For Adrenalists devoted to pushing their physical and mental limits, winning a Guinness World Record is the ultimate accomplishment. Those few who manage victory are recognized as the only people in the world to have achieved a feat, and though an entire subsection of the planet will likely set its sights on toppling whatever benchmark is set as soon as news of a record is leaked, a Guinness World Record is validation of complete singularity.
Some of the most extreme and incredible athletic happenings are tracked by the venerable Guinness organization. Here are the most extreme Guinness World Records ever.
Fastest Motorcycle Wheelie
Wheelies are cool mostly because they’re so incredibly dangerous. Whether on a one-speed, a BMX, or a motorcycle, one false move is enough to leave a rider on his back at the very least and, more often than not, with a few broken bones. Risk equals reward, however, as we all know, and no where is this more true than in the world of extreme sports. Just ask Patrick Furstenhoff, who’s held the Guinness World Record for fastest motorcycle wheelie since attempting the stunt in April of 1999 at Bruntingthorpe Proving Ground in Leicestershire, England. While aboard his Honda Super Blackbird 1100 cc Turbo, Furstenhoff’s storied attempt clocked in at 307.86 km/h (191.3 mph), three times the speed limit of most roads, as the video somewhat terrifyingly reminds us.
Skateboarding’s First 1080 Spin
12-year-old skateboarder Tom Schaar is no stranger to the pages of The Adrenalist. In fact, we covered his record-setting feat in our Take a Dream and Ride article back in April. We revisit Schaar because there are two unusual elements about his record. First, and most obviously, is his age. Very few kids accomplish any act of world-record caliber before they hit their teens. More importantly, though, is the feat itself. Schaar’s record is so extraordinary because he’s the first person in the world to ever hold it. Just unseating a predecessor would’ve been impressive enough, but Schaar went a step further and created something entirely new. Before he and his board pulled off a 1080, no skater had ever successfully landed the move. Not only is Schaar a world-class talent, but he’s also a world-class innovator. There just aren’t many of those kicking around.
Photo Credit: UKGear
Most One-Armed Pushups in One Hour
Paddy Doyle, way back in 1993 at the Munster Arms Hotel in Sparkbrook, UK, grabbed the Guinness World Record for performing a staggering 1,868 one-armed pushups. Not only is that impressive, but it wasn’t over the course of an entire day, mind you. It was in one single hour. Get this: Doyle, a multi-discipline pro athlete with skills that range from fitness to martial arts, holds six other World Records, including most back-of-hands pushups completed in one hour (1, 940), most sit-ups done with a 50 lb weight on his chest in 30 mins (932) and most pushups in one year (1, 500, 230).
Fastest 20 M Carrying 300 Kg on Shoulders
Lifting your own body weight thousands of time is indisputably impressive, but how about carrying more than 660 pounds of steel over 65 feet in just over 11 seconds (11.4 to be exact)? Yes, that’s downright incredible. Latvian-born, career Strongman competitor, Agris Kazelniks, set a World Record for completing the feat on the set of Lo Show Dei Record, in Milan, Italy, on 18 April 2009. We were floored to find out that Kazelniks finished second in overall standings for the 2009 Strongman season. If carrying the equivalent of half a Mini Cooper over your head for two first-downs in the time it takes to pour a glass of water doesn’t get you a first place spot, we fear the man who’s able show us what will.
Longest Somersault on Spring Loaded Stilts
No matter how many times you’ve done it successfully, flipping always carries with it some degree of uncertainty. Every time you turn your legs over your head and manage to land correctly is both a medical victory and an adrenaline-inducing accomplishment. That’s all true when you don’t have spring loaded stilts attached to your legs – stilts that amplify your body’s natural ability and, in turn, your potential for injury. This increased ability for disaster is precisely why UK-born John Simkins’s spring loaded stilt somersaulting World Record is so doubly awesome. While performing in front of a live studio audience in Beijing, China in 2009, Simkins shattered his previous stilting Record by somersaulting 5.04 m (16 ft 6 in). To put in perspective just how far that really is, go to 1:28 and compare John’s competitor’s performance with his own. The first jumper jumps impressively, but Simkins’s in a whole different league.