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Summer Guide

Weird & Wild

While away the sunny days with sports you've never heard of before.

By Austen Diamond
Posted // June 6,2012 -

For those adventurous enough to step off of the tennis court, there are plenty of oddball recreation activities—some competitive, some not—here in Zion.

Paddleboard Yoga in a Dome
Yoga, as most people know it today, is only about 100 years old and very much Americanized. So it was inevitable that it would be taken to the most remote or extreme places, like, say, deep within a 55-foot-tall, beehive-shaped limestone crater that’s home to 96-degree hot springs, where yogis flow and stretch while floating on a paddleboard. Park City Yoga Adventures owner Julia Geisler first came across the practice via YouTube videos of surfers a few years back. Now, Geisler leads folks in asana and pranayama practice down in the sauna-like 10,000-year-old calcium carbonite dome at the Homestead Resort. 700 N. Homestead Drive, Midway, 435- 695-4502,

Invented in 1965 by a congressman from Washington State—the game is named after his dog, Pickle, who would often steal the ball and hide—Pickle-Ball is something between tennis and ping-pong. The game is played on a scaled-down tennis court with wooden paddles and a Wiffle ball. Active seniors and young drink-swillers alike can enjoy this game. There are no dedicated courts in Salt Lake City, but there are several throughout the state, including Sandy and South Jordan.


Bike Polo
For those who thought the official sport of hipsterdom was mustache growing—or who could look the most ironic—bike polo proves them wrong. It’s played just like polo, except that players ride a steezy fixed-gear bike instead of a horse. There are hardcourt and grass pick-up games at Liberty Park, which are announced on the Bike Polo Utah Yahoo group page. And if this two-wheelin’ sport is too commonplace or too technical for you, might we suggest tall-bike jousting?

Tough Mudder
Iron Man competitions were sooo, like, 1999. Get with the times, people … and get dirty. Designed by the British Special Forces, Tough Mudder events are 10- to 12-mile obstacle-course races that test one’s fortitude, strength, endurance and, after the race, one’s ability to get really tough stains out of clothing. Aside from mud, there is also fire, ice water and electric fences, to name a few of the event’s challenges. If you’re still not afraid, Tough Mudder comes to Salt Lake City on Oct. 13 & 14.

What’s better than getting wet on a hot summer day? A highly competitive game of underwater hockey, that’s what. City Weekly couldn’t actually find any information about Octopush being played in Salt Lake City, so take this as a call to arms. Equipped with a snorkel, fins and a stick, Octopush players dive underwater and try to push the puck into the opponent’s goal, set up on opposite ends of the pool. The sport was invented in 1954 by Alan Blake of the Southsea Sub-Aqua Club. As the years have passed, offensive and defensive maneuvers similar to ice hockey have developed. 







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Posted // June 7,2012 at 08:24

There are new Pickleball courts in Ogden, St. George, Brigham, Hurricane and Cedar City.  Pickleball is taught in the public schools in Ogden and St. George.  Only Salt Lake City is lagging behind as the sport gains popularity.  Nevertheless, you can play Pickleball every day of the week at one of the Salt Lake County recreation centers.  The Ogden Pickleball Association, 200 strong, is hosting a regional tournament next month.