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|Friday, October 27, 2000, updated at 14:57(GMT+8)|
MSOQ 2000 to Open in LijiangThe Mild Seven Outdoor Quest 2000 will take place from November 2-5 in the historic city of Lijiang in Yunnan Province, China. Twenty-four international teams, each with at least one person of the opposite sex, will be selected to compete for the total prize money of US $200,000. The Mild Seven Outdoor Quest is a 4 day adventure stage race, covering 300 kilometers, featuring 7 different sporting disciplines.
The 7 sports are: Team Biathlon, Trail Running, Off-Road In-Line Skating, Lake Paddling, Mountain Biking, River Kayaking, and Adventure Skills.
A combination of running and cycling, the team biathlon "ride & tie" originally arose from an old gathering technique using horses. Teams of four would split up into two runners (team A) and two bikers (team B). The bikers (team B) would cycle for a distance, drop their bikes, and continue running. The runners (team A) on the other hand, would run up to the parked bikes, and ride past the original bikers (team B) and then drop their bikes after a distance. This "leap frog" pattern continues. The team biathlon requires strategy and a clear knowledge of what each team members' strengths and weaknesses are. Cycling too long can tire out runners, while cycling too short can lead to inefficient transitions. Triathletes and duathletes find the team biathlon an excellent training tool for their sports competitions.
Trail Running is probably one of the world's oldest sports. Originally used as a mode of transportation, now a favorite weekend aerobic pastime. Trail running, also known as cross-country running, takes the runner through a variety of terrains, from snow capped mountains to valleys, to gullies and pastures. It's a combination between a vigorous hike and a running workout. It offers a break from the traditional track or treadmill, allowing the runner to experience a variety of atmospheres.
In today's vast consumer sporting goods market, you can buy special "trail running" shoes. With trail running, it's easy to twist your ankle on slippery or uneven surfaces, so trail running shoes are built with extra support, but are not as bulky as traditional hiking boots. Shoes tend to have a more rugged outer sole for traction and slightly stiffer bodies for better lateral support. Watch out for hidden roots, loose rocks, and muddy surfaces while running on trails. Be sure to wear layers of moisture wicking shirts or a light jacket in case the weather decides to turn on you.
Off-Road In-Line Skating is a hybrid of roller-skating and cross-country skiing, off-road in-line skating is a relatively new sport taking off with great speed! In-line skating is similar to ice skating except the blade is replaced by wheels in a straight line; off-road in-line skating is similar to traditional in-line skating except can be done on varied surfaces. From a fitness standpoint, skating burns almost as many calories and gains nearly the same fitness benefits as running. It works the leg muscles longer per stride than in running or in a cycling pedal. With the use of ski poles in the off-road version of in-line skating, an additional upper body workout is added. Ski poles not only offer additional balance and stability while skating over gravel, grass, and branches, but can assist with power and forward propulsion. For longer more effective strides, use longer poles and wider leg strides.
Lake paddling, also known as flat-water paddling, has some of the same disciplines as sea kayaking. On lakes, however, waves tend to be choppier than at sea. Lake paddling boats come in many varieties. From traditional steel fishing boats and heavy wooden Dragon boats to carbon fibre kayaks and canoes, all will test your skills on the lake.
Essential skills for a good paddler, apart from strength, endurance and determination, are balance and coordination. Making the boat go straight is either done with extra strokes, slowing progress and requiring more effort, or more importantly by good team rhythm and communication.
Discovered in the early 1970's in the hills of Northern California, mountain biking has taken over traditional road cycling as the sport of choice. Cycling on the road used to be a "10-speed" bike on a circular paved track. Nowadays, mountain biking is a 27-speed, multiple suspension, fat tire, invigorating challenge.
In adventure races, mountain biking can take one along single-track trails, muddy ditches, through streams, over boulders, requiring strength, stamina, and balance.
River kayaking, or paddling on moving water, can vary from extremely wild whitewater river kayaking to a milder river transverse. Differing from lake paddling, the downward movement of the river water will lead to faster speeds, unless of course you are traveling upstream! The trick is to find the fastest line, scanning the surface ahead for tellates that give away the fastest stream and looking for rocks or shallows. There is little chance to settle into a rhythm or relax and it is doubly difficult when the vessel is a double kayak.
The best paddling teams communicate constantly about the river ahead, calling the best line, avoiding difficulties and dangers, all while keeping an eye on the opposition. Practice is essential in order to know how rivers behave. But even then, dunkings are common when a quick roll is essential to avoid losing precious seconds.
Always remember to paddle in good condition kayaks, wear a life vest, use a properly sized sprayskirt, carry a minimum 25-foot throw line, and bring extra clothing.
Characterized by the tactical skills and agility, adventure skills cover a range of outdoor and rope sports. With components of boot camp training, rock climbing skills, and mental puzzles, the MSOQ offers a menu of adventures to test any adventure racer's all around athleticism.
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