Words: Gavin Kearns, Shift Sport and Marketing | Photos: Turbovite Jump City JHB 2012
Day in and day out you go about trying to conquer the urban jungle, spending hours in traffic, being cut-off and raging behind a steering wheel as you make your way to and from work. Not only is this precious time wasted but one seldom gets to enjoy the city. This is all changing thanks to Turbovite Jump City, a series of urban challenges that combines the best of multi sports and obstacle courses in Johannesburg, Durban and Cape Town.
This lung-busting 10 km urban challenge is about athletes being given the opportunity to run free and experience their city in ways that they would otherwise never be able to. The focus is entirely on having fun while running through the streets and alleyways, past buildings and the landmarks of their respective city, and overcoming urban obstacles placed sporadically along the route. For the organisers of the event, no wall is too big, no stair is too high and no area out of bounds.
The concept of urban running is based on the incredible athleticism demonstrated by parkour athletes who can pretty much leap, bound or conquer anything you place in front of them. Marry this concept with the abilities of your everyday athlete or avid runner and you have an urban challenge; something that caters for all levels of athleticism, something that you can do nowhere else.
The recent gain in popularity of obstacle and concept races demonstrates the overwhelming desire of individuals to overcome new challenges and break away from the monotony of a standard event with a singular discipline. The obstacles on the urban challenge courses are specially designed and inspired by the city to give you an unparalleled experience. Along the way you can expect to encounter 4 m high quarter pipes, blacked-out parking garages that are seven stories below the city, 2 m walls, tyres, tyres and more tyres. There are no fewer than 14 obstacles on this challenging and somewhat testing 10 km course! When participants enter one of these events, they are required to dig deep and use their full body strength to climb, crawl, jump, carry and slide to overcome these obstacles en route, which uses as little road as possible and more of the urban landscape.
With ample categories catering for teams and individuals, this event is all about the camaraderie between friends and family who may assist each other in the teamed event, whilst individuals can go about the business of trying to beat their goals. One thing is for sure, there is no shortage of adventure to be had by any aspiring urban athletes.
Changing the pace
In keeping with the theme of overcoming the urban jungle and experiencing the city, participants can expect to take on some of the cities greatest landmarks. Every event in the series features something never used before. In Johannesburg, urban athletes ran through Museum Africa and fascinating Discovery Sci-Bono Centre. Durban athletes are spoilt with adventure as they take on uShaka Marine World, the vintage of the imaginatively shipwrecked themed aquarium and the best slides that Wet and Wild has to offer. Cape Town urban athletes will be treated to the majesty of Green Point Stadium and its surrounds.
Conquer your city
You don’t need to be the fittest or fastest. Your keen love for adventure and challenge will more than suffice. The event series features different categories with a broad offering to all:
• The Jump City Charger - this elite individual category is for all the avid athletes who have been putting their blood, sweat and tears into training. The charger is the top dog in our city and these elites will be competing for gold in this urban challenge. Athletes competing in this category should be able to run 10 km in under 45 minutes to qualify for a place as a Charger. Entries are limited to 200 participants.
• The Jump City Ranger - this is for the solo artist who is out there to beat his or her personal best, and young and old are encouraged to stretch the limits and climb onto the fitness train. Entries are limited to 300 participants.
• The Jump City Adventure - this is our version of couple’s therapy or some good fun and bonding time with a friend because sometimes you just need a partner in crime. Teams will have the advantage of being able to assist one another through the obstacles. Entries are limited to 400 participants.
• The Jump City Mayor - this is the corporates' opportunity to stake a claim on the city.
Break the rules
Rise to the challenge and show what you are worth. You will never look at the city in the same way again; it is our playground and yours to take on. Next time you are stuck in traffic you might just be inspired to find another means of travel.
Just remember, this is your city, your adventure and you need to breathe.
The Johannesburg event took place on 10 March 2013 and now we are heading out across South Africa for the remaining legs in Bloemfontein, Durban and Cape Town. For more information visit: Facebook: www.facebook.com/jumpcity.GP or www.shiftsm.co.za