Myopia Therapy: Paragliding, Kitesurfing, Motorbike Excursions

Matthew asks one of my favorite questions, considering new outdoor hobbies. That’s the truly best question of all, “what could I go do outside”?  Just like measuring centimeters will first get you hooked on following […]

Jake Steiner

Sep 19,2016 · 4 min read

Matthew asks one of my favorite questions, considering new outdoor hobbies.

That’s the truly best question of all, “what could I go do outside”?  Just like measuring centimeters will first get you hooked on following down the rabbit hole on myopia, getting outside consistently will get you the most 20/20 gains.

I added a few of my own outdoor finds to Matthew’s thread.  See if any of these get you daydreaming:

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“Love the question, Matthew!

I keep thinking about this one, especially in the context of endmyopia. A really big part of my own bigger picture life, once I put all the myopia pieces together, was to find ways to keep me outside, and away from screens. It’s a super fun thing to have in your mind, looking towards new outdoor hobbies.

Couple things I went for that were fun.

I took hang gliding lessons. I was in Florida at the time which wasn’t an ideal place for hang gliding but found a spot where they had ultralight airplanes to tow you up and then release you, so you can go find thermals and soar. Sounds pricey but actually cost less in lessons than a mid range TV.

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Yea that thing.  And there are other pictures, of me looking green in the face.

Also went for dive certificate / license, and spending more time with people with boats. Bought a boat, which ended up being the activity (rather than diving), to this day one of my favorite memories. Just a small 18″ foot boat, friends, hang out on nearby islands. 

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A much younger, blinder Jake, on a lobster hunt.

Paragliding. Did that quite a bit for a few years and all over the world, though that’s ridiculous and will just get you killed (at least that ended up my assessment). 

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Watching kids learning to fly, in Thailand.  Extra sketchy.

Motorbikes. Always owning a bike, which somehow drew me outside a lot, and jut go ride and explore. As with the other above bits, of course very location dependent. I put tens of thousands of kilometers on little bikes exploring parts of Asia, many miles on bigger bikes in the US, and Vespas in Europe.

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Rode this contraption all over Cambodia for 7 months.

Watersports. Tried to get proficient at kitesurfing (failed), some surfing, some wakeboarding, windsurfing. All interesting because they take up a lot of time besides the activity. Getting ready, going, coming back, hanging out with people before, after, during.

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Go ahead, laugh.

Did rowing for a while, if you’re near a quiet river, that’s amazing. The boats are super tech too, crazy thin, lightweight contraptions, and you’ve got to really learn to balance. Or Waterpolo, if you’re the combative sort. 

Had friends into soccer after work. Not my thing though.

Ultralight airplanes. And yes, sounds expensive again. But a used trike is cheaper than most motorbikes, and while also a little death defying, a very very cool way to really get outside. That’s a whole world of things, from being able to build your own from a kit, to learning to fly, to making all sorts of new friends. In the US in particular there is a crazy cool range of ultralight groups (ones with pontoons if you’re around water, all sorts of different sizes and budgets and configurations – and an easy license to go fly one, and no FAA nonsense to limit your landing options or make maintenance crazy expensive).

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Truly forever ago, many of those adventures.

More out there, things like making friends with burner communities. Lots of art projects there, get togethers out in the wild, building things as a big part of groups. A lot of regional stuff going on there.

I could probably go on forever, but then I’ve also had quite a bit of time (and latitude) on my hands to find things that translate into more first hand, real experience. Maybe some inspiration to think further and wider out of the box, if appropriate. ?”

There are so many things out there, things you may never even have thought of.  Things so much better than consuming life passively, through screens.  And you don’t have to have lots of money or time either.  One thing I used to do while living in coastal cities was go to the yacht club (oh shush, wait for it!) with a six pack of beer in the evenings (regatta time – ask if/when they do those ahead of time) and ask around if any sailboats needed more crew (waving around the six pack of beer, of course).

That worked swimmingly, almost every single time – and cost just the price of a six pack.

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That beats any kind of Facebook time.

Get to thinking!

Cheers,

-Jake

WRITTEN BY

Jake Steiner

Reformed stock trader. Kite surfer, pilot, vagabond. Father. And of course - the last of the living, imaginarily bearded eye gurus.

Topic:  20/20 Life

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