During the summer of 2010, I spent eight weeks in London interning at a sports website. I had to write articles about different, lesser-known sports. I wrote about parkour, rollerskiing and a bunch of different sports, but my favorite would have to be landyachting.
No, not lady aching, as some people probably read that. I don’t even know what lady aching would be, but I probably don’t want to know.
Landyachting is basically a combination of sailing and go-karting. It’s more physical than either sailing or go-karting, mostly because you have to control the landyacht with your hands and your feet. At first it’s a little tough. You have to steer with your feet, but you increase or decrease speed by releasing or pulling on the rope for the sail. It’s a little bit like windsurfing, but not really.
You can definitely gain some speed when you participate. The expert that I went to for my lesson had a record speed of 86.4 mph. Imagine that wind wiping through your hair, or what will probably be more accurate, detaching your hair.
The day that I went landyachting, it was rainy and cold (basically a regular day in London in May) and had on the lamest fleece ever. I was freezing the entire time, but it was awesome.
Though it is a beach sport (preferably wet so you get more speed), you can do it in parking lots, but where’s the fun in that?
The sport is popular in England, which apparently is the weird sport capital of the world (Gloucestershire cheese rolling? Really?) There are numerous clubs in England and some in France, as well. There is even a British Federation of Sand and Land Yachts.
I think I smell a new Olympic sport.