/ Opinions / Could tubing be considered a sport?

Could tubing be considered a sport?

July 10, 2020 by Brett LaBore

I recently went on vacation and did a little swimming, relaxing and … tubing. It was a very fun vacation and the tubing was a highlight.

It did leave me thinking … is or can tubing be a sport? 

My brother and I tubed nearly every day over the course of a week. We went in and out of the wake, over the waves and up and down the lake. 

The one thing I realized when I was on the tube was how tired I got … and how quickly. I haven’t done much strength and conditioning training as of late, but I got really tired.

Pulling myself to get in good position, constantly shifting around and getting battered by waves really wore me out. 

And then I hit a big wave and I had to do it all over again. It’s super fun and something I enjoy doing. I also see it as a challenge. How long can I stay on the tube before potentially getting thrown off?

I might consider it a sport in this aspect. It requires some strength to hang on and it gets my cardio up as high as running would at times. Isn’t that what sports are?

Sports are the best athletes in the world playing in a competition. We can debate what a sport is or what qualifies as an athletic competition. 

What I do know is the Olympics showcases the best athletes in the world and the Olympics is a sporting competition.

Is tubing behind a boat an Olympic sport? Of course not. All I’m saying is I got tired and I had to use all of my strength to hang on as I went back and forth outside the wake with waves for a couple of minutes. 

The stronger one is, the longer they will last on a tube without getting worn out or getting their heart rate up. 

You also have to be smart about using your strength. I feel like I wore myself out more than I needed to with my hand grip. 

The tubes we had have four handles all spaced out proportionally. I used the far left and far right handle. That stretches me out as far as I can, which I felt was to my advantage.

But maybe that was strenuous. I started experimenting and held onto the two middle handles and it conserved my energy. Instead of adjusting myself and using the most energy, my arms were parallel to one another.

Tubing is also a little bit of strategy. By the end of the week, I was using the middle two handles to see how that worked. But when there were big waves coming, I switched to the outside handles. When that was over, I switched back.

So I was able to conserve my energy to when I really needed it. Tubing is about grip, positioning and strength. Most of all it is fun.

I have and always will love tubing. It’s a tradition my brother and I like to do on vacation and it gives me a rush that I don’t get anywhere else and one that will continue.

Brett LaBore may be reached at [email protected] or [email protected]



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