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The Orange Pop team

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This week's feature

Sports & the City

For some, sports + city = pollution, dangerous roads, pedestrians to avoid, not enough parks for working out… But surprisingly, the city can be ideal for practicing sports. Some sports deemed unimaginable in urban settings are practiced right in the heart of New York City.

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So for issue number 76, “Sports & the City”, lace up your sneakers and stretch those muscles. You thought the concrete jungle was a no-sport zone? Think again – we’re off to city center for a serious workout:

  1. Infographic on the world’s most sports-friendly cities
  2. Urban stunt bike champ, Danny MacAskill
  3. Freestyle skiing with Sosh Big Air. Sponsors, organizers, and athletes weigh in
  4. Streetball, the Top NBA players whose first jump shots were on urban blacktops
  5. Surfing with Alison Teal and her trip to the Paris Catacombs
  6. Mind-blowing aerobics in a clip by the group OK Go
  7. Street workouts with Hannibal For King… check out those abs!

Fasten your seatbelts, destination pop culture!

As skateboard champ Tony Hawk famously said:

I love the fact that there is now a skate park in almost every city.

Cue up OK Go and go for a run with the headphones on

Music - November 23, 2016

What was once a gimmicky extra, is now a music industry mainstay. While every group churns them out, some recording artists make better videos than others. OK Go, an American pop-rock group that came together in 1998, is renowned for their brilliant clips. Billboard magazine calls them ingenious. With tip-top production values and whacky humor, they’re hailed as masters of the short film. Their smash hit Here It Goes Again racked up 30 million views on YouTube. The foursome’s running machine jitter-bug in cardigans and kitsch ties is just hilarious.

For this week’s magazine, dedicated to Sports in the City, we picked out OK Go’s track End Love, in which the band members head to L.A. for an aerobics session. They’re decked out in technicolor sweat suits for a little Echo Park Lake cardio-vascular work. Check it out – you’ll want to rush out and get yourself neon duds, study all the moves, and head to Central Park for a test run. One caveat: the clip, produced by the band members themselves, features stop-motion and time-lapse photography, so you’ll need superhero abs for some of these moves.;)

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The world's most sport-friendly cities

The infographic - November 23, 2016

Want a vacation chock full of sports, workouts, and sweat suits? Here’s the ranking of the 10 best sports cities!

infographic-the-world-most-sport-friendly-cities-streetsport-smartcities

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3 questions au Sosh Big Air

The 3 questions - November 23, 2016

The first ever Sosh Big Air was held in downtown Annecy (France) this autumn. A look back on this fab funky event and the people who made it happen (big ups to our buddies at Sosh :D).

 

Gaylord Pedretti, the man in charge of Sosh Big Air

Orange Pop: Where did the idea for this event come from?

Gaylord Pedretti: We all love skiing and snow sports but the problem is that they take place in the mountains. Paradoxically, while these are the ultimate spectator sports, not many fans make it up the mountain to watch them. We wanted to hold a spectator-friendly freestyle event right downtown, before the ski and snowboard season opened. Annecy was the obvious choice since it’s home base for so many alpine sports in France. The idea of attracting so many top-notch freeskiers for some frosty urban freestyling was just too tempting. It was a huge challenge that we met with an emphatic, “Yes we can!”

O Pop: How tough is it to hold this kind of event right smack in the middle of a city?

GP: It’s a huge undertaking. It took 3 weeks, massive cranes, and a lot of heavy construction. The ramp was 45 meters, higher than the buildings around it. What with France’s heightened security measures, we had to convince the authorities to allow the event to take place. But truth to tell, I like doing difficult things: after all, no one’s ever pulled something like this off.

O. Pop: What kind of rapport does this kind of event create between city-dwellers and snow sports enthusiasts?

GP: I remember talking to a granny watching the event through binoculars. I complimented her on her kit and she said: “I’ve never seen anything like this and I’ll surely never see anything like it again!” The president of Annecy’s football team even post-poned their match so his team could come watch Sosh Big Air! And to get everyone into it, we had the crowd do the judging and designate the winners. It got everyone involved.

gaylord-pedretti-organisateur-sosh-big-air

Gaylord Pedretti © David Malacrida

Kevin Rolland, freestyle skier

Orange Pop: How are ramp skiing and alpine stunt skiing different?

Kevin Rolland: Skiing on a ramp is weird because you have no contact with the snow until you hit the slope. One minute you’re an urban dude in sneakers, the next you’re a pro rider. Pretty bizarre.

O. Pop: This Big Air rig is the largest of its kind ever built. How do you train for this event when there’s nothing like this ramp anywhere in the world? How do athletes deal with the fear factor?

KR: There’s always some fear during the first run because it’s a leap into the unknown. Plus, skiers are used to alpine scenery, so a backdrop as incongruous as a center city spooks them a bit. But once they get into it, the fun takes over and they have a ball.

O. Pop: The Sosh Big Air ramp is in the heart of Annecy. As an athlete, how does this urban venue change your mental approach?

KR: In general, I like skiing around a little bit before I hit the course. It warms me up, relaxes me, and gives me the feel of the snow. At Sosh Big Air, you just jump into it and you’ve only got 50 meters of downhill to get used to it before the jump.;)

kevin-rolland-sosh-big-air-ski-streetsport

Kevin Rolland © Louis Garnier

 

Sandy Alibo, Director of Sponsoring at Sosh

Orange Pop: What brand image advantages do sponsors get out of backing an event like this?

Sandy Alibo: Almost 20,000 spectators came to Annecy to see Sosh Big Air over its two-day run. And we had 4 million hits’ worth of visibility thanks to coverage in 213 media of some form or other, 20% of which were TV stories that totaled 2 hours and 30 minutes. That’s the equivalent of 1,500,000 euros of advertising! (source: argus). Web coverage was very strong, with 54 million impressions on social media (source: radarly).

O. Pop: Why organize an event like this in the heart of a major French city?

SA: Sosh is constantly on the lookout for things that are bold and unusual. Big Air-type events are commonplace worldwide but have never been held in France. We wanted to put on a show that brings together the world of international freeskiing and the general public. That’s where the idea of hosting the event in an urban setting came from. It offers brands maximum visibility as opposed to the small turnouts alpine competitions attract. The challenge was to find the perfect spot to host this world-class extravaganza.

O. Pop: Will this lead to similar events in the hearts of other big cities?

SA: Next year, our star event is the Sosh Freestyle Cup in Marseilles, June 2017 (one of the official competitions collectively referred to as the BMX Freestyle Park World Cup), the Sosh Highlight in Paris, May of 2017 (a skate photo and video contest) and the Sosh Urban Motion in Paris, October of 2017 (BMX photo and video contest).

Sosh is now a major promoter of freestyle sporting events. We contribute to the global strategy of competition-hosting, teaming up with Orange Events Solutions to furnish cutting-edge technology, HD WiFi, social wall, and livestreaming. The result is an unforgettable digitally enhanced experience!

sandy-alibo-sponsoring-sosh-france-streetsport-rider

Sandy Alibo © Sandy Alibo

 

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Can you really surf in the city?

The killer question - November 23, 2016

“If Indiana Jones were a she”, that’s how admirers of young Hawaiian surfer Alison Teal describe her. She has an unquenchable thirst for adventure and exploration. In October, she set herself a fresh challenge: go surfing in the heart of Paris. After a tour of the capital, she got down to business, i.e. surfing the cold waters of the River Seine.

And she didn’t stop there, either, descending 150 meters below the cobblestones into the famed (and spooky) catacombs for a little subterranean surfing. A headlamp and a surfboard – now that’s a creative way to visit Paris’s creepiest monument!

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No urban nook or cranny’s off-limits for champ mountain biker Dany MacAskill

A picture says it all - November 23, 2016

All-around street trials champion, British bike maestro Danny MacAskill demonstrates urban off-road in this video. You can indeed go absolutely ANYWHERE you want to in the city.

With a GoPro camera fastened to his helmet, this daredevil roams the perches and ledges of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria in Spain, jumping from roof to roof and negotiating vertiginous heights while executing eye-popping stunts. This dazzling bike ballet will set your head spinning, but don’t forget: he’s a pro, so don’t try this at home 😉

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“Hannibal for King”, the one-and-only street workout superstar

Who's who - November 23, 2016

You may have seen him in a park or hanging off a telephone pole. In any case, you surely didn’t see him in a gym. Hannibal For King is the star and founding father of what’s been dubbed “the street workout”, outdoor weight training.

This American started popularizing the sport in 2008 with a raft of internet videos in which he demonstrates weight-lifting routines using park benches, utility poles, walls and even sliding boards. He’s the undisputed king of an urban sport that’s taken root all over the world. His version of cardio-vascular fitness and muscle toning is a reminder that you don’t have to spend a mint and buy $200 sneakers to get into shape.

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TOP 5 former streetballers turned NBA stars

Gimme 5 - November 23, 2016

Before dunking on the most beautiful floors, the 5 athletes below begun basketball in the sidewalk!

1. Vince Carter: Basketball’s most spectacular trick, the slam dunk, was a product of the flamboyant freewheeling style of streetball. So it’s no surprise that the greatest dunker in the history of the NBA got his start on courts with bent rims and no nets.

vince-carte-streetball-joueur-basket-nba

Vince Carter © Twitter

2. Allen Iverson: Allen Iverson is hands-down one of finest to ever play the game, and he owes his mesmerizing ambidextrous dribbling to his streetball roots.

allen-iverson-joueur-nba-basket-streetball-streetsport

Allen Iverson © Twitter

3. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar: The Los Angeles Lakers icon was the king of the blacktop before his reign in the NBA. And in his retirement, he’s gone on to success in Hollywood and in the bookstore.

kareem-abdul-jabbar-streetball-basket-joueur-nba-streetsport

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar © kareemabduljabbar.com

4. Jamal Crawford: One of the Los Angeles Clippers superstars, Jamal Crawford invented a spectacular dribble dubbed the “shake and bake”. No doubt about its provenance; he honed it in the ‘hood.

jamal-crawford-nba-basket-streetsport-streetball-joueur

Jamal Crawford © jamalcrawford.com

5. Rafer Alston: After becoming a legend on the inner-city courts, New Yorker Rafer Alston became an NBA stand-out for the Houston Rockets.

rafer-alston-basket-streetsport-streetball

Rafer Alston © Wikipedia

ELSEWHERE ON ORANGE POP
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Snowboarding in the streets of St Petersburg

Stories - November 23, 2016

Snowboarding in the streets sounds like a crazy idea? Well, not with the Adidas team.

Artem Smolin, Mikhail Ilin, Anton Lavrenteev and Philipp Ananin, 4 professional Russian riders, actually made this crazy project come true… And it’s simply amazing!

They succeeded in making spectacular stunts like jumping above bridges or ramp stairs… just as if they had a skateboard instead of a snowboard under their feet. Congrats for this stunning performance that you can watch in the video below:

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Play basketball inside the new Nike store!

Stories - November 24, 2016

Do you like shopping and sport? Breaking news: Nike opened a new connected store in Soho, NYC, on November 18 to enable customers to buy new shoes and play sport at the same time.

This huge store is made of 5 floors with trial spaces,  including a basketball ground and a running space to test new products.

You’ll be able to shoot hoops and test new sneakers on a treadmill.  And thanks to several immersive digital screens, you’ll feel like running inside Central Park or West Side Highway! According to Sean Madden, the senior director of service for Nike, the brand wants to “augment the shopping experience” and to reinvent the retail business.

Last but not least,  you can buy Nike’s new self-lacing shoes! 😀

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Be sportive, be stylish with Stella McCartney

Stories - November 25, 2016

Sometimes, one of the biggest issues for not going out running is not motivation, it is lack of style!

If you’re looking for the perfect sport outfit, you may find your happiness with the new Stella McCartney’s collection designed for Adidas.

The famous Brit stylist mixes performance with elegance in a new sportswear range unveiled in LA at the beginning of November.

“We wanted to meet the need of the multifaceted and fitness focused women of today, no matter what their choice of exercise.” Stella McCartney said. Plus, these clothes are ecofriendly- 38% of the pieces are sustainable.

From sleeveless tops to new shoes, the choice is yours. Check out her latest collection here. And like Karlie Kloss, the muse of this capsule wardrobe, you’ll look sportive and stylish! 😀

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Streetball across the world

Stories - November 28, 2016

“Where there’s a ball… there will always be someone who wants to play soccer” said Sean Taylor, author of several books about streetball. Yes, we can always play soccer no matter the city we’re living in!

Caio Vilela, a globe-trotting photojournalist, illustrated one of these books. He travelled through 105 countries and many cities (impressive, right?) to highlight the practice of streetball, far away from stadiums. Basically, Vilela took pictures of ordinary people playing soccer in the streets in order to capture their emotions. That way, he proved that everyone plays soccer everywhere around the globe.

His last book,Strassenfussball, is made of images of spontaneous soccer games. He visited major cities like Brasilia, Edinburgh in Scotland, Yazd in Iran and recently St Petersburg in Russia. He went to suburban areas, remote regions and also unknown spots in Africa. Next destination: the region of Caucasus and the Arctic. Have a nice trip, pal! 😉

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The crazy ascension of the votive church in Vienna

Stories - November 29, 2016

Vitaliy Raskalov and Vadim Makhorov are Russian photographs, addicted to extreme urban climbing. They created their own Youtube Channel in 2011, On the roofs, to show their exploits throughout the world.

As thrill seekers, they are used to climbing impressive monuments like skyscrapers and historic buildings. One thing is for sure: they don’t know vertigo! Their craziest ascension is probably the Shanghai tower: 650 meters above the ground, without any safety equipment.

In their latest video released in October, they climbed up the 100-meter Vienna cathedral- their first ascension in Europe. Last but not least, this video offers a wonderful panorama of the capital of Austria. No doubt that the video will be awesome for those who enjoy strong sensations… from the sofa 😀

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See you next week!

To be continued - November 23, 2016

Next week, digital is gonna take Art into the streets! #DigitalArt

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