Sport Northern Ireland celebrates achievement and success when participants overcome challenges and difficulties that involve genuine risks in the natural environment.
Adventure sports and outdoor recreation inevitably involve genuine risks but facing and overcoming challenges is exactly what many people crave in an increasingly “safety conscious” society and these bring immeasurable personal and social benefits.
Adventure sports make both physical and mental demands on those who participate and the rewards from overcoming challenge are great.
Finding the balance between accepting and embracing risks and being safety conscious is critical and there is no excuse for being reckless about safety or causing undue stress and fear in people. However, in adventure sports if there is too little real or perceived risk, the activity becomes mundane, loses its challenge and the resulting rewards are greatly diminished. On the other hand, poorly managed risk has the potential to cause participants to be put off the activity, be left emotionally scarred, or even suffer severe injury and loss of life.
Sport Northern Ireland recognises that adventure activities are more than a sport but also are part of an industry that is growing. Managing risk appropriately is all about balancing the risks and benefits.
Sport Northern Ireland and the Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure (DCAL) are pleased to support and promote Adventuremark which is an accreditation scheme for providers to demonstrate that they are compliant with health and safety requirements and industry recognised norms without decreasing opportunities for adventure and challenge.