Sport of The Month: Extreme Ironing

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Sport of The Month: Extreme Ironing

One man extreme ironing by wake boarding while ironing. Image courtesy of Wikimedia

One man extreme ironing by wake boarding while ironing. Image courtesy of Wikimedia

One man extreme ironing by wake boarding while ironing. Image courtesy of Wikimedia

One man extreme ironing by wake boarding while ironing. Image courtesy of Wikimedia


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One man extreme ironing by wake boarding while ironing. Image courtesy of Wikimedia

One man extreme ironing by wake boarding while ironing. Image courtesy of Wikimedia

By Joe Antoun

Have you ever felt like you needed more adventure in your life but you still wanted to enjoy your daily ironing? Neither have I, but for some people this is a serious problem, including one man named Phil Shaw.

Shaw is from a town in England called Leicester. There he was a worker in a knitwear factory. He had just come home from a long day at work and had many chores to do. He knew that he had to complete these chores but he had a strong urge to go rock climbing. He decided to do the chores while rock climbing.

He took his ironing board and the clothes he needed to iron and went climbing. This took place in 1997, and by 1999, Shaw, who now goes by the name of Steam, went on a national journey to promote the new activity.

While he was in New Zealand, he ran into a group of German tourists. After talking with them, they formed a group called “Extreme Ironing International.” The Sport gained even more attention when a British television channel called Wag TV produced a documentary called “Extreme Ironing: Pressing for Victory.” This documentary followed Britain’s team in the first Extreme Ironing World Championships in Germany in 2002.

A side story in the show talked about the rivalry between the Extreme Ironing Bureau (EIB) and another group called Urban Housework. Urban Housework was an organization that is very similar to the EIB but they are based around vacuuming.

Extreme Ironing can be defined as an extreme unusual sport where people choose a remote location to iron. There are a few rules to this relatively simple sport. The first set of rules are in regard to the board. The board must be 1-meter long and 30 centimeters wide and the board must have legs. The next rule is you are not allowed to use a plastic iron, it must be a real one. The garment that you are using to iron must be at least the size of a tea towel. And lastly, it must take place outdoors. The world record for extreme ironing is held by DE Waterman Diving Club who had 173 people ironing underwater at one time. So, next time you want some excitement in you life but you also love wrinkle-free clothes, you should give this crazy sport a try.     

Joe Antoun, Videographer

Joe Antoun, Videographer