essay 3 important

ESSAY #3: Flow States in Extreme Sports Athletes

Page Requirements

3 pages

Point Value


Percentage of Final Grade


Required Texts Needed to Write This Essay

Read the following chapters from Steven Kotler’s Rise of Superman (Links to an external site.). (Not available through GCC bookstore. Please order on your own from your preferred online store. Also available for photocopying at GCC Library Reserve.)

  • Preface
  • Chapter 1 “The Way of Flow” on skateboarder Danny Way jumping the Great Wall of China
  • Chapter 2 “The Wave of Flow” on big wave surfer Laird Hamilton
  • Chapter 3 “The Where of Flow” on free solo rock climber Dean Potter
  • Chapter 4 “The What of Flow” on wingsuit pilots of the Red Bull Air Force in Transformers film
  • Chapter 6 “Outer Flow” on extreme solo kayaker Doug Ammons in the Stikine
  • Chapter 7 “Inner Flow” on world champion freediver Mandy-Rae Cruickshank
  • Chapter 9 “The Flow of Imagination” on the creativity of Shane McConkey’s extreme ski-base-wingsuit innovations.

In your introduction:

  • First, define “flow state” according to Steven Kotler in Rise of Superman.
  • Next, provide a personal example of a flow experience of your own in the form of a detailed story. The flow experience does not have to be about a sport.

In your thesis answer the following two questions in one sentence (last sentence of introduction):

  • What do you think are the two most important benefits of being in a flow state for extreme sport athletes?
  • Why are those two flow effects important for extreme sport athletes?

In your body paragraphs:

  • Very Important Requirement: Provide examples from the stories of at least 4 of the 7 athletes featured in Chapters 1-4, 6, 7, and 9 of Kotler’s Rise of Superman: Danny Way, Laird Hamilton, Dean Potter, Red Bull Air Force, Doug Ammons, Mandy-Rae Cruickshank, and Shane McConkey.
  • Provide quotations from at least 4 from the following chapters of Kotler’s Rise of Superman: chapters 1-4, 6, 7, and 9.
  • Dr Kwa has provided some Canvas videos on the above extreme sports athletes. These videos may be quoted in your essay. However, no other outside sources besides Kotler’s Rise of Superman should be cited in your essay. Kotler’s book is your main essay source.

In your conclusion

  • Restate your thesis using new wording and phrasing so you are not simply cutting and pasting.
  • End with some interesting reflections on the topic that go beyond merely repeating what you said earlier. For example, you can answer the following question. Has learning about the accomplishments of extreme sport athletes effected your belief in your own potential?

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