FREE ELECTRONIC LIBRARY - Dissertations, online materials

Pages:   || 2 | 3 |

«7-17-2012 Surfing as adventure travel: Motivations and lifestyles Zachariah Reynolds University of North Carolina Wilmington Nancy M. Hritz Dr. ...»

-- [ Page 1 ] --

Journal of Tourism Insights

Volume 3 | Issue 1 Article 2


Surfing as adventure travel: Motivations and


Zachariah Reynolds

University of North Carolina Wilmington

Nancy M. Hritz Dr.

University of North Carolina Wilmington, hritzn@uncw.edu

Follow this and additional works at: http://scholarworks.gvsu.edu/jti

Part of the Recreation, Parks and Tourism Administration Commons, and the Tourism Commons Recommended Citation Reynolds, Zachariah and Hritz, Nancy M. Dr. (2012) "Surfing as adventure travel: Motivations and lifestyles," Journal of Tourism Insights: Vol. 3: Iss. 1, Article 2.

Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.9707/2328-0824.1024 Available at: http://scholarworks.gvsu.edu/jti/vol3/iss1/2 This Article is brought to you for free and open access by ScholarWorks@GVSU. It has been accepted for inclusion in Journal of Tourism Insights by an authorized administrator of ScholarWorks@GVSU. For more information, please contact scholarworks@gvsu.edu.

Reynolds and Hritz: Surfing as adventure travel Surfing as adventure travel: Motivations and lifestyles Abstract The purpose of this study was to create a profile of the adventure traveler’s lifestyles, values and travel motivations. An understanding of the lifestyle and attitudes of today’s adventure traveler can aid tourism marketers in designing messages tailored to this unique target market. Differences and similarities between genders and the age cohorts of Generation Y, Generation X and Baby Boomers were examined.

Across the sample most participated in a “traditional” type of sport before migrating to an adventure activity and they also engaged in more than one type of adventure activity.

Across the sample, the participants traveled in order to meet or maintain current relationships. While participating in their adventure sport, females reinforced the desire to be with others while males wanted to gain self-confidence. The participants overall also viewed themselves as conservative in their lifestyles and values. They spend money carefully and do not feel the desire to rebel against things in general. Future research and implications for the resort and commercial recreation industry is presented.

Key Words: Adventure travel, surfing Published by ScholarWorks@GVSU, 2012 1 Journal of Tourism Insights, Vol. 3, Iss. 1 [2012], Art. 2 Introduction Adventure tourism, as a form of special interest tourism, grew out of the need for a customized experience combined with physical activity (Sung, 2004). Historically, adventure travel began with hunting and fishing tours and then progressed to safari tours, sport fishing, rock climbing, SCUBA diving, whitewater kayaking, and snowboarding (Buckley, 2002). Individuals in these early days had past experience and skills in the activity and also participated in adventure tourism activities over the course of their lifetime.

Tourism providers initially offered adventure experiences as separate and individual activities. However, as it grew in popularity over time, tour operators and resorts specializing in adventure travel appeared in the United States. Properties such as the ACE Adventure Resort in West Virginia emerged and attraction providers now catered to this group with full day excursions including zip lines, biking adventures, and hiking (ACE, 2009; Adventure Travel Trade Association, 2010).

Adventure tourism is also recognized as an important and growing market segment, however primary research to fully understand these travelers has been lacking (Schneider, 2006). Adventure travelers, though seeking new and cultural experiences, do not always have a valid passport and do not necessarily intend on traveling far from home (Adventure Tourism Trade Association, 2010). They also intend to spend more on their experience than other types of travel. The adventure traveler is not merely the young male seeking risky experiences such as bungee cord jumping. They are young and old, male and female, rich and poor, and engage in a variety of adventure pursuits (Sung, 2004). In addition, research suggests the adventure travelers of today have little or no experience in their adventure activity of choice, expect high levels of instruction, and require assistance and safety monitoring (Buckley, 2000).

Adventure tourism is heavily marketed with a theme that today's adventure traveler might be different from years past. Adventure activity is marketed through the use of specialty magazines, with professional athletes and corporate sponsors (Buckley, 2002). Moreover, the marketing and promotion of adventure sports has merged with music, apparel and movie industries to form a unique culture (Fitzgerald, 2000). Usually targeted to the younger crowd, the media shows individuals participating in adventure experiences looking and talking a certain way. The media portrays this crowd as listening to specific music, dressing with either specific name brand labels (Quicksilver, Billabong) or shopping in specific stores with the appropriate haircuts. Surfing, in particular as an adventure travel activity, has been described as a “scene” and depicted as individuals with values that might differ from mainstream society (Farmer, 1992). Booth (2004) also concludes that surfers have a unique culture all their own different even from other visitors on the same beach.

All of this suggests that the adventure traveler might be unique in some fashion. Adventure experiences are not just an activity, but rather a lifestyle and culture all its own. Lifestyle marketing is designed to gain an understanding of “how individuals spend their time, what they consider important about their surroundings, their opinions on various issues, and their interests” (Michman, 1991, p. 19).

Understanding the lifestyle and attitudes of today’s adventure traveler can aid tourism marketers in designing messages tailored to this unique target market.

Literature Review Defining adventure travel Adventure travel is known by many different names and broadly defined by its activities. Experiences can range from a simple hike in the woods to skydiving (Loverseed, 1997). In any given situation they may be labeled as soft tourists, good tourists, ethical tourists, green tourists, alternative tourists, intelligent tourists, or sustainable tourists. Regardless of the title, adventure travelers are generally

–  –  –

grouped into three categories based on the types of activities they participate in: hard or soft tourists.

Examples of hard adventure travel include rock climbing, mountain biking, bungee cord jumping, and skydiving. Soft adventure constitutes activities such as bird watching, horseback riding, camping and canoeing. Regardless of the activity or semantics, adventure travel participants are thought to engage in active pursuits that are authentic, unique, interesting, educational, and exciting (Adventure Tourism Trade Association, 2010; Loverseed, 1997).

While the activities of adventure travel are not heavily disputed, a precise definition of “adventure tourism” is argued amongst academics. Some believe adventure travel, with its foundations in outdoor recreation, is associated with risk. Risk as part of their travel is expected and desired as long as it matches their competence and skills in the activity (Ewert & Hollenhorst, 1994; Martin & Priest, 1986).

Here the adventure travel participants expect their physical and mental skills to be tested by the activity itself and the surrounding environmental conditions.

Others state the adventure traveler seeks knowledge and meaning in the activity rather than risk taking behaviors (Walle, 1987). Expanding on this idea, other researchers defined adventure travel as a physical activity, an interaction with nature, learning about different cultures, and an exchange with different types of individuals (Adventure Tourism Trade Association, 2010). This was summed up nicely by Weber (2001) who states “(t)he reward for those who seek adventure lies in the discovery and unveiling of the hidden and unknown” (p. 363). These adventure travelers seek intellectual growth on some level.

Adventure tourism is at times confused with ecological tourism. Ecological tourism is considered to be travel to a natural and pristine area with a focus on conservation and quality of life for the local community (Millington, Locke, & Locke, 2001). While adventure travel does encompass the outdoors, its main focus is not on preservation, but rather it has an educational component instead. Therefore, for the purposes of this particular study, adventure travel was defined as travel to experience the unknown with a certain level of excitement. It often takes place in an outdoor setting and requires some kind of physical exertion. Adventure travel participants expect to their skills to be tested and strive to learn either something about themselves or the places they visit.

While most of the research in adventure travel centers primarily on identifying activities, for example what types of activities they might engage in and where they might do it, research is lacking on other motivations that might drive their behavior, other than the activity itself. Therefore, this study sought to investigate of the values and lifestyles of the adventure traveler to better define this market segment using surfers as a sample.

Adventure travel and surfing Surfing, as an adventure travel activity, has grown from humble beginnings in the early 1900’s to a multi-billion dollar industry (Dolnicar & Fluker, 2003). There are an estimated 10 billion surfers worldwide fueling development and bringing economic, environmental, and social benefits and costs to travel destinations (Buckley, 2002).

Research on the surfer as an adventure traveler is not abundant, but there has been some preliminary investigation in this area. While the literature in adventure travelers in general states participants are of no particular age, the surfer might be different. Buckley (2002) acknowledges in his study of surfers the Indo-Pacific Islands participant ages can span across all generations, the largest growth in recent years seems to focus on younger individuals. Dolnicar and Fluker (2003) found similar results in Australia as the average age of their sample was just age 30.

–  –  –

Farmer’s (1992) study suggested that surfing also might be an activity for only one gender. In his research on surfers in the southeastern part of the United States, an adequate number of female surfers was not available and thus not included in his results. Other studies on surfers also have relatively low female participation (Buckely, 2002, Dolnicar and Fluker, 2003). Pearson (1982) notes that women historically were not known to surf. However in more recent times, more women are participating in the adventure activity, despite the persistent perception it is male dominated (Henderson, 2001).

Other noticeable demographic traits of the surfer as an adventure participant is their tendency to engage in more than one activity and at times, across the life span. The literature is ripe with evidence that adventure travelers participate in multiple activities (Adventure Tourism Trade Association, 2010; Sung, 2004). Similiarly, Farmer (1992) found that surfers do engage in a sport in high school or college.

Buckley (2002) attempted to describe some of the lifestyles and consumer behavior of the surfer. He labels surfers as “cash rich, time poor” which may describe their adrenaline, risk seeking behaviors (p.

408). In addition, he finds in recent years that surfers, while some consider it a lifestyle, are treating their adventure travel as a “purchasable package holiday” (p. 413). Dolnicar and Fluker (2003) also moved beyond describing the surfer in terms of demographics and sought to understand the personality traits of surfers in Australia. They discover unique market segments of the surfer including those that are “price conscious safety seekers,” “price conscious adventurers,” “luxury surfers,” “ambivalents,” and “radical adventurers.” They advocate these groups behave and respond to marketing and tourism products differently.

Surfing is purported to be a unique culture and lifestyle on its own (Polzat-Newcomb, 1999). Surfers have been labeled as hippies, crazy, free spirits, or a “unique tribe of nomads” (Young, 1983, p. 189).

Farmer (1992) strove to understand this lifestyle more carefully. He found that these individuals do not engage in surfing for health and wellness, nor was competition important. Rather, they felt their adventure activity was more an “art form” and work was only important in that it provided the means necessary to keep surfing. In addition, he found that these individuals participated in surfing for what he labeled “vertigo motives.” These motivations were the need to for the excitement that comes from the risk of feeling the force of a “monster wave” pin them down and spin them around or escaping the danger of being caught in a rip current, or falling three stories down the face of a wave.

Therefore this study sought to build upon the current cache of knowledge of the surfer as the adventure traveler and explore the seemingly distinctive lifestyle of the surfer. Information of this type can assist resorts, attraction providers and other travel and tourism partners to create more effective marketing messages and strategies that speak to this market segment, ultimately serving them better. Thus, this

study asked the following research questions:

1) What is the demographic profile of the surfer as the adventure traveler:

What are the ages and gender of participants?

Do surfers participate in other types of adventure activities and across the life span?

2) What are some values and lifestyles and travel motivations of today’s surfing adventure traveler?

3) Are there differences among age groups and genders in travel motivations or values and lifestyles for the surfing adventure traveler?

–  –  –

questions such as gender, age, and ethnicity. In addition, this section determined if the individual participated in other types of “traditional” sports such as soccer or football and other adventure types of activities. Lastly, questions here also asked who the individual participates in these activities with and how they plan their travel.

Pages:   || 2 | 3 |

Similar works:

«Contents List of Figures ix Foreword by Stephen J. Leonard xiii Acknowledgments xv 1 Introduction 1. “Alarming intelligence and intense Excitement”: First Murders in the Pike’s Peak Country 11 2. “Most Horrible and Fiendish Murders”: The Bleeding of South Park Begins 33 3. “There Has Been Considerable Excitement”: The First Colorado Cavalry Steps in 49 4. “The People Are Scared Nearly to Death Here”: The Murderers Strike at the vitals of South Park 61 5. “Fallen into the...»

«http://chordmaps.com/index.htm Copyright 1999-2006 Steve Mugglin Permission is given to make not-for-profit copies of this material. Introduction So there you are. walking along, when suddenly you come to a big wall. and written all over it are ideas. ideas for songwriters. Along the way, most songwriters have some questions. Many of the questions have easy answers, but sometimes you meet one that looks like a mountain in your path. One of the biggest mountains can be described this way. Let's...»

«The technological advance in CRM and the impact on customer loyalty: a comparative study between Irish and German consumers Item type Master thesis (taught) Authors Weese, Alexander Citation Weese, A. (2010) The technological advance in CRM and the impact on customer loyalty: a comparative study between Irish and German consumers. MSc, Institute of Technology, Sligo. Downloaded 13-Nov-2016 18:23:49 Item License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/ Link to item...»

«The Social Science Journal 44 (2007) 91–97 Ethnic and gender differences in attitudes toward driving Jacqueline Bergdahl ∗ Department of Sociology & Anthropology, Wright State University, Dayton, OH 45435, USA Abstract A convenience sample of 424 students from the University of Texas at El Paso and Wright State University were surveyed about attitudes and behaviors regarding operating a motor vehicle. The object of this study was to examine the effects of gender and ethnicity on attitudes...»

«THE KARNATAKA HABITUAL OFFENDERS ACT, 1961. ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS CHAPTER I PRELIMINARY Statement of Object and Reasons Sections: 1. Short title, extent and commencement.2. Definitions. CHAPTER II REGISTRATION OF HABITUAL OFFENDERS AND RESTRICTIONS ON THEIR MOVEMENT 3. Power of State Government to direct registration of habitual offenders. 4. Issue of notice to habitual offenders and enquiry regarding entries to be made in the Register. 5. Charge of register and alterations therein. 6. Power...»

«Exploring the Foundations of an Islamic Identity in a Global Context: A Study of the Nature and Origins of Cape Muslim Identity A thesis submitted to the Faculty of Humanities, Development & Social Sciences, in complete fulfillment of the requirements of the degree of Master of Arts by Abdul Taliep Baker Student Number: 200302457 School of Religion and Theology University of Kwazulu-Natal Howard College Campus, Durban Supervisor: Professor Suleman E. Dangor © 2009 DECLARATION The Registrar...»

«WFLO Commodity Storage Manual Frozen Foods Handling & Storage Revised 2008 Introduction The successful retail marketing of frozen foods began over a half century ago, and the rapid growth of sales since that time reflects consumer satisfaction in the high quality of products, year-round availability, and general convenience in product use. Because of consumer appreciation of product values, more frozen foods are sold each year and new products are introduced to swell the total sales. The...»

«Instructions for Wearers AFTER YOUR PARAGON CRT® or PARAGON CRT® 100 CONTACT LENSES FOR CONTACT LENS CORNEAL REFRACTIVE THERAPY HAVE BEEN FITTED Instructions for Wearers of Paragon CRT® (paflufocon B) or ® Paragon CRT 100 (paflufocon D) Contact Lenses for Contact Lens Corneal Refractive Therapy Patient Name: Prescribed Lens: Dr. _ Address Phone _ CAUTIONS: Federal (US) law restricts this device to sale by, or on the order of a licensed practitioner. Contact lenses for Corneal...»

«Table of Contents Residence Hall Staff Housing Contract Occupancy of College Housing Check In/Check Out Safety Your Room Room Assignments Room Furnishings Internet Service Cable Television Phone Service Keys HVAC Heating and Air Conditioning Windows Fire System Housekeeping/Custodial Room Entry Damages General Housing Information 911 Calls Emergency Alert Notification Fire Evacuation Procedures Food Court Meal Plan Rattlers’ Den Flex Money Illness and Accidents Laundry Facilities Lobbies...»

«HEALTH ASSESSMENT Contents Page Introduction 1 My Details 2 About Me 2 My medication 3 How I communicate 5 Lifestyle 6 Skin 8 Eyes 10 Hearing 12 Teeth 14 Eating and Drinking 16 Heart 18 Chest and Breathing 20 Getting Around 22 Pain Management 24 Managing the Toilet 26 Epilepsy 28 Feet 30 Emotions and Feelings 32 Relationships/ Friendships 34 Women’s health 37 40 Men’s health 41 44 Health check record 45 Health Action plan Produced by Mary Griffiths and Christine Goodban, Health Action Plan...»

«‫מכון ליאו בק ירושלים‬ ‫לחקר יהודי גרמניה ומרכז אירופה‬ Leo Baeck Institute Jerusalem for the Study of German and Central European Jewry Leo Baeck Institute Jerusalem Report of Activities Academic Years 2009/10 and 2010/11 Graphic Design: Naama Shahar Leo Baeck Institute Jerusalem for the Study of German and Central European Jewry 33 Bustenai St., Jerusalem 93229, P.O.B. 8298, Jerusalem 91082 Tel: 02-5633790, Fax: 02-5669505 E-mail:...»

«BIBLIOGRAPHY OF EXXON VALDEZ OIL SPILL PUBLICATIONS An Introduction to the Bibliography David K. Johnson and Laura R. Rustin The Exxon Valdez is the most studied oil spill to date. Consequently, during the nearly 25 years following the tanker’s grounding on Bligh Reef in Prince William Sound, Alaska, at a little after midnight (local time) on Good Friday, March 24, 1989, a large body of literature—in all senses of that term—has accumulated. This bibliography of 1,718 citations was...»

<<  HOME   |    CONTACTS
2016 www.dissertation.xlibx.info - Dissertations, online materials

Materials of this site are available for review, all rights belong to their respective owners.
If you do not agree with the fact that your material is placed on this site, please, email us, we will within 1-2 business days delete him.