ORIEN.ASIA (originally O-Resa till Asien) is founded by Raphael Mak in 2017 to promote Asian orienteering to orienteers of the Nordic countries. It includes a blog introducing Asian events, travel and culture, and plans to introduce package tours in the future.
Why Asian orienteering?
Orienteering has traditionally been centered on Europe, with the highest concentration of orienteers in Scandinavia and strong activity across Europe. Unfortunately, orienteering on the other continents have not yet been able to match that of Europe whether in activeness or in performance. European ways and terrains continue to dominate the definition of orienteering to this day.
Things are changing, however. In Asia, the Americas, Africa and Oceania, orienteering activity has increased and performance improved. Asia, in particular, is the most exciting place for orienteering growth—as adventure sports and travel gain momentum in Asia, so has orienteering become one of the newest trends in many Asian countries. In places where orienteering has been around for a while (like Hong Kong), the dynamics of the sport have been reinvigorated by a new generation of innovative orienteers. New championships are started and international events are springing up quickly.
Orienteering in Asia is very different from in Europe. While European-like forests can still be seen in the temperate areas of Asia (which China, Korea and Japan are privy to), the particular focus of orienteering development in Asia has been sprint orienteering. The cosmopolitan and urban-savvy populace in Asia’s metropolises are eager to take on the sport and discover their cities in a fun and engaging manner. The speed of sprint orienteering also has what it takes to make the sport trendy in fast-moving Asian cities. Trail orienteering is also seeing much growth in Asia, extending beyond its traditional base of masters and disabled persons. Not to ignore forest orienteering—places like Hong Kong are known to offer thrilling orienteering experiences with complicated terrain and breathtaking scenery just steps away from the city!
With more and more Europeans choosing Asia for holidays, among them orienteers, there is much potential for orienteering to grow even further in the cities, towns and resorts where the sport has not yet been a hit. Moreover, by encouraging interflow between orienteers far apart, we can make orienteering a truly worldwide sport with competitive events in all corners of the globe. ORIEN.ASIA aims to achieve this by bringing Asian orienteering to European orienteers online.
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