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Writing an essay

Page Requirements

3 pages

Required Texts Needed to Write This Essay

Read the following chapters from Steven Kotler’s Rise of Superman. (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.

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 introduction:

• First, summarize at least 4 or more qualities that Kotler thinks are characteristic of a flow state in your own words.

• 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 (last sentence of introduction):

Select three of the above seven 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.

Discuss one similarity and one difference that you notice about specific aspects of flow states in three of these extreme sport athletes. Make sure in your thesis to be very detailed when you name the particular aspect of the flow state you are interested in for both your point of comparison and contrast.

Sample thesis topics:

• How your athletes get deeper into their flow states

• Phenomenological or spiritual qualities of your athletes’ flow states

• The feats your athletes accomplish during peak flow states

• How flow states affect your athletes’ perceptions about their surroundings, nature, their community, themselves, and other athletes.

• How athletes overcome injury and other forms of adversity during flow states

• Unusual information received during your athletes’ flow states

• Create your own point of similarity or contrast

In your body paragraphs:

• Provide quotations from Chapters 1-4, 6, 7, and 9 of Kotler’s Rise of Superman

• You must discuss all three of your chosen athletes in each body paragraph. One paragraph will be about your point of similarity and the other will be about your point of difference.

• Each body paragraph should discussion one idea that supports the thesis; in other words, body paragraphs should not repeat ideas from previous paragraphs and should not contain more than one main idea.

• Make sure to follow up all quotations with a 4-5 sentence explanation of how they support your topic sentence claim.

Skills: Academic Writing, Essay Writing, Writing

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