Contrary to popular opinion, Land sailing isn’t a figment of the current century of revolution. Rather it is a concept that was already well developed in the early 19th century! However, it is true that as a sport it has only recently become rather popular. It was the 80s that popularized this sport and gave it a competitive edge. Soon after organizations and bodies governing the sport popped up in various corners of the world. As the Internet enabled easy growth of any community and popular thing, it became evident that it will influence the overall expansion of this sport.
It was a recreation initially
Like with many thing in the beginning, no one thought it would become one of the most desired sports. At first the sport was practiced for leisure and recreation, mostly on beach fronts. As the sport became more competitive over time though, beaches became less the gladiatorial grounds with a sudden popularity for dried sea beds and lakes taking over the community. Today, majority of world events and competitions are held on dried sea beds since they offer excellent windy conditions with stable and plain fields.
How did it all start?
So, ever wondered how someone thought of the idea to sail on land? The credit has to go to the Chinese ancient engineers since it is in their history that the earliest resemblance of a land sail can be seen.
In a text called, Book of the Golden Hall Master, there is a descriptive mention of a massive Chinese wind powered vehicle that had masts and sails mounted on top and the ability to carry nearly thirty people at once. It is presumed this vehicle was first created around 610 AD for the then Emperor. Later mentions are seen in European history where travelers to China mention such sailing carriages with utter surprise. Some were astounded by the design and intricate artwork of the silk sales. In fact Abraham Ortelius, a cartographer has depicted such Chinese carriages in his drawings, which lends credibility to the fact that the Chinese are probably the first to invent such a land sailing vehicle.
Still, the early beginnings of this sport trace back to the 18th century, when the sport came to the wider audience. In the beginning, it was just a type of leisure, like walking or swimming and it did not show any prosperity, at least not in amount that shows today. By the way, it wasn’t until the 18th century that land sails came to Europe and America and became more popular and present!