Survivalist or Prepper – Are You One?

I’m not really sure whether I have not noticed it before or whether they are new, but it seems that there are a lot of new shows on the Discovery and History channels that center around the themes of surviving in harsh environments.

Some good examples are: on the History Channel, the show called Alone which just completed its first season with contestants that were placed on remote Vancouver Island vying for a half million dollars prize. On the Discovery Channel the show “Naked and Afraid” has a similar theme of surviving in a harsh environment with little or no food, water or shelter. And there are others based in Alaska and remote parts of the United States. There must be a lot of interest in this theme.

After eight weeks of competition on “Alone” that started with a total of 10 other men, Sam Larson from Lincoln, Neb. and Alan Kay a corrections officer from northern Georgia were the final two. Kay walked away, in the show’s finale, with $500,000. During the eight weeks, the 6’6″ Kay lost 60 pounds.

When asked if he will keep the weight off, Kay says, “Of course not. This obviously was not a healthy, slow, sustainable weight loss plan. This was extremely rapid. Best quick weight-loss plan on the market today” he said with his sheepish grin.

With all the interest in these types of shows we thought it might be a good idea to explain the terms survivalist and preppers.

According to our good friends at Wikipedia Survivalism “is a movement of individuals or groups who are actively preparing for emergencies, including possible disruptions in social or political order, on scales from local to international.”

According to that website, survivalists frequently get emergency medical and self-defense training, stockpile food and water and other supplies to become self-sufficient in the face of a catastrophe-natural disaster or otherwise.

Eric Frein-Former Fugitive
Eric Frein-Former Fugitive

Eric Frein was a recent example of a prepper. He gained a lot of notoriety and went to ground after shooting a police officer. His manhunt lasted over 40 days during which time he spent in the Pennsylvania bear country.

Here is a partial explanation of the differences and similarities between preppers and survivalists. Both groups of people have a burning desire to live life on their own terms. They also prepare for unforeseen events and have a positive outlook when it comes to overcoming obstacles related to survival. You could say that the early settlers of our country where the first examples of survivalists.

Frequently the terms get interchanged and the differences may become blurred. Preppers prepare for an uncertain future with one or more situations that they view as inevitable and plan to mitigate the bad effects. They seem to form groups or communities. Whereas survivalists, on the other hand, train and learn techniques that will enable them to survive in a wide variety of desperate situations in the wild.

Bear Grylls is an excellent example. He is one of the most recognized faces of survival and outdoor adventure. He learned many of his skills in the three years he spent with British Special Forces. “His TV shows Man Vs Wild and Born Survivor became two of the most watched programs on the planet with an estimated audience of 1.2 billion. Emmy nominated, the show ran for seven high octane seasons.”

Wise 5-Day Survival Kit Backpack
Wise 5-Day Survival Kit Backpack

We offer a wide variety of food and water solutions for emergency preparedness as well as a great selection of Survival Kits for just about any emergency. When are you getting one?

Do you agree that there are more TV survival shows today? Why do you suppose that is?

Leave a comment


Your email addresss will not be published. Required fields are marked *
Please note, comments must be approved before they are published.