Winter Sports in Europe

Skiing as an Olympic Sport

Skiing as an Olympic Sport

It’s coming up to that time of year again, where skiers and snowboarders start looking for the best snow holiday deals. Skiing and snowboarding is big business and you don’t have to travel far to find the white stuff. Many European ski resorts offer some fantastic affordable skiing and snowboarding such as Chamonix in France, and the southern European micro-state of Andorra.

Snowboarding is now considered a winter sport and it involves descending a slope that is covered with snow while standing on the board which is attached to the rider’s feet. A snowboarder will use a special boot set onto a mounted binding. The development of snowboarding is said to be inspired by skateboarding, sledding, surfing and skiing. It was originally developed in the United States in the late 1960s to early 1970s and became a Winter Olympic Sport in 1998.

Today Snowboarding is a very competitive sport with the following areas of competition:

  • Slopestyle
  • Big air
  • Half-pipe
  • Boardercross
  • Big mountain and freeride
  • Rail jam
  • Slalom

And of course many people just enjoy snowboarding as a pastime or hobby and do not compete or even consider it as a sport.

Skiing has its roots much further back in history.

Colourful Snowboards

Colourful Snowboards

The oldest and some say the most accurately documented evidence of skiing origins was found in modern day Norway and Sweden. A very ancient primitive carving was located in Rødøy in the Nordland region of Norway, circa 5000 B.C. and it depicts a skier with one pole. A primitive ski was also found in a peat bog in Hoting, Sweden and this has been dated to 2500 or 4500 B.C.

Today skiing is a huge sport and popular in many regions around the world where snow is abundant.

Olympic Sport is a big theme with modern skiing and events take place such as:

  • Alpine skiing
  • Cross-country skiing
  • Freestyle skiing
  • Nordic combined
  • Ski jumping
  • Snowboarding

Ski equipment can be very expensive and includes: Ski Gloves, Ice Grips, Ski Goggles, Ski Helmets, Ski Suites, Ski Jackets, Skis, Snowboards and thermal clothing to keep you warm while out on the piste.

If you’re planning a skiing or snowboarding holiday and fancy your chances at the next winter Olympics then you can train before you go on holiday with local UK ski slopes. In some cases you can cut costs as well by hiring ski gear, and equipment. This can be done once you are in the ski resort but it’s always best to check before you go. By hiring ski equipment you will still have less to carry, it will cost less and be safety checked. However, if you are skiing or snowboarding regularly then you will definitely need to invest in your own snow gear. It’s a great hobby and if you show potential money can be made from international competitions.

Article by Simon Lucas.

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