New Style of Skiing Gaining Recognition on Olympic Stage
If you’ve been watching the Winter Olympics then you’ve probably noticed that the word “slopestyle” is being used a lot. That’s because this year’s Games in Sochi, Russia mark the debut of slopestyle skiing, halfpipe skiing and slopestyle snowboarding. They have all been a big hit so far despite some detractors who think they are gimmicky sports that don’t really have a place in Olympic lore.
He Said What?
Last month during an appearance on NBC’s Today Show, broadcaster Bob Costas questioned slopestyle’s place in the Olympics with some somewhat disparaging remarks. “I think the president of the IOC should be Johnny Knoxville, because basically, this stuff is just Jackass-worthy stuff that they invented and called Olympic sports,” Costas said, laughing.
Despite Costas’s remarks slopestyle is carving out its own niche in the Sochi Games and so far it hasn’t disappointed. Slopestyle and halfpipe skiing have been two of the biggest draws at the Olympics so far. Although these two sports may look unfamiliar to many Olympic viewers, slopestyle skiing might be one of the Olympic sports that skiers can best relate to.
Anyone Can Give it a Try
To put it another way, slopestyle is a sport that just about any average skier could try on his or her own. In fact, almost every ski resort has a course with terrain similar to the jumps in the Olympic slopestyle competition. Another plus side to halfpipe and slopestyle skiing, or freeskiing, is that they are drawing young viewers to the Olympics. Plus, freestyle skiers have also given snow skiing a boost.
Learn to Ski Freestyle or Downhill
Freeskiing also requires different skis called twin tips. According to reports, twin tips made up $55 million of the $2.6 billion spent on gear for snow sports last season. These sports are definitely growing and they aren’t going away, despite their detractors. If you’re interested in learning how to ski, either downhill or freestyle, Launch pad has the products to help you get started. Check out our line of dynamic ski training tools.
Source: The Atlantic, “You laugh, Bob Costas, but freeskiing is the future of skiing,” Tess Weaver Strokes, Feb. 12, 2104.