Skiing – An Olympic Event!

Evidence of Skiing being used as a form of transport across the snow and ice of Europe has been found dating back to circa 8000 B.C. but the first recorded example of skiing as a sport only dates to the 1840s, with the first national skiing competition taking place in Christiania (now called Oslo) in 1868. For the record it was won by a man called Sondre Norheim.

 

It did not become an Olympic event until 1936 when a combined downhill and slalom event took place. Now look at the equipment needed to take part:

 

  • Boots: Reinforced plastic boots are specific to the competition discipline.

 

  • Gloves: Made of leather or synthetic material. Slalom gloves also have a plastic forearm guard for protection when skiing through the gates.

 

  • Goggles: Ski goggles protect the eyes against weather, glare and the effects of speed on the eyes. They can be worn with a variety of lens colours to maximize contrast and visibility

 

  • Helmet: A helmet is compulsory in downhill and Super-G, and is often worn in slalom and giant slalom. Some skiers choose to attract a chin guard.

 

  • Poles: In downhill and Super-G these are curved to fit around the body to reduce air resistance. In the slalom events they are straight with guards to help knock the slalom poles out of the way

 

  • Skis: These can be made of various materials (wood, composite fibres) and can be of various width, lengths and depths depending on the race and conditions. The Metal edges are sharpened after every run.

 

  • Suit: Skin-tight racing suits are worn to reduce air resistance and suits must meet minimum requirements for air permeability. Padding may be worn under the ski suit a plastic back protector is usually worn in downhill. In slalom events, pads are frequently worn on the arms, knees and shins.

 

  • Binding: Bindings are the link between the boots and the skis. Safety bindings will release when the impact is strong enough

 

And I thought all you need was snow!!!!

 

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