Ever since Sondre Norheim brought skiing to the global limelight as a recreational and challenging winter sport it has taken center stage at all the Winter Olympic Games held since 1924. Skiers from around the globe compete in a variety of skiing competitions for the chance to win the gold and bring pride to their country. With each Olympics, technology and athlete performance push the boundaries of the sports technology changes and world records fall. The inclusion of skiing in the Winter Olympics has given this adventurous winter sport tremendous popularity the world over.
The first Winter Olympics held at Chamonix, France in 1924 included Nordic skiing and ski jumping events only. Then at Lake Placid in 1932, cross-country skiing got included in the Olympic itinerary. However Alpine skiing events including the popular downhill skiing were debarred from the Olympic competitions for quite some time.
This was due to a lack of infrastructure and proper skiing equipment necessary for hosting such events. After the development of lifts, cable cars and better equipment downhill skiing events became more popular. Alpine skiers could use these lifts and move up the slopes with ease. This made practicing and enjoying the sport easier without being exhausted due to the steep climb on foot. Finally the Winter Olympics hosted the first exclusive Alpine skiing competition at the 1936 Games in Innsbruck, Austria.
The inclusion of skiing in the Olympics brought international exposure to this ancient and traditional winter activity. Skiers of all calibers from across the globe participate in this prestigious event representing their respective countries. There is a sense of pride that comes with marching in the opening ceremonies with your countries flag displayed proudly.
Skiing has become a glamorous outdoor winter sport and Olympic skiing is very popular nowadays. Today skiing at the Olympics is not only about winning gold medals but its something more than that. Olympic skiing events are a platform where various companies, banks and corporate institutions market their products. Famous skiers are endorsing top brands such as Rossignal, Head, Sun Ice, and numerous other brands manufacturing sports accessories, sports equipment, etc. This is often a launching platform for professional careers.
Different ski clubs and ski schools have mushroomed all over the world providing courses and training to aspiring young athletes who are interested in learning how to become Olympic athletes. There are intense lessons to refine the skills of these athletes to bring them up to Olympic quality.
The introduction of skiing into the Olympic arena has totally redefined this popular winter sport making it more thrilling and challenging. The downhill skiing events hosted at the Winter Olympics are extremely popular.