Whether you grew up on the snowy hills and have become a grizzled veteran, or dream of making it to the top of a hill and racing down in the cold, yet thrilling sport. For the most part, everyone can agree that skiing can be extremely fun! However, some people just enjoy the actual ‘doing’ of the sport, without knowing much about it. While that is fine and still fun, we’ve put together a list of top ten fun facts about skiing, so you can know and show off to your friends your vast knowledge of the sport! Without further ado, here’s our top ten fun facts about skiing!
1. The word ‘ski’ (as used all across the world) was originally derived from the Norwegian Word ‘skíð’. Which means ‘ a split piece of wood’
2. However, although the word ski originated from Norway, the earliest archeological examples and artifacts of skiing equipment can be dated back to 6000BC, in Northern Russia.
3. The first ever recorded downhill ski race took place in Sweden, in 1879. That's a long time ago!
4. St Bernard of Montjoux is the patron saint of skiers. He was proclaimed a saint by Pope Pius XI in 1923. Bernard became a patron and protector of skiers as a result of his four decades spent in missionary work throughout the Alps. Also, the St. Bernard's dog breed was named after him.
5. Skiing is one of the fastest non-motorized sports on land. Skiers can ski faster than a car and this was proven by Simone Origone of Italy, who in 2016 set a world speed skiing record at 158.424 miles per hour compared to the speed of road cars at 120 miles per hour.
6. Many professional and non-professional skiers beseech the name of ‘Ullr’ the Norse God of winter and make small offerings to get him to unleash a powder dump on selected ski hills. Skiing even has some Norse history and religion tied to it!
7. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the creator and writer of the Sherlock Holmes mysteries, discovered skiing when he moved to Switzerland in 1893. Doctors had suggested the mountain air would heal his wife and improve her health. There he found two local men, the Branger brothers, skiing in the middle of night to avoid fellow villagers’ derision. With them he made the first pass of the 8,000ft Maienfelder Furka mountain passage.
8. Skiing has previously been used as a means of transportation for war soldiers, in the first and second world war. Mountain corps regiments have been trained in skiing to help move important cargo across mountain passages with stealth and speed to avoid crossing through enemy airspaces and patrolled roads.
9. Skiing for an hour can approximately burn between 300 - 400 calories! It’s considered a great full body exercise, that can quickly catch up newbies and those that just want to ski as fast as they possibly can.
10. You can now ski and snowboard in 97 countries, that is half the total number of countries in the world! So your chances of finding a cool ski hill near you, or in your country are actually pretty good!
How many fun skiing facts did you know? Did you know more than 5? If so, well done! You truly know your sport of skiing! Even if you knew none, don't worry! Now that you know some history and cool facts about skiing, you can hit the slopes in style with your very own Extreme Ski Mask! Click here for more information.