Skiing – more than a winter sport

Some people consider skiing just a winter sport to practice when heading to the mountains. Other seem to be afraid of this sport, considering it as being dangerous. It’s true you can suffer from serious injuries when skiing in dangerous zones without knowing much about it. But it is also true it’s a very popular winter sport. The majority don’t even know there are 19 different skiing types. So this is not just a winter sport, it’s a passion, a way to have fun while it’s snowing outside and keep yourself warm while taking a break from your daily activity.

Alpine skiing – the most common winter sports type


Alpine skiing means letting yourself go from the peak of a mountain until you reach to the bottom of it, using fixed heel bindings. It is also known as downhill skiing and most people also confuse this with other types of skiing. It can be practiced by both amateurs and professionals at the mountains, wherever it has snowed. Usually motels and mountain chalets offer a special area to go alpine skiing for all tourists who booked a room. It was first mentioned in Australia, in the late 1861 and it expanded in North America, Swiss Alps, Europe, South America, East Asia and even in New Zealand. However, today you can also alpine ski in Dubai, at the special ski resort which was man-made. Alpine skiing has also become a national and international competition where the most skilled persons are trying to finish on the first position and gain a long desired prize.

Biathlon, present even in the Olympic sports


Though people tend to confuse it with biathle or duathlon, biathlon is a sport that combines two disciplines. A winter sport with cross country skiing, or even with rifle shooting can be considered as part of this weird but pleasant sport. It can also exist in the summer sports category, combining running with swimming. It’s a single or a team competition and it also managed to be present at the Olympics from 1960. Funny though, this sport has its origins from military, previously being a training used by the Norwegian soldiers. Biathlon, as alpine skiing began for the first time in 1861, this time in Norway and it easily expanded on other regions.

Cross-country skiing – the recreational XC skiing


More like a way to relax and enjoy the view, the cross-country skiing requires patience, being mostly practiced by tourists heading out to visit new places, a natural environment rich in fresh cold breeze. You only need skis, boots and poles to get going on your way. It’s usually practiced on large fields covered in snow and it can take place in the Northern countries, such as Canada, Alaska or the northern part of Europe. It’s more like a walk on the snow and it has also been on the Olympics program in 1924. A prehistoric activity, the cross-country skiing was practiced by ancient people who went hunting in the winter days using wooden sticks, arrows and bamboo poles.

Freestyle skiing for nonconformists

First appeared in 1930, this type of skiing involves a lot of passion, dedication and also much creativity for those brave sports people willing to bring an additional drop of originality in their moves. Also known under the “hot-dogging” code, this sport reach to the Olympics, too. A lot of famous names appears on the leader board of this fascinating winter sport. Though it allows you to create your own ski program, the freestyle skiing comes with a few rules to apply. Barely in 1979 it managed to become a true recognized sport by the International Ski Federation, when they gave the accept for this winter sport to be legally practiced. In 1988, this sort of activity became a demonstration, taking part at the Winter Olympics held in Calgary. Nowadays there are practiced two different freestyle skiing forms: the traditional moguls and the aerials, a.k.a. the new school.

Mogul skiing – means that skiers have to find their way down through a terrain full of different bumps. Hard enough to face this challenge, this type of freestyle skiing has its own winners since 1922, till the very end of 2010 when Alexandre Bilodeau from Canada took the Men’s Gold back home. A sport practiced by both men and women has its origins from Germany, or at least that’s where the name comes from.

New school skiing – becoming world wide known in 1990, this new type of freestyle skiing has made its entrance in the Olympic winter sports through two major events: superpipe and slopestyle. It’s an entertaining sport, due to the program containing jumps and tricks over obstacles, hard to make and easy to impress.

Kite skiing – better on ice

Another form of skiing where you’ll have to use a kite, is now available on snow, but you glide better on ice. In the 2007′s winter people began to use this as the most adequate manner of propulsion in the Antarctic zone. But the world record is held by Eric McNair – Landry, a Canadian who managed to kite ski a distance of almost 600 km (599 km) within 24 hours. Usually found on water, kite skiing can also be practiced on land, on snow – resembling a bit with the downhill skiing, but you can try something extreme and make your way on the ice.

Snow monoskiing to complete the other two mono skiing types


Invented in 1960 by a surfer, this sport is now available for winter practices. Resembling a lot with snowboarding, but very different from it, when you monoski, you also need ski poles. It also exists on water and of course the second option is mountain boarding. It’s not that recognized, due to the fact that most skiers prefer snowboarding instead of this traditional skiing method. It’s peak was considered in 1970 and then it slowly started to die, thus the majority are not even aware of its existence.

Skiboarding, a combination of other popular skiing types

Combining skating with snowboarding and skiing, you create skiboarding, a winter sport practiced with ski boots and ski boards. Ever since it has been created, it had to face falls and ups all the time. Still, it’s boom consisted in the participation to the X Games for two years in a row, from 1998 to 2000. In 2009 was the latest biggest apparition of this sport, at the European Ski board Cup.

Skibobbing – a winter sport with bicycles

If you’re up to something more extreme, then you should definitely try skibobbing. A bicycle with skis instead of the original wheels originally came to life in 1892, as a means of transport through the Alps. Then the race continued with the first international competition, held in 1954. Seven years later, in 1967 there was formed the FISB which came with an annual World Cup competition for this winter sport. Nowadays it also goes along under the name Snow Bikes which confuses people into believing that it is the same with snowbiking.

In addition to these skiing types, there are others to mention, like Skijoring, Ski jumping, Snowshoe, Speed skiing, Speed flying and also Telemark skiing. So you see, skiing is not just a winter sports, or an international competition to view. The passion and devotion to this delightful and very active sport, has allowed people to use their imagination and develop a wide array of skiing forms. It’s impossible not to love at least one of them. Whenever you get the chance, you should try one of the above mentioned skiing types. It’s fun, it’s exciting and a real show, a blast to the observer!

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