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Snow Dad - Is snow sports an individual or team sport?


You probably have your answer already, but please allow me to share my opinion with you.
I’ve been fortunate enough to have spent 27 fantastic years in the pursuit of my sport. 13 of these years were spent at the World Cup level for the Slovenian National Team. On the way, I have made many decisions which had uncertain and unforeseeable results. I have travelled the world and spent countless days exposed to the sun, cold, and snow. I have experienced a sense of failure, a sense of triumph and everything in between. Today when I look back at these 27 years one questions always arises is Alpine skiing an Individual or Team Sport? And subsequently is snow sports an individual or team sport?

When you are standing in the starting gate along with the greatest skiers at that time like Tomba, Sykora, Aamodt, Kjus, Jagge my amazing team mates Košir, Kunc, Vrhovnik, Alpine Skiing is definitely an individual sport. Your performance and results rely on your ability, physical strength, skiing skills, winning attitude, equipment, ability to focus and concentrate on your best performance, endurance and many other things. But in order to develop, learn, practice and train all of the above mentioned set of skills, an Alpine Skier needs the TEAM.

No questions asked, a team is essential for every skier’s progression. Starting from early childhood, ski schools, first competition experiences, selection processes, qualifying to a national team and all the way to compete at the Alpine Skiing World Cup. Therefore Alpine Skiing is definitely a TEAM SPORT where all the team members play its important role.

When looking at this from a recreational perspective there is also a big team involved. For example, imagine conducting any sport with friends and then without friends. With friends is usually more fun. Whilst these friends are not coaches, physiotherapists and equipment specialists they are an important team of moral and confidence supporters.

As a conclusion Alpine Skiing on the world cup level or recreational level is an individual sport with a tremendous amount of team sport characteristics. Today we evidence many of the most successful Alpine Skiers in the World Cup have their private teams but they are teams nonetheless. Always keep in mind that your progress and success will rely on your team approach and team spirit, despite your individual role, effort and results.

Enjoy life, enjoy sport!

Andrej Miklavc. Olympian, Author of THE SPORTSKID WHISPERER and CEO of Winter Sport Expert Group


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