Mountain Sports

Top 10 Winter Sports In the World

A snowmobile tour at Yellowstone National Park

Winter is the time of year when you can enjoy outside games and sports. The advantage of winter sports is you can play games, exert force without even getting sweated. In different countries, the weather varies, and winter conditions also vary there. There are many countries with soothing closeness or a nip in the air. While in many countries, winter is all about snow. And this may vary with ice and snow; such countries have freezing temperatures sometimes.

There are some special types of sports that can only be played in winters because we need a cold and dry atmosphere for them. Even people having winter season in their country always wait for this season so they can play their favorite games. Such games help maintain body temperature and health. There is a whole long list of sports played in winter; here we have discussed the top 10 sports played in the winter.

1. Snowboarding

Since 1998, snowboarding is one of the major gaming activities. It has been frequently played in winters where the snow falls. One of its kinds, Alpine snowboarding, is really famous and most played too. Total 42 medals, including 14 gold, 14 bronze, and 14 silver medals, are given from 1998 to 2006. The players use longer boards, hard shoes, and a helmet to protect themselves.

Snowboarding was developed in the USA in the 60s and later became a Winter Olympic Sport in 1998 at Nagano. Its popularity in the United States peaked in the year 2007 but has been in decline since.

For more information, check out our article on The History of Snowboarding.

2. Alpine Skiing

Alpine Skiing, another winter sports game, is rated as second most played and liked sports in winters. In this game, the players slide down over the snow-covered hills on skis. Usually, they practice this game on fix heel bindings. The alpine equipment is provided to the player’s helicopters or by using snowcats. There are world-level competitions organized by different countries and professional, elite, and competitive players come to play there.

The events happening on world level are FIS Alpine World Ski Championship, the World Cup, and the Winter Olympics. Olympians wait for winter to come for these sports and participate. On average, it is recorded that out of 1,000 skiers, only two or four may require medical attention per day.

The history of alpine skiing can be traced back to the prehistoric times in Finland, Sweden, Russia, and Norway (cold regions). For more information, check out our article on Alpine skiing: Interesting Facts and History.

3. Ice Hockey

Ice hockey skating is different from the common hockey because it’s played on ice by the team of ice skaters. They use sticks to shoot the hard ice ball and goal. However, it is also commonly called just hockey. Because of its fast moves and for being a fast-paced, physical sport, this game has won the title of the fastest game on earth. This sport is the major part of winter games of Canada and northern parts of the USA. According to recent statistics, federations of ice hockey are reported to be in 73 countries of the world.

The team of ice hockey includes five players; 3 forwards, two defensemen, and one goaltender. It is believed that ice hockey evolved from merely a simple stick and ball game played in the 18th and 19th centuries in the UK and elsewhere.

To know more about Ice Hockey, check out our article on Ice Hockey: Interesting Facts and History.

4. Figure Skating

Figure skating is a sport that has the biggest range of varieties in winter games. It has different categories according to dance moves and the number of people taking part in it. It is also called the oldest and foremost sports of the Winter Olympics.

Figure skating has four categories according to the people participating; single men, single ladies, pairs and ice dancing. There are five major events that include the Winter Olympics, the World Championship, the World Junior Championship, the European Championship, the Four Country Championship, and the Grand Prix Series (Senior and Junior).

The participants of this game are called figure skaters that compete at various levels, from beginner to the Olympic level at local, sectional, regional, national, and international competitions. The judging and competitions are regulated by ISU (International Skating Union).

For more information, read our article on What is Figure Skating?

5. Ski Jumping

As the name suggests, ski jumping is a sport in which the player jumps up and flies as far as possible. The place of taking off is called a run. The player is awarded points according to the distance covered by the jump. Typically, wide and long skis are used in this game to cover up the whole body of the player. They are of approximately 260 to 275 cm by length.

Ski jumping was introduced in the Olympics in 1924. It is also practiced in summers by creating artificial surfaces. It’s believed that this sport was first originated in Norway. All major ski competitions are organized by the International Ski Federation.

It is believed that ski jumping was first brought to Canada by Nels Nelsen, a Norwegian immigrant. For more information, check out our article on Ski Jumping: interesting Facts and History.

6. Bobsled

Bobsleigh or bobsled is a very exciting and challenging winter sport as it’s played against gravity. It also requires teamwork and management. In this sports, team of two or four members is created, and they make timed runs. The first bobsleigh tracks were built in St. Moritz and Switzerland. National Bobsled competitions are governed by US Bobsled, skeleton federation, and Bobsleigh Canada Skeleton.

Modern bobsled teams compete with each other to complete a downhill route in the fastest time. Wondering why this game has a weird name? It is derived from the action that early players adopted of bobbing back and forth inside their sleds in order to increase their speed. Modern bobsled tracks are made of concrete and then coated with ice.

For more information, check out our article on History of Bobsledding.

7. Slopestyle

Slopestyle winter game includes many activities. There are three main things to win this game: Amplitude, Originality, and 0051uality of tricks of a player. It is a kind of combination of some other winter sports like skiing, snowboarding, and athletes. Slopestyle has a lot of categories, but four of them are dominant, and most liked, i.e. snips, grinds, grabs, and flips.

People also name it as freestyle snowboarding. It was first introduced in 2014.Slopestyle became an Olympic event officially at the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi, Russia, in both snowboarding and skiing forms. For more information, read our article on What is Slopestyle?

8. Curling

World Women’s Championship 2017, Beijing, China

Curling is a sport that requires the player to slide stones on a sheet of ice towards the target area. It is related to bowls, boules, and shuffleboard. To win the game, good strategy and teamwork are the major things to be managed. The oldest and considerably first written record of this sport can be dated back to 1541.

According to some ancient evidence, it can be said that curling existed in Scotland in the early 16th century. The world’s oldest curling stone and football are both kept in the same museum, the Stirling Smith Art Gallery and Museum, in Stirling. To know more about its history, check out our article on History of Curling.

9. Nordic combined

Nordic combined is the combination of Skiing and ski jumping. The first major event of these sports was organized in 1892. This game was dominated by Norwegians and Finns also had a good trip over this. The first victory of Norwegians was broken by a German in 1960. Main organizers of this sport are Winter Olympics and FIS Nordic combined world cup.

For more information, read A Guide to the Sports of Nordic combined.

10. Skeleton

Skeleton comes at first under the category of sliding sport because it is the fastest winter sliding sport. Approximately, riders can bear 5g of weight and slide at the speed of 130km per kilometer. People named it skeleton because of the bony appearance of players while playing. Formally, it was added in the Olympic program in 2002. It is necessary to stay concentrated and not to see around while you are sliding to win the game. In short, this game is all about how good you concentrate on your destination. This sport is the part of 5 major sports of Olympics.

To know more about this game, check out our article on A Brief Guide to Skeleton: A Winter Game

Conclusion

Winter is not about having vacations and staying indoors. You can enjoy the essence of this season by playing winter games during it. It will help you to stay active and sharp, even in the lazy winter days. Moreover, the Winter Olympics has also played quite a vital role in supporting winter sports in many aspects.

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