Best Winter Sports around the World

Sports are way more fun in winter than in summers. You don’t get tired easily while there is no problem of sweating during intense physical exercise. Winter Sports have their own specific events including the Winter Olympic Games. Most of these sports are played in mountainous areas that are covered with thick snow. Get your gear and equipment ready for having some fun during the winters.

How Winter Sports Emerged?

Many have the question as to when and how winter sports emerged. With extremely cold weather, it does sound odd that someone came up with the idea of having sports during the winter season. However, it all started when specific winter transports were designed. For example, the earliest transport on snow included sleds, skis, and skates. People then got involved in small competitions and friendly matches with each other through these means of transport which ultimately led to the creation of a whole range of winter sports. 

Modern equipment such as snowmobiles have also contributed to the development of winter sports. These vehicles led to racing sports as well as stunt-based sports. Special quad bikes were also made which can be ridden in the snow. Other reasons for the emergence of winter sports are the natural climate of a particular area. For example, many countries such as Canada have very long winter seasons. Naturally, sports that could be played in winters became important and these countries developed different types of games. 

Best Winter Sports Around the World

Skiing

Skiing is truly the all-time favorite sport of many people. It has got so popular over the past few years that it has been recognized by the International Olympic Committee. Specific organizations have been set up for the promotion and development of skiing including the International Ski Federation. The Ski Gear comprises a pair of skis, ski suit, ski goggles, ski gloves, poles, helmet, a pair of boots, and bindings. 

Before the 19th century, skis were used by continental troops only while during the 19th century, they became popular among the general public as a means of transport as well as an important sport of all times. Modern-day skiing has more than 10 types out of which many have World Cup Championships as well as a part in the Winter Olympic Games. Unlike the general belief, skiing is also done indoors in specific ski simulators. 

Skiing has become one of the top known sports of winters

Snowmobile

Most recently, snowmobiles have gotten in trend as people seem to be attracted towards them. A snowmobile is a specially designed vehicle that can run on snow. With the advancement in motor technology, snowmobiles have become popular in many parts of the world. They are driven on open trails as well as specific tracks too. Many people consider it more of a hobby rather than a serious sport although there are many competitions held around different parts of the world every year. 

Earlier snowmobiles were only capable of running on simple rubber tracks but modern ones are capable of running on different terrains. A snowmobile usually has the capability of carrying two people. It does have a windshield and can run on either a two-stroke gasoline engine or a four-stroke internal combustion engine. Different types of sports played with snowmobiles include snowmobile drag races, trail riding, freestyle, boondocking, ditch banging, long-distance off-road race, and snowmobile skipping. It is one of the favorite winter sports of all time. 

Snowmobiles are fast

Ice hockey

Ice Hockey is another famous winter sport played in an indoor or outdoor rink where two teams wearing skaters use sticks to shoot the hockey puck onto the opponent’s net. The sport is known to be one of the most important ones in winter sports. There are six players fielding in one team of which one is the goalkeeper, two on defense, and three on the attack. The highest governing body of Ice Hockey is the International Ice Hockey Federation.

There are many indoor arenas all over Canada, Europe, and the United States dedicated to Ice Hockey and it is even the national winter sport of Canada. Over 76 countries have Ice hockey federations working for the development and promotion of this sport. Experts believe that ice hockey emerged from simple stick and ball games which were played during the 18th century. Ice Hockey has become one of the most entertaining sports in the Olympics as well. 

Ice hockey

Ice Racing

Snowmobiling didn’t bring enough thrill to the fans which is why Ice Racing got popular. This is a sport that involves driving different types of vehicles such as cars, motorbikes, 4 by 4 trucks, and other vehicles on a lake that is frozen. The same cars that you see on roads racing against one another are used in ice racing with slight modifications to ensure a better grip for the car and safety for the drivers. 

Although you may think that this is dangerous as the cars may sink in the water below if the ice cracks, there is enough evidence to support that ice racing is safe because the event organizers measure the ice thickness and maximum allowance of weight accordingly. The drivers are also packed with gear to stay safe if any unfortunate event occurs. The best part about ice racing is that it is quite affordable. You don’t need a racing car because riding on the ice requires skill more than acceleration. Just get the simple tires replaced with snow tires and you will be ready to go. 

Ice racing is done on cars and motorbikes
Snowboarding

Snowboarding is a sport that is inspired by skiing, surfing, and sledding. This involves riding on a snowboard that is almost always attached to the rider’s feet. Snowboarding is usually done on tall mountains which have thick ice on them. Snowboarding competitions are also popular and it is a famous sport in the Winter Olympic Games and Winter Paralympic Games. Plan your trip in the coming winters to a snowy peak. Make sure you have the right gear including snowboard, safety gloves, helmet, and other accessories before you begin. 

Snowboarding emerged when Sherman Poppen, an engineer, invented a toy for his daughter by fastening two skis together and attaching a rope to one end. This assisted in better control of the downhill glide. Initially, it was known as the snurfer as it was a surfing board on snow but later it was named as a snowboard. Brunswick Corporation was the first one to start a mass-scale production and sale of snowboards. 

Snowboards have had a lot of trends in the US

Curling

Curling is one sport that is somewhat similar to ice hockey because of the sticks and pucks but the entire game is more engaging than ice hockey. Curling is a sport where players slide stones on iced floors towards a target area that has four circles. Each team has eight of these stones curling towards the target marked on the ice. There are 4 players per team and each of these players is allowed 2 throws. 

Whichever team gets the higher score wins. The more interesting thing about this game is that there is a lot of tactical nuance going on and players are performing tricks to overcome the opponents through a series of techniques regarding friction, angles, and arcs. It is sometimes referred to as the “Chess on Ice”. The history of Curling dates back to the 16th-century when locals curled stones on frozen lochs. It can be a great idea for the upcoming winters and you should find a center nearby where you can practice curling easily. 

Figure shows a curling match

Ice Boating

After snowmobile and snow racing, iceboating is when the boats are traveling on Ice. It may sound boring but you would be shocked to know that people who go on iceboating can cross speeds more than 140 miles per hour as well. Ice Boating includes a boat which has skis fitted onto it which helps it in running over ice instead of water. The boats have a higher speed because it is easier to get going on slick ice rather than water with waves. 

In Poland, Ice Boating is one of the biggest sports which is usually done in the lake district of Mazury especially during the winter season when there are frozen reservoirs and gusting winds. One has to get in the proper equipment and practice this sport before going for the final run. With such high speeds, safety becomes a major concern as well. 

Find out more about some of the most thrilling sports for beginners – Extreme Sports for Beginners.

Conclusion

Winters are unarguably one of the best times for exercising your body as it helps in staying warm along with bringing a vast range of health benefits too. All over the world, we see Winter Sports are being developed at a swift pace with many of these being a part of the Olympics too. Seems interesting? Plan your next tour to a hill station in the winters because this is the perfect spot for a lot of winter sports.