I think that there is no type of family holiday thatâ€™s better than a ski holiday in a catered chalet. Family skiing trips allow you to bond, spend quality time together in a unique set-ting and try new activities. In addition to this, you definitely wonâ€™t have to spend time cooking if you book a catered chalet! You can benefit from the cosy accommodationâ€™s roominess and great facilities. This will create many happy memories that you will all look back on fondly.
If you want to pique the kidsâ€™ enthusiasm in the run-up to the holiday, there is no better way than intriguing them with some fun facts about skiing. Here is a collection of my fa-vourites.
There is some debate about where the thrilling winter sport of skiing originated. Many claim that it was invented in the snowy terrain of Norway, as ancient carvings about ski-ing have been discovered in this area. Another reason for believing that it first began in Norway is that the word â€˜skiâ€™ comes from the Old Norse word skÃÃ°, which translates to â€˜a piece of woodâ€™.
Sounds like a solved case, right? Wrong! It is thought that tribesmen in the Altai Moun-tains (in Central and East Asia) were shredding powder even before the Scandinavians. A ski that dates back to approximately 8000-7000 BC was uncovered near a lake in Russia, creating an interesting debate about the true origins of this hugely popular activ-ity.
Early Form of Transportation
Back in these prehistoric days, it is unlikely that people were skiing for fun. Instead, the sport surely served as an early form of transportation. It is easy to see why, as it provides the ability to quickly travel across challenging terrain â€“ itâ€™s not surprising, then, that skiing was even used as a mode of transportation during the First and Second World Wars.
Heard of a Snurfer?
Letâ€™s quickly turn our attention to snowboarding. Did you know that the very first snow-board was called a â€˜snurferâ€™? This somewhat comical name was given to a contraption that was invented by the American Sherman Poppen in 1965, when he connected two skis to create a skateboard without wheels. Unfortunately, the funny name did not stick, but about one million snurfers were sold over the next decade.
Alpine/downhill racing originated in Sweden and dates back to 1879, but it did not be-come an Olympic event until 1936. This is unlike cross-country skiing, which has been a part of every single Winter Olympics since its inaugural year in 1924. In contrast, snow-boarding only made its Olympic debut at the 1998 Games in Nagano, Japan.
This fun fact is certainly one to remember. Astronaut Harrison Schmitt, who was on the famous space shuttle Apollo 17, claims that our moon has the perfect terrain for cross-country skiing and that this technique could actually help astronauts traverse its surface. Who knows â€“ perhaps one day families will be able to book lunar ski holidays!
Speed skiing – faster than a car!
Skiing is one of the fastest sports in the world, and some speed skiers can reach speeds that are faster than a car! Passenger cars can reach speeds of around 120 mph, whilst the current world record for skiing is a blistering 156.2 mph. This was set by the Italian skier Simone Origone in 2006.
A Global Activity
Skiing is immensely popular in modern times, and those who have experienced the adrenaline rush and awesome surroundings know why! You can find ski resorts in around 80 countries worldwide, and approximately 350 million people visit these resorts every year.
These fun facts are sure to dazzle your little ones â€“ consider sharing them before your trip or possibly in your catered chalet after a fun day on the slopes!
Belinda Smythson works for Ski Amis, a specialist ski travel agency and booking service that has been helping avid skiers craft their perfect winter holiday for over a quarter of a century. If you're looking for the best catered chalet accommodation in the Three Valleys, Paradiski, Espace Killy or Chamonix Valley, Ski Amis is the go-to company for winter sports fans searching for the holiday of a lifetime.
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