The History of Skiing
Although the history of the modern days skiing can mostly be found I Scandinavia it is much likely that they have also been practicing skiing in china from as early as 6000BC. Over 200 prehistoric skies have been found by now and all the founding have been from Norway, Sweden, Finland and Russia and in fact the oldest one found is from Russia and is about 8000 years old. The oldest rock carving ever found of a man on skies is in Norway and dated back to 5000BC.
Now days’ skiing is associated with fun and games, but it hasn’t always been like that from the beginning it was very much a necessity for surviving.
It is even described in the tales of Nordic Mythology that some gods and goddesses used skies when hunting with bow and arrow.
But except for gods using them the skies have also an important part of the old Scandinavian farming communities. Without these the people of the villages wouldn’t have a way of getting past and around the many obstacles like fjords, mountains and so on that were keeping them apart during wintertime.
Even if it would take a long time until it would start to pop up regulations regarding the sport of skiing there was already a law in Norway from 1274 that says “No moose shall be disturbed by skiers on private land”.
The craftsmanship of making the skies also developed from being something you did by yourself at home to being a full business for many people. In the beginning tar, fat, butter, cheese or herring was smeared to the base of the ski to protect the wood from absorbing moist but this also made the ski very slippery when going downhill. A solution for this was to put the hid from a reindeer, moose or seal under the ski with the hairs facing backwards. Now days though we use ski wax, a bit more modern fix for the problem. There is records of skies being used in warfare already in 13th century but from the 1700ths the military started to play a bigger part in the future of skiing as a sport. In fact the first records of organized skiing races and exercises comes from the military and in 1767 they started competitions with cash prizes in order to recruit young village boys to their army ski troops. The exercises that were then included involved downhill on rough terrain, downhill shooting a target and cross-county skiing with a military backpack.
In the mid 1800s skiing started to become a more mainstream activity in time with that the society got a better welfare and more free time to spend exploring the nature. And finally 1843 the very first civil skiing event were held I Norway only adding to its interest. After this many different branches of the sport has developed. In 1862 the first civil ski jumping was held, in 1922 Slalom going downhill trough built in obstacles were developed by an Englishman and then in 1950s Biathlon a combination of skiing and shooting got fully adopted in the Norwegian and international winter games. By now skiing had been spread throughout the whole world much because Norwegian immigrants bringing there tradition along to the country’s they traveled to.