Women Ski Jumpers Fight for Olympic Events

Nov 12, 2009
Outside Magazine

JessicaJeromejump Last year, ski jumping phenom Lindsey Van won the firstinternational-level ski-jump medal for the U.S. since 1924 and set the ski-jump recordfor both men and women at the Vancouver Olympic facility. But you won’t see herat the Olympic Games.

That’s because women aren’t allowed to compete in skijumping events. But a group of persistent athletes are trying to change that. Todayand tomorrow, Lindsey Van and a handful of her teammates and competitors are appealing a former ruling in the courts of British Columbia. They hope a verdict in their favor will force the OlympicCommittee to institute a women’s event in the traditionally Euroand macho sport of ski jumping. 

These elite athletes have endured appalling hardships in the name of pursuing their sport, from being pushed from the competition platform in Poland to sleeping in barns during competitions for lack of funds. And believe this: Gian Franco Casper, president of the International Federation of Skiing, was once quoted as suggesting that women's uteruses might be damaged from repeated jumps (and therefore perhaps they shouldn't compete). Riiiiight. Can you tell where I stand? 

Read the whole story as reported by the Christian Science Monitor here. To help the cause, donate to thenon-profit organization Women’s Ski Jumping U.S.A.   

--Kate Siber

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