Who am I?
In May of 2011 I graduated from Elon University with a double major in International Business and International Studies. But instead of getting a job I tried out of the US Skeleton team. Fast forward to November and I’m flying headfirst down an icy track.
What is this blog about?
This blog is meant to document an Olympic hopeful’s many firsts of learning a new sport. Wikipedia describes skeleton as such: Skeleton is a fast winter sliding sport in which an individual person rides a small sled down a frozen track while lying face down, during which athletes experience forces up to 5g. If you have any more questions about the sport, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What is your background in athletics?
While at Elon University, I was a Division I scholarship athlete in the sport of Track and Field. I was a 3x Southern Conference Champion, 9x All-Southern Conference team member and was named the Southern Conference Field Performer of the Year in 2011.
Elon awarded me the university’s highest athletic honor, the Stein H. Basnight Outstanding Athlete Award. In addition, I was an NCAA Division I East Preliminary qualifier in the Triple Jump and I own PRs of 19-6 (5.95m) in the Long Jump and 41-5.75 (12.64) in the Triple Jump.
Image courtesy of Shawn Coleman
Sooo… how does this apply to skeleton?
The US Bobsled and Skeleton Federation recruits athleticism. The idea is that explosive and powerful athletes will acclimate better to the important push start. If the USBSF can recruit well-rounded athletes, then they can teach the skills necessary to thrive within the sport.
The USBSF hosts a combine over the summer in which participants compete in 8 different events. Each event is scored on a scale from 1-100 points, making a grand total of 800 points possible. New skeleton athletes must score 650 points in order to be eligible to slide that season. In my second season of skeleton, I recorded the highest combine score on the women’s team and subsequently won the National Push Championships, in record breaking time. As the years pass, I hope to become a better and more confident driver on the skeleton sled. Being successful will takes accepting an athlete’s lifestyle, committing to the sport wholly and a little luck.