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Alpine skiing

Alpine skiing (or downhill skiing) is a recreational activity and sport involving sliding down snow-covered hills with long, thin skis attached to each foot.

Alpine skiing evolved from cross-country skiing when ski lift infrastructure was developed at mountain resorts to tow skiiers back to the top of slopes, thus making it possible to repeatedly enjoy skiing down steep, long slopes that would be otherwise too tiring to climb up. Thus, the sport is popular wherever the combination of snow, mountain slopes, and a sufficient tourist infrastructure can be built up, including much of Europe, North America, and Japan.

The main technical challenges faced by skiiers are simply how to control the direction and speed of their descent. Typically, novice skiiers use a technique called the "snowplough" to turn and stop by pointing one or both skis inward, but more advanced skiiers use more difficult but more elegant and speedier methods. As skiiers gain confidence, they tackle steeper, longer and more uneven slopes at higher speeds.


Various alpine skiing competitions have developed in the history of skiing, and elite competitive skiiers participate in the annual World Cup series, as well as the Winter Olympic Games.

Alpine skiing competition events include:

World Cup

Professional alpine skiers compete on the World Cup circuit in Slalom, Giant Slalom, and Downhill races held at various sites in Europe, the United States, and Canada. Points are awarded in according to where the participant finishes in each individual race. At the end of the season, the personal accumulating the most points from all three race venues is the overall champion.

See also: