Beyond the snow: Summer sports for winter athletes

Today, 22 September, marks the end of the summer for many across the world. It also means the winter season is about to begin! But how did Beijing 2022 hopefuls who haven’t seen snow in months train in the summer heat?

Picture by 2021 Getty Images

Liu Shaolin, Hungary, short track

For PyeongChang 2018 Olympic 5,000m relay short track champion, Liu Shaolin, the answer was a mixture of long roads and climbs. With the Italian village of Bormio located at an altitude of 1,225m, the gold medallist will have prepared his legs perfectly for the rigorous journey to Beijing.

Queralt Castellet, Spain, snowboard halfpipe

Snowboarding and skateboarding share one key characteristic: they are both sports where balance is essential. Perhaps that’s the reason Queralt Castellet, who is aiming to compete in her fifth Winter Olympics in Beijing, chose to skateboard as a means to keep fit (and have fun) over the summer.

Alexis Pinturault, France, alpine skiing

Before going down the mountain slope at the World Cup season restart in Soelden, Austria on 23 October, crystal globe holder Alexis Pinturault rides his bike in the hills in the French Alps.

KODAIRA Nao, Japan, speed skating

PyeongChang gold and silver medalist KODAIRA Nao went on a cycling session in a beautiful hilly road and found some synergy with her sport on the way: "The posture may be similar (to speed skating) but the movements are quite different. Cycling is a good tool to improve the mobility of the whole body."

Arianna Fontana, Italy, short track speed skating

Training for her passion in the lovely summer sun, what preparation could be better for eight-time Olympic short-track medallist Arianna Fontana?

Mikaela Shiffrin, USA, alpine skiing

Could there be a plan to compete in the Summer Olympics for alpine skiing superstar Mikaela Shiffrin? She certainly took advantage of the summer months to practice her tennis backhand and forehands skills. Her next mission? To conquer a third (and maybe more) Olympic gold, after winning slalom at Sochi 2014 and giant slalom at PyeongChang 2018.

Lucas Eguibar, Spain, snowboard cross

Boxing, cycling, climbing... what can Lucas Eguibar not do?

The Spanish flagbearer at PyeongChang 2018 is aiming to reach the podium at Beijing 2022 in snowboard cross but, before that, he hasn't stopped training and appears to be good at any of the sports he does!

Tessa Worley, France, alpine skiing

Two-time giant slalom world champion, Tessa Worley, challenged herself by attending a surf rescue training camp, which she found “super demanding” and took her “out of her comfort zone”.

Jaqueline Mourao, Brazil, cross-country skier and biathlete

Canada could be a perfect place to practice winter sports... but summer is summer everywhere. If you have doubts, ask Jaqueline Mourao, who captioned her rollerskiing instagram post with, "End of the week training in the Canadian heat!"

The Brazilian had to be creative in order to stay finely tuned ahead of the winter season.

Laurie Blouin, Canada, snowboard slopestyle and big air

Laurie Blouin is a sport addict. During the summer, the PyeongChang 2018 snowboard slopestyle silver medalist didn't stop being active with mountain biking, golf and skateboarding among her passions.

Laura Gómez and Daniel Zapata, Colombia, speed skating

Colombia could be more known as a country of cycling than a country of ice. So let's mix both!

Beijing 2022 is in the sights of Laura Gómez and Daniel Zapata, two South American speed skaters who obviously also love the speed of a bike.

Edson Bindilatti, Brazil, bobsleigh

No ice?

No worries, Edson Bindilatti has a solution.

Brazil's bobsledder and flagbearer at PyeongChang 2018 has his own way to use an athletics track.

Perrine Laffont, France, freestyle skiing (moguls)

When there is no snow, there is water. Freestyle skier Perrine Laffont, the Olympic champion in moguls from PyeongChang 2018, found another way to slide, taking to the ocean to surf in style.