Top Women in Winter Sports History

If there is one thing that excites an adrenaline fanatic during the winter months, it’s the winter sporting activities that they can get to enjoy. Families and individuals love being involved in winter sports these days. However, women were not always encouraged to be a part of sporting activities and leave alone winter sports. Today with the celebration of women’s rights there are a handful of women who are to be saluted for standing up to a male-dominated society, play winter sports, and give today’s woman hope and freedom. These women have played roles in winter sports right from the 1800s, and this is why they are as unique as they are today. 

Marie Paradis

Climbing snow-covered mountains are not an easy feat even for a professional. For a woman in the 1800s, it is seldom heard off. However, Marie Paradis was one who did it with Jacques Balmat by her side like a mountain guide. She climbed Mont Blanc, and she did it not in trousers, but a dress. Women like Henriette d’Angeville did the same climb ten years after Marie, too. If there is one obvious thing, it is that both women performed and laid the foundation for a winter sporting activity when it was unheard of.

Sonja Henie

In the year 1924, the concept of the winter Olympics was started. However, there was only one category that permitted women, and that was in figure ice skating. A young eleven-year-old girl stood up to 13 other women and competed. She took home the gold for her performance and became the youngest and first woman to win the Winter Olympics in history. The best part is she did it in a short skirt – something that was not allowed at the time. However, Sonja Henie from Sweden believed that the short skirt gave her the agility required on the ice.

Top Women in Winter Sports History
Top Women in Winter Sports History

Christl Cranz and Marielle Goitschel

The year 1936 saw Christl Cranz win the Alpine Skiing winter Olympics category. The category was introduced for the first time that year in the winter Olympics too. It was a year that over 500 women took part in the Winter Olympics as well, and Christl took home the gold. Later, she also won 13 World Championships and added them to her accolades. Coming from a family known for their amazing Alpine ski racing talents, Marielle Gotschel won the Alpine Skiing winter Olympics the very next Olympics after Crystl Cranz did. She won as many as 11 World Championships in the Alpine Ski Racing category and did her family proud. The family is based on the French side Alps and even have resorts and shops to their name. The Famous Val Thorens resort belongs to the Goitschel family in the French Alps.

Janica Kostelic

Croatian born Janica comes from a family that provided her with every support possible to aid in her success in the winter Olympics. With as many as 4 Olympic medals, Janica did her family proud. The determination and her passion to succeed is one that makes her stand up as an icon for women in the winter sports today. She is the first and only woman to win three golds in a single Winter Olympics in 2002.