If you’ve ever tried the sport of skiing, you’ve certainly felt the rush that comes when you speed down the mountain. Whether you spent your day in ski school or glided over the moguls on an expert run, everybody who tries the sport has a moment of feeling like an Olympic Champion.
Now, US Ski & Snowboard is offering talented young athletes, despite their experience level on the slopes, a chance to make those moments into a new athletic career.
Their new online event, U.S. Aerials Ski Team Pipeline: Digital Combine, allows motivated skiers, and those interested in learning more about the sport, an opportunity to display their talent to U.S. Aerials Ski Team coaches and start the journey towards becoming part of the national team.
This Digital Combine is a free event that athletes from anywhere in the country can compete in virtually, through video uploads and questionnaires about an athlete’s background and athletic metrics.
Some of the participants in the Ski Team Pipeline: Digital Combine will be invited to continue training with the Performance Series and then the National Training Group and development with the U.S. Aerials Ski Team.
What is the U.S. Aerials Ski Team?
The U.S. Aerials Ski Team is one of the competition teams within U.S. Ski & Snowboard, the governing body for skiing and snowboard events in the United States. The Aerials Ski Team competes in Freestyle Skiing events domestically and internationally, while also developing young athletes for the national team and educating the public about the Olympic event.
Freestyle Skiing has been an Olympic event since the 1992 Winter Olympic Games, where an American, Donna Weinbracht, won the inaugural event.
The sport includes a combination of ski jumping and moguls, as the skier performs aerial maneuvers like flips and spins between stretches of moguls on a steep ski run. Watching an aerial skier is among the most mesmerizing things in Winter Sports as the athlete glides across the icy bumps before flipping into the air, then landing and continuing on the next stretch of moguls.
Who can participate in the U.S. Aerials Ski Team Pipeline: Digital Combine?
This Digital Combine is the first step in becoming part of the U.S. Aerials Ski Team. It is essentially an open tryout for those motivated athletes who believe they have what it takes to be a freestyle skier.
That being said, the U.S. Ski & Snowboard Team is looking for daring athletes with or without skiing experience. Similarly, athletes with gymnastics, diving, or action sports experience are encouraged to try out and demonstrate some of their acrobatic talents that could translate to freestyle skiing.
What is included in the U.S. Aerials Ski Team Pipeline: Digital Combine?
This virtual event on GMTM includes five unique activities that athletes can upload content to. Each activity was added by U.S. Ski & Snowboard coaches to showcase a particular attribute of freestyle skiing that athletes need to develop. The activities include:
- Athlete Background: This is an athlete’s chance to tell U.S. Ski & Snowboard coaches about themselves. Upload a video about your skiing experience, your other sports accomplishments, and why you’d like to be a part of Team USA.
- Highlight Reel: Upload a video of your athleticism and some of your accomplishments on the ski slopes or another sports field. Show the U.S. Ski coaches what makes you an elite athlete.
- Standing Backflip: Aerial maneuvers are an integral part of Freestyle Skiing. Upload a video of yourself performing a standing backflip.
- 40-Yard Dash: Speed and athleticism are what can make good athletes into Olympic champions. Upload a video of yourself performing a 40-Yard Dash at your house or local track.
- Vertical Jump: Leg strength is about as important as any attribute for freestyle skiers. Upload a video of your vertical jump so that coaches can evaluate your leg strength.
How To Participate In The U.S. Aerials Ski Team Pipeline: Digital Combine
Participation in the event is free for all athletes and each activity is created so it can be recorded and performed in any space. Video submissions for each activity can be easily recorded on your phone and then uploaded to the corresponding activity. Below, you can find detailed instructions on how to find the event and participate for yourself.
Follow the instructions below to learn how to start your submission to the U.S. Aerials Ski Team Pipeline event:
Step 1: Log into GMTM or Sign Up to Create a New Profile
To get started with your showcase submission, either log into your existing GMTM profile or create a new one. The process is simple and you can get started here.
Step 2: Find the U.S Aerials Ski Team event in the Activities Tab - or - search for it using the Search Bar on GMTM.
After creating a profile or signing in, you can find the U.S. Aerials Ski Team Pipeline: Digital Combine event by clicking on the URL anywhere in this article, or by searching in the Activities dropdown menu. To access the Activities Menu, go to the homepage and hover over Activities. The dropdown menu should appear and will display the different types of activities on GMTM. The U.S. Aerials Ski Team event is an Online Tryout, so scroll down in the dropdown menu and click on Online Tryouts.
This will redirect you to the Online Tryouts page where you can see dozens of unique online events hosted by different Olympic teams, professional clubs and college programs. To find the U.S. Aerials Ski Team event, scroll down until you see the Event Card. Then, click Participate.
You can also use the Search Bar at the top of the screen from anywhere on GMTM to find the event. Just click on the Search Bar to start searching from any page on GMTM. Then, start typing to find the athlete, event, or organization you are looking for.
Once you type in the event name “U.S. Aerials Ski Team Pipeline: Digital Combine”, scroll down to select it from the new dropdown menu that appears. You may have to select View All Results at the bottom of the menu to find what you are looking for.
Step 3: Click the Participate button on each Activity and provide info about yourself or create a video submission
Once you click Participate on the Event Card in the Online Tryouts menu, you will be redirected to the U.S. Aerials Ski Team Pipeline: Digital Combine page. Here you can view all of the activities athletes will need to complete.
After scrolling through the page, you can start any activity by clicking the Participate Button on the right-hand side of the Activity.
Clicking Participate will take you to the Activity page. Once there, watch the instructional video that U.S. Ski & Snowboard has provided to complete the tasks. Some activities will ask for a video submission.
Step 4: After completing the tasks in each Activity, click Submit
After you've watched the video and read the description explaining how to complete the activity, record your submission. To do this, find a place in your backyard, at your school, or at a local field to create your video submission. You can ask a friend to help record your activity using a camera phone or other equipment. For activities that require a timed metric, ask a friend to record the time on a stopwatch - or - measure it while watching the footage played at real time.
Once you've created your video, save it on your phone or in a folder on your computer. Then find the Upload button on the Activity page and attach your video submission. You can also submit videos as YouTube or Hudl links.
Once you've attached the correct video and added any other information the Activity asks for, click Submit.
Step 5: Share your submission with your network and connect with coaches and other athletes
After you've completed each activity and finished your submission, go to your profile to check out the videos you've uploaded.
To gain more exposure and share the experience with teammates and coaches, copy the link to your profile or a particular video, and post it to your other social media accounts. Each time someone views your GMTM profile, your chances of being seen by more coaches and teams improve, so make sure you keep engaging!
What Happens After Participating In The U.S. Aerials Ski Team Pipeline: Digital Combine?
After an athlete submits to the U.S. Ski & Snowboard’s virtual event, their videos and other information will be visible to current national team coaches and athletes. Their information and content will become part of the U.S. Ski & Snowboard athlete database.
This Network will connect athletes interested in competitive skiing and snowboard events to opportunities. Participating athletes will be able to connect with one another in hopes of growing the sport and building better, more competitive ski & snowboard events all over the country.
By creating a profile on GMTM and participating in this event, athletes are that much closer to becoming part of an Olympic team. On the platform, you can connect with other athletes, engage with Team USA coaches, or just keep a growing record of your athletic journey.