I honestly wish this issue would go away and we’d never need to talk about snowboarding and the FIS (or even the IOC) in the same sentence again but unfortunately the Olympics needs the snowboarding loot so…
Does Snowboarding Need the Olympics?
It’s clear that the Olympics needs snowboarding. Snowboarding is one of the highest-viewed sports in the Winter Olympics. What is not so clear, is whether snowboarding needs the Olympics. Case in point we seem to have been doing just fine for the last forty years.
But TTR is still trying to negotiate some compromise with the FIS, more power to them I guess but I don’t know why they’re pushing so hard to get FIS acceptance.
Maybe I’m hanging with the wrong peeps but the general sentiment among the snowboarding community seems to be either “take it or leave it” ambivalence, or outright rejection of FIS. So we definitely don’t need the Olympics, and many of us don’t even want the Olympics.
Isn’t Olympic Exposure a Good Thing?
Some people will say the “exposure” of the Olympics is good, that snowboarding will benefit, and that it introduces new people to the sport that we love. Right. Just like watching olympic figure skating and speed skating inspired a fresh new wave of figure skaters and speed skaters?
Ooops. No. Every four years people like our moms get excited to watch these spectacles and immediately afterwards they forget about and/or stop giving a shit about figure-skating and speed skating for the next 3 years and 364 days.
And although nobody actually knows what happens to speed skaters (some are rumored to appear on Wheaties boxes) after the Olympics, we do know that most figure skaters will eventually fall into Disney-on-Ice obscurity. Sorry but that’s not the direction I want our sport to take.
I really do not even like the Olympics to begin with so maybe I’m a bit biased but I don’t want a bunch of old ass skiers regulating the comp formats or event schedules, I’m not clear on what the alleged “benefits” are supposed to be, and seriously I think we’ve all had enough commercialization to last several lifetimes.
What Do You Think?
Well I’ve ranted long enough what do you think about this? Do you want to see snowboarding slopestyle in the Olympics? What sort of compromises (if any) would you make with FIS? Or should we stick to doing our own thing?