winter sports


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winter sports:

see bobsleddingbobsledding,
winter sport in which a bobsled—a partially enclosed vehicle with steerable sledlike runners, accommodating two or four persons—hurtles down a course of iced, steeply banked, twisting inclines.
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; curlingcurling,
winter sport, similar in principle to bowls and quoits (see horseshoe pitching), played on an ice court called a sheet by teams of four. Each player hurls a squat, circular stone—weighing 38 to 44 lb (17.
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; hockey, icehockey, ice,
team sport in which players use sticks to propel a hard, round disk into a net-backed goal. Rules and Equipment

Ice hockey is played on a rectangular rink with curved corners whose length may vary from 184 to 200 ft (56–61 m), its width from 85
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; ice dancingice dancing,
ice-skating competition in which couples are required to perform dance routines to music. The sport gained popularity in the 1930s and the first world championships were held in 1950.
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; ice skatingice skating,
gliding along an ice surface on keellike runners known as ice skates. Skating as a Sport

Skating, besides being an important form of winter recreation and the essential skill in the game of ice hockey (see hockey, ice) has developed into three
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; skiingskiing,
sport of sliding over snow on skis—long, narrow, flexible runners. Water skiing is a warm-weather sport in which a motor-propelled craft tows a skier through the water.
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; snowshoessnowshoes,
footgear enabling the wearer to walk on soft snow without sinking. A snowshoe consists of a light frame of tough wood or aluminum, roughly the shape of a large tennis racket, which is strung with caribou skin or other material and is attached to the shoe in back of a
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; tobogganingtobogganing,
sport of coasting down snowy hillsides or chutes on a toboggan, a flat-bottomed vehicle made of hard wood. The toboggan, typically measuring 1.5 ft by 6–8 ft (.46 m by 1.8–2.
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.

Winter Sports

 

the collective name for skating, skiing, and sledding sports and games, with competitions held on ice and snow.

Winter sports include the biathlon, a ski race combined with rifle shooting; bobsledding, a high-speed descent on guided all-metal sleds down a special run—an ice-covered chute with a reinforced-concrete foundation; ice boating, a race over ice on boats with sails; Alpine skiing, including downhill, slalom, and giant slalom; skiing, including cross-country races over varying distances, ski jumping, and various Nordic combined events; tobogganing, a descent on specially designed sleds; speed skating, a race on ice skates; figure skating; ice hockey; and bandy. National forms of winter sports also exist, such as races with reindeer, dog-team derbies, and curling. Motor racing on the ice has become popular, for which national and world championships are held.

Winter sports have thrived in Austria, the German Democratic Republic, Italy, Canada, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, the USSR, the USA, Finland, France, the Federal Republic of Germany, Czechoslovakia, Switzerland, Sweden, and Japan. World and European championships are held, and in the USSR national and sports societies’ championships as well as Union-republic and trade-union Spartakiads are organized. The Winter Olympic Games have been held since 1924.

The development of winter sports is directed by the corresponding international sports federations: bobsledding and tobogganing, founded in 1923, uniting 17 national federations as of 1970; skiing (1924, 47 national federations as of 1970); skating (1892, 38 national federations as of 1970); the biathlon and modern pentathlon (1957, 22 national federations as of 1970); sledding (1957, 26 national federations as of 1970); ice hockey (1908, 31 national federations as of 1970); and bandy (1954, 7 national federations as of 1970).

Outstanding successes in international official winter sports competition have been achieved by such Soviet athletes as I. G. Artamonova, O. G. Goncharenko, E. R. Grishin, M. G. Isakova, L. P. Skoblikova, and B. A. Shilkov (speed skating); L. V. Baranova, K. S. Boiarskikh, V. P. Vedenin, A. P. Kolchina, P. K. Kolchin, V. S. Kuzin, G. A. Kulakova, and A. S. Oliunina (ski racing); L. E. Belousova and O. A. Protopopov, I. K. Rodnina and A. N. Ulanov, L. A. Pakhomova and A. G. Gorshkov (figure skating); V. P. Belousov and G. lu. Napalkov (ski jumping); V. F. Mamatov, V. M. Melanin, and A. I. Tikhonov (biathlon); and the USSR ice hockey and bandy teams.

V. I. SAVVIN and IU. S. PERMINOV

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