Lets go Kiiking!

by Jennie

Have you ever heard of Kiiking? Me neither, until one of my friends from back home said, “OH you’re in Estonia? Are you going Kiiking?”

Kiiking is a sport that was invented in Estonia by Ado Kosk around 1996. In Estonian language kiik means a swing. In a kiiking swing, the swing arms are made of steel to enable a person to swing 360 degrees going over the spindle of the swing . A person is fastened to the swing base by their feet. To swing the person begins to pump by squatting and standing up on the swing. The swing will gain momentum and will by skillful pumping take a person across the spindle.”

I really wish this was a winter activity, but I have a feeling it would be hard to find right about now.  You must see this to get the full picture – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TWbcsEDrmFE

Back to the present, our venue today came alive with teams prepping for the first race today. I love the rush as I first enter the stadium of a new venue in my team swag and realize that the athletes around me could be speaking any language in the world. The fact remains, however, that they are still my peers,  and they are doing their thing for the day on skis just like the rest of us. This is my last year as a U23, and when I first began, I couldn’t help thinking ‘do I belong here with these people’?  I wanted to qualify so badly, then when the time came, I seemed to stress/psych myself out. Years later, I finally put my foot down, slapped my results on the table and asked ‘well who are THEY to be here? Heck yes do I belong! And man if feels good. So although I have some big goals for this up coming week, no matter how it goes, I am excited to say that my ball has just started rolling…..

Where the magic happens - the race skis/race wax only room

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