Chutes and Ladders

Swiss freeskier's Olympic training routine is like a human Rube Goldberg machine

September 12, 2017

Meet Andri Ragettli. Andri is an Olympic freeskier from Switzerland, which means his 9-5 mostly consists of doing stuff like this:

That's a quad cork 1800 (four inverted rotations seamlessly combined with five horizontal rotations) and it was the first one ever pulled by a human being wearing skis. Needless to say, Andri is good at his job. So what does it take to get this damn good at something so damn dangerous? Contrary to popular belief, it's not bong hits and Aspen ski bunny orgies (though it looks almost as fun). Check it out:

This is Andri's daily Olympic training regimen and if we we're dumb enough to even try the first leap in this crazy real-life game of Chutes and Ladders, we would nuke both our ACLs and spend remainder of the afternoon ugly crying in the emergency room. For an Olympic-level skier—and a legitimate medal contender—however, it's about as dangerous (and difficult) as putting on a pot of coffee.

And while this consequence-free viral video is certainly a hell of a lot of fun, it also demonstrates the sort of multi-discipline approach—balance, focus, creativity, and risk-taking—that make action sports athletes some of the most underrated (and cerebral) on earth. In fact, Andri's Real Madrid jersey only underlines the point: These guys are full-bore, badass athletes that could have played any organized sport on earth and excelled. They just chose something where they can use "stoked" like commas and get away with it, and that's totally cool with us.