After the Summer Olympics in Tokyo, people couldn’t wait for the next big event: the Winter Olympics.
Held in Beijing this year from February 4 to 20, we are once again witnessing a tough competition amongst the world’s best athletes.
While the hype had toned down significantly due to the lack of supporters in the arena, loyal fans are tuning in via the Internet to catch a glimpse of their favourite athletes in action.
Below are some intriguing Winter Olympics trivia.
Winter Olympics facts that you should know
1. Can you name all 15 sports in the Winter Olympics?
Winter sports are limited compared to that of Summer Olympics.
Nonetheless, the Winter Olympics is still highly anticipated thanks to the competitive spirit of all participating countries that makes it so exciting and nerve-wracking to watch. Here is a list of all Winter Olympics sports:
- Alpine skiing
- Cross-country skiing
- Figure skating
- Freestyle skiing
- Ice hockey
- Nordic combined
- Short track
- Ski jumping
- Speed skating
2. Women’s participation was limited to only one sport in the first Winter Olympics
In the first ever winter games in France (1924), women were only allowed to compete in figure skating.
It wasn’t until 1948 that women were finally allowed to compete in skiing as well as other winter sports in the years to come.
3. Is it possible to compete in both the Summer and Winter Olympics?
(Image source: Bleacher Report)
It is a possible but extremely difficult feat - you need to excel in two completely different sports to compete in both events.
There is one man who not only managed to do so, but had won gold medals for both events! Eddie Eagan (USA) won gold in boxing (1920 Summer Olympics) and 10 years later, went on to score another gold medal in the team bobsledding event (Winter Olympics). Speak of overachieving!
4. Beijing has a unique way of showcasing their cultural identity
In a typical opening ceremony, we see countries entering the arena in alphabetical order.
Beijing, this year’s host added a meaningful twist to the event: Countries were introduced by the number of strokes present in their names in Mandarin Chinese (starting from lowest to highest).
5. The infamous 'figure skating legend’ broke world records 19 times
(Image source: Olympics.com)
You should have known his name by now: Yuzuru Hanyu from Japan.
Dubbed one of the greatest male figure skaters in the history of Winter Olympics, the 27-year-old bagged gold medals in the men’s singles for two editions of the games. He had also broken the world records 19 times, the most amongst single skaters.
6. A German speed skater competed in eight Winter Olympics
(Image source: Reuters)
Claudia Pechstein just made history as the oldest woman to compete in the Winter Games - at 49 years old. She is also the second athlete to compete in a total of eight Winter Olympics. As the saying goes: when there’s a will, there’s a way!
Top study destinations to experience winter
The best part about the Winter Olympics is watching athletes compete on ice and snow.
Born and bred in a tropical country myself, visiting countries with winter season is on my bucket list for the longest time! Sounds relatable?
You can experience winter too - by studying abroad.
The next Winter Olympics will be held in Milan, Italy in 2026. If watching the Winter Olympics live in the arena is on top of your list, or if you simply want to study in a country with winter, it’s time to plan ahead!
Check out these countries:
You should consider Italy first if you’re keen to make it to 2026’s Winter Olympics. Not only does Italy have plenty of breathtaking landscapes and amazing culture, it is also well-known for its unforgettable study experience among international students. There are many fields for you to choose from, such as fashion, design, architecture, arts, and applied science.
After studying in South Korea, you will know much more than just ‘Annyeonghaseyo’.
The best way to learn Korean is by immersing yourself in the culture and environments for a long period of time. Besides, the Korean educational system is based on the American system, so you have a chance to experience a different curriculum! Some of the world-renowned universities in South Korea are:
Known as the world’s most educated country, you can obtain world-recognised degrees in Canada with lower tuition fees! There’s a post-graduation work permit (PGWP) that allows you to stay and work in Canada for three more years after graduating from a higher education institution in the country. That’s a great way to guarantee a promising career opportunity!
Studying in the UK has many perks. From top-class facilities and resources to learning from leading academics, you will experience lifelong learning in UK universities as they focus on building curiosity and research skills. The majestic architecture of old university buildings just makes studying in the UK so much better! Some of the most famous UK universities are:
You are one step closer to living the American dream when you study in the US. Business and Management, Computer Science, Engineering, and Mathematics are among the most popular programmes among international students. If you’re planning to migrate to the US, it is best to start from your higher education as it is easier to get a job in the country with a US degree. You can apply for permanent residency once you start working in the US after graduation!
The first thing that comes to mind when you think about studying in Switzerland is Hospitality and Tourism. As a hotspot for tourists from all over the world due to its astonishing natural wonders like the Alps, Switzerland is by default the best place to enroll in hospitality-related programmes. Studying and working here after graduation is a dream come true to students who wish to work in the hospitality industry, as the salary in Switzerland is among the highest in the world!
So, where will you go?
Read more of our articles here: