Origin of slalom
Words nearby slalom
MORE ABOUT SLALOM
What does slalom mean?
Slalom refers to the type of skiing and snowboarding event that takes place on a winding, downhill course marked by a series of boundary poles or gates, which the racer is required to stay between while attempting to cross the finish line in the shortest possible time.
There are several slalom events in the Winter Olympics. In skiing, these include the slalom as well as the giant slalom and the super giant slalom (popularly called Super G), which feature longer courses and more widely spaced gates. In snowboarding, there is an event called the parallel giant slalom. (In slalom events, the word parallel indicates that two racers compete simultaneously on identically spaced courses).
Such competitive skiing events are categorized as types of Alpine skiing (in contrast with Nordic skiing, which includes cross-country skiing and ski jumping). Alpine skiing is sometimes more generally called downhill skiing. The term downhill is also used in a more specific way as the name of the Alpine skiing event that takes place on a relatively straight downhill course—without gates.
There are also slalom events in the Paralympic Winter Games.
In slalom events, the gates or poles are laid out in different variations and combinations based on the course and the competition rules. It is common for racers to hit the gates as they pass them in order to take the most direct (and fastest) route to the next gate.
Example: I like the speed of the downhill event, but I prefer the added challenge of slalom.
Where does slalom come from?
The first records of the word slalom in English come from the 1920s. It comes from the Norwegian word slalåm, from sla(d), meaning “sloping,” and låm, meaning “track.”
The creation of competitive slalom is credited to Arnold Lunn, a British skier and winter athlete who developed the sport in the 1920s.
The slalom event in skiing was first included in the Winter Olympics in 1936. The giant slalom event was added in 1952, and the super giant slalom (super G) event was added in 1988. The first snowboarding slalom event was featured in 1998.
Did you know ... ?
What are some words that share a root or word element with slalom?
- giant slalom
- super giant slalom
- parallel giant slalom
What are some words that often get used in discussing slalom?
How is slalom used in real life?
The term slalom is used in both skiing and snowboarding. It is used in the names of multiple events, including slalom, giant slalom, super giant slalom (super G), and parallel giant slalom.
Mikaela Shiffrin wins GOLD in women's slalom. At 18 she is the youngest gold medal winner in the history of the event.
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) February 21, 2014
Congrats to the brilliant Swedish skier Frida Hansdotter! Olympic gold in the slalom!
— Sweden.se (@swedense) February 16, 2018
🇦🇹 Benjamin Karl from Austria barreled down the course to win #gold in the men's #snowboard parallel giant slalom at the Beijing #Olympics.
Tim Mastnak from 🇸🇮 Slovenia took #silver while Vic Wild from the Russian Olympic Committee took #bronze https://t.co/RrqLwsgNj7 pic.twitter.com/Sr5JvpPBqr
— Reuters Sports (@ReutersSports) February 8, 2022
Try using slalom!
True or False?
In slalom events, racers are not allowed to touch the gates in any way.
How to use slalom in a sentence
With a fat ski, “you can make a slide GS turn, a slide slalom turn, and it’s, you know, playful, fun.”An Ode to Skinny Skis|Dan Schwartz|March 5, 2021|Outside Online
Back in the day when everyone skied on modified slalom and GS skis, stiffness was often the deciding factor in ski selection.Long-Term Review: The Best Skis, Period|Heather Schultz and Marc Peruzzi|March 4, 2021|Outside Online
Shortly after her giant slalom run Thursday, Abbasi expressed optimism about how far women have progressed in Iran but was emotional about what remains to be accomplished.Iranian skier appeals for women’s rights after her coach is kept from traveling by her husband|Cindy Boren|February 19, 2021|Washington Post
He uses his snout to flick branches aside, like an Olympic skier powering through the gates on a slalom course.More dog tales: We’re learning the quirks of Archie the rescue|John Kelly|November 8, 2020|Washington Post
Notice below how Walker starts out on the left before he slaloms right at midcourt.Give Boston’s Kemba Walker A Double Pick And Watch Him Work|Michael Pina|August 31, 2020|FiveThirtyEight
There are four disciplines on a scale from technical to speed, with slalom the most technical and the downhill the fastest.
Starting 40th in a Lienz, Austria slalom, she posted the fastest time of the day in her second run, finishing third.
The prince chatted with a few athletes and family members before conversing with Canadian slalom kayaker Michael Tayler.Prince Harry: I'm Too Old To Go Out Anymore. Really Your Highness?!|Tom Sykes|August 2, 2012|DAILY BEAST
Meanwhile the Knox parents slalom between TV tents giving interviews for the morning shows.Knox Case Nears Its Gaudy End|Barbie Latza Nadeau|September 29, 2011|DAILY BEAST