One of Australia’s only medals in the Winter Olympics was in 2002 Speed Skating 1,000 Meters – Steven Bradbury
A study done during the 2006 Winter Games in Turin found that 330 athletes, or about 13% of the total, sought medical care. Nineteen athletes had to be rushed to the hospital for serious traumas (five head, two cervical, three upper limb, one abdominal and one backbone). The list of casualties even included two curlers who suffered traumas after falls on the ice. At the 2008 Summer Games in Beijing, roughly 10% of the athletes sought medical attention, but fewer than half had injuries that might have prevented them from competing. (The most-treated maladies were sprained ankles and pulled thigh muscles.)
What will set these coming Games apart is the result of recent advances in medical technology and physical therapy. Experts say Vancouver’s Games will feature a record number of athletes who have suffered a catastrophic injury that, years earlier, might have ended their athletic careers.
Recent races in Austria were a milestone for the German ski cross team. Two members qualified for the Winter Olympics in Vancouver in February. The Germans now have a poster boy, and possibly several poster girls, for the newest, most dangerous and exciting sport at the Winter Olympics.
He might be one of Germany’s best medal hopes for the upcoming Winter Olympics but he still has to explain his jokes — especially the one about the padded cell. “Now I need a padded cell,” ski-cross champion Simon Stickl joked straight after winning a race in Austria in early January that made him the first German male to qualify for the ski-cross event at the upcoming Winter Olympics. Four female skiers have also qualified. Nobody could figure out Stickl’s joke. “In the team, we always made jokes about locking ourselves away as soon as we had qualified for the Olympics,” Stickl told SPIEGEL ONLINE. “Just so that nothing could happen to us. Because our sport is so dangerous.”
A US first grade teacher explains to her class that she is an American. She asks her students to raise their hands if they are American too.
Not really knowing why but wanting to be like their teacher, their hands explode into the air like flashy fireworks. There is, however, one exception. A girl named Kristen has not gone along with the crowd.
The teacher asks her why she has decided to be different. “Because I am not an American.”
“Then”, asks the teacher, “What are you?”.
“I’m a proud Canadian,” boasts the little girl.
The teacher is a little perturbed now, her face slightly red. She asks Kristen why she is a Canadian.
“Well, my mom and dad are Canadians, so I’m a Canadian too.
“The teacher is now really angry. “That’s no reason,” she says loudly. “What if your mom was a crappy hockey player, and your dad was a crappy hockey player? Would that mean that you’re a crappy hockey player too?”
The first little girl says: “My name is Mary and my daddy is a postman.”
The next little boy says: “I’m Andy and my Dad is a mechanic.”
Then one little boy says: “My name is Jimmy and my father is a loser who prefers to lay on the couch all day and watch TV, while Mom goes off to work to support us.”
The teacher gasps and quickly changes the subject, but later in the schoolyard the teacher approaches Jimmy privately and asks if it was really true what he had said about his father.
He blushed and said, “I’m sorry but my dad plays hockey for Team USA, and I was just too embarrassed to say so.”