Emma Dahlström, 20, started skiing as soon as she could walk. She began practising Slopestyle, one of the newest disciplines in alpine skiing, at the age of 13.
Emma is part of Olympic Talent Support Vattenfall, and she says that it is every young freestyle skier's dream to get the kind of support that makes it possible to be a full-time athlete. Emma is preparing for the upcoming Olympic Games in Sochi.
Achievements: 4th at WC Silvaplana 2013, 1st at WSI Big Air Whistler 2012, 7th at Winter X Games Aspen 2012, 5th at Winter Dew Tour Killington 2012, 1st at European Freeski Open Laax 2011, 7th at Winter X Games Tignes 2011.
What is Slopestyle?
A slopestyle trail comprises of challenging jumps and obstacles where the point is to get height in jumps, variety in tricks and to use as much of the course as possible. The whole idea is to present new tricks that have never been seen before. Being an athlete in free skiing means that you need to be creative and, at the same time, stay in control of your race.
Could you describe a typical training week?
It's different every week. Sometimes I can't get enough of skiing. It can spend up to 25-30 hours a week on skis. After skiing, I spend a few hours at the gym every week in order to keep strong. When the snow has melted and the summer unfortunately begins, I continue with trampolining, water ramp jumping, gym and running to stay strong for the upcoming season.
How do you push yourself to the next level?
When you try new tricks, it's often the case that you take a lot of falls, and sometimes it feels like you just want to give up. But often it's the friends around you that motivate you to try it again and again until you make it. It's the greatest feeling to manage to do something that you didn't think was possible. That's the true challenge of this sport!
How have your parents supported you?
They were always the ones to give me a lift up to the hill whenever I and my childhood friend Victor went up to my local resort during the weekends. It was also my dad who taught me how to ski. So I have a lot to thank them for.
How do you see yourself in the future?
I share a dream with my sister about opening up a small café in our local town, Torsby. Maybe with my favourite pork, potatoes and onion sauce dish on the menu. But before that I would like to be remembered as the girl who changed the sport with new and creative tricks.