The Olympic Winter Games (official name) (French: Jeux olympiques d’hiver)[nb 1] is a major international sporting event held once every four years, for sports practiced on snow and ice. The first Winter Olympics, the 1924 Winter Olympics, was held in Chamonix, France. Olympic games was inspired by the ancient Olympic Games, which were held in Olympia, Greece, from the 8th century BC to the 4th century AD. Baron Pierre de Coubertin founded the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in 1894, leading to the first modern Games in Athens in 1896. The IOC is the governing body of the Olympic Movement, with the Olympic Charter defining its structure and authority. The original five sports (broken into nine disciplines) were bobsleigh, curling, ice hockey, Nordic skiing (consisting of the disciplines military patrol,[nb 2] cross-country skiing, Nordic combined, and ski jumping), and skating (consisting of the disciplines figure skating and speed skating).[nb 3] The Games were held every four years from 1924 to 1936, interrupted in 1940 and 1944 by World War II, and resumed in 1948. Until 1992 the Winter and Summer Olympic Games were held in the same years, but in accordance with a 1986 decision by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to place the Summer and Winter Games on separate four-year cycles in alternating even-numbered years, the next Winter Olympics after 1992 was in 1994.
The Winter Games have evolved since their inception. Sports and disciplines have been added and some of them, such as Alpine skiing, luge, short track speed skating, freestyle skiing, skeleton, and snowboarding, have earned a permanent spot on the Olympic programme. Some others, including curling and bobsleigh, have been discontinued and later reintroduced; others have been permanently discontinued, such as military patrol, though the modern Winter Olympic sport of biathlon is descended from it.[nb 2] Still others, such as speed skiing, bandy and skijoring, were demonstration sports but never incorporated as Olympic sports. The rise of television as a global medium for communication enhanced the profile of the Games. It generated income via the sale of broadcast rights and advertising, which has become lucrative for the IOC. This allowed outside interests, such as television companies and corporate sponsors, to exert influence. The IOC has had to address several criticisms, internal scandals, the use of performance-enhancing drugs by Winter Olympians, as well as a political boycott of the Winter Olympics. Nations have used the Winter (as well as Summer) Games to proclaim the superiority of their political systems.
The Winter Olympics has been hosted on three continents by eleven different countries. The Games have been held in the United States four times (1932, 1960, 1980, 2002); in France three times (1924, 1968, 1992); and in Austria (1964, 1976), Canada(1988, 2010), Japan (1972, 1998), Italy (1956, 2006), Norway (1952, 1994), and Switzerland (1928, 1948) twice. Also, the Games have been held in Germany (1936), Yugoslavia (1984), and Russia (2014) once. The IOC has selected Pyeongchang, South Korea, to host the 2018 Winter Olympics and Beijing, China, to host the 2022 Winter Olympics. As of 2017 no city in the southern hemisphere had applied to host the cold-weather-dependent Winter Olympics, which are held in February at the height of the southern hemisphere summer.
As of 2017 twelve countries – Austria, Canada, Finland, France, Great Britain, Hungary, Italy, Norway, Poland, Sweden, Switzerland and the United States – have sent athletes to every Winter Olympic Games. Six of those – Austria, Canada, Finland, Norway, Sweden and the United States – have earned medals at every Winter Olympic Games, and only one – the United States – has earned gold at each Games. Norway leads the all-time medal table. Germany and Japan have been banned at times from competing in the Games.
Above is an excerpt from WiKipedia on the History of winter olympics
Below As reported by FHM:
With the 2018 Winter Olympics right around the corner, we decided it was the perfect time to start introducing y’all to some of the incredible female athletes that will be participating in the games. Is this our excuse to talk about hot olympians? Yeah, maybe, but we hardly think that any of you are going to complain. These ladies are not only some of the sexiest in the world, but they could single-handedly skate, ski, snowboard, and bobsled circles around us! Oh, and body check us! How could we forget that?
Not to champion any of these ladies over the other, but, we have to give credit where credit is due and highlight our favorite competitor in the bunch — Miss Lindsey Vonn, holding down the number 52 spot on our Sexiest Women of 2017 list, Lindsey is an all around powerhouse. No, let’s be perfectly blunt, the woman is fierce as hell. Having sustained a devastating knee injury 2013, Vonn was unable to compete in the 2014 Olympic games. Unsurprisingly, people really felt her absence on Team USA. Most recently, she suffered a back injury during the World Cup race in December, but she has assured fans she ready and raring to go next month! We can’t wait to see her kill it! Even if this year is her last, we’ll always be cheering for Lindsey!
The 2018 Winter Olympics are starting Friday, Feb. 9, in PyeongChang, South Korea. To meet the entire Team USA, over to the official website of the 2018 Olympic Winter Games.
Lead Image Via Getty
For all of the hottest Winter Olympians to be on the lookout for, keep scrolling!