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17 December 2013 | in Winter Universiade, Alpine Skiing

Rediscovering his Passion



POZZO DI FASSA - One drastic life decision changed the course of Joonas Rasanen’s skiing career and revitalized the passion to continue his dreams.

Rasanen decided to leave his native Finland and move to the United States and attend the University of New Mexico. It was there he rediscovered his love for skiing.

“I had been lacking the fun part in skiing again and I got it back the first year I got there,” he said.

A friend of Rasanen’s had been there the year before and highly recommended the experience, so Rasenen tried it. It saved his skiing career.

“I’m actually having fun again…I love it,” he said. “I love to go out from the start gate and fly down that hill, it’s just so much fun.”

He was previously on the Finnish national team, but moved because “I just wanted to do something else with skiing.” He initially got into skiing because his mother was a ski instructor and thus grew up skiing on the hill where she taught.

Now living in the United States, Rasanen says there isn’t much difference between skiing in North America or Finland, but to keep his mind at ease during his runs, Rasanen keeps things simple.

“Surviving and coming down as a fast as possible of course,” he says of his objectives. “The less you have to think about it the better it goes.”

He is majoring in journalism and communications, but the 24-year-old has no intentions of giving up his skiing dreams after rediscovering his love for the sport.

For sure I want to be a world champion and stuff but we’ll see where it goes. I just want to grind out the skiing part for as long as possible and then we’ll see what happens.”


Matt Tidcombe, FISU Young Reporter