• Unusual high search volumes in both popular and obscure winter sports
  • Nigeria’s searches for bobsledding over half the number of those in the US
  • Searches for “Bobsledding” and “Curling Lessons” increase by 3233%1

It’s not surprising to find that Canadians have an interest in snowboarding, or that US citizens are searching for “skiing near me” in the winter months. But it’s a little weirder to find Turkey looking for Japanese snow fighting games, the Czech Republic among the highest searchers for fast ice-skating sports, and St. Helena (the volcanic tropical island) finding an interest in skiing.

With international sporting events driving high search volume for winter sports, alpine experts Crystal Ski Holidays have conducted research of a variety of snow sports, finding out exactly who’s searching for them, whether they’re popular or niche.

Global Snowball Games

Interest in many snow-related sports and games is high, with search terms for curling lessons and bobsledding seeing a growth of 3233% each from last year. But who’s looking for each sport?

  • St. Helena’s interest in skiing is more than a hobby. Searches for the sport from the tropical isle were 68% of those from the location with the most interest, the UK.
  • Searches for the North Pole Marathon came primarily from Poland. This was in excess of those from Australia, the UK, and Canada.
  • “Ice Cross”, a high-speed ice-skating event best known when hosted by Red Bull as the Crashed Ice event, is primarily of interest in countries like Canada, the UK, and the US – but the Czech Republic also show 38% of the interest Canada, the frontrunner, does.
  • “Yukigassen” is a Japanese fighting competition in which two teams attempt to capture a flag while throwing snowballs at each other to eliminate opponents – but the top number of searches for it in 2017 came from Turkey, who had double the amount of interest of the next country, Norway.

Beyond the Slopes

If skiing and snowboarding don’t seem like your cup of hot chocolate, you might consider taking a leaf out of Turkey or Czechia’s book and look to try something unusual. “Skijoring”, or “ski driving”, is a sport where the skier is being either pulled by a dog (or dogs), a horse, or a motor vehicle. With interest in it up 117% from this time last year, there’s never been a better time to give it a go – it might be the next big thing!

Or if you’re not a dog person, you might try snow kiting, which is similar to water-based kiteboarding. With interest on the rise, now’s your chance to start getting lessons in.

There’s a range of other less-known winter sports you can try if these don’t tickle your fancy – from racing down slopes on a shovel to snow kayaking (which is exactly what it sounds likes), all of which are gaining popularity worldwide. You can see the rest of the story on these unusual cold-weather adventures here.

View Interactive Version
(via TUI – Crystal Ski).

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