We Interview Austrian Gold Medal Snowboarder Anna Gasser
Talking career, sports and music.
As one of the most famous faces in winter sports, Austrian snowboarder Anna Gasser has been at the top of the podium of every major competition in recent years — from the X Games to the US Open and the FIS World Championship. Last season, she was the first to win the Gold Medal in the Big Air discipline at the Winter Olympics in South Korea, thus reaching the absolute peak in her career so far.
Anna, the first to master a Switch Double Cork 900, Backside Double Cork 1080, Cab Double Cork 1080 and most recently the Triple Cork, set new standards for the next generation of female athletes. What distinguishes Anna from her contemporaries is her boundless élan and her determination — she just wants to go to her limits at the highest level. "My goal is to inspire millions of girls to pursue their dreams. Whether snowboarding, gymnastics or traveling - I want them to realize that everything is possible! “
We talked to Anna about sports, determination and her newest collab with headphone brand Skullcandy.
When you were 17, you started with snowboarding. That's an age where some say it's too late to make a big career. But you made it anyway. How was that possible?
Well, first of all, I come from gymnastics, so for sure, this gave me a good foundation for Snowboarding, especially when it comes to air control and body awareness. And secondly, as soon as I discovered Snowboarding, I loved it and was hooked so I decided to focus on becoming a better snowboarder constantly. That’s why I convinced my parents to allow me to do a winter season in the US after my school exams, as I wanted to have the chance to ride one of the best parks all season long and to improve my riding.
As a balance to snowboarding, you also do gymnastics. Why didn't you turn this passion into your career, or would you still strive for a career in this sport?
I still love gymnastics and train here and there with my sister and follow the sport. For many years I put a lot of time and effort into gymnastics, but in my teenage years, I realized quickly that I will never make it to the very top. That’s when I decided to follow another path.
How did you feel when you learned that you could actually bring gold to Austria for the first time?
How regularly did you prepare for it?
I knew I could do it, but what really put a lot of pressure on me was the Austrian media. They kind of said that I pretty much just have to go there and pick up my Gold medal. It’s not that easy though. Everything has to work out that day.
Since you had your big breakthrough, have you been following a strict vegetable and protein shakes diet?
I do take care of my body and do gymnastics every once in a while to keep myself in shape but I eat pretty much what I like.
Besides sports, do you also have a passion for sneakers or fashion in general?
Of course, I love sneakers, they are just the comfiest shoes in the world. And yes, I’m interested in fashion, I spend so much time in snowboard gear so it’s nice to dress up sometimes.
You were the first woman to make the Triple Cork. Were there people who didn't believe in you just because you're a woman in a more male-dominated sport?
I think people didn’t believe that a woman, in general, would be capable of doing a Triple. I am happy I could prove them all wrong and break that barrier.
When did you get your first sponsorship contract?
I got my first real sponsor deals after I landed the double cork 900 and the video of it went viral. All of a sudden people in the industry knew who I was and the interest was kind of overwhelming.
Currently, you are the new face of the Skullcandy campaign. How do you identify with the brand?
Skullcandy offers an amazing range of products, which I use on a daily base. I love snowboarding with music, so what better thing then partnering up with Skullcandy and joining a team of athletes I’ve always looked up to.
What is your favorite Skullcandy product and how do you use it in your daily routine?
I really like the PUSH earbuds for snowboarding but otherwise, I also use the Venue noise canceling for traveling.
What is your current playlist?
It changes every day, depends on my mood.
What do you think about the new trend earbuds?
It’s nice to not have to deal with cables and obviously, you can just have them in your pockets.
You want to inspire and encourage many more girls to go to their limits. Snowboarding requires a lot of risk taking, do you think there are very few women in your sport because many women are not brave enough?
Snowboarding for sure is still male-oriented, but I feel it’s changing. More and more young girls are picking up the sport and go for it. Yes, it can be scary hitting a jump – also for me - but routine and body awareness is everything.
What do your parents think about your job? Is it not dangerous?
I think now they are happy seeing what I achieved so far. In the beginning, they weren’t very excited I chose Snowboarding. And my mom sometimes does have a difficult time watching me riding, as she is always a little scared that I could get hurt.
What happens in your head before the start?
I’m in my own zone and totally prepared for the run or trick I wanna do.
How do you keep yourself constantly motivated?
There is always something new to learn and I want to learn it all…haha. This keeps me going I guess.
Shop the Skullcandy x Anna Gasser Empowered Limited Edition Bundle here for $99.99 / €129.99.