Skiing may be the answer to short athletes

Sam Roberts

One sport that does not benefit you in being tall is skiing.

Every other spring break, my family and I go skiing in Colorado. We visit Beaver Creek and usually go skiing for 4 days.

At first, skiing was definitely not my forte. I am 5’11”, so maybe I was built to do something other than be a skier. I quickly learned that having a lower center of gravity is an advantage in skiing.

I also learned that shorter people do not have to fall as far when skiing. This is probably why kids are so good at skiing.

My dad is 6’6”, so being good at skiing is also very hard. When we go skiing, the green hills are more up our alley. However, my brother is the complete opposite.

The last time we went skiing was 2 spring breaks ago, and my brother was much shorter. He wasn’t afraid to go down some of the black rated hills. He was only 5”7’ then, so now it may be harder.

Professional skiers are similar. The average height of a female professional skier is only 5’4” while the average height of a male professional skier is 5’9”.

Kjetil André Aamodt, is former olympic alpine skier from Norway. He has won 5 gold medals and 21 individual World Cup events.

Aamodt only stands at 5’9”, and still brings heat in the Olympics and other ski competitions. He proves that you do not have to be tall to be successful in skiing.

Spud Webb shocked basketball fans despite his height – September 20

A common stereotype basketball players face is that they have to be tall to play. However, some of the most successful basketball players have been much smaller than the average NBA height of 6’6”.  Shorter players are often faster and more agile than their taller counterparts. 

Spud Webb, a former NBA star, is known for being one of the shortest basketball legends. Standing at just 5’6”, Webb played Division I basketball and enjoyed a lengthy career in the NBA. 

Webb played college basketball at Midland College and North Carolina State University. At Midland, a junior college program, Webb was considered the “all-star” of the team and even led the team to a JUCO national championship in 1982. 

With Webb’s height, no one believed he would be able to play on a division one basketball team. In 1983, Webb transferred to North Carolina State, a division one school, where he played for two seasons. 

Shortly after, Webb was drafted in the fourth round of the 1985 NBA draft by the Atlanta Hawks. Defying the odds, Webb played for the Atlanta Hawks, Sacramento Kings, Minnesota Timberwolves and Orlando Magic. 

Webb was the shortest player to ever compete in a NBA Slam Dunk Contest. He ended up winning the contest in 1986.

Webb’s vertical was between 42-46 inches. Even though he was small, Webb was able to dunk in games. 

Winning the contest in 1986 gave Webb many opportunities and showed the world that height does not matter. Webb retired in 1997 and is now president of basketball operations for the Texas Legends.