A few Questions from Matt Chisam

FasterSkierFebruary 1, 2009

1. What is the athletic background of your parents and family?
My parents and family were very athletic and active when I was young. My parents met at a bike/ski shop in Manhattan and ran the shop’s weekend ski trips to Vermont together. I grew up downhill skiing in the winter and windsurfing and hiking in the Green Mountains in the summer.

2. When did you begin participating in your sport? I began participating in my sport in High School. I was 16 years old when I started cross country skiing.

3. What was your early experiences with sport like? My early experience with sports was very positive. I can remember looking forward to recess and PE everyday!

4. How instrumental were parents and coaches in the early part of your development as an athlete? My parents were very instrumental in the early part of my development as an athlete. I learned how to ice skate, swim, and I did gymnastics early on in the city and was skiing from age two up in Vermont. As I grew older my coaches became amazing role models who definitely encouraged and inspired me to pursue an athletic path.

5. How were you introduced to your sport and how many other sports did you seriously participate in? During high school friends were a very important role in sports and fortunately some of my closest friends were as active as I was. My best friend, who I met alpine skiing in 5th grade switched to Nordic and she had so much fun she encouraged me to try it.

6. Is your success a product of nature or nurture? I think my success is a combination of both. I am the only sibling in my family who has pursued sports throughout school. I know that my little brothers and sister in California will never be cross country skiers because they simply don’t have access to snow. When I was born my parents were younger and were active themselves which was very influential for me. My parents no longer have the staminia to do the type of activities they used to and so my younger siblings are being raised much differently. I will say that I was extremely impressed when my little sister ran a 5k running race with me though.

7. Are you an expert in your field? (by your own definition)NO. I think that is what intrigues me so much about pursuing a sport. There are so many components to “master” and there will always be new and unexpected obstacles to overcome. I hope to gain enough knowledge and experience in the sport of cross country so that I could one day pass on what I have learned.

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