Olympic skiing is for men and women

Olympic skiing events include alpine skiing, freestyle skiing, cross country skiing, and Nordic combined, which incorporates ski jumping and cross country skiing.

Freestyle skiers perform acrobatics

Freestyle skiers perform acrobatics

Freestyle skiing

There are two kinds of freestyle skiing events in the Olympic Games. They are called aerials and moguls.

Skiers in aerial events jump, twist and somersault. The skier must perform two acrobatic jumps, taking off from a ramp called a kicker. Judges award scores to the skiers for height and distance, technical performance or how well they somersault, and for the landing.

A mogul is a high ridge of snow. In mogul skiing, competitors ski at high speed down a bumpy slope, jumping and spinning and turning as often as possible. Scores are awarded for speed and for how well the skier turns and jumps.

Alpine ski racing

Downhill races

Downhill races are the longest and fastest races. The skier with the fastest time is the winner.

Slalom races

Slalom skiers must make turns around close together 'gates' © Getty Images

Slalom skiers must make turns around close together 'gates' © Getty Images

Slalom races are the shortest races. Skiers must ski around close together turns or gates. Each competitor makes one run, then the course is reset on the same slope, but the position of the gates is changed. On the same day, those skiers who qualified for the second run, ski again. The fastest combined times of the two runs is the winner.

Giant slalom or GS

Giant slalom (GS) races are similar to the slalom races, but there are fewer gates and wider turns.

Ski Jumping

Skier on a ski jump. © Image from http://imasportsphile.com/category/olympics/

Skier on a ski jump. © Image from http://imasportsphile.com/category/olympics/

Ski jumping and cross-country are the parts of Nordic skiing. Athletes ski down a specially constructed take-off ramp (called the in-run), and jump from the end of it with as much power as they can generate, and "fly" as far as possible down a steeply sloped hill.

Cross-country skiing

There are 12 different cross country skiing events. Women compete in the sprint, team sprint, 10km individual start, 15km pursuit, 30km mass start and the 4 x 5km relay. Men compete in the sprint, team sprint, 15km individual start, 30km pursuit, 50km mass start
and the 4x10km relay.

For more about cross country skiing go here, there's a video too

http://www.olympic.org/cross-country-skiing