Hi Maddie. A lot of ladies don't feel confident going into the park simply because of the negative experiences they've had from the other park riders and the aggressive attitudes that can be prevalent there. What's the worst experience you've ever had skiing in the public park? -Cyanicenine
MB: This is a really good question that I feel is very applicable with parks becoming more crowded. I feel like the worst situation I have been in is just being shouted at to move or get up, one time people were hating pretty hard on my skiing. To combat that I just try to find a really good fun crew to ski with, it makes it a lot easier to block out the haters. Skiing is for fun and I think other people forget that sometimes.
What was going through your head when you won the olympic gold? How difficult has it been for you to balance both college and skiing? What are you studying? -nsfairy
MB: When I won the Olympics it was a really confusing moment. I didn't know what to feel i was relived that all the pressure was gone. I was happy because I wanted it so bad. I was sad because my friends hadn't beat me. And overall i was confused because I never thought I would be in that situation.
It has been challenging to do both college and skiing; however I think it is really rewarding because it reminds me that there are other things besides skiing (i know crazy) and it reminds me how free i feel when I ski. I have not declared a major yet but I know I want to be a high school teacher... a little strange but I think it would make me happy
What do you do end up doing in your off time/ off season? Do you have any passions outside of skiing or is snow on your mind all year round? – lp.
MB: I love skiing, yes, and I think about it a lot. But I love the summer just as much. I really enjoy mountain biking, being in the water, and soccer. Being super active is how I would like to spend my day, and get really stir crazy if I can't do anything.
In the freeskiing world there is a lot of hate directed towards competitions, as a prevalent comp skier do you have any light to shed on the matter? Do you think comps are crucial towards progressing women's skiing? If you could pick any three people to shred with, who would they be? -YoungDaph
MB: Competitions do get a lot of heat is freeskiing but they are also very exciting and fun to watch. I do think that it pushes people to try and learn new things, which pushes the sport. But it is also not the only way that our sport gets pushed. I get inspired by watching other people on the mountain and online and wanting to try new things. Maybe competitions are just away for those of us who compete to share while others have their own ways to do it.
This is a hard one. I don't think I could nail down just three people I would want to ski with, one would be Sarah though because I didn't get the chance to ski with her much.
Snow conditions aside, what's your favorite mountain?
What's your favorite thing to do on a long car/ plane/ horse and buggy ride? -taylor_gang
MB: My favorite mountain is my home mountain Sierra at Tahoe. I have so many memories there and know it so well!
I like to just talk with friends on long car rides and such, but if I'm alone I look around and listen to books on tape haha
How did you get into park skiing? -pizza_LIBRE
MB: I started out as a racer actually and all the boys switched to the free ride team at my mountain so naturally I had to try it and I just fell in love with it.
Have you ever had any interest in filming? What factors have driven you to follow the road of competitive skiing versus film and urban? -Katrina
MB: I have a lot of interest in filming. I think why I haven't is I have just been skiing so much I forget to film some of it haha. I think competition skiing was just something that picked me up before I realized it. I started to dabble in competitions and I just started to get invited to bigger and bigger ones and before I knew it I was at my first X Games. I'm very drawn to film and urban I just haven't done it much but my career will be long and I want to do many different things.
What direction do you want to see women's skiing go? Towards more competition, or making a stand in filming? Are all woman crews something you would like to see more of? -LynxNation
MB: I want to see women's skiing going in all directions. There are so many cool parts to skiing from urban to half pipe. There is no reason we can't do it all. I would love to see more women's crews because they are so much fun but I love skiing with guys too! I think everyone can learn from each other.
Who do you look to for inspiration in the ski community? Do you look towards men and their progression or your fellow women skiers? -NewEscuelers
MB: I look to both men a women when I'm looking for inspiration. In the half pipe for example I look at Brita Sigourney, Joffrey, and Wing Tai when I want to go bigger. And as far as style goes I look to Torin and Ayana. Everyone brings something different to the table in skiing and its' great when you can get inspired by others strengths.
How did you like the representation of freestyle skiing in vice's Free? What's it like trying to progress in a sport where men have already progressed so far? kim_jong_ill
MB: I think that The North Face had great intentions when it came to educating the non skiing population on what freeskiing is about. Vice did a good job too; however i felt like they built up sides. While in some ways people take sides on the topic of freeskiings place in the olympics. I don't see sides in freeskiing . We as skiers all have our own ways of expressing ourselves in skiing and showing the world in different ways, wether it is an urban edit or the olympics. And I appreciate all types of free skiing. I wish they would have focused on the fun and appreciation for others we have and less on the drama.
It is not easy to progress in a sport where the men have already gone so far. We get a lot of hate for it. I just want people to understand that we are not just kicking back. Women skiers work their asses off and we are progressing.
What do you think about the progression of womens freeskiing What do you have to say to people who hate on girls for not progressing? - Mseward
MB: I think the progression of women's skiing is moving. The girls that I compete with have all learned a new trick this year and I feel the level rising at each competition. I think I would say to people who hate on women's skiing that we are out there doing what we love just like they are and hating on us super hard isn't going to help anyone.
Thanks to Maddie's sponsors- The North Face, Rockstar Energy, Sierra at Tahoe, Subaru, Volkl, Bollé, Dalbello Boots, and US Freeskiing!