Skier Eveliina Piippo feels she is studying the right field at the University of Denver, but she has been terrified of “jogging” rats.
Eveliina Piippo a week ago, he was quite an atypical activity for a Finnish national team skier.
He enrolled in the exam system of the American University of Denver in Finland, opened the Zoom video connection and passed the last final exam of the autumn season in two hours.
“The school has an app that when I log in to it, I can’t access other sites online. At the same time, I photograph myself with Zoom so that the professor can see that I can’t rattle the phone during the exam or talk to anyone, ”Piippo explains to himself the system that is quite familiar with monitoring the exam situation.
Piippo, who is studying biochemistry as a major, passed an exam related to human physiology two days before his second race of the season, which he skied in the Finnish Cup in Taivalkoski last Sunday.
“There was a constant feeling that life really has more to offer than the kind of everyday life an athlete can give.”
Athlete In recent years, the path has been a buzzword in top Finnish sports. Piipo’s path currently passes purposefully through the University of Denver in the state of Colorado in the Rockies of the United States.
Taking remote exams during the first competitions of the season is an example of how 23-year-old Piippo wants to combine study and sports.
Some people in Finnish ski circles have considered Piippo a dissident and a kind of freak because of his choices, because he is known to be one of the most potential young skiers.
In early 2020, Piippo justified his decision to go to Denver to study for a sports scholarship, stating, among other things, that the athlete’s everyday life was not enough for him.
Before that, Piippo had had time to try out the full-time life of an athlete.
“I missed something more than just skiing. There was a constant feeling that life really has more to give than the kind of everyday life an athlete can give, ”Piippo said at the time.
Read more: Eveliina Piipo’s everyday life is not enough for her, that’s why she goes to the “ski cemetery”
Although the corona pandemic also messed up Piipo’s plans and the last academic year was practically entirely distance learning, he has been happy with his solution from the beginning.
“After all, many people think that things will piss sooner or later, and they will probably blame my back for going to school,” Piippo ironizes.
She says she practiced more during the fall than ever before.
“School has been really important in that I haven’t really even noticed how much practice has come because my days have been somehow balanced. When you just go and do and there is no such time left, the time left for recovery has been really necessary but also better than before. ”
Piippo admits that he may give some equalization to others because of his studies. This fall, he has lightened his curriculum a bit.
“I think it’s been a really good decision and has made it possible for this to be a sensible equation. I feel that school has brought more of an important addition than taking something great out of the sport. However, it may be that the race season will be more difficult, at least mentally. ”
Read more: Eveliina Piippo wins ski competitions and enjoys being in the Rocky Mountains anyway: “Damn it is good to be”
“The university team has 4–5 joint workouts a week. Of course I will. ”
Piipon according to most of his classmates, after graduating, aim to study to be a doctor.
“At one point, it was pretty clear to me that I would continue as a graduate engineer and focus on biomedicine, but it could be that I’m going to end up in medicine too. I have noticed that I am studying the right field and I am most interested in those courses that are close to human activity. ”
The study has also included an area that Piippo has carded out.
“After being in the lab with those rats, I’ve been wondering if the development of drugs is this, if I have a heart for it.”
Piippo states that sick animals have been treated in the laboratory.
“I was terrified of it at first, but I was told that no rats have been fetched from the forest to kill the students but they are sick cases and under all regulations. But yes, he has got those bags there too, and it hasn’t felt like his own job. I know I’m not going to do that, at least. “
However, Piippo plans to pursue postgraduate studies in Europe.
“Right now, the feeling is that I’d like to do jasmine in a certain way and invest some time in skiing and study something alongside it that’s easier to combine with sports.”
“Jasmeilla” Piippo means that he joined the national team last season Jasmi Joensuu previously studied in Denver.
Piipon last season was a quiet life for the races. The results for the early season were modest, and in January he underwent back surgery. Now the situation looks brighter again.
Piipo’s long-term coaching cooperation with the head coach of the women’s national team Ville Oksanen with ended in the spring. It happened by consensus largely because of the geographical distance.
Now Piippo is responsible for his own training, which is also exceptional for a Finnish skier of this level.
If necessary, he will still receive help from Oksanen. Likewise From Toni Roponen, who previously served as head coach of the University of Denver ski team and was instrumental in getting Piippo to study there.
In addition, Roponen’s successor in Denver is the interlocutor Rogan Brown.
“The university team has 4–5 joint workouts a week. Of course I will. I am on really good terms with Ville, and we were still talking about this Rukan week. There are good distances for many coaches. If anything comes, I can coordinate. I myself have made a plan for the whole season. ”
Although Piippo arrived the second winter immediately after moving to Denver several victories in the US University Championships, at the hardest level of his career so far, he was in early 2019.
At the World Championships for under-23s in Lahti, he won silver in the tens and lost to the winner in just two seconds.
At the World Championships in Seefeld, Piippo reached a high-quality debut in the adult championships, as a result of which he was ranked 19th and 23rd in personal trips.
After back problems, Piipo’s number one goal this season is to stay healthy.
“And I want to finish my plan, be it the World Cup or the Yankees. The most important thing is that I am intact in the spring and I have been able to develop all aspects. However, my level has clearly fallen from where it was in 2019. The minimum goal is to return the baseline to where I was then. ”
“If I’m being honest, I’ll have time to bury my Olympic dream.”
The following weeks will largely determine Piipo’s chances of reaching the Beijing Olympics.
“If I’m being honest, I already have time to bury my Olympic dream. It felt like raising the level there was just a light year away, ”he admits.
“The more I set investment goals and think about the Olympics, the easier it gets on the wrong track. Right now, I feel confident. For the Olympics, my level of free normal travel is good if I can keep my musculature and others in good shape. ”
Piippo got an indication of this almost two weeks ago at the Olos International Artillery Competition, where he placed 12th in the freestyle and was the third best Finn. Among other things, they were left behind Riitta-Liisa Roponen and Anne Kyllönen. The difference between the winner Krista Pärmäkoski accumulated a minute and two seconds.
It was a great performance, because Piippo had arrived in Finland only a week earlier and got into the snow for the first time this season. Even the adjustment to the nine-hour time difference was still a short way.
Piipo felt good about that race.
“That’s why I think there’s a chance to get to the Olympics, but I don’t want to keep any icing compulsion or pressure that I should get there. It’s a kind of goal, but the most important thing is not to repeat the same mistakes that keep the next weekend’s games in mind all the time and the limbs don’t stay on the go. ”
World Cup at the opening in Ruka this weekend, Piippo will compete in the national quota of the host country. On Saturday, the traditional ten is not the best trip for him, but it paves the way for Sunday’s chase, which is skied for Piipo with a stronger skiing mode, ie free.
That race will largely determine whether Piippo qualifies for the next World Cup in Lillehammer and Davos, where a free race with a temporary start is available.
“I start to compete quite relaxed. There is no terrible pressure and no expectation of success for oneself. I hope that I will get the kind of performance that would make the work done during the autumn confiscated, and I would not be left to fight for it. ”
Lived in Tampere, Pirkkala, Vuokatti and Rovaniemi.
Studied at the University of Denver in the United States.
Club: Vuokatti Ski Team Kainuu.
Best achievements: 19th and 23rd in the World Cup, 18th and 20th in the World Cup at best, 10 km (v) silver in the World Cup (2019), 4th (2018) and 5th in the combined race: s (2017), silver and bronze in the youth PM, 3rd and 4th in the general series championships at best, five youth gold medals.
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