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Posted by on February 15th, 2012

Holy Dyna! The start of 2012 has been a blitzkrieg of awesomeness . . .

By now though you’ve probably heard the great news — you know, I’ve had this dream since I was first laid up in the hospital nearly eight years ago to do a backflip in my sit ski. With countless hours of training and preparation and with help from a group of good friends (professional skiers) who prepped the jump site for me, I was able to realize my dream on February 3rd — I nailed a backflip at Whistler!

The process to bring the flip to snow began awhile back in the foam pits at Woodward at Copper Mountain. I met up with Nick Bass — who’s a very accomplished aerialist and jumping coach — and it was then we both knew it could be done.

The next stop was the terrain park at Blackcomb to practice this trick into an airbag. Our practice and preparation paid off huge. We figured out the best jump shape, speed, and all the other details we thought were important. I really wanted to take this into the backcountry and try it on snow right away, but Mother Nature did not allow. Conditions were snowy, windy, and foggy, which made it too dangerous to try. We had to put the project on hold.

Next, it was off to the X Games down in Aspen. This trip is probably my favourite competition all winter. I love being right in the mix with all the other sports and athletes — watching everyone throw down is so inspirational and gets me super charged up.

They toned down the Skier Cross course this year to make sure everyone was going to be able to go fast and put on a good show for TV — and that’s exactly what happened. It was probably the best finals heat our sport has ever showcased. I’m so happy for my good friend Samson who took home the gold . . . and for me, a bronze finish is a mighty fine accomplishment.

Josh Dueck X Games

Huge air in the Mono Skier X Final. That’s me at the top right.

Another highlight was getting to attend the Powder Video Awards. I’d just found out before heading to the party that “Freedom Chair” had been nominated for best documentary. We gave it no chance of winning considering the other films we were up against. Imagine our surprise when they announced our film . . . we were completely stunned.

Lacey and Josh

Lacey and me at the PVA award ceremony.

Then it was back home to catch up on some routine business. I was home for less than 48 hours when the crew from Switchback Entertainment called and said the weather in Whistler was going to be sunny, and that Powder Mountain Catskiing was willing to build me a perfect jump to attempt the backflip.

I knew it was the right time and place to overcome my fear and do something awesome. Coming down the approach I felt a sense of calm and confidence. I’ll let the video tell the rest of the story . . .

Josh Dueck becomes the first person to execute a back flip on a sit ski

All of the elements were in place. It took a lot of training and preparation to get to this moment.

Nailing the back flip was such a great feeling — total freedom!

The response to the video has been insane. It’s all good — for the sport and for anyone desiring to overcome challenges and obstacles in their life. This could also open up a new avenue for the sport, which would be great.

In racing . . . my 2012 season began with a quick trip to Waterville Valley, New Hampshire, for the U.S. Para-Alpine Championships. I had a chance to test myself against the best riders in North America and it went pretty well — in four races I earned four silver medals. There was pretty much a new winner every day, which was nice to see. For me, I kept making little mistakes, which kept me in the hunt but out of the top spot. It left me hungry for the next set of races in mid-February.

Canadian Para-alpine Ski team

Showing off the results of all our hard work – members of the Canadian Para-alpine Ski Team racked up 12 podiums at Waterville.

I’m off to LA to have a little chat with Ellen. The episode with my segment airs Wednesday, February 15. Then I’m straight back into racing on Thursday at my old stomping grounds in Kimberley B.C. Here’s some footage from last year’s race.

Enjoy the moments in life and see y’all back here soon. Thanks for reading…

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  • On February 16, 2012 at 1:12 am pat Commented

    Hi from Terrace BC..Home of Shames Mountain!
    You are fantastic! The jump video gave me goosebumps. Your appearance on Ellen today had me grinning. You deserve all the good things your sport and life has to offer!

  • On February 16, 2012 at 7:45 am Catharine Pendrel Commented

    Yeah Josh! Listening to you on Daybreak. Awesome to see you pushing the boundaries of what is possible and loving doing it!

  • On February 16, 2012 at 7:16 pm Stefan Commented

    Hey Josh,

    Saw your documentary at the banff film festival tour when it was in fernie and it was unreal. Not only the accomplishments and the sick cliffs you hit, but I thought the coolest part was just how modest and genuine you are. Congrats on the on the flip watching that was really inspiring. For me who never really noticed mono skiing you have definitely brought it up on my radar. Keep inspiring I know all the guys I ski with know who you are.

  • On February 16, 2012 at 9:03 pm Pam Edwards Commented

    Josh–good Canadian boy–did us all proud on Ellen. Thanks for striving for more and finding your freedom and encouraging others to find thiers. YOUR MOMMA MUST BE SO PROUD

  • On February 17, 2012 at 9:49 am John Pomeroy Commented

    Right on Duey!

  • On February 25, 2012 at 4:51 pm Trish Wicks Commented

    Thanks for your visit to our sales meeting this week in Toronto,you are an amazing spirit and you remind us all of what courage,dedication and belief can do when put to the test.i look forward to following what life has to offer,and I will pin a picture of that backflip on my fridge to remind me to never give up. Thank you

  • On March 7, 2012 at 7:13 am Dimitri Galani Commented

    I used to love skiing but my knees started being really painful. Living in Greece I am also right in the middle of a deep economic crisis, so I had pretty much decided that this was it for me … No more …
    Seeing your video has inspired me. I will get back on the the mountain and get some powder back under my skis. As soon as I can afford it, I’ll do what it takes.
    Thanks man.

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