FIS Timeline


Compiled by Elizabeth Hussey

Complete FIS timeline (2007-08), a committee effort by six or eight historians from around the world, has gone missing from the FIS website. This is the first draft from March 2005, to be replaced when a copy of the final version can be found.

  • 7,000-6000BC Remnants of skis from late 7th millenium found near Lake Sindor, Russia,
  • 4,000 BC Skis of this date found in Russia  Also, rock carvings found at Bolommid Norway
  • 3,623-3110BC skis were brought out of a bog in 1924 in North Sweden dating from this period. 
  • 3,343-2939BC skis found from Draya.
  • 3,000 BC half a ski and pole found in Latvia and ski found in Pskov region
  • Approx 2,500 BC  The Hoting ski dating from about this time was dug out of a Swedish bog in 1921. Also about the same date, rock carvings of skiers were made at Rodoy, a Norwegian island north of the Arctic Circle.
  • 2,000 BC 2 complete skis and a pole dating from this time were dug out of a bog at Kalvetrask in 1924 
  • 1700-1500 BC Bronze Age rock carvings including skier on Aeskove Cultur.  Also clay vessel with illustration of skier. 
  • 550-540 AD 1 pair of historic bindings found an Mantta.
  • 1335-1215 AD ski found Steinhanger Rana 
  • 552 Procopius I The Gothic wars refers to Scrithiphini (Finns who glided)   Peter Lunn in The Guinness Book of Skiing considers this a doubtful reference to skiing Finns.
  • 629 Thieh-lo tribe brought tribute “riding on pieces of wood hunt deer over the ice.”  Described by Dr Joseph Needham
  • 618-907  “The wooden-horse Turks are accustomed to skim over the ice on so-called wooden horses, that is, on sledges (or runners) which they bind to their feet to run over the ice.  And they take poles as supports and push themselves rapidly forward. “.
  • 1206 The future King Haakon, aged 2, was carried across the Dovre Mountains to safety by skiers loyal to the royal family.
  • 1522  Two skiers brought Gustav Vasa to found the Vasa dynasty to rule Sweden   The Vasaloppet, founded in 1922, commemorates their journey
  • 16th Century  A map produced by Olaus Magnus, a Swedish Catholic bishop, shows 2 men and a woman hunting on skis.
  • 1689 Janez Vaikard Valvasor of Slovenia described people of the Bloke plateau using wooden boards to “swerve like snakes” to avoid obstacles when coming down steep slopes through snow. 
  • 1825-1897 Sondre Norheim of Morgedal
  • 1850 Sondre Nordheim  makes heel strap using birch tree roots
  • 1851 Snowshoe Thompson (born Jon Thorsteinson Rui Tinn in Norway in 1827) came to California and started to carry the mail over the Sierra Nevada.  He made his own skis and taught himself to use them.
  • 1856-25th February 1940.  Mathias Zdarsky
  • 1861-1930  Fridtjof Nansen.
  • 1868 Sondre Norheim demonstrated Telemark and Christiania at Iverslokkan Norway.(ISHA)
  • 1870 Sondre Norheim introduced Telemark Ski.
  • 1879 Norwegian Ski Federation founded.  Competition in Huseby.
  • 1890 Publication of “Paa Ski over Gronland”” by  Fridtjof Nansen, in Norwegian and English (as "The First Crossing of Greenland").  Translated into German in 1891, it encouraged spread of skiing.
  • 24th June 1890-1955  Hannes Schneider. 
  • 1892 The Norwegian competitions were transferred from the Huseby Hill to Holmenkollen
  • 1892 Reinhard Straumann, inventor of S-scoring for skijumping,  born in canton of Basel (Triet)
  • 26th January 1893 Austrian Ski Federation founded .
  • 2nd February 1893  First ski competition in central Europe at Murzzuschlag. Won by W.B. Samson
  • 1893 Skiclub Glarus, first Swiss ski club was founded . 
  • 1894 Fritz Huitfeldt invents “bolt” binding (Torgersen)
  • 1896 Publication of  “Lilienfeld Skilauf Technik by Mathias Zdarsky
  • 1897 Dr Payot uses skis to visit his patients in Chamonix France.
  • 1898 Henry Lunn sends group of British to Chamonix. His 10-year-old son, Arnold accompanies them.  Skis and an instructor are brought from Switzerland to keep them amused.
  • 1903 Davos British Ski Club founded by E.C Richardson.
  • 12th May 1903 Ski Club of Great Britain founded
  • 1905 National Ski Association founded at Ishpeming, Michigan (ISHA)
  • 1905 First issue of “Yearbook of the Ski Club of Great Britain”.
  • Hannes Schneider starts to teach skiing to guests of Hotel Post, St Anton am Arlberg,
  • 1906  First Arbeiter=Skischule founded in Vienna.
  • 1907 First International Ski Week at Mont Geneve, France.
  • International Ski Commission set up in Norway
  • Roberts of Kandahar race in Crans-Montana – world’s senior challenge cup for downhill. 
  • 17th December 1911   Roald Amundsen using skis, is first to reach the South Pole.
  • First of Schneider/Fanck films
  • First Lahti Ski Games (Parviainen)
  • The British run the first National Ski Championships to include Alpine events (Slalom & Downhill) above Wengen, Switzerland. 
  •  Arnold Lunn changes rules of modern slalom so that it is judged on speed not style and through awkwardly placed gates. 
  •  Vasa Race founded
  • Seventh International Ski congress, Prague
  •  2 complete skis and a pole found buried at Kalvetrask, Sweden, dating back to 2,000BC
  • 24th January-4th February 1924 Chamonix. International Winter Sports Week and Eighth International Ski Congress (later called first Winter Olympic games. International Ski Federation set up with  Ivar Holmquist (SWE) first president.  
  • 29th January 1924  Kandahar Ski Club founded at Murren .
  •  First Nordic World Championships, Chamonix First World ski champion was Thorleif Haug of Norway
  • –“Rendezvous Races in Czechoslovakia were listed and numbered as Nordic Ski World championships
  • 1926 The Wonders of Skiing” by Hannes Schneider and Arnold Fanck published.
  • 1927 Nederlandse /Ski Vereniging founded.
  •  World Ski championships, Lahti
  • 1927 Arnold Lunn visited Hannes Schneider, set a small slalom for local boys and the two men decided to run a downhill and slalom event called The Arlberg-Kandahar.
  •  The first Arlberg Kandahar was organised at St Anton, by Hannes Schneider and the Kandahar Ski Club.   The oldest open combined downhill and slalom event in the world, it became the top alpine event each year.
  •  FIS Meeting and Winter Olympic Games, St Moritz at which FIS agreed to try out Alpine races.
  • 1929 Major International Downhill Race in Zakopane, Poland.
  •  Ernst Gertsch founded the first Lauberhorn race at Wengen.
  • 1931 First World Alpine Championships, Murren, Switzerland
  • 1931 First Hahnenkamm  at Kitzbuhel.
  • 1932 First Winter Olympics outside Europe held at Lake Placid USA. 
  • 1934-1951 N.R. Oestgaard of Norway succeeded Ivor Holmquist as President of FIS 
  •  First Winter Olympics to include Alpine races (slalom and downhill) and women’s events. Medals awarded for Combined only.   Held at Garmisch Partenkirchen.
  • First chairlift built in Sun Valley, Idaho,
  • 1938 First Citadin race (Duke of Kent cup) set in Murren by Arnold Lunn.
  • 1951  Marc Hodler appointed President of FIS
  • 1952 Winter Olympics Oslo, Norway
  • 1956  Winter Olympics Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy.  Tony Sailer of Austria won Gold in giant slalom, slalom and downhill.  Sixten Jernberg of Sweden,won gold in 50km, silver in 30km and 15km and bronze in the relay race
  • 1960 Winter Olympics Squaw Valley.
  • Citadin Racing adopted by FIS.and first meeting of Citadin subcommittee. 
  • The Ski Club of Great Britain set up the National Ski Federation of GB to control British Ski Racing
  • 5th January 1967   Serge Lang launched World Cup at race at Berchtesgaden
  • The FIS Master committee set up and Master racing recognised


Berov. 2004 Ski History conference, Murzzuschlag

Rune Flaten. Ski History conference,Murzzuschlag

Peter Lunn: Guinness Book of Skiing 1983