Summer may be Olympic Snowboarder Torah Bright’s downtime, but she already has the 2014 Winter Games on her mind. This summer, when she’s not on the beach, she’s doing something active like bike riding, tennis, yoga or doing some plyometric work on her own, then it’s off to New Zealand for training to qualify for the next winter Olympics. She talked to us about preparing for the Games, her favorite Olympic moments and designing her line of snowboarding gear for Roxy, the Roxy Bright Edition.
How do you gear up for a winter competition?
“I practice on the snow and ride a bike and do yoga to work off the lactic acid that builds up throughout the day. It doesn’t sound like a lot, but three hours of working on tricks and hiking up the pike is draining.”
What body parts are important for snowboarding?
“It’s whole body. You don’t use your upper body per se but it’s part of your motions. You can hurt your shoulders so it’s important to keep that strong. The main focus is on the legs, butt, abs for sure. But you can hurt your shoulders and arms easily, too. When you’re stronger overall, the less harmful your injuries are.”
To design for Roxy, how do you come up with ideas?
“I flip through fashion magazines and flag down what I like. I work with designers who take my input and work with fabric and samples until we get it right.”
Now, let’s talk about your favorite Olympic moments from the past winter games. Tell us about your first “Holy sh*t, I’m an Olympian!” moment.
“In Vancouver in 2010, I came across the finish line and I knew that I landed the round that I wanted, I thought ‘I could be a gold medalist!’”
During the Trials or Games, what was your most challenging moment to get through?
“In the finals during my first run, I fell in my second hit. They reverse the order, so because I qualified first, I went last in the first run. I got the worst score because of my fall so I had to go first on the second run. There was very little time and my brother, who was my coach at the time, had fear in his eyes. You could tell he was worried for me. Working through that and putting myself in the right mental state was tough.”
During the Trials or Games, what was your most personally satisfying moment?
“Getting to eat McDonald’s at 3 in the morning. The food halls in the Olympic village are open 24 hours a day and my friend really wanted McDonald’s after the Games, so we just went for it.”
During the Trials or Games, what is a funny, embarrassing, or random moment that you can share with us?
“After an event, I really wanted to see my fiance and family and it was getting late. My brother was driving the official car and got pulled over for speeding. I thought ‘Uh oh, we’re gonna get a ticket in the official car!’ but the police officer was cool after my brother explained why we were in a rush and just told us to be careful, and good job!”
Tell us about your favorite moment from meeting another athlete/celebrity?
“In Italy in 2006, I met figure skater Johnny Weir, and I loved it! He was fabulous. He walked in the room holding a Balenciaga bag. To this day, I still think ‘yeah, I met him!’”