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Articles on Sochi 2014

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Jazzy trousers. Wong Maye-E/AP

Fashion at Sochi: who wears it best?

So, your country is one of 88 participating in the Winter Olympics in Sochi 2014. How do you get noticed? The winter games may not get as much coverage as the those in the summer, so fashion is used as…
How do they do it? David Davies/PA Archive

Lutz or flutz? The tricky physics of figure skating

Figure skating is always the highlight of the Winter Olympics. With the introduction of a team competition this year, there are five figure skating events. And we’ve already seen much drama with records…
Sochi as a media spectacle has epitomised Vladimir Putin’s aspirations for his Russia. EPA/Yuri Kochetkov

Sochi on screen: how Russia is being sold to Russians

All modern Olympics employ directors who stage-manage the huge spectacle of the Games – and Sochi 2014 is no different. So what does this stage management tell us, internationally, and what is it intended…
Jana Pittman, an accomplished summer Olympian, will compete in the bobsleigh event this week in Sochi. AAP/Dean Lewins

Switching sports: Jana Pittman’s psychological hurdles

Jana Pittman has always been fast on the athletics track, but now she has the opportunity to display not only her speed, but her strength and versatility, when she becomes “the muscle at the back” of a…
Jana Pittman will be Australia’s first female athlete to compete in both Summer and Winter Olympics. Dave Hunt/AAP

Jana Pittman’s leap from the track to the bobsleigh

Reaching the Olympic Games is undoubtedly the highlight of any athletic career, but this year will be the first time a female Australian athlete has participated in both the Summer and Winter Olympic Games…
Illegal dumping in the Mzymta River from Sochi’s building frenzy. sochiwatch

Sochi Olympics have left a trail of environmental destruction

The reports from Sochi’s newly built hotels and Olympic Village have not painted their construction in the best light, with tales of doors that wouldn’t open, yellow drinking water, and collapsing fixtures…
Russian biathlete Olga Medvedtseva was the only athlete to test positive to a banned substance in the 2006 Turin Winter Olympics. EPA/Gero Breloer

Higher, faster … cleaner? Doping and the Winter Olympics

A quick look at Wikipedia shows that Winter Olympians test positive for doping at a far lower rate than their Summer Olympic counterparts. The past two Summer Olympics (London and Beijing) saw 34 drug…
Shaun White lost his gold medal, but kept his cool. Andrew Milligan/PA

Winter Olympics embraces ‘cool’ to fight off X-Games threat

Though a slip cost him gold in the half-pipe, and perhaps his title as the king of 21st century snow sports, American snowboarder Shaun White is what a hero looks like in 2014. White is a phenomenon: a…
That’ll be 42 broken bones and still skiiing. Mike Egerton/PA

The fear factor: coping with anxiety at altitude

The nature of competitive sport involves athletes putting themselves in high-pressure situations in which they are being constantly appraised, and Sochi is no different. So it is unsurprising that the…
Krasnaya Polanya, the site of the Sochi 2014 games, has long been a haunt of Russian artists and intellectuals. EPA/Michael Kappeler

Writing the Caucasus: Sochi and Russia’s literary retreats

Sochi – currently hosting the Winter Olympics – looks like the beach resort it is, situated on the blue waters of the east coast of the Black Sea, and enjoying a sub-tropical climate. There is what looks…
Torah Bright, seen here competing in the 2013 Snowboarding and Free Style World Cup Test Event, won silver at the Winter Olympics – Australia’s first medal at these Games. AAP/Chris James

Advance Australia: five steps to Winter Games success

You may have seen overnight snowboarder Torah Bright picked up silver in the women’s halfpipe at the Winter Olympics in Sochi. It was Australia’s first medal at these Games and brings our all-time Winter…
Australian skier Katya Cremer (right) flies through the air in the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics. AAP/Julian Smith

Where athletes look can spell Olympic success or failure

Some of the most exciting moments in the Sochi Winter Olympics will be in racing events such as ski and snowboard cross and short track speed skating. While it may seem obvious that vision plays a big…
Torah Bright is one of many Australian women competing in the Winter Olympics and challenging perceptions about women in sport. AAP Image/Julian Smith

Australian women show the way to equality at the Winter Olympics

The London 2012 Summer Olympic Games were declared the “women’s games” – with female participation in all sports and every nation represented by at least one female athlete. Although the Sochi 2014 Winter…
Warming temperatures will make it hard for many Winter Olympics host cities - including Sochi - to hold the Games again. Flickr/Samsung Tomorrow

So long Sochi: cities set to be too hot to host Winter Olympics

Only six of the previous 19 Winter Olympics host cities would be suitable to host the Games again by the end of this century…
The calm before the storm: millions of people will descend upon the city of Sochi and its surrounding areas. What’s in place to mitigate their impact? EPA/Karl-Josef Hildenbrand

Sochi 2014 – a ‘rich green legacy’ to remember … or forget?

Since the late 1990s, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has been committed to sustainable development. Since the Agenda for the Olympic Movement in the 21st Century (Agenda 21) was adopted in 1999…
The pomp and glamour of the Sochi Winter Olympics opening ceremony didn’t quite project an accurate version of Russian history. Flickr/Kristy Yang Photography

Looking through the spectacle, Olympic opening ceremonies can rewrite history

The role of an Olympic opening ceremony is twofold – it is a place to show off to the world and it is a place to converse with your own citizens. So what did the grand opening ceremony to the Sochi Winter…
A German protester wears a mask of Vladimir Putin – one of thousands protesting Russia’s stance on gay rights ahead of the Sochi Winter Games. EPA/Axel Heimken

Are politics fair game at the Olympics? Google thinks so

This week, the largest, coolest and most promising Australian Winter Olympics team to ever leave these shores landed in Sochi. But there’s more than gold on their minds – they want their presence to mean…
Snowboard halfpipe 2010 gold medalist Torah Bright (centre) won one of a total of nine medals for Australia in our history of the Winter Games. EPA/Valdrin Xhemaj

Better late than never: Australia’s Winter Olympic medallists

It’s no secret that Australia fares much better in Summer Games than the Winter Games: Aussie athletes have won 485 medals in Summer Olympics, while the winter counterpart has yielded a much more modest…
Faster, Higher, Stronger … Safer?

Keeping Sochi secure is Putin’s most serious challenge

One thing dominates the Sochi Olympics as nothing else: the towering summits of the Caucasus mountains. To begin with, it may strike a first-time visitor as strange that this seaside resort is to host…

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