The world’s greatest female slopestyle snowboarder: passionate, joyful, authentic and humble.
I would tell girls to love themselves more than anything, find something that they truly are passionate about and to follow their dreams and trust that they can do anything they believe in! – Jamie Anderson
When you think of Jamie Anderson, you think of snowboarding. Slopestyle’s first and second Olympic gold medal winner, 8 x Winter X Games medals, 5 of which are gold…and she is the youngest Winter X Games athlete to have ever won a medal, a bronze at age 15!
Jamie Anderson is well on her way to becoming one of the greatest competitive female athletes of all time… and she is only 24 years old. Snowboarding aside, what makes her a great role model is her demeanour, character and approach to life. She has a calmness and grace that is rare for such a young girl. An old soul at heart, here are 10 reasons why Jamie Anderson is an incredible role model and an inspiration to all women.
1. She respects her body and is comfortable with how things are
I don’t think I’m your typical rock-hard ripped girl. But that’s what I love and embrace about myself. I feel good, but I always feel like I can be better. That’s what I thrive on. – Interview with ESPN
In 2014, after winning gold in the Olympic slopestyle, Jamie was asked to feature in ESPN’s Body Issue (surfer Coco Ho was also featured in this issue). She turned what was a daunting shoot, that made her want to train really hard to look her best, into a life lesson about being comfortable with her body. She just let it be. This is something all women can relate to. She looked fantastic in the shoot (as did Coco Ho).
At first I was a little bit terrified but it was really good practice for me to accept everything about myself and love my body and not judge the little things that we do as women or anyone and just embrace where I’m at. – Interview with Transworld Snowboarding
2. She is grateful
Living the blessed life she does is not lost on Jamie Anderson. The beautiful places, people and experiences she shares are often accompanied by acknowledgement and gratitude for her blessings. With the help of her sponsors, for the last three years, she has supported the sponsorship program “Give Back With Love”, a charity for less fortunate kids in Lake Tahoe, introducing them to snowboarding.
Snowboarding is an expensive sport. I wanted to create that chance for kids from the local community who have not been able to afford all the gear. I teamed up with Sierra Tahoe, my home mountain and we have donated for the last three years.
3. She is dedicated to progression
I’d rather be inspired by my competition than be jealous. I’m trying to approach it in a different way, where I’m inspired that they’re doing a double cork even though I’m scared as hell to do it. – Interview with ESPN
Competitive snowboarding can bring out a lot of people’s egos. It is an unhealthy aspect of the sport that is otherwise so soulful and carefree. Jamie’s unique outlook on competing and pushing herself is refreshing. She generally thrives off her peers doing well. She wants them to do well because she knows this will push her own snowboarding and the level of those around her. She knows that this collectively will drive the progression of women’s snowboarding. It is not all about just one individual being the best and holding the spotlight.
I feel the best when everyone lands an epic run. I have friends who come over to me right before they compete and give me a hug and try to rub off some of my energy. And I love that, that’s what I’m there for. I’m not the type of competitor who wants to not see everyone do well. – Interview with ESPN
4. She promotes a healthy wholesome diet
More than anything, beauty is about what goes in your body—make sure you are eating healthy, nutritious food and drinking a lot of water.”
Acutely aware of her body, Jamie’s wholesome approach to life also informs what she chooses to eat – a balanced diet. Eating mostly plant-based foods, Jamie is focused on how food affects her mind and body. “To me, it’s a combination of what you’re putting in and what you’re giving out” she said in an interview about her diet.
She always seeks out fresh, organic, living and nourishing foods and is an advocate of eating seasonal and buying local. If you want to operate at your optimum you need to give you body the best foods. Her natural curiosity ensures she also loves to cook.
I always try to eat healthy — pure, organic, whole foods. I eat a little bit of meat, but I’m mostly vegetarian. I drink a green shake that’s filled with amino acids — it’s called Tonic Alchemy— it has over 100 superfoods like spirulina, goji berries, all kinds of different grains. You have to make sure you’re taking in a lot of extra vitamins and minerals. Giving yourself the right ingredients is for your body, what positive affirmations are to the mind.” – Interview with Today
5. She is active and loves sports
I’ve never been a big fan of the gym. That’s why I have a trainer. I’m like, ‘Tell me what to do — I just want to get in and out of here as soon as possible. – Interview with Refinery29
She lists yoga, hiking and mountain biking as her favourite things to do other then snowboarding but she also loves watersports such as wake surfing and paddleboarding (wouldn’t you if you lived on beautiful Lake Tahoe!). One thing that jumps out about Jamie is that she doesn’t pound a treadmill or spend hours in a gym. The sports she chooses are outdoors, sociable and fun. Sure they help her keep in shape, but we get the feeling that isn’t why she loves them.
6. She practices yoga and actively seeks balance in life
For me, it was all about finding that balance. I worked out with my trainer and made yoga a priority.
Jamie attributes yoga to a lot of her success: her strength, her calmness, her stability. One of the great things yoga gives you is a strong core that is vital in snowboarding. She loves anything that works her abs and incorporates a lot of these exercises into her training. Like 11x World Champion surfer Kelly Slater, she also attributes yoga to conditioning her body and helping prevent injury. The imbalances that yoga identifies and the strength and stability it brings to the body are key aspects that any athlete or individual can benefit from.
I always go to yoga — I do core fusion and Vinyasa. My favorite poses are variations on the handstand and the scorpion. You have to use your whole body, it’s physically and mentally challenging. – Interview with Today
Jamie Anderson Uses Yoga to Win Dew Tour
7. She has her own unique style
I’ve tried to find that balance of still being a woman and being feminine and beautiful but doing these extreme sports. So, it’s fun, it’s crazy, but it’s all about finding that balance. – Interview with Refinery29
I love watching Jamie in competitions or following her Instagram feed. She carries herself in such a confident, unique way while still remaining feminine. With snowboarding being such a male-dominated sport, it is sometimes hard to let this side of you shine. Jamie doesn’t follow the crowd and always has something quirky in her style that sets her apart.
8. She is passionate about sustainability
Jamie has a deep understanding of how and why we should take care of our planet. She has even created an environmentally conscious clothing company TRYE (To Respect Your Earth). She hopes to grow this into a company that can be introduced to the school system and teach younger generations about living a non-toxic life. Understanding your own impact and how the choices you make can have a positive or negative effect is something that she has spoken about in many interviews. Supporting local businesses, understanding the impact of the foods and products we buy as well as the actions we take, can all have a positive impact.
9. She uses her influence for positive messages
Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Action Climate Change, Protect Our Winters, Jamie uses her profile to raise awareness of causes close to her heart. She also introduces her friends and followers to companies outside of snowboarding that she loves, be it health food companies, natural jewels or a local cafe that is making great wholesome food. She understands the power of her influence and always makes a conscious decision to use it to spread positivity.
10. She frigging rips on her snowboard
Snowboarding brings you into that place of present time consciousness where nothing else matters – Post Olympic interview with Elen Degeneres
My first memory of Jamie is from the Vans Triple Crown events back in Mammoth when she was 15, doing backflips off one of the jumps. Her mum was behind me saying “I’ve told Jamie to stop doing those backflips, her head is almost touching the ground!”.
But Jamie did those backflips over and over and every time they got better. I believe one of snowboarding’s greatest gifts is how it allows us to express ourselves in any way we want. I count Jamie Anderson as one of the most stylish snowboarders of our time. She rides beautifully, with such calmness and grace. I hope we see her take some time out of competing to film a video part as her approach and creativity would be nothing short of mind-blowing. “She’s so strong, and so, so smooth,” said American snowboarder Karly Shorr, who finished sixth in the Olympic Slopestyle. “That’s how I want to snowboard. That’s exactly how I want to look when I snowboard”. Karly is right. That is exactly how I want to snowboard too.
Follow your dreams. Find something you’re passionate about and really pursue it. If you put it out into the universe and really believe in that dream, it can really happen. But also be productive and work hard towards goals. Everything will turn around for you, but it happens one day at a time. Be patient, because it doesn’t always happen all at once. – Jamie Anderson
One of my favourite Jamie Anderson video parts – from her 2012 season
Follow Jamie Anderson on Instagram, on Twitter, on Facebook or on her website itsjamieanderson.com.