Finland’s Olympians bring their knitting everywhere

Roope Tonteri of Finland trains at Phoenix Snow Park on February 10, 2018 in Pyeongchang, South Korea. –Getty Images

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The Finnish are knitting.


Maybe you knew of Finland’s enthusiasm for heavy metal, expensive speeding tickets or coffee. Maybe you knew it’s home to the Air Guitar World Championships, that the Fins once dunked all over Italy in a Pizza-making contest and that they’re the ones who gave us Angry Birds. Maybe you’re the Finnish Alex Trebek, which would be the only good reason to know all those things.

But did you know that this Baltic nation harbors such an extreme commitment to knitting that its snowboarding coach was hard at work with two needles and some yarn during the slopestyle competition, even as he stood at the top of the course?


In a video on NBC’s website, Finnish snowboarding coach Antti Koskinen can be seen calmly knitting while his rider Roope Tonteri gets ready for his run. Let’s break down the footage. Koskinen and Toneri high-five just before Tonteri sets himself for the start, then Koskinen goes right back to his knitting.

Very casual.

Koskinen seemed to be working with midsize needles, perhaps your standard 8mm, and navy blue yarn.

To paraphrase the rapper YFN Lucci: Everyday we knit.

The Fins are veteran knitters. The whole team worked together on a giant scarf four years ago in Sochi. This time, they’re knitting a blanket for their presidential couple’s newborn son.

What a lovely gesture. Knitwear is almost always appropriate, just don’t wear it in a sauna (also from Finland).

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