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Chloe Kim to take year off from snowboarding competition

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Chloe Kim will not compete this snowboard season to focus on freshman classes at Princeton but plans to return next year and go for the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics.

“It was a really tough decision,” Kim said in a YouTube video, noting she had been competing at a pro level since age 12. “I do not hate competing whatsoever. I love it so much, but at the same time, I wanted to kind of explore life outside of that scene for a year. … Competing is really, really stressful.

“I need some Chloe time. I need to be a human. I need to be a normal kid for once because I haven’t been able to do that my whole life.”

Kim, 19, announced a month after the Olympics that she was accepted to Princeton but deferred enrollment until this year. She was expected to juggle competing this Olympic cycle with classes.

“I want to be in good health for the next Olympics as well as for the rest of my life, so I think this was a good decision,” said Kim, who is in a classroom setting for the first time since seventh grade, after which she was home-schooled. “A lot of people, after the Olympics, they do take a year off from competing, and I didn’t do that last year.”

Kim, who in PyeongChang became the youngest Olympic halfpipe gold medalist, extended her dominance last season. She swept the Dew Tour, X Games and world championships before breaking her ankle in a minor fall and taking second at the season-ending Burton U.S. Open.

“When you kind of get stuck in the same routine, over and over and over again, year after year after year, it gets pretty hard,” she said. “I felt like I lost a part of myself in a sense where I didn’t feel like I had an actual life outside of snowboarding. Which is completely fine, because I love snowboarding so much and it is my life, but it made me a little nervous thinking that my life was 100 percent snowboarding, and, after the Olympics last year, I took my ACTs, SATs, studied and I did pretty well and I got into my dream school.”

In Kim’s absence, the top halfpipe rider may be PyeongChang Olympic teammate Maddie Mastro, who earned bronze at worlds then won the U.S. Open last season.

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Chloe Kim, Princeton student, finds college transition difficult

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Chloe Kim‘s transition to Princeton student life has been difficult, especially in the dining hall, where she notices people staring and taking pictures of her.

“College is OK, I guess,” the 2018 Olympic snowboard halfpipe champion said in a video posted on social media on Friday. “I’m going to fill you in a bit. I don’t think a lot of people understand that I’m a legit student. I’m trying to study. And, like, I would really appreciate it if I had a comfortable space here, I guess, but I don’t.

“As soon as I go to the dining hall, people stare at me. They whisper. They take pictures of me without me knowing. I don’t like it. I don’t think anyone would like if you were just trying to have a meal and you see it. Like, I see that. I see it. I’m a human. It’s been really, really hard to transition, but hopefully it gets better. And if not, then, [sarcastic] yay. So to anyone that’s here at Princeton and sees me at the dining hall or anywhere, please just remember that I’m a human being and I want a true, fun college experience. I would just really appreciate it if everyone respected my privacy and let me live my life. So thank you.”

Kim, 19, announced a month after the Olympics that she was accepted to Princeton but deferred enrollment until this year. She is expected to juggle competing this Olympic cycle with classes.

“I’d love to live just a normal life there, where maybe people don’t recognize me and get to know me not because of what I do, but just because of me,” Kim said in February, according to The New York Times. “Anyone who is going to Princeton next year, just be cool.”

Kim, who in PyeongChang became the youngest Olympic halfpipe gold medalist, extended her dominance last season. She swept the Dew Tour, X Games and world championships before breaking her ankle and taking second at the season-ending Burton U.S. Open.

“Princeton was my dream school before snowboarding took off,” Kim said last winter, according to The Associated Press. “I just liked the name when I was really young and didn’t know about college or anything.”

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Max Parrot, Olympic silver medalist snowboarder, beats cancer

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Max Parrot, the Canadian Olympic snowboard slopestyle silver medalist, said he beat cancer, after he was diagnosed with Hodgkin lymphoma on Dec. 21.

“After battling myself to the best I could during these past 7 months, I can finally say that I have won against cancer!!” was posted on Parrot’s Instagram. Parrot wrote that he underwent 12 rounds of chemotherapy, the last in June.

Parrot, a 25-year-old Quebecois, will return to competition at X Games Norway on Aug. 31. Parrot owns five X Games Aspen titles between big air and slopestyle, including three straight big air crowns before he had to miss this past January’s event.

In PyeongChang, Parrot took slopestyle silver behind American Red Gerard and was ninth in big air two weeks later.

“I’ve beaten cancer, but my body is not back to normal yet,” Parrot said, according to the Canadian Press. “I feel like I’m getting back my muscles and my cardio and my energy, but there’s still a lot of work to be done.”

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