We're less than a month away from the Winter Olympics, which means it's time for figure skating, snowboarding, and crying about how we'll never be as successful as all of the athletes on TV. Before the games begin, it's important to know what sports are in the Winter Olympics. There are probably some you've never heard of, but this list will help you sound like a pro when all anyone can talk about are the games.
This year, the Winter Olympic Games will take place in Pyeongchang, South Korea. They begin on Friday, Feb. 9 and end on Sunday, Feb. 25. If you're all fired up and want to see the magic of the opening ceremonies, you can catch them at 8 p.m. ET on NBC, according to Good Housekeeping. As we prepare for the exciting event, here's a quick overview of the 15 different sports you'll see.
According to the Olympics Website, alpine (or downhill skiing), first gained popularity in the early 20th century. It's now one of the most well-known Winter Olympic sports.
Biathlon combines two skills: skiing and rifle shooting. But don't worry, animal lovers: no furry friends are harmed in this sport.
All you Cool Runnings fans out there know how bobsledding works, but for anyone who doesn't, here's a quick overview: A team must get a bobsled going from a complete stop, jump in, and race down the track as fast as possible to win. Yes, it is as cool as it sounds.
Cross Country Skiing
Cross-country skiing differs from alpine skiing, in that the athletes deal with varied and more difficult terrain. If you want to see some different views, definitely check it out.
Although it's sometimes mocked by viewers, curling is super exciting once you know all the rules. According to MentalFloss, the object of curling is to get the stone as close to the button as possible, without being thrown off track by the pebble. Easy to follow, right?
Whether you've been a fan since Disney's Ice Princess or you just saw I, Tonya, figure skating is perhaps the most exciting sport in the Winter Olympics. Plus the U.S. Men's Figure Skating Team just recruited their first openly-gay figure skater. This is history, people!
Half skiing, half skateboarding, 100 percent rad. Don't try this at home, kids.
Although hockey isn't as popular as other sports in the United States, the game always gets its in the limelight in the Winter Olympics.
Long-Track Speed Skating
Speed skating is sort of like the Winter Olympics' equivalent to track events, so if you love watching Usain Bolt dart down a track, consider tuning in.
You may not immediately think "sheer athleticism" when watching luge — they are lying down after all — but it's honestly so fun to watch the athletes fly scarily fast down the track.
As you may have guessed, Nordic combined is a combination of cross-country skiing and ski jumping. Sweet views and thrilling jumps? Yes, please!
Short-Track Speed Skating
The short track is about one-fourth of the distance of the long track, and the skaters are much closer together.
Athletes lay down face-first on a sled and race down a track. Kind of like luge, but a lot more terrifying.
If you thought we already covered all of the skiing events, you thought wrong. Everyone looks like they're going to face plant coming off the jump, but they all miraculously recover and glide effortlessly down the remainder of the hill. It's truly fascinating.
Although many of these sports look totally extreme, snowboarding is probably the closest the Winter Olympics get to the Winter X Games. Get ready to see these athletes shred some serious gnar.