Skeleton originated in the Swiss resort town of St. Moritz in the late 1800s

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The Federation Internationale de Bobsleigh et de Tobogganing (FIbT) was founded in 1923 and, 3 years later, bobsleigh and skeleton were declared Olympic sports. Men's skeleton made its Olympic debut in 1928 at St. Moritz. Brothers Jennison and John Heaton of the US won the gold and silver medals, respectively. In 1948 at St. Moritz, Nino Bibbia of Italy won gold and John Heaton repeated his silver medal victory. After the 1948 Games, skeleton was removed from the Olympic program.

Today, competitions exist for both men and women. The discipline differs from other sliding events in that the competitor lies flat on his or her stomach in the prone position on the sled with head forward during the slide. Once the start is signaled, the athlete has 30 seconds to begin the run trip the clock. The only means of acceleration is by the athlete's own push at the start of the race. The athlete may leave the sled in order to push or move it, but must pass the finish line on the sled in the prone position. Olympic skeleton competition consists of 2 runs timed electronically to hundredths of a second. Devices to assist steering or braking are prohibited.


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Public - 4/12/16, 5:29 PM