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Marvels of the Snowshoe

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When you hear "The Wonder of Skiing", Arnold Fanck and Hannes Schneider's book may be the first thing that comes to mind. First published in 1925, it has been reprinted many times over the years, becoming a legend in international skiing literature. However, “Marvels of the Snowshoe” was first seen on the big screen, when Fanck's work had its premiere in Freiburg im Breisgau in October 1920. After the censors approved the youth-friendly documentary on 6 December 1920, "Marvels of the Snowshoe" was shown to the general public for the first time in Dresden on 11 March 1921 - and praised afterwards by critics and media.

The silent documentary film was Fanck's debut as a director, one of the world's first feature-length documentaries which brought skiing to the masses in 66 minutes. There is no plot as such; instead, the beauty of the alpine glacier world is captured and the achievements of experienced athletes (including Hannes Schneider) honoured.

The success of the film prompted the creators to produce a sequel, and the kilometres of footage also lent themselves to being turned into a book. "The Wonder of Skiing” is a masterpiece on the sport, covering equipment and skiing theory and showing hundreds of stills and film sequences.

Many other films and books have accompanied FIS throughout its hundred-year history. Thanks are owed to all those who, through their creative efforts, have captured the winter sports journey.