Maxx Nelkin - Skier - Tennesee, USA



 Your Age: 27

Your Location (where do you ride mostly): Ober Gatlinburg

Weapon(s) of choice: Line soulmate twin tips and camera.

What’s an average day for you like?It depends on the time of year. I work at a distillery in the day time and usual head up to the mountain right after work in the winter time. My husband skis too. He films in the terrain park and I photograph. When I don't work, we head up in the morning to get first chair. In the summer time, I'm usually at the lake or relaxing at home with my German shepherd. I love cooking for my family and friends and having game nights.

What is the most difficult part of your activity/sports for a beginner? The easiest? The most difficult part for me about skiing was getting into the terrain park. I've been skiing since I was 11 so I am very comfortable with it. I never tried freestyle tricks until 2 years ago. It was so intimidating in the beginning and still is. Facing your fears is the hardest part. The easiest thing about skiing is just taking it all in. Its amazing views of the mountains, beautiful snow, a chance to express myself with my style and having good friends always around.

What is the best and worst thing about being female in your sport? I think the best thing about being a female in skiing is getting the opportunity to express myself. Not very many girls I know ski. Its a chance to show people you can be tough. It's also a chance to show that even a girl can shred. I love changing up my style. I think the worst part about being a female in skiing is the struggle with being accepted. It's never easy going into the terrain park with a bunch of guys standing around who you don't know and they are watching everyone who goes through. They give their opinion on every mistake and every fall. I've struggled with having the confidence to try new things. I've learned that it doesn't matter how many times you fall down. The guys fall twice as much. What matters is that you pick yourself up and try it again. It matters that you're trying. It matters that you showed up and you don't give up. I still have to give myself a little pep talk.

What would you like to see change in your sport to make it better for you and other female athletes? I think skiing has evolved quite a bit for women. I think ladies night and female specific clothing and gear helped changed women's attitude towards skiing. I would definitely like to see more women supporting women in skiing and all sports. I think our attitudes and support for each other will change our minds about how far we can go with confidence and determination.

What are your favorite brands/designers for your sports apparel and for stepping out? My favorite brands to wear skiing are SheShreds, Saga Outerwear, Tall T Productions, Orage and Neff.

Let’s hear your thoughts on how important looking good is to feeling good. “Being” your personal best? I believe that looking good does make you feel good. It should not be something thought of as 'shallow' or 'materialistic'. When I am happy with how I am dressed, it makes me more confident when I go out. Looking good is not all about the clothes. Part of it is how your personality looks and how your attitude looks. I believe you become more approachable to people when you smile and treat others with respect.

How dangerous do you really think it is compared to what people do in their regular activities? I think skiing can be quite dangerous at times, especially when you are in the terrain park. Rails, boxes and jumps are very unforgiving if you mess up. Also, you have a lot of obstacles to avoid. Whether it's out of control people on the mountain or that tricky pile of snow that just catches your ski just right and stops you immediately. If you learn the proper techniques and practice a lot, skiing becomes something thrilling and exciting.

I bet in your experience you have seen some crazy crashes. Describe one. I haven't seen too many personally but it always freaks me out watching big mountain skiing or snowboarding and they get caught in an avalanche. That's my biggest fear.

What usually gets people hooked on your activity/sport? I've got some friends hooked on skiing. The thing that gets them is the awesome environment. Simply being outdoors will make anyone with an open mind enjoy it. Also, getting to express yourself through clothing and gear makes it easier to like it. After falling a few times, my friends always say how much fun it is to just go fast down the mountain.

What gets you pumped up for the day? Definitely some coffee if its an early mornings. And of course some breakfast. Good vibes at the start and some dope music gets me pumped for the day.

What are three things you could not live without? Snow, dogs, companionship.

Who have been your biggest supporters in getting you to where you are now? My family, close friends and my husband because they all have a passion for skiing just like me and have encouraged and supported me all the way. They have helped me progress and be the skier I am today.

Who’s your favorite rider/shooter (photo/video)? Some of my favorite riders are Tom Wallisch, Gus Kenworthy, Bobby Brown, Lindsey Vonn, Sarah Burke and Keri Herman.

What do you do in your spare time when you’re not riding/shooting/competing? I love to relax at home with my husband, watch Netflix and cuddle with my dog. I enjoy being outdoors, taking road trips and spending time with my friends.

How about in the off season to stay in shape? I like to hike. I live in the Smoky mountains so I have many trails close by. I also workout to stay in shape and have recently started to run and did my first 5K a few months ago.

What is your biggest goal to accomplish this/next season? My biggest goal is to travel to more ski resorts and continue to progression in freestyle skiing.

Favorite conditions? Powder on a blue bird day.

Where would be your biggest dream place to ride and why? Alaska, Japan and Canada for the amazing views and terrain.

What turned you on to your sport? The ability to make it all your own. I liked that I could pick my own style. The scenery isn't too bad either. I love snowy mountains. The lifestyle is great too.

What’s the coolest thing you’ve ever done in your sport? It would probably be traveling to so many beautiful places. Being on top of a snow covered mountain is amazing.

What other extreme/action sports are you into? I use to rock climb in high school. I've tried wake boarding. I'm not very good at all! I love watching any winter sport.

What’s your favorite board/bike/sled to ride and why? I love my Line twin tips because they're fun and have a cool graphic.

How would you describe your riding style? Easy going and adventurous.

Favorite drink of choice to refresh yourself after a long day of riding/shooting? Water is always the best idea to rehydrate. I go for a coffee in the day and beer at night.

What do you want to be when you grow up? Happy and successful.

Any of your own web pages or social media buttons you want links to? & Instagram: @maxxerinn