MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - Most seniors in high school are busy preparing for graduation during the month of May. Dani Loeb’s plans, however, are a little different.
She’ll be heading west in a couple weeks to begin her life as a member of the United States Ski Team, where she’ll perform on the aerial squad at the national level.
“I’ve always been super close to making it, but not quite,” said Dani. “This year, I finally got it.”
Now, I know what you’re thinking: how does a gal from Alabama find her way to the snow and a pair of skis?
“I was a gymnast. I did gymnastics at United Gymstars and Cheer in Montgomery, and then I moved to Texas,” she said. “I got recruited for my air awareness, and then they put me on some skis, and that’s how it got started.”
Thankfully, she was able to pick up the sport quickly, even impressing on her first outing with skis.
“Having skis on your feet and doing flips is so odd. It’s so heavy, but once you get the hang of it, it’s a lot easier,” said Dani. “The first time, I was in Liberty, Virginia, and we had to go off the jump and do just straight air - no flips or anything - and I accidentally did a back flip, landed it and then skied across this big airbag.”
As the first person from Alabama to ever make the U.S. Ski team, Dani has spent just five years in the sport... traveling around the world to jump in major events.
“I compete in the Noram tour, so that’s when we compete in Utah, Bristol Mountain in New York and also in Canada at La Roule, which is in the Quebec area,” said Dani. “For World Cups, I’ve done the Lake Placid World Cup twice, and then I got to four-run at the Deer Valley World Cup this past winter.”
Currently, she’s focused on making the 2021 World Cup team, which begins next January. Only 10 skiers from the U.S. national team will travel, and while it seems like she has plenty of time to train, Dani says she has to take advantage of every opportunity to get on the slopes.
"We’ll water ramp up until the middle of October, and then we’ll start snow jumping end of November - beginning of December,” she said. “There’s two people who will be knocked out, so I just have to beat two people in order to make the World Cup team, so that’s my goal for this year.”
Dani is also looking for sponsors to help with the travel expenses for her upcoming events. If you’d like to learn more about sponsorship, you can contact Ricky Davis with Wallace Jordan Radcliffe and Brandt at 205-870-0555, or email at RDavis@wallacejorday.com You can also follow Dani on Instagram.