Lindsey Jacobellis has been an Olympic staple, and has her family to thank for her introduction to snowboarding. She credits her parents, Ben and Anita Jacobellis, for encouraging her and her brother, Ben Jacobellis, to be active at a young age. It resulted in both children becoming professional athletes. Lindsey grew up in Roxbury, Connecticut before attending high school in Stratton, Vermont. She spoke with the Clymb.com about her parents encouraging them to participate in various sports.
“…My parents always put me into sports and I was always playing outside with my brother,” Lindsey told Clymb.com. “Every season my brother and I would be involved in a sport that ranged from swimming, softball/baseball, lacrosse, field hockey, skiing, snowboarding, and skateboarding. There was never a dull moment for my mom, she was our number one fan, and was there with her cowbell.”
Lindsey has an accomplished resume including four Olympic appearances and 10 X Games gold medals. For all her accomplishments, it has not always been easy. Her parents were with her in Italy during the lowest moment of her career at the 2006 Winter Olympics. Lindsey was set to win her first gold medal before trying to pull off a more complicated move than necessary at the end of the race, resulting in her crashing. Lindsey was still able to win a silver medal, but was publicly chastised by critics for “showboating”.
Learn more about Lindsey’s mother, father, and brother who keep her grounded away from the competition.
1. Lindsey’s Mother, Anita, Was Diagnosed With Breast Cancer, But Is Now Cancer-Free
When Lindsey was younger, her mother was diagnosed with breast cancer, but was able to be treated thanks to an early detection. Lindsey declared her mother cancer-free at the 10-year mark in a 2014 Instagram post.
“My mom is 10 years cancer free due to early detection! Make it a habit to check yourself starting with these ladies @ehomberg @amiethomas @langemcneal @mariaramberger @keepabreast #iloveboobies,” Lindsey posted.
Lindsey has become passionate about women getting checkups thanks, in part, to her mother’s story. She created a cast of her torso then signed it for it to be auctioned off, with all the proceeds going to cancer research. Lindsey posted about the project on her blog.
Today I did a cast for Keep A Breast. This process takes about a half an hour from start to finish. When the cast is complete an artist will paint a design on it and then it will be sold at an auction. All of the money raise will go to Breast Cancer research. If you ever had a loved one go through something as difficult as cancer than you know how I felt when my mother was diagnosed. My mother is a survivor from early detection and I tell her story to all. It might not be in your family history but you should still check yourself out at least once a year. Cast for the Cause was a fun way to participate in gaining a global awareness for Breast Cancer. I look forward to making another cast soon and maybe designing it myself.
2. Her Brother, Ben, Is a Professional Snowboarder & Introduced Lindsey to the Sport When She Was 10
Lindsey’s older brother, Ben, introduced her to snowboarding at the age of 10, and she began racing at 11 years old. It was her competitive relationship with her brother that helped her perfect her craft. According to The New York Times, it was her brother that nicknamed her “Lucky”, a name that has stuck with her to this day.
“I always wanted to do everything Ben was doing but try to be better,” Lindsey told Sports Illustrated. “Sometimes it could end very badly.”
Everything was a competition for Lindsey and Ben, not just snowboarding. Sports Illustrated detailed some of their competitive battles.
Jacobellis would follow her brother, five years her senior, every weekend when their family went to Stratton Mountain in Vermont. She would chase him off jumps, through the half-pipe and through the woods. She started racing at 11 because Ben did. She started winning.
At home in Danbury, Conn., if Ben was playing a sport that meant Lindsey was too: lacrosse, street hockey, home run derby, didn’t matter. And Lindsey wasn’t satisfied just keeping pace. She couldn’t stand losing.
3. Lindsey Grew Up Trying to Chase Her Father Down During Family Ski Trips
Lindsey’s brother was not the only one she was trying to chase down, as her father was also good on the slopes. She spoke with New York Magazine about growing up trying to chase her family members down the slopes.
…I was a skier. I was a weekend warrior with my family, always chasing my older brother, my dad, and his friends down the mountain, and if I wanted to ski with them, I had to not be afraid to go fast. And my mom was always like, ‘You don’t have to stay up with them, we could go on other runs.’ And I was like, ‘No. I like going fast, I wanna stick with them.’ And then my brother picked up snowboarding and basically turned everyone in our family, and our friends, into snowboarders. So he set the bug in everyone’s brain.
Her father was one of the family members who watched in shock as his daughter fell during the 2006 Olympics in Italy just moments before she was set to secure her first gold medal. Critics note Jacobellis tried to show off as the snowboarder had a sizable lead on the field before crashing.
4. Lindsey Calls Her Mom Her “Mental Rock”
Lindsey posted a heartfelt message to her mom on her blog for Mother’s Day.
I love you so much MOM. Thank you so much for everything that you have done for me in my life. You are my mental rock and I would not be where I am today if it wasn’t for YOU and DAD. Miss you so much when I travel, but I am always thinking of you.
It was her mother that looked out for her when she worried Lindsey was going too fast trying to catch her brother. Despite her mother’s anxiety, Lindsey has been able to hold her own on the mountains.
“I’ve always had male coaches,” Lindsey told The New York Times. “I have an older brother who pushed me. I’ve never been coddled.”
5. Lindsey Is Dating California Real Estate Agent Adam Bakkedahl
Based on her social media posts, Lindsey looks to be dating Adam Bakkedahl, a real estate agent who lives in California. Prior to Adam, she was dating pro surfer Jesse Heilman. While Lindsey was in PyeongChang prepping for her upcoming Olympic event, Adam took to Instagram to offer a very public Valentine’s Day salute.
“Happy Valentine’s Day to the most bad ass woman on the planet @lindseyjacobellis love you,” the caption read. The two spent Christmas together as Adam described in another Instagram post.
“I’m grateful for this wonderful women @lindseyjacobellis and her family for giving me a great Christmas,” Adam posted.