Before Nick Goepper became an Olympic freestyle skier and a slopestyle legend, he was just another park rat on the ski hills of Indiana.
He was 15 when he earned a scholarship to Windells Academy for snowboarding, skiing, and skateboarding in Mount Hood, OR—it was also the first time he skied a Western resort.
But he quickly made up for lost time. Over the years, the 23-year-old has won three gold medals and one silver at the Winter X Games, and nabbed a bronze medal at the 2014 Olympic Games in Sochi.
Now training for PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympics from his home base in Breckenridge, CO, Men’s Journal caught up with Goepper for his advice on how to come from Anywhere, U.S.A., and not stick out on the slopes. If you don’t want to look like a “Jerry” (someone who doesn’t understand the essence of the sport or the lifestyle), heed these tips.