Colorado’s Olympic Training Center


Mandy Rosen, Ranger Review Reporter

In the midst of the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing, China, our American Olympians are showing off their intense training and hard work. Many of these athletes have come to Colorado to train at a high altitude and gain stamina before competing. The Olympic and Paralympic Training Center in Colorado Springs is the only Olympic Training Center in the United States, after relocating from Lake Placid, New York. Olympians from all over the country have trained here for the past 44 years, many of which are paralympic athletes or pursuing olympians who are hopeful to compete in the future.

The Olympic Training Center is home to around 15,000 athletes every year. These athletes are a part of the 24 different National Governing Bodies of Sport that train here, such as Triathlon or Swim/Dive during summer season or Figure Skating and Hockey in the winter. In this year’s 2022 Olympics, 23 olympic athletes originated from Colorado. Among these athletes are alpine skier Mikaela Shiffrin, hockey goaltender Nicole Hensley, freestyle halfpipe skier Alex Ferriera and many more, all of which have trained in Colorado Springs.  

The Olympic Training Center provides housing, dining, and recreation for up to 557 athletes and coaches at a time. Inside the facility, athletes have access to multiple weightlifting and wrestling rooms that can be toured by visitors. Swimmers and aquatic athletes have two swimming pools with diving centers located in the Aquatics Sports Center. The Velodrome, which is one of the only major indoor tracks in the country, is a cement covered indoor track and arena for cyclists and roller sports. Most athletes will train for six to eight hours a day for their respective sport, disregarding conditioning and recreational training. 

It’s not just a coincidence that Olympians come to Colorado to train. Our high altitude helps athletes to improve blood flow and lung function. When living at a higher altitude, our bodies adapt by producing more red blood cells and improving our respiration and blood circulation. So, Olympians will use this to an advantage to heighten their body functions and have an easier time when competing at lower altitudes. 

The Olympic Training Center is a statement facility in Colorado Springs that brings not only olympians, but aspiring athletes and olympic enthusiasts to our state. Colorado has been the home for the USA Olympics since 1978 when it was selected because of its high elevation and location in the country. Since this relocation there has been no talk of relocation again, meaning the Olympic Training Center will be remaining in Colorado Springs permanently, bringing athletes and tourism to our state for years to come.