How Japanese Teen Ayumu Hirano defied USA’s Snowboarding Dominance | Game Breakers

How Japanese Teen Ayumu Hirano defied USA’s Snowboarding Dominance | Game Breakers

Snowboarding is not a
major sport in Japan. The pipes in Japan are not up to the standards of
the rest of the world. But I always believe in myself
and try to perform my best no matter how bad
the conditions are. Instead of trying to
flip as high as I can I prefer to just get
more creative on the pipes. I’m just trying to do my best
given the circumstances. (GAME BREAKERS) (AYUMU HIRANO, JAPAN,
SILVER MEDAL, HALFPIPE) I’m Ayumu Hirano. I’m a halfpipe snowboarder. I got a silver medal at the
Sochi Olympics in halfpipe. My father was a surfer. And
he taught my brother to surf. When my brother competed at
a surfing competition, he almost drowned. And that fear stuck with him. From there, my father asked us if we’d like to switch
to snowboarding. We went to a shop and got a board from the store. And then we started
snowboarding. Murakami is in the north side
of Niigata prefecture by the Sea of Japan. The wind is strong and the
snow doesn’t pile up that high. Although Murakami does have
enough snow for snowboarding, it’s difficult to build
high-enough quality pipes to train athletes for
the Olympics. Back then I only had
a small surf shop… money and time
was always tight. We didn’t have a good
environment for training but we made the best of the
situation and built halfpipe for skateboarding. The main goal of building
this park was to help the kids train. When I was little, I’d go to
school in the mornings and snowboard in the afternoon. After snowboarding was done, I’d eat and then go
skateboarding. And I’d be practising under
my dad’s tough supervision up until 11pm. (IN 2001, AYUMU’S FATHER
ride was the US Open 2012. He had done Junior Jam, which
is 14 and below and he won it. And he got a spot in the Open And he was right up there almost as big as some of the
guys at the highest level. (DEFYING THE LANGUAGE BARRIER
RELATIONSHIP A YEAR LATER) I think Elijah makes the effort to match his personality
with Ayumu. He builds a positive
environment in which Ayumu can train
without stress. No air, just drop in Elijah takes pride in creating
an environment for Ayumu where he can train at
100% capacity. Ayumu is special in a sense
that he’s very competitive. And he’s full of style. So, he’s bringing the style
aspect into the bigger tricks. He’ll just make it look like
it’s a simple manoeuvre. Competing in the Olympics was
my biggest dream ever since I was a kid. The Olympics had always meant
so much to me and my family. I went to Sochi to support him because he was the youngest
athlete from Japan to go. Everything was new for us and it was hard to grasp
the situation. I was just desperately cheering
him on, and wishing for him not to get
injured. I know his first run, he didn’t
have a backside spin. And I told him going into it,
he had to have one. In my mind, backside spin
wasn’t my strong suit. So I avoided putting
that into my routine. Plus, all of the riders after
me had great runs. And of course,
Shaun was still up after me. That’s why I was pushed
back to third place. For the next run, I took
Elijah’s advice and went with the backside
spin routine. I was able to construct
that run from the stands. I was there, I didn’t even have
a pass, you know. I was in the stands because
I couldn’t be there with Japan. And I don’t know how we were
going to get it up to him. Luckily, someone had a way to
connect with him. I think it was calling another
coach. Backside air, frontside 1080, cab double cork, frontside
nine, backside nine, frontside 10 double cork. Going from the fifth to the
sixth jump, my mind was like, “I gotta
land this! I gotta land this!” That’s how I was feeling when I
was in the air until I landed. “Just one more! Just one more!” I felt the end as I was riding and I remember each and
every trick very clearly. When I saw that I was receiving
second place, my mind was actually blank. It wasn’t like I couldn’t stop
smiling or I was sad at that moment. Surprisingly, my mind
was just at peace. The score coming in by
Ayumu Hirano isn’t enough to take the top spot.
Is it enough for the silver? (AYUMU HIRANO AND TAKU HIRAOKA
also a salaryman. So, he also had to improvise
with what they had in order to make the most
out of their environment. That effort surely paid off with their results at the
Olympics. Sports are part of
education in Japan. But skateboarding and
snowboarding have always been more for fun or just for show. They are very expensive sports. In America, there are
competitions like the X-Games, where pro snowboarders can
perform and compete. We don’t have those kinds of
professional competitions here but I have high expectations and am very optimistic about
sports here in the future. With time, sports here are evolving,
little by little. The US always been very strong in their presence at the
Olympics with the 2002 sweep
in Park City and Shaun being on the top
at the last two, prior. I think Ayumu’s silver medal
in Sochi was maybe a big upset to
snowboarding halfpipe. His amplitude and his variety
of big tricks mixed with his style
is just phenomenal. Ayumu is bringing it
to a new level. He’s that next generation
coming up, and it’s just adding that flare and making snowboarding fun
and cool and a great thing to be
a part of and watch. An Olympic medallist came out
of this small town of Murakami. Something that used to be a
dream became a reality when Ayumu accomplished that. I think people now see that
dream as something reachable. To be honest, it didn’t hit me
for a while when I actually won silver
medal at the age of 15. I wasn’t completely happy
with my performance. But it became an event where
I gained my confidence. My experience in Sochi made more people learn
about snowboarding. It made people see
snowboarding differently. And I would like more people to
continue to learn about it.

Antonio Breitenberg

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69 thoughts on “How Japanese Teen Ayumu Hirano defied USA’s Snowboarding Dominance | Game Breakers

  1. Nicholas Hoskins says:


  2. MR AR ZONE says:

    2nd and please subscibe my channel

  3. x Miyuki says:

    Am I the only one who don't have English subtitles for this one? 😡

  4. Arcadian says:

    Automatically turned on subtitles on all your other videos, then none on the one where it's actually needed?

  5. Larry 306 says:

    There is pervert who does this sport.. Shaun White I think?

  6. Bryce Rogers says:

    @Olympic Are you gonna make me translate the captions from Spanish to English??? ADD ENGLISH CC

  7. jaisnav rajesh says:

    Like if you don't speak Japanese

  8. Suteera Tak says:

    Need English caption! 🙏

  9. 中村俊輔 says:


  10. Hashanah 555 says:

    English subtitles pls!!!

  11. Naomi Bedin says:

    Japanese subtitles nothing to do with the story..

  12. Desmond Suarez II says:

    English subtitle translation would be nice…..

  13. anime freak says:

    Am I early

  14. uhaha wahaha says:


  15. 柚栗 says:


  16. kamilla lang says:


  17. akinohikari1000 says:

    why are denis ten subtitles here?

  18. Roreinu Sama says:

    My intense anime watching comes in handy..

  19. Victor Brant says:

    se equivocaron con los subtitulos en español, no tiene relacion con el video

  20. Pavel Karasin says:

    Русские субтитры-огонь)

  21. Olympic says:

    Thanks everyone for pointing it out. We had a mistake in the upload of our subtitles which has now been fixed. We are sorry about that mistake. 😳
    You'll should now be able to enjoy this story in 11 different languages.

  22. Nette A says:

    Anyone else having an issue where the subtitles are in the middle of the screen? Like blocking most of the video?

  23. Carlos Botelho says:

    Great! He's amazing!

  24. Space Age Productions says:

    imagine the japanese medals if yuki was there too

  25. Raghav Bhatnagar says:

    That’s an automatic car and what to tur a have to do with the clitch

  26. Earlgreymilktea says:

    Gave up watching after 2mins because the subtitles are smack right in the middle of the video for some reason so I can’t see the video properly. Please fix it.

  27. GB says:

    Mid-video ads? Niceeeeeee move…

  28. Aging ARMY63 says:

    No subtitles at all can't watch.

  29. FWG says:

    I was talking to my favorite youtuber Ruthi san because she is living with her family there in Murakami, Nigata and told her an Olimpic medalist it's practicing snowboarding behind the playground of your son and she answer me "Yes it's Ayumu Hirano San" that was amaizing, hahaha her child use the dinosoure behind the building to play in the park. Hirano San is a hard worker, we are proud of him and we wish you achieve all your goals, I know u can do it.

  30. - Lujis says:

    Wrooong subtitle

  31. kiri says:


  32. kiri says:


  33. REIWA JPN says:

    next gold medal.from japan●

  34. MightyFish says:

    I really felt that Ayumu Hirano should have won the gold medal. His last run was truly spectacular to watch and really gave Shaun White a run for his gold medal and his name.

  35. adnan ali says:

    What is the song at the starting?

  36. jasiom says:

    Amazing steez. 😀

  37. T k says:


  38. mish098aimer says:

    I wanted him to win Sochi and PyeongChang. Now I will continue to root for him at Tokyo and Beijing!!!!

  39. 上海マニュアル says:

    NIGTA murakami

  40. 上海マニュアル says:


  41. 上海マニュアル says:


  42. says:


  43. Ben King says:

    Whats the song from 4 minutes? Please 🙂

  44. j g says:

    What, no Japanese word fo snowboard or halfpipe? lol

  45. 1 Garoto 2 Mundos says:

    silver and bronze…. oh yeah, really defied hahahahhaha the white is power and his back !!!

  46. michi 1080 says:


  47. JanegroDrums says:

    Escape from Tarkov Menu Music…

  48. Thistledove says:

    He is an olympic hero. I hope his country recognizes him for his greatness.

  49. anj says:

    Ayumu is the best!!!

  50. omgn88 says:

    He doesn't wear a helmet?

  51. Suteera Tak says:

    Wonderful documentary! Watch this so many times.

  52. RAЯ says:

    Ayumu is so badass! Whether he wins or loses first place he still has the same neutral expression thinking of how much further he can go!

  53. Kasvini Muniandy says:

    wow… what an incredible journey. The Hirano family is so inspiring.

  54. ねこねこ寿司朗 says:


  55. Cristina Gacute says:

    Would anyone know what song they used for the introductory part? 🙁

  56. Ryan Carr says:

    his coach is my cousin 🙂

  57. 순간을 소중히 says:


  58. CANDICE Zhou says:

    He is the bae

  59. david bates says:

    What an inspiring video. Just great.

  60. Daniel Choi says:


    실제로 봤던 경기애서 체공시간과 높이에 감탄했죠

  61. dd7ism says:

    Хорошо, что название на русском.

  62. 타이어는넥센 says:

    대단한 선수;;

  63. mental mad says:


  64. 마스야가자 says:

    멋진 부자..

  65. Softly Tone says:

    Such an amazing & inspiring athlete. And a humble young man…Love his fighting spirit !!

  66. jenas akiyo says:

    subtitles! subtitles please!

  67. Wade Huang says:

    Musics from 0:00~ Artist: Laurent Dury , song: Interstellar travel / 0:50~ unknown , did anyone know? / 2:10~ Artist: Laplage , song: Analog Flight /

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