sports equal…highlights: eks champion Sadie Maubet Bjornson

In a world that’s getting more competitive and demanding, Sadie Maubet Bjornsen fully believes in the healing power of being outside. “Being active outside, breathing fresh air, is a natural remedy to the anxiety thats fueled by our fast-paced lives. It has a tremendous impact on our brains.”

Sadie grew up in the Methow Valley, a small community in eastern Washington State, and spending time outdoors was part of her family’s lifestyle. “Exploring the mountains on the weekends, riding bikes to the river to swim, or skiing to a friends house to visit were ways we stayed active. I also played soccer, participated in the summer swim league and ran.  My family had a competitive spirit, but I dont remember taking any of it too seriously.  It was all just for fun.”

In high school, Sadie just happened to qualify for an international nordic ski competition. “I went to the U.S. Nationals not even knowing that there was a chance to qualify for the World Junior races in Europe. But I did really well and all of a sudden had the opportunity to travel with the U.S. Ski Team and be around some of the best skiers in the world. I was hooked!”Inspired with a goal of making the 2010 Olympic team, Sadie focused her efforts on nordic skiing, dropping out of college after her freshman year to train. However, she found that having a singular goal didn’t work well for her. “I didnt make the team, and I realized that for me, balance is key. I need school, a job, or other activities that I enjoy to keep me from focusing solely on skiing. There is a lot of pressure as an athlete, and carving out time for other passions allows me to maneuver those pressures, knowing I have something to fall back on.”

“There are so many lessons that you
can only learn from sports…”

Sadie returned to school, attending Alaska Pacific University while skiing as a member of the U.S. National team, traveling and competing in World Cup races. “I was an individual athlete but became part of a team when I joined the National Team. You are training, traveling and living with each other for five months, and the teams goals become bigger than any individual goal.  The relationships I formed were more important to me than any result.” As a newcomer, she appreciated the generosity of her teammate Kikkan Randall, who was the most talented athlete on the team with a decade of experience. “Kikkan basically showed me all her cards and shared all of her knowledge with me and the other newbies on the team. Soon, we were starting to beat her, and ironically it was because she was so willing to give us a hand-up.”

Sadie made the 2013 Olympic team where she and Kikkan both demonstrated their best efforts leading up to team sprint final, in which they were competing for the final spot. The coaches ultimately selected Kikkan over Sadie to race with Jessie Diggins. The pair went on to win a gold medal. “That was the hardest moment of my racing career, but because I prioritized team goals and relationships over my own individual goals, I was able to handle the disappointment and celebrate our success as a team.”

Now a veteran racer with countless World Cup podiums and two Olympics under her belt, Sadie enjoys giving back to the sport and helping younger athletes find their confidence. She recently won the U.S. Ski Team’s Buddy Werner award for sportsmanship, and says “that award means more to me than any medal. I love supporting other athletes and giving them a helping hand where I can. This is one of the most important qualities that I have learned and will be applying it to my next phase in life, whether it be in coaching or the business world.” 

Sadie shared her goodwill with us when she decided to be an Every Kid Sports Champion to promote inclusion in sports. “I hate the idea of a kid not being able to be involved in sports, for any reason. There are so many lessons that you can only learn from sports, and it doesnt matter what level youre involved in..whether its competitive or recreational, the lessons are there and so important. I have had the opportunity to have an impact on the people around me, and this opportunity will hopefully allow me to have a wider impact.”


Thank you, Sadie, for being a wonderful role model for kids and adults alike. We appreciate all you do!

– Every Kid Sports