Shaun White Sets Aside Skateboard To Focus On Winter Olympics

After returning to the Olympics as a commentator, White sets sights on 2014 Winter Games.

Fresh off the Summer Olympics, where he was a gymnastics commentator, Shaun White is now setting his sights on the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia. And to properly train, he’s putting the skateboard aside to focus all of his efforts on snowboarding.

White recently stopped by MTV News, where he described his aspirations for the 2014 games and upcoming plans. While he usually can skateboard during the summer and snowboard in the winter, after his knee started giving him trouble this year, he scaled back on skateboarding.

“This season was strange because I had an old injury that came — a small tear in the meniscus — which is the soft tissue, soft cartilage in between the two bones in your knee,” he said. “It’s just a bummer.” White went on to explain how he came to the “tough decision” to get surgery.

“It was a tough decision to make, but I went for it and I’m glad I did,” White added. “I did have a decent-sized tear in there and I’m glad that it’s fixed up and I’m hoping to be recovered sooner rather than later.”

As for his training, he recently one-upped his own training grounds where he had built a half-pipe in Silverton, Colorado — only accessible by snowmobile or helicopter — and now uses a half-pipe facility at Northstar in Lake Tahoe. “It’s an amazing place. What’s fun is when I leave to go on competition we just open it up to the public.”

In addition to starting snowboard training once again, he just launched his new Stride spearmint with melon gum called “Mintacular.”

But how does an athlete come up with his own flavor for a gum? He actually sat in a room to taste different pieces and wrote down comments for each one, before ranking each flavor from best to worst. “There are some very questionable pieces,” he said. “You know, they’re trying to experiment, but it was cool from the very beginning I’m testing the flavors.”

In addition to filming multiple different commercials for Stride, his face also appears on the packages. Perhaps, White’s proudest gum-related achievement of all?

“I had a lot to do with the packaging. I worked my mustache into the packaging,” he laughed.