What is a "Rennböckl"?
A rennbock is a simple, non motorised piece of winter sports equipment used for going on snow. It consists of a seat with two grab handles on the site, attached to a wooden board which is sinuously cut.
An iron skid underside or an old alpine ski, cut off in the middle, gets in contact with the snow. The bock can be steered by shifting the weight and is braked with the feet. Today there exist many different types of bocks.
The history of the Rennböckl
Although many believe that the Rennböckl was born in Olang, it is more likely that the bock has been independently invented several times. The oldest patent, which is similar to the original skid bock from Olang, goes back to 1914 and was registered in Washington, USA. The first patent for the ski bock was registered in 1963, also in the USA. In fact, driving down a slope with a rennböckl is great fun in South Tyrol and especially in Pustertal Valley- There are races for kids and adults. In Olang, there even was a bock world championship.
The modern Rennböckl
Today, the Rennböckl is known under many names: Skibock or Skigigibewl in Switzerland, Klumper in North Tyrol and Bockerl in Bavaria. Often, the Rennböckl is self-made, but there are some companies as well, who produce them. The modern top models are made of a carving ski with a steel or aluminium frame on it holding a leather saddle.