An Ode To The Olympic Parental Reaction

by Colleen Dilthey Thomas

The 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing will kick off later this week. And while it’s great for the athletes — they’ve worked so hard to get there — let’s not forget the greatest sport in the Olympic games: watching their parents react.

If you’ve ever watched the Olympic games, you know that the cameras love the parents. Those photographers know where the parents are and they do their best to capture their reactions. Whether happy, sad, disappointed, or moved to tears, TV viewers get to be part of their most raw emotions. And boy is it entertaining.

In the run up to the Olympics, let’s take a walk down memory lane to remember some of the all-time great parents at the Olympics.

Chloe Kim brought home gold for the United States in 2018 in snowboarding. Here she is celebrating with her mom and dad.

American snowboarding phenom Shaun White’s mom was thrilled when her son won the gold in the half pipe final in 2018.

It isn’t just the parents who share in the celebration; other family members get in on the action too. You can’t help but love the shot of Alex Bilodeau and his brother Frederic celebrating Alex’s gold in the men’s freestyle skiing.

Cameron Spencer/Getty

Of course, no parent can live up to the gold-worthy reactions of Aly Raisman’s mom and dad, Lynn Faber and Rick Raisman.

Aly brought home three medals in 2016, a gold in the team all around and silver in both the individual all around and beam events. Her parents were a staple in the media that year; here they are on Ellen’s show.