Team Canada talks space with astronaut David Saint-Jacques

To infinity and beyond!

Sport has the power to bring people together, even those who are more than 400km away in space.

On March 25 at 9:55 am ET, Canadian astronaut David Saint-Jacques participated in a live 20-minute Q&A session from the International Space Station. Olympians Mikaël Kingsbury and Kim Boutin were at the Canadian Space Agency in Saint-Hubert, Quebec to ask Saint-Jacques various questions about his six-month mission.

Check out Kingsbury’s question for Saint-Jacques below:

You can watch the full live stream here

Saint-Jacques is the third ever Canadian astronaut on board the International Space Station (ISS), as part of a mission to conduct various scientific experiments in an effort to explore Earth from space. A native of Quebec, Saint-Jacques has an impressive background and earned a bachelor’s degree in engineering, Ph.D. in astrophysics and a medical degree. Expedition 58/59 is Saint-Jacques’ first mission into space and he began training for the mission in 2016, two years prior to his launch.

Olympic champion Mikaël Kingsbury is out of this world on moguls hills – we all know that. Kingsbury’s question for Saint-Jacques will be about the concept of performing maneuvers in the air, such as an acrobatic ski jump, versus in a zero-gravity environment.

Kim Boutin understands how to perform under pressure, which she proved at PyeongChang 2018. Boutin will be asking about how an astronaut prepares for a space mission. Saint-Jacques will be going over this during the live Q&A on Monday.

This is not the first time our Canadian athletes have had to use their knowledge of space. Check out when Colonel Chris Hadfield quizzed some Olympians on space:

Part 2 | Part 3

The Olympics also became intertwined with space when the Olympic torch for Sochi 2014 traveled to the ISS and was actually part of a space walk. Read about it here.

Expedition 38 Soyuz Commander Mikhail Tyurin, holding the Olympic torch, and Flight Engineers Koichi Wakata and Rick Mastracchio wave farewell prior to boarding the Soyuz TMA-11M rocket for launch. PHOTO: NASA

Here are some other similarities between astronauts and Olympians:

Flag Raising Ceremonies

Saint-Jacques and the 58/59 expedition crew participated in a flag raising ceremony as part of the formal crew introduction, similar to the flag raising ceremony at the Olympic village when athletes arrive.

Canadian Pride

Both astronauts and Olympians wear their country with pride. Saint-Jacques uniform and space suit feature a large Canadian flag on the arm, and Canadian athletes prominently wear the maple leaf during Olympic Games.

Kim Boutin finish 2nd in at the Short Track Speed Skating -Women’s 1000m Final at the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympic Games at Gangneung Ice Arena on February 22, 2018 in Pyeongchang-gun, South Korea (Photo by Vincent Ethier/COC)

Ridiculous Training Habits

As noted earlier, Saint-Jacques has been training for two years prior to this mission. Olympians endure similar training routines and most of them have been training their entire lives for their Olympic dream.