A Career Change
Forsberg started her athletic career as a cross-country skier. She skied for the Swedish national team for several years, and as part of that country s relay team she won a bronze medal at the 1987 World Cross-Country Skiing Championships. Forsberg missed her chance to compete in cross-country skiing in the 1988 Olympics because of an illness, and when she did compete in 1992 she fared poorly, finishing no higher than twenty-sixth in any individual event. After an injury and subsequent surgery to her Achilles tendon kept her out of the 1994 Olympics, Forsberg gave up competitive cross-country skiing.
Around the same time Forsberg took up biathlon, a sport which combines cross-country skiing and shooting. She already knew how to handle a gun; she had learned the skill from her father, Jan, who used to take Forsberg along when he went hunting for moose when she was a child. Forsberg claims that she was only interested in trying biathlon for fun, not for prizes, but she started competing on the biathlon World Cup circuit in 1994. By the end of her rookie 1994-95 season, Forsberg had finished first in one 7.5 kilometer sprint event and was fifth in the overall World Cup points standings, much to her own amazement. "I had to ask, Who is this person?", she later recalled. "This cannot be me."