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Lustenau has a long and successful history in sports. The town's two football teams, SC Austria Lustenau and FC Lustenau, play in major Austrian football leagues. The well-known and successful skier, Marc Girardelli, was born in Lustenau, and the Lustenau ice-hockey team, EHC Lustenau, is part of the Austrian National League. The town used to be a major centre of the embroidery industry in the past and is now a centre for the new technologies industry.
Until 1830, Lustenau was an independent county reigned by the counts of Waldburg-Zeil-Lustenau-Hohenems. After 1830 it became part of Austria. The name Lustenau derives from a document signed by the Carolingian king Charles the Fat with the title "Lustenauua curti regali", meaning "Royal Court of Lustenau"
There are also two very good athletics and gymnastic clubs in Lustenau, the TS (Turnerschaft) Lustenau and the TS (Turnerschaft) Jahn Lustenau. Both have achieved top results nationally and internationally. They also have survived the domination of the football clubs, which led to a total demolition of the athletic track in the Reichshofstadion in 1998. Sadly, the rebuilding project by the county, in progress since 1999, has not been completed, although it should have been finished in 2005.