As I promised in my last entry, I am writing after my first competition, Liberty Open. Liberty is great opportunity to debut your new programs, and to show the international judges what you have been working on all summer. It’s a very big competition were you also get to see how everyone from around the country is skating as well.
I’ll start from the short program. I had gotten to the rink earlier in the day, just to see what start number I was skating. I looked at the start numbers, and I saw that I had to skate last! All I thought about is how long I would have to wait, but wasn’t really worried about it. I went to my hotel room and rested for a while, called a few friends for some inspiration, and was ready to go! I got to the rink, warmed up, and tried to stay very focused. When it was my turn to skate I was a little nervous, but I knew I had practiced hard all summer, and I had nothing to lose. My program went very well, and my coach and I got many compliments. My point total was just shy of my personal best, but good enough to put me into 3rd place. When my coach and I looked at my protocol sheet, we saw that had I not gotten a time violation, I would have won. Luckily the violation happened at Liberty and not at Nationals! That’s what these summer competitions are for!
The next day was the day of the long program. I felt ready and skated very well that morning. Again, I went to the hotel to rest. The friends I called yesterday, called me to wish some last minute luck. I was to skate in the first group of the event. I was feeling nervous, wanting to make a good impression on everyone watching my new programs. I was so concerned of skating well, that I did just the opposite. I had many jumping mistakes, and unlike the day before, my spins received all level 3’s and not 4’s. The whole program, I never felt my legs under me. My coach and I talked with one of the judges and after my skate and we decided that I would do a couple local competitions to practice my long program in front of an audience. We also decided that I would be monitored at the 2006 Moran Memorial in late August.
Even though I didn’t skate my best at Liberty, I was proud that I had gotten higher levels on my spins and footwork. I know the jumps will come. I do them all the time in practice. It’s still very early in the season. I feel that my summer training/competitions, will definitely pay off by the end of this season.
Thank you so much for reading,
June 20, 2006
I’m very excited to finally have this site up-and-running. I am very thankful to Figure Skaters Online for putting up with my late timing and helping me with my first official web page! Thank you everyone!
I am 16 and from Clarks Summit, Pennsylvania. During the week, I live 3 hours from my home, in Philadelphia with my coach, Yelena Sergeeva. To get to Philadelphia, I have to take the Greyhound Bus. It has been a lot less stressful, especially for my mom, with me traveling by myself for the past 2 years. I’ve been living away from home for 3 years, which has been hard, but I have been willing to make the sacrifices from the start. My parents are divorced, so my limited time home is split. When I do get to rest, it usually isn’t very peaceful, because at home I have 3 brothers and 2 sisters.
My coach, Yelena, is one of the most incredible people I know. She knows how to push me when I need to be pushed. She knows how to calm me down when I need to be calmed. She is always there for me, on and off the ice. I have been living with Yelena for 2 years now. At first, it was a little weird. I could never have imagined that the person I spent all my time with on the ice, I would now have to spend more time with off the ice. My worries were in vain because living with her has been great. She lived and trained in St. Petersburg, Russia as a skater. She had to get a Masters Degree in Sport in order to coach in the Soviet Union. She was the bronze medalist at the ’64 Soviet Nationals and was a principal skater in the Kiev Ballet on Ice. She has been through so much through her life and it has definitely made her one of the strongest people I know. She is very kind hearted and still a child at heart, which also makes training with her that much more enjoyable. She always expects the best out of me and is a perfectionist, especially when it comes to my skating.
My mom is definitely another one of the strongest people I know. There aren’t many words to describe how much she means to me and it would take up all of this page if I told you everything she has done for me. Without her, I would have definitely driven myself crazy by now. She is one of the smartest people you will ever meet and is always there for me. She is the reason I get to skate, because she is the one who pays for it. It’s very hard because she also has to pay for 5 other kids. This year I was lucky enough to receive a grant from the Michael Weiss Foundation, which helped a lot. I do not want to know where I would be without her.
Well, I finished the 2005/06 season horribly, with the worst free skate I have ever done in a competition. My coach and I took a couple of steps back to look at where we went wrong and where I needed serious improvement. Of course the first thing we pointed out was that I needed to skate with more power and bring my stamina to a new level. Spins and steadier jumps were also on the list of what needed to be improved. We also realized that we needed to study the rules and learn how to get levels without guessing or crossing our fingers. I thought about how I skated all year and realized I wanted to have a new attitude about it. With the help of Yelena, I made a list of short term and long term goals. I started summer training, took two weeks off the ice and dedicated it to off-ice, while Yelena went on vacation. It was not a good time, but I hope it will pay off by the end of the season.
I came back to skating and slowly started getting into the daily routine again. I’m working on my new short program, Masquerade Waltz, and long program, The Nutcracker. I really like my music this year and we tried to pick music that better fit my style than last year. My last year in skating was very fun and full of learning. I received my first Junior Grand Prix International in Croatia, and Team USA envelope. I also got to attend the High Performance camp in Colorado for one week, where I had the time of my life with so many great people. I tried to have fun at every competition this year, knowing that is was a learning year because of it being my first year as a Junior. It’s now my second year of junior, and I feel pretty old by saying that. I have been training very hard and I know that it is worth it.
My first competition of this season is Liberty Open. I’ll update my journal right after that.
Thank you for reading and all of your support,