Hey sports fans!! Thanks for stopping by my blog! I am a self admitted “rink rat” so a lot of this blog will be about figure skating and hockey, however as an ex-figure skater, ex-varsity athlete and a sports fan in general, I usually have thoughts and opinions about alot of different sports I follow, so visit often!
By the time we see Yuzu skate his programs, they have been practiced, refined, and perfected. Sometimes the jumps don’t quite go as planned but when they do, Yuzu makes the whole program look so easy. Making it look that “easy” takes a lot of hard work! What we don’t see during a competition is the hours and hours it takes to learn the jumps and spins, and the time it takes to make these skills consistent and beautiful.
When I was younger and learning my jumps, I wasn’t afraid of falling, and yet somehow I knew “how” to fall in order to not hurt myself. Knowing “how to fall” is very hard thing to describe in words. As the years have gone by, a new sense of fear of falling has found it’s way into my head, and even attempting to do double jumps these days makes me very nervous. So much for that fearlessness that I had when I was Yuzu’s age!! And surprisingly enough, the falls actually hurt now, where as they didn’t before.
Watching the tv footage of Yuzu’s practice sessions are as exciting as watching his competitive programs. There are a lot of successful spins and jumps, and of course, his footwork is always amazing. Then there are Yuzu’s falls. Simply put, some of them make you cringe, and some of them are spectacular. Yuzu’s arms and legs spray everywhere. But, since Yuzu is such a fierce competitor against other skaters AND himself, he just gets up and tries it again and again, even when he’s hurt.
I struggled with whether or not to write this blog post, because sometimes it’s just tough to watch him fall, and when he’s hurt, he just keeps going. That is his nature, his true heart, he doesn’t want to quit, he wants to perfect everything he is doing. He knows what it takes to get to the top, and to stay on top of his field. This doesn’t make it any easier to watch.
Even Tracy Wilson, his current skating coach once said “When he falls, his falls are spectacular.” (NBC – Worlds 2012, Nice).
Regardless of how you describe the fall, Yuzu’s falls always seem to be big, like his jumps. While Yuzu is all arms and legs splattered everywhere when he falls, you can tell that he is still loving every moment that he is on the ice. The next series of photos are from practices only. I purposely did not include falls during competitions in this blog post because then I would be compelled to include footage the Cup of China which is hard to re-watch.
Thank goodness Yuzu is flexible else I’m sure some of these falls would have resulted in serious injury!! In the photos below, Yuzu actually makes falling look fun!! He’s like a kid in a candy store!
Here is a small gif which shows an attempt at a triple axel that ends up with Yuzu doing the splits on the ice.
Only Yuzu! : )
Just a few more pictures of the arms and legs all over the place.
Yuzu’s falls are not limited to ice surface!! Here is a link to his off ice wipe out backstage during the 2014 Olympics in Sochi. Thank goodness he wasn’t hurt here.
So, now it looks like it’s about time for Yuzu to head back to Japan for this summers’ ice shows, so we should get a glimpse of him and his progress soon!!
Moral of this post: Never give up, never say quit!!
Go Yuzu Go!!