… THE FIRST PLACE AND THE TITLE OF CHAMPION OF RUSSIA WAS WON ANNA SHERBAKOVA! FROM MOSCOW! I was very pleased with my skate Of course, I was very nervous for other girls We skate together, I know how hard it is Of course I am very glad, I did not expect I was started skating when I was 3.5 years old I remember that my older sister was skating already and my mom brought me pair of skates, and say: “Get out on the ice, try it too” I go out onto the ice and they take me by the handle “Now we are trying to stomp”. I thought, “Why take my hand? I’ll go now and do everything right away I stepped on the ice and fell right there They say to me: “No, you need to be careful” I get up and think “Well, it’s an accidental” I’m starting to do something else, to run somewhere – I’m falling again Then again! (laugh) So, I remember that it was a little shock for me, that it’s not as easy as it looks The critical point was when I transfer to Eteri Georgievna because before that it was more like amusement And then, when we decided to transfer, then realized that is serious That this is what I want and love to do and that it will already be professional In the morning I go to school for one or two classes During breaks between classes, I try to find those teachers whose classes I will not have time to attend I pass the assignment or receive the assignment Teachers are helpful – they help, explain, give the assignment After that, they [parents?] drive me to the rink We first have a warm-up or choreography. Then ice time, then stretching Then break time A break, sometimes – if on weekends, is free time and sometimes it’s studies with tutors, this is more often Then warm-up or dancing Then ice time, then cool-off time Then back home, and if it’s not weekend, then tutors will be again but by the evening I get tired already, yes if it’s every day, then you get used to it Mom helps me with everything, in general and Dad helps me with Physics courses, constantly Most often I do Physics assignments with him Because if you miss Physics classes, it is very difficult to learn by on your own And he is very good in Physics, and helps me I like biology This year we had to learn the structure of human body it is interesting to learn how it’s all work how complicated things are inside us before that you know it only by your feels and in classes they explain it and told you “why” and everything fell into place My mom goes with me to all competitions but she so nervous when I skate my programs that she don’t watch my skating more often she finds out the result even before I texting or calling her but she’s always the first person I text or call she learn about FS for a long time But in the end she knows jumps Actually, right now, I can even say that she knows probably almost everything. But she doesn’t coach me to jump That’s good, because I have a coach Within our group we all communicate with each other Because we have a lot of common topics for conversation and we are always together Quite often we talk about FS, of course – what news, or about training And of course, we are all girls, almost the same age and we can talk about something diffrent we also talk about school, by the way about assignment Q: *Are you talking about boys?* Well… rarely well.. not really We always see each other as friends We don’t have “which one is better” Last summer, I visited Japan for the first time Figure skating is very popular there. People recognized me even on the streets. I now have two different kimonos More precisely, yukatas – it’s for summer. There is not just one kimono, there are a lot of what put on the belt – some ties, towels, plastic plate I mean, that there’s so much details that you’re standing like this and three people about ten minutes running around you and wrapping you. So, I would definitely not be able to put it on alone. We were given a really lot of gifts After each show we left the rink with giant bags which they would help us carry It was very nice they print photos and cut them out, make huge post cards someone even made a whole album with sections about my family, my short program, my free skates It’s all so beautifully done, with beautiful stickers with wishes I really enjoy it. We usually return to the hotel very late but for another three hours I sorted out the gifts laid them out, then all this photographed, so that it all fit in one frame I tried to lay out so that everyone could find their gift each gift must be visible Because often after this they write to me, “I’m so glad that you got my gift, that you have it” We all calculated – we arrived with three suitcases weighing 12 kilograms [26 pounds] each and left the country with 6 suitcases weighing 25 kilograms [55 pounds] each. Every skater loves Japan and in general it is like own whole world I’ve wanted to go there for a long time Every time before vacations, you think “I can’t wait” And after vacations, you think “Why was this needed?” “It’s so hard for me now!” relearning the edgework and jumps and at first the spins make your head dizzy Muscle memory is short And even if you think that “I remember everything in my head” “I’ll do it now” but then after a first jump you realize that you don’t After the first jump you are surprised that there is no usual lightness But the fear is not there, because you know that day to day, year after year you were able to do it so, I have no fear about that That’s how we live This is my bed, and this is Camila’s [Valieva] sometimes we are get together and, for example, we play cards or we’ll watch a movie A boy who was with us once taught us how to play poker We gambled for pencils Once, when I was really bored I asked my mom to bring me knitting threads and I tried to knit a toy. I have a toy “Rilakkuma” from Japan It’s a gift, very cool I flew back with it It opens up here and you get a pillow around your neck Let’s see… well, there’s a lot of things there In fact, I don’t wear much makeup every day but sometimes it happens Here Patrick Süskind “Perfume: The Story of a Murderer” Daniil: One, two, three, four! Give me more emotions, Anya! Change! change! [emotionally] You should be harder now now speed up! don’t wait for music, get ahead of it! here! that’s better Yes, now more and more girls are starting to learn quads and understand that these jumps are not something unattainable We started to try it for a long time Even when almost no one did this even then the coaches, looking into the future, understood that it would happen It’s important that we understand that this is like norm, that this is not something “beyond” that you need to be afraid of, that this is just one of the jumps, that we can do it We have long worked on the solidity of the triple When it is clear that we are ready, we jumped with a “fish-pole” This is, probably, most critical part of process because you have an opportunity to actually feel the jump but do not be afraid, because it really helps a lot the coach can lift you up a bit, at some point hold a little give you a direction when at some point the coach who holds a “fishing-pole” says “I’m not doing anything anymore and I’m just skating with you so you can be sure” in then (and a little earlier) we begin to train without the “fishing-pole” sometimes coach tell you “I’m not doing anything” but you start doing without a “fishing-pole” and you feel that everything is a little different You get used to everything: at first it seems that this is impossible, then you started to jump, and it feels to you that it’s very difficult, then, after much training you think that “in principle, it’s quite possible” When you start learning a new jump, you must think of every little detail: how do l make the three turns(step) think of the turn, the arm, the leg but if you do this jump for a long time sometimes while entering the jump you think of something irrelevant it’s about triples that I don’t have to think about, think about speed it is automatic. If I entry to the quad then I control the speed, think about all the details so that everything was exactly like in the warm-up. Of course it’s harder to do than triple, And you feel different when you do it It’s a quad jump after all After the skate I review the tape Because sometimes how it looks and how it feels can be different. Sometimes you think it was not right, that some jump was bad, skewed but on a video it looks good Or in reverse, it feels like this is a small mistake And then you see that it visible It is sometimes strange to hear when someone says: “when you did your entry, I knew you won’t make the jump” It is understandable if your coaches says it, cuz they knows your features. But when an outside person says it, I think “I didn’t know that, and you did” “I wonder how?” I thought the mistake was made in the jump itself And they say – “at the entry it was already clear that you will not do” Actually, yeah, I heard something crack but somehow I didn’t realize that I broke something. I didn’t know what it was It was then someone told me that, yes… this is it [fracture] well… it was a terrible moment Now I understand that this is also an experience But then it was very hard for me Because it’s the beginning of the season We are ready to enter international competitions We’ve been waiting a long time for this Just before that, I learned to jump quad I wanted to show it. And you suddenly understand: one clumsy move and your plans are ruined It was hard, at the time it happened, you think – “why I didn’t it right?” then it hard when you realize how long you have to sit and being inactive, that you already miss it so much Then there was an important and complex recovery process Although before that you think “it ended, finally I’m back on the ice!” Parents helped too yeah, the recovery was a critical moment This season is different, cuz I am entering Seniors I’m concentrating on what I have to do to make myself competitive, what to improve, what to work on. well, we know about each what the other can do and of course none of us wants to lag behind I must… I don’t know… to fight on the ice But it does not mean that in life I have to start to getting rough with other girls. It’s a completely different thing I mean, in life you stay who you are On ice you need to know that it is a sport that it’s all for a some goal you need to be able to “switch” I won’t say that before I only thought that it was all in order to win some medal later but overall, I always liked the process itself but now, of course, everything is changing – there are goals, competitions it’s not just for fun you have now responsibilities If you want to win you need to work hard you’re learning something new But still, I am doing it all because I enjoy it.