I went ice skating yesterday. It was a great workout and now I am crippled. My knee is also bruised and so is the area where my boot would dig in.
I did figure skating for about 4 years, from when I was in about sixth grade until the middle of freshman year in high school. I actually became interested in the sport much earlier, when Kristi Yamaguchi won the Olympic gold in 1992. I was mesmerized. Kristi quickly became my idol. Not only was she an amazing skater, she was Japanese American – just like me – and I thought that was cool.
I begged my parents for lessons, but they wouldn't let me take them (figure skating is a ridiculously expensive sport). They did, however, take me to the rink for the first time when I was about 7. I was shaky at first, grasping onto the railing, but quickly adjusted, and was soon gliding around speedily towards the center of the ice. I loved it. I was totally jealous of the girls in the middle, practicing their moves. I wish I could do them. Nonethelss, I had tons of fun.
When I was 11, I met a guy, Carl, through my mom's friend. Carl was a skater and he offered to take me and teach me. So, every Wednesday, I went to the rink and starting learning the moves. The beginning was boring, I wanted to get to the spins and the jumps as quickly as possible, but one must master the fundamentals before jumping into the fancy stuff. I went through this quite quickly, but looking back, I wish I would've spent more time on the fundamentals. Some of my edging is weak, and I still have trouble with some of the turns and such because of that. Maybe because I only get to skate sporadically, but if I think that if i had paid more attention to them, they would be easier, even now.
Soon after though, I was learning my first jump, a waltz jump, consisting of a half revolution in the air. I don't remember much about the first attempts – and I don't remember being scared at all. I think I just took off and went for it. I can't remember if I landed it or not, but soon enough, I was doing multiple jumps in a row. I went on to other jumps, the toe loop and the salchow (unfortunately, I didn't attempt much beyond that). I started spinning, but I wasn't that great at it - I kept spotting and that slowed me down tremendously.
I never made it to competing. In a way, that's a good thing, because competiting is so time-consuming and expensive. In a way, I wish I would have competed, because it seems thrilling and exciting. I also loved performing, and this would have given me a chance to shine in the spotlight.
I'm not exactly sure why I quit. I was tired because of starting high school, and so I slowly stopped going, but looking back, I did have time to continue. I regret not doing just that. It would've kept me occupied, and besides, skating is such great exercise.
Nowdays, I only skate once every couple months. Or so. Everytime I do go skating, I try to see what I can still do, and sometimes, that means falling and landing on my poor ass. I can still do my waltz jump and my toe loop. Sort of. I still love being on the ice, though. Every time I'm at the rink, I'm instantly refreshed by the cool air and just making my way accross the ice. I still, of course, still love to watch the sport also. I adore Michelle Kwan and Timothy Goebel, among others.
One day, I will get back into skating....I just don't know when that will be.