Figure skating is my favourite sport. This is no secret, especially if you know me personally. In fact, the second-ever Her Campus article I wrote was about figure skating! Whenever I’m asked how I fell in love with the sport, I tell them about the ever-so-fateful freezing February night of 2014. I accidentally came across the Olympic channel and saw Kaetlyn Osmond gliding across my TV screen. But then, they’ll ask me why I love figure skating so much, and I’ll hesitate.
“I don’t know… I just like it,” I’ll respond, secretly thinking, How can you not love this gorgeous sport?
It’s easy for me to pinpoint exactly when the interest began, and which eras of figure skating stood out to me the most. But with a little more ease, I can tell you who my favourite skaters are, although that’s an ever-changing list with a few legendary contenders always floating around the top. But the exact reason why I love figure skating is difficult for me to verbalize, as it’s more of a feeling and vibe than anything specific. The jumps, spins, twiddles, and step sequences are lovely, of course; but for me, figure skating represents strength and hope.
Recently, I attended the Skate Canada International Competition in Mississauga, Ontario. The top figure skaters from all over the world competed their hearts out and I got the front-row seat to it all. It was a magical experience, to say the least, and I felt myself becoming extremely emotional as the night went on. Seeing figure skaters I’ve admired since I was a teenager right in front of my eyes, pouring their all into the sport, their determination, grit, and bravery hanging thick in the air, I felt a wave of new inspiration in me. And it wasn’t the wind from how fast they were skating!
Figure skating represents strength and hope, not only because of each skater’s individual story and their ability to jump like that on ice skates but because they prove time and time again that they’re capable of doing something that seems impossible. That even when you’ve hit what you believe to be the bottom, you will always have it in you to pick yourself back up and try again. Through figure skating, I’ve learned that failure isn’t something to be afraid of.
If you ever have the chance to watch a figure skating competition live or even just online, please do. You’ll learn a lot, both about the sport, and maybe a bit about life too.