Interview with Maria Sotskova. About World Championships, exams and new programs.
Masha, all athletes say that the Olympics is the most difficult competitions in the career of any athlete. Did it take long to recover from Pyeongchang?
– After the Olympics, I forgot everything. We returned home and began to prepare for the World Championships. We didn’t invent anything new, just worked. I just to switch psychologically, to feel more confident on the ice, because after the Olympic Games confidence has gone a little. The short program did not work there, from the free program I had a blurry impression. There was no clear understanding that I did everything I could. Therefore, for the World Championships I prepared a little differently in terms of emotions.
After the World Championships I got sick. For a week I was lying with a temperature of 40. Thank God that I fell ill not in Italy.
– Yes, I think so. I was very upset after the free program. And together with the accumulated fatigue and tension, all this played a role. Immunity is weakened. And I also had exams in school. I thought: I’ll be back from the World Championships and will work hard to prepare for the exams. But I fell ill, although I still tried to do it, as much as I could. The first exam was written with a temperature of 39. This was the only time when I came to the exam with pockets full of pills and handkerchiefs.
Did you pass?
– Yes. I have B for all the exams. Now I’m waiting for entrance exams, I want to try to enter GITIS (Russian Institute of Theatre Arts) in July. There is still a creative competition, but I will learn more about it by June. You must show your work. But last summer I choreographed a program for a little girl, she performed well with it. I hope this will be enough.
The intake for figure skating faculty happens not every year.
– That’s the trouble. I wanted to enter the figure skating faculty this year. Elena Anatolievna Tchaikovsky is a head of it. But she canceled the intake. I found out about this only after I passed the exams at school. I planned to enter GITIS, so I had exams on mathematics, Russian and literature and did not focus on biology.
When I learned about this, of course, I experienced stress. But there is the ballet master-choreographer in GITIS. I’ll try it. But I will have to attend a lot of classes. I do not know yet whether it will be possible to combine studies with a sports schedule, because in my case athletes will not have some kind of special treatment.
Why are you interested in this direction?
– I’m interested in everything related to creativity. I even thought that maybe I could try acting faculty. Figure skating and art are very close. And GITIS is one of the leading universities in our country. I do not know how it will turn out, but I want to try.
Study in university of Physical culture is less interest to me, because so far I do not see myself as a coach. It’s very hard, you have to have a lot of strength, and I do not think that I’m ready for this now, because coaching is a very big responsibility.
But in any case, I will continue to do figure skating for many more years. That’s 100%. I have not yet shown everything, not fully revealed, there is a lot to strive for.
When did you start working on new programs?
– After illness and exams at school. We began to work on programs with Peter Tchernyshev. Then I went to Austria for 5 days to celebrate my birthday. It became a tradition.
Why to Austria?
– My closest friends live in Vienna. We were neighbours and then they moved there. We rarely see each other, we miss. And we use every opportunity to meet. When I compete in Europe, they come to the competitions, support me. I come to them when I have time. I have been in Vienna 6 times, three times we celebrated my birthday there. I really like this city.
Can you tell us about new programs?
– One of them will be latina. I’m happy that I managed to convince the coaches and agreed to make me such program. I wanted this last season, but since the season was Olympic, we decided that it’s not worth experimenting.
This time I tried to insist, I said that I still dream about latina. We began to work with Peter Tchernyshev. Elena Germanovna (Buyanova) was not completely sure if I could skate through such program, but decided to try. The tempo is very fast. It’s hard. I have to work a lot. I already feel that the program is difficult. I must be in a good physical shape.
Can we say that this program is a challenge for you?
– Yes, it really is. Last season, and the season before last I skated “classics” and forgot what latina is. I had a program in this style only once – “Black Magic Woman” by Carlos Santana. And I was so fond of that program, I liked it so much that I wanted to get to this artistic image as soon as possible. The new program is firy. Music will help. No matter how hard it is, how fast the tempo is, but the music will push me forward.
– “Summertime”. Peter Tchernyshev suggested. Elena Germanovna loves this kind of music. I also really like the music and the program. I think that I will have a completely different artistic image than in the past years.
What are your goals?
– First, we need to work on programs to make them look the way Peter Tchernyshev sees them. Almost all the jumps are in the second part, except the axel. I want to learn a combination with loop, in order to complicate the programs to the maximum. But we’ll see. Each year you want to complicate something, and then you realize that you need to skate the programs consistently. And for this you need to work a lot on “physics”.
In the summer you will have a training camp in Italy, in the mountains, where you can do it.
– Yes. But after this season I realized that the female body is such a complicated thing, so you need to watch it closely. It is clear that self-control is needed, this is the first thing. But sometimes it happens that you give yourself some slack, and then you pay for it. Any eaten cake should be working off. Ate – went to run or work in gym, otherwise excess weight will interfere jumping, skating, well, the general appearance is not very good, when there are extra pounds.
It’s hard. Such a cycle. The whole season you should keep as optimal shape. But for me it became to some extent a sporting interest, how much I can restrain myself. There are days when you relax and want to eat sweets. But when you imagine how much you have to work then, you’ll think 100 times, how much you really want it.
Better an apple than a cake.
– But turns out that apple is also high in calories.
– Air. And water. (She laughs). I eat normally. Vegetables, meat. Some things I exclude, some in limited quantities. I take care of myself actively, because I understand that the excess weight interferes. I had a period when I started counting calories. But I realized that better not to do it, because you really start to go crazy. Just, as I said, self-control is needed. In addition to trainings, when the body must be kept in a tone, you need to control your own state, weight. This is the main difficulty of the transition period. But sooner or later everyone passes through this.
by Olga Ermolina and Tatjana Flade for fsrussia.ru