Elizaveta Tuktamysheva: “The extension of suspensions is another reason for skipping the season. There’re no more of those bright moments, international competitions and trips that once were.”

Posted on 2023-10-28 • No comments yet


Translation of Elizaveta Tuktamysheva’s comment about taking pause in her competitive career.

original source: Tuktamysheva’s blog on sports.ru

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Here’s translation of Elizaveta Tuktamysheva’s comment.

“Hello, everyone!

I have been a professional figure skater for a long time, and I’ve got a bit tired of the daily training. Throughout my life, I’ve focused solely on this one endeavor. To achieve results and progress in it, I had to place my other desires and interests on the back burner. Figure skating has always been my top priority. Even if I wanted to explore something new or engage in other activities, the intensity of my training didn’t often allow for it.

For some reason, the past few years have been particularly challenging for me. When it’s October, as it is now in St. Petersburg, and it’s constant darkness with the day starting very late, my energy and mood tend to wane. Especially without those bright moments, like traveling to warm Italy or interesting Japan. These trips used to be highlights of the season, but now you’re in the same climate, participating in similar events. Of course, I’m exaggerating a bit, and the federation does a lot for us. But fatigue has accumulated, and demotivation has set in. That’s why I’ve decided to skip this season.

I’m taking a break this season, not because of an injury or difficulty coordinating my body. No, I can still jump, skate, and train just as before. I simply want to redirect my energy into a different path and learn something new.

I made this decision recently, and it was a difficult one. I’ve never taken an entire season off; there hasn’t been a single season in my 16 years where I was absent. I thought, perhaps, I could find some motivation? Maybe something will strike my heart, and I’ll still enter the season. It would have taken me about a month and a half to get back into competitive shape. But after the test skates, I realized that it’s already challenging to immerse myself in the training routine.

Another reason is the extension of suspensions. There are no more of those bright moments, international competitions and trips that once were. That’s why I’m skipping this season.

I understand that making a comeback will be difficult. I think it will be comparable to the time when we were on lockdown, and then we reintegrated into our normal pace of life. But many athletes took breaks and then returned: Evgeni Plushenko, Carolina Kostner. Miki Ando even took a break for childbirth and then came back. So it’s possible, but it will be challenging.

I’ve seen that many are already bidding me farewell. I take this in stride because typically when an athlete takes a break, it often means they’ve ended their career and will announce it at some point in the future. But I’m not set on that path; I still feel that if I have the desire, I’ll find a way. I know that if I want to, I can return. My body will allow me to restore the triple axel, all the triple jumps, and combinations.

It was expected that someone would let something slip prematurely, and the information about my break would be revealed earlier than I had intended. So why did I remain silent for these past few days? I needed some time to gather my thoughts. I had a plan to share everything, even picked a date, but I was slightly preempted. However, there’s nothing wrong with that.

Of course, I’m feeling a bit sad. Ahead of me lies something new and unfamiliar. But there’s also a sense of relief: there’s no turning back, at least not this season. I can engage in other activities without the need for endless daily training. All in all, it’s not a very profound sadness. Although when I see emotional posts and videos with highlights of my performances, I can get quite emotional.

During this break, I’ll attempt to learn something new, try myself in new roles. I’ll strive to find something that ignites the same passion in me as figure skating once did. It’s something I need to do at this point in time – life goes on, and in this wonderful period when you’re nearly 27, you need to understand where to go after sports. If I find that calling, I’ll be incredibly happy.”


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