Alexandra Boikova and Dmitri Kozlovskii: Any athlete tends to be the first, otherwise why do sports?
Interview with Alexandra Boikova and Dmitri Kozlovskii. About past season, current rules and plans for the future.
by Olga Ermolina for fsrussia.ru dd. 2d May, 2019
This season you participated in high-level competitions, and this is another level of responsibility, another pressure. How to cope with it?
Dmitri: All this season, from the very beginning, we were discovering a new level for ourselves, so we didn’t think much about pressure. First of all, we tried to show our best skating – cleaner, more synchronous, to show ourselves at the world level. And we succeeded. The more people, viewers, the easier it’s for us to perform.
Alexandra: I can add that the whole season we skated more maturely. I tried to do everything more consciously than last year. We are happy with the season.
Which competition was the most memorable?
Dmitri: Of course, the World Championships. It wasn’t easy, we had a hard, gradual preparation. And it’s not close to fly to Japan. You see, the World Championships is the key, the most important competitions of the season, and the fact that we were able to show ourselves well in Japan gives special emotions. It’s impossible not to mention the European Championships. Our first medal at this level! And nevertheless the World championships was the most memorable.
Alexandra: I remember the Grand Prix in Canada. Our first major international competitions, where we met with the skaters of our team, met with the guys from other teams, other countries. Why do I remember the Grand Prix in Canada? Because we skated clean but finished fourth. And I remember how Dima and Morgan (Cipres – ed.) comforted me. And I could not recover for a long time. So if we talk about the first half of the season, the most memorable for me was “Skate Canada”. And in the second half the European and World Championships. A lot of energy was devoted to the preparation for this competitions. I remember, I was delighted that the Worlds coincides with the school holidays, I realized that it would be easier with studies.
Do you have a feeling that you are progressing from competition to competition?
Dmitri: Of course. Look at the scores, how we started and finished. We started with 190, and finished with over 210 points. And both the second and the technical marks grew.
What would you like to change in training so that next season you can be on the podium at all competitions?
Alexandra: Nobody asked us about it, and by and large, if there is progress, then why should we be dissatisfied with something? Now is the off-season, we do new programs, work on new elements.
Dmitri: What to change? We need to improve skating, complicate technical elements, learn new lifts, but we are doing that. It’s necessary to change something in training when there is a problem. And since there is no problem, we need to develop and only strengthen what we have.
Now all senior pairs are doing almost the same content, the same jump content. How can you beat your competitors?
Dmitri: Now pair skating becomes like ice dance, because everyone does almost the same thing, and you want to add some difficult technical elements. For example, new jumps. But you need to include them into programs only when you are really sure.
Alexandra: When you jump a hundred out of a hundred.
Dmitri: I would say ten out of ten. As for the rest, according to the new rules, I’m not sure that it makes sense to learn, for example, a quadruple twist.
Alexandra: And I would really like to learn a quadruple throw. But our coach has a different point of view.
Dmitri: Artur Minchuk understands that quadruple throws are traumatic. And since the throw is much more difficult to do than a jump, inertia is higher, another trajectory, learning a quad throw you will fall so many times that you can easily get hurt. So it turns out that you will spend a huge amount of energy, but one mistake on such an element will throw you far back.
If the difference in points in pair skating had been at least the same as in single skating, then it would have been worthwhile to do difficult elements. In single skating for example a triple salchow is 4 points and a quadruple is 10. Then it’s worth the risk. And when for a quad twist with a small mistake you get less than for a triple with positive GOE, what sense to try? At the Russian Nationals, a pair who did a quad twist received less than other pairs who did qualitative triple. And this despite the fact that quadruple twist is physically difficult for both partners. It is almost impossible to do a split for level 4; it is possible to rotate four turns with arm above head only with a “cat”, which has 10kg of weight. So you need to complicate only those elements which are consistent. This applies to pair elements and jumps. But sooner or later you can learn everything, so I believe that it is necessary to develop in this direction.
Speaking about jumps, you have a triple-triple combination. Do you plan to add something new?
Dmitri: Now in training we train all triples. We have a separate time for jumps. We are jumping, working on it and then we’ll see which ones will be more consistent. But I’m convinced that the future is, maybe already at the Beijing Olympics, in difficult jumps. Therefore, if we want to compete with top pairs, who get 10 and +5, then we need to move in this direction. Today, leading pairs are reaching their maximum in points. With error-free skating, they get marks close to the maximum in pair skating. So in order to rise to that level, we try to work and develop in all directions. Of course, we want to win, but there is no athlete who doesn’t. And we understand that for this we need to work very hard and make a lot of efforts to become better.
The World Championships was your last competitions this season. Did you watch the World Team Trophy?
Alexandra: We watched. And I thought that I would like participate in such competitions. But for this it’s necessary to be higher in ranking, be first and qualify.
Dmitri: But to become the first pair, we have to work very hard. Because we want to be the best not only in Russia, but also in the world. And hours, weeks, months of work on the ice and even outside the ice are needed. Any athlete tends to be the first, otherwise why do sports?
I now that Natalia Bestemyanova and Igor Borin are helping you with new programs.
Dmitri: Yes, they do our short program, Nikolay Morozov will choreograph a free program. While we are working on a short.
Related topics: Alexandra Boikova Dmitri Kozlovski