Kamila Valieva: “My motto is just to work, work a lot, work to the limit, more, better and it will lead to good attempts.”
Interview with Kamila Valieva. About performing at the Rostelecom Cup, where Kamila set new records, but the athlete noticed something else for herself, the main thing for her is that in Sochi she skated calmly, thinking about her every move.
This interview was taken the day after Grand Prix in Sochi. It was not yet known that the series Finale would not take place, it would be postponed to the end of the season, and the athlete was looking forward to her first trip to Japan.
source: fsrussia.ru dd. 10th December 2021 by Olga Ermolina and Tatjana Flade
Kamila, what emotions, feelings do you have after the victory?
Kamila Valieva: Probably, I’m very happy that yesterday I performed very calmly for myself, went on the ice very calmly, thought over every step, every move that I would do. It’s more like preparing for the next competitions. With each competitions I become more confident in my actions, in my elements. And, probably, now I have more joy, but I have no time to relax, because in a week I will go to the Grand Prix Final in Japan.
You have been skating your free program “Bolero” for the second season and the first at international competitions. Can you say that you feel the program so well, as if it became your “second skin”?
Kamila Valieva: At this competitions, I caught myself thinking that here, I don’t know why, I didn’t really want to smile a lot in the program. I just set a goal to skate confidently. That is, I realized that I can share my mood through the program. If I don’t want to smile all the time, then I will perform it more strictly, more confidently, I will do certain elements. If I am in a different mood, then I play more with the judges and spectators. Probably yes – for myself, I think it’s good. But still, there is always a room for growth. There were moments when I relaxed a little, somewhere I didn’t really do my best.
You showed your mood very well and it was clear that you were enjoying your skating during the program. Was that so?
Kamila Valieva: Yes. When I had already done the first half, there was such a small exhalation, and I skated more confidently after. But, I was a little uptight on the second toe loop …
Because the jump combination was performed close to the boards.
Kamila Valieva: Yes, because when I was in Canada, the skating rink there was a little bit longer, but here I miscalculated a little.
Well, yes, you have great speed, everything needs to be calculated. You seem to have grown as well, how much?
Kamila Valieva: Last season I had 155 cm, now 160. At the beginning of previous season, about 155 cm, at the end – 157. And from May to the present day I have grown by three centimeters.
But doesn’t it interfere?
Kamila Valieva: It was very difficult at first in Novogorsk. There, you generally cannot get yourself together right away, because it is very difficult to get into the working moments after vacations. And I could not get everything together even during the test skates, when more than 3 months had passed. Now, I hope, I understood for myself how to jump, where are my arms, legs … (laughs).
At the press conference, you expressed the opinion that it is easier for men to jump, because they are more enduring, physically stronger. But some people say that jumps are easier for girls.
Kamila Valieva: At the press conference I was asked if I would like to compete with men. I don’t know. There was no such thought. Still there should be more strength in men’s skating. I like Yuzuru Hanyu very much, he skates well. Nathan Chen skates with such power. You look and you even feel a little uncomfortable and at the same time enjoy watching. And in women’s single skating, everyone requires more emotions, more program presentation, and so on. Women’s single skating is more interesting for me.
How do you think for whom it is easier to jump?
Kamila Valieva: Everyone has their own. We have a younger group, where almost everyone are already jumping quads, and this is the 2009th year of birth, even 2011 is already starting to jump. It is clear that they are all thin, slender. But there is a moment that a transitional age will begin, when no matter whether you want it or not you gain weight, you grow, and it will be difficult with all of this. Because at first you don’t understand at all why you are doing the same but you it’s not enough? Why are you doing triples and it’s so hard for you? I cannot answer for whom is easier. Each has his own way.
Who is the most influential person for you?
Kamila Valieva: Probably, me, because if I set myself up correctly, then no one will be able to knock me down or unsettle somehow. Therefore, I believe, that’s it’s me.
Who inspires you?
Kamila Valieva: Eteri Georgievna is very inspiring, because she will always find exactly those moments in your skating where you need to improve, and she will say such a thing that I hear from her for the first time in 4 years of working with her. For example, she will say a new thought about your program, and you listen and understand: yes, that’s what I lacked.
What is your philosophy, motto?
Kamila Valieva: Just work, work a lot, work to the limit, more, better and it will lead to good attempts. And then your task is to transfer everything to the ice. As Irina Viner says: “If they said no, then we will say yes.” That is, if you really work, then at the competitions you will do what you have worked on.
If the ship does not know where to sail, then not a single wind will be favorable for it. Do you know your goal?
Kamila Valieva: My goal is not only to show at competitions what I have worked on, but also give people aesthetic pleasure, so that they do not have this: well, competitions, okay, she will do some jumps. I want to show the integrity of the program, to show the artistic image.
Your mother and dog Leva came to Sochi with you. Does it help you?
Kamila Valieva: Honestly, I don’t know, but when Leva is with me at competitions, it feels like I’m at home. And somehow I relax, move away a little from the fact that this are competitions. Mom tries to leave me alone before the competitions. I’m so accustomed and it’s easier for me this way.
Have you already learned how to do your hair, makeup for competitions?
Kamila Valieva: Well, yes. Since the last season, mom has been saying: “I can’t go with you to every competition, do it yourself.” At first it was difficult for me to do my hair for a short program, because apart from a bun I couldn’t do anything. At first it took me an hour, now a half an hour. And I always did make up myself, but it seems to me that now I have become a little better in it.
Alena Kostornaia loves bright makeup. And you?
Kamila Valieva: Yesterday I tried to do something new for the free program. I liked it, but it seemed that something was missing. Too bright makeup looks a little unusual for me. I’m used to being more moderate. But for Bolero, it seems to me, the makeup suited well.
If you had a magic wand, what one wish would you make?
Kamila Valieva: Health for my whole family, because you cant do anything without it.
What are your ambitions outside of sports?
Kamila Valieva: I don’t know yet.
What are your interests in life in general?
Kamila Valieva: This season I train a lot, a lot of time is spent on training, recovery, so I haven’t thought about anything else. Now I will have the state exams, then another two years of school. After that, I’ll probably go to study to be a coach – after all, I’ve spent so many years on it. And then … I don’t even know yet. Life develops in different ways, maybe during this time I will find something truly mine.
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