Mikhail Kolyada: figure skating has both technique and choreography
Translation of Tatjana Flade interview with Mikhail Kolyada. About NHK Trophy, quad lutz and upcoming Russian Nationals and trip to Japan.
Misha, what do you think about your performances?
– I think I did the short program well. I mustn’t tripled the toe loop and then do a 3-2 combination instead of two triples.
Good that you realized it.
– Yes, I realized it on time, because I had a similar situation two years ago at the competition in St. Petersburg. There I made a triple toe loop, then a triple axel and 3 lutz – 3 toeloop and lost points. Since then I remember that you can’t do that.
There are positive and negative aspects about performance in the free program. Positive is that I could rotate a quad lutz, it wasn’t good, but this is the first step, the first start. Especially, since I’ve started to do this jump recently and there’s no consistancy yet.
It’s a shame that I popped the second triple axel, but in general, I was trying to fight for every element.
Did you feel some pressure because you had a chance to qualify for the Grand-prix Final?
– I hadn’t such thoughts, because I understood that it’ll be very difficult to qualify. But this doesn’t mean that I was relaxed. Just I went to Japan with the knowledge that likely I won’t make it to the Final.
I considered this competition as a test before the Russian Nationals. So, I should have skated calmly, but for some reason this did not happen.
Yes, and at trainings not everything was going well.
– The fact is I felt very strange, I can’t even explain how. But such has never happened with me before. I went on the ice and it was like I put on the skates for the first time in my life. Besides after the Grand Prix in Moscow, we have worked well. Honestly. Hand on heart, I have worked very well. In each training session all worked out, I made the most of possible. And we did a run-throughs…So, a bad short program here become a shock for me.
When did you start to train a quadruple lutz?
– Right after Grand-prix in Moscow. We arrived in St. Petersburg, started to train. In general, we tried it before. And it was very close. After Moscow it started to turn out quite well.
After the Rostelecom Cup there was criticism in your address in the interview on the website of FFKKR. Did It somehow affect you?
– I think yes. I myself understand that today it’s difficult to claim for something with one quad, even if the jump is executed perfectly. So, we decided to take a risk at this competition, why not? It’s necessary to start once, to try and where if not here?
Of course, it’s a new jump for you, so you shouldn’t be ashamed for the fall, you tried.
– I was afraid of one thing – to pop the jump. When I went on lutz I was a little too overstrained…
Will you make changes to the programs?
– Not yet. Now we have to concentrate on work. I work well, but I need to work even better, to be sure 200 per cent – just to go and jump, without thinking: to do or not to do, to go or not to go for it, can I or can’t …
What do you think of some skaters’ efforts to do four or five quads in in the program?
– It seems to me that the more quads are in a program, the more difficult it’s to assess it in terms of PCS. The main focus is on the technical side, and if you look at the second mark, it’s difficult to say whether there was a program or not. When there are two quads in the beginning of the program – it’s okay, but when four or five … It’s very difficult. Let’s see what will happen next. There may be some compromises. But I can give you 100% that no one will make his program easier.
After all, it’s not a jumping competitions.
– And it turns out that the program is reduced to “run and jump” … There is not so much actual skating. I have good jumps, but it’s important for me to show the program. It seems to me that it turned out in Sapporo. According to the judges’ marks they also understood me correctly. In the short program, despite big mistakes, and in the free program the second mark was good. Some people came to me after competitions and said that they liked my programs. So, we shouldn’t forget about impression from the program. Figure skating is a special sport which has both technique and choreography.
How will you prepare for the Russian Nationals?
– I won’t have any competitions till Russian Nationals. We’ll continue training as usual. I have three weeks before traveling to Chelyabinsk and it’s a good time to prepare mentally and physically, to come to this competition in the best shape.
How difficult this competition will be for you?
– At this stage, I consider it as the most important start. In Chelyabinsk, it won’t be easy. I understand the importance of the situation. It’s scrupulosity.
What do you mean?
– This situation may have many ways of development. This is the pre-Olympic year and the leaders of figure skating federation and judges are starting to think whom to include in the Olympic team and whom not. The Russian Nationals in this regard is not the most important competition, but one of the key competitions and you need to treat it as seriously as possible.
To prepare psychologically.
– This too.
– To work with psychologist. It helps. Gives a lot of practical advices. I see that I become more consistent.
You’ve been in Japan for the first time, what’s your impression?
– I liked it. Very friendly people, very responsive. We walked with a coach once and decided to look into the store, so passersby explained everything and showed on the map. The atmosphere is not like at home, but very close. But Japanese food – it’s an acquired taste.
Did you get a lot of presents?
– Yes, gifts and letters. I didn’t have time to read it all. Amazing people. Interesting country. The hardest thing is flight. And the rest is cool.