Stanislava Konstantinova: A person can move mountains with his work
Interview with Stanislava Konstantinova after grand-prix in Helsinki 2018.
by Andrei Simonenko for rsport.ria.ru
At the Grand Prix in Finland, you didn’t skate the short program very well, but then you skated brilliantly in the free. The same happened to you last season, more than once. Is there any pattern?
– There is no pattern, but there is logic. Free program turns well when you realize that nothing depends on you anymore, and you just have to do your job. Turn off the brain and show all you’re capable of. The psychologist with whom we have been working since last season calls it that way – to skate with a song in the heart.
To sing during skating?
– No, to skate with a light heart, for the audience. Spread your wings.
These are beautiful words. But is there a method to achieve this? For example, to think about something?
– For me, this method is to turn off the brain. I tried for a long time to come to this. Some kind of small mistakes, stumbles interfered. But I came to this.
How to do it? I can’t turn off my brain even before bedtime.
– Focus, control yourself, keep in the right state.
And how to make it work in the short program? Maybe make yourself angry the day before?
– I don’t know. At trainings I do my short program, well not as a warm up, but absolutely with no difficulty. I can even skate it several times. So, hopefully, at the next competition I will be able to get the right mindset and show both programs how they should look.
I read in an interview that natural modesty always caused problems for you on the ice.
– This isn’t even modesty, this is called lack of insolence. You need to feel much more confident than I really am. And don’t be afraid to feel that way. This season I let go of the situation a little bit, I stopped scolding myself so much as in previous years. This doesn’t lead to anything good. You need to love yourself. And accept your bad results. Because it’s a part of a person, a part of what happened to him. I realized that after the World Championships in Milan. It was very hard for me, I didn’t want to think about it, I didn’t want to remember it. But then I realized that it wouldn’t be me if I erased it from my memory.
But if you try to get these features, for example insolence, it will not be you either.
– No, I don’t try to be someone else. I try to behave the way I like. What I feel, what I have to say, what I have to wear – I do that. I behave on the call of the heart, and don’t put some kind of boundaries.
Did you come to figure skating late?
– Yes, at the age of seven, it is very late. And I didn’t get to the Academy immediately, at first I skated in a group of health. We came there to get rid of runny nose. And then somehow it all started…Thank you to Valentina Mikhailovna (Tchebotareva) for taking me, seeing something in me … I am very grateful to her, because many coaches at the Academy simply refuse to take me.
There is practically no need to edit your quotes from the mixed zone and interviews, you speak very well. I guess you studied well.
– Since I came to figure skating late, I never forgot about my studies. I went to art school, various educational camps. My grandmother worked a lot with me, my parents worked with me a lot. Our family is athletic, my dad is a CIS champion in karate, he has a black belt, mother is a candidate for master of sports in rhythmic gymnastics and athletics. Dad is a very well-read man, from childhood he spoke to me in a very adult way. We often discussed interesting topics.
Outside the ice, you probably have a lot of interests, and these are not tv-shows.
– I watch them, I can’t even count how many TV shows, cartoons, I have seen in my life. And I don’t know if I’m ashamed of it, or it’s a reason for pride (smiles). I listen to music, absolutely different. I read a lot. Since last year I passed my exams, I focused more on the classics, but in general I read almost all of Agatha Christie.
So the deductive method is close to you.
– And I have an intuition. Actually, I love detectives. This is my hobby. Both to watch and to read.
Talking with athletes, I concluded that by and large they could be divided into two categories in relation to the training process. Someone thinks about what he is doing all the time. And someone just follow the instructions of the coach without thinking whether it is necessary or not, right or wrong.
– Probably I’m in the middle. Because the most important thing is to trust the coach, the person with whom you work. And to listen to him unconditionally. But I also think a lot, offer my ideas for trainings, programs, music, costumes, elements, steps, some interesting exercises. Turns out a very interesting work. On the one hand, I can rely on my team, but at the same time bring something mine.
Do you look at other skaters?
– Of course, I watch almost all Grand Prix, I try to watch live, of course when it doesn’t coincide with training sessions. I always cheer for our guys.
Can you do some Conclusions?
– Sure. I get inspired by the success of others, and it motivates me a little.
Do you watch figure skaters of the past?
– There are evenings when I just take a tablet and start watching some performances. Сompetitors, or just some famous skaters. I often rewatch Carolina Kostner’s short program at the Sochi Olympics and her “Bolero”. I also love Ashley Wagner’s “Sweet Dreams” program. This is my favorite program of hers. The energy is awesome. It is very inspiring. Not to change yourself, but to get better in all aspects.
As far as I remember, Kostner said that to get a standing ovation was more important for her than winning a medal.
– For me, however banal it may sound, the main thing is to get pleasure. But it can happen only when I did all the elements.
Elizaveta Tuktamysheva said that in figure skating, being 21 she feels like a 40-year-old woman in everyday life. How do you feel about the fact that figure skating is getting younger?
– Very positive. Figure skating develops, girls try quadruple jumps. Everything becomes more complicated every year. Of course, competition is growing, but if it was not there, it would be uninteresting. Sometimes, of course, there’s panic, especially when something is not going according to plan, but I can quickly pull myself together and tell myself “Why can they, and I can’t?”
Because they are children, and it is easier for them to learn quadruplets than for you.
– It is necessary to try, nothing is impossible. Each person can move mountains with his work.
So you have a specific plan?
– I probably won’t start learning the quads. I will try a triple axel, we are working on it, there are plans. But while I want to focus on consistency, on the second mark and high-quality execution of jumps. To make them not “ok I land it”, but so that everyone says “wow”.
Is it panic or thoughts what else besides figure skating you can do?
– Thoughts that besides figure skating I can do a lot of things help. I love fashion. I love journalism. I like to paint. I like to choreograph programs, skate at gala. But if I like figure skating, why can’t I skate?
Do you have plans for further education?
– While I’m studying at the Lesgaft University, I’m trying to integrate into the work process. Because it is very difficult to combine everything together. I prefer training. Although I have days when I can visit the university, I understand that there will be no strength left for training. And at the moment it’s more important for me to get in shape and get better. Every evening I write notes, study, but the university is very far away and I physically can’t get to go there at least several times a week.
Do you see yourself coaching in the future?
– Maybe someday. I haven’t thought about it yet. Now I like the choreographing process more, but I understand that I need a profession.
It’s a very nervous work.
– Yes, and it bothers me, because I’m a very demanding person both to myself and to others. It’s probably not easy to work with me, it’s not easy to get along. But I hope someday this will work out.