Wakaba Higuchi: “Rather than aiming for high goals, I want to take it one step at a time with the image of progressing.”

Posted on 2023-09-06 • No comments yet


Wakaba Higuchi about start of the season.

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source: nikkansports.com

“Step by step for now.” Figure skater Wakaba Higuchi, who finished fifth in the women’s event at the 2022 Beijing Olympics, opened her practice session on September 5th at the Meiji Shrine Outer Gardens Ice Skating Rink. She stated, “I really feel like I can start with fresh feelings, so I want to keep practicing with this fresh mindset. Rather than aiming for high goals, I want to take it one step at a time with the image of progressing.”

On this day, she didn’t attempt her signature triple axel. She commented, “This season, I hope to land it at least once in a competition. First, I want to make sure I can perform the jumps I usually do in practice during competitions, so I’m not in a rush. I want to focus on becoming more consistent first.”

During the practice session, she energetically worked on the consecutive jumps in her new free program, “Fix You/Paradise.” There were moments when she expressed frustration after unsuccessful attempts. Her immediate goal is to improve the consistency of other types of jumps.

Last season, she took a break from competitions after October. After spending time away from skating, she resumed training in April this year and completed her second competition at the Tokyo Summer Championships in July. Her next competition is the Tokyo Championships at the end of this month, which serves as the first qualification leading to the Japanese Nationals, where she aims for the podium. She expressed her desire to use the experience she got at the Tokyo Summer Championships and gather momentum for the upcoming Grand Prix Series.

“As the competitions draw closer, I feel the usual tension building up. But it’s not the kind of stress that makes me anxious; it’s more like the frustration of not landing jumps, and even that feels interesting. It’s a feeling that I can enjoy,” she shared. During practice, there were moments when her jumps were successful, and a natural smile appeared on her face. Right now, she’s purely enjoying what she can do.


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