Adam Rippon: "Skating really is the most important thing for me now"

Interview by Vladislav Luchianov

Adam Rippon is a two-time World Junior champion (2008-09), the 2008 U.S. junior champion and the 2007 Junior Grand Prix Final champion. Claimed the silver medal at the 2005 U.S. Championships as a novice.

Adam began skating at age 10. Is the oldest of six kids in his family. Formerly coached by Yelena Sergeeva (2000-07) and Nikolai Morozov (2007-08). Current coach is Brian Orser,choreograther David Wilson. Hobbies include music,surfing the Internet and spending time with friends and family. Loves to travel. Won the World Junior title again in 2009, becoming first man ever to win that title in back-to-back years.

Has a passion for his friends, skating, dancing, music and photography. Would like to meet Michelle Kwan because “I would like to ask her how she skated so well and how she got into ‘the zone'”.Says he loves to listen to music and his favorite song changes every week .

VLAD: Hi Adam! I’m very glad to talk to you. First of all thank you for your skating!

ADAM: Thank you! I’m honored that you would like to interview me.

- Adam,when did you feel first time you want to be a figure skater?

- I started skating pretty late; around 10 years old. I have to say that I really felt that I wanted to become a skater about the same time. I begged my mother to bring me whenever it was possible. I still love it just as much!

- What was the most difficult in learning figure skating basics for you?

- The basics of skating I continue to work on with my coaches. I think they are something that you can always improve. When I was younger I didn’t want to spend more than 2 or 3 minutes working on crossovers or different turns but I worked really hard with my coaches and learned how important they are and how helpful it is to have a solid understanding. Now being older, I don’t mind to work on them and sometimes I even secretly enjoy it.

- How do you manage your time between skating,study, free time?

- I’m not sure how I manage. Skating really is the most important thing for me right now and so it take priority over everything I do. I am really very lucky to have a lot of close friends that understand that and live their lives the same way. Hanging out with my friends is always a great way to relax and refocus!

- About how many hours per week do you train?

- I usually skate about 4 hours a day 5 days a week and about 2 hours one day during the weekend.

- You are one of the most promising US skaters. Is it because of your hard work on the trainings?

- First, I am honored to be considered one of the rising stars. I’m sure I have gotten to where I am now because of hard work. Whenever I go out for a practice I try and give 100%. Not every day goes perfectly and there are sometime where I just need to step any and clear my mind but, there is always something to work on. I hope that my hard work will continue to pay off.

- For athletes it is an usual thing to travel from country to another to the competitions. How do you take long distances?

- I don’t think about it too much. As soon as I arrive to the competition I don’t think about time changes or anything. I almost mentally trick myself and just make myself get over it. I don’t know how to explain it but I just don’t let thoughts like it taking a few days to get over jet-lag even enter my head. So I would have to say that it really doesn’t effect me too much… *knock on wood*

- What competition are still memorized in your career?

- This might seem like a funny answer but I can think of 4 competitons right now that stand out for me. My first Jr. Nationals in 2002, I had never been and STILL have never been so nervous in my life; The JGP Final in 2007 because it was the first time I had broken the 200+ point mark; Winning the National Junior title in 2008; and skating so well after a little bit of a dissapointing season at Junior Worlds in 2009, but also for winning that title for the second year in a row.

- The history of figure skating has a lot of great skaters. Who is your favorite?

- So many great skaters are my favorites. I would be a bad student if I didn’t say Brian Orser is one of my favorites! I also love Michelle Kwan. She is the reason I started in the first place. Skaters of the past, skaters still competeing, and so many more!

- Which ice rink, in the world, is the most comfortable for you?

- Well, I would have to say that the rink that I skate at now is the most comfortable. It is my home ice. It’s where all my work takes place, where my coaches teach me, and where I have my best and worst days. When I feel confortable at home, I can feel comfortable where ever I skate.

- What is your main dream in figure skating?

- My dream? I have many goals that I would like to achieve before I retire. I think my dream would have to be for people to remember my skating because I made them feel something. Maybe I made them feel happy, sad, or inspired but I think the most powerful skating is something that gets your emotions going. If you can get the crowd to understand the story you’re trying to tell, the skating speaks so loudly. It’s the reason I remember the skaters I remember. I think it’s the reason people are drawn to become fans of skaters and why some of us started in the first place.

- Adam,thank you very much! First, I wish you good health. Also, good luck at any of your next competitions!

- Vladislav, thank you so much for the interview!

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