Alissa Czisny: ”Winning the U.S. National Championships was a dream come true for me”

Interview by Vladislav Luchianov

Alissa Czisny is the 2009 U.S. champion and a two-time U.S. Collegiate champion (2004, 2008). Has earned four medals in the Grand Prix Series: gold at 2005 Skate Canada, silver at 2005 Skate America, bronze at 2008 Skate Canada and silver at 2009 Skate Canada. Won the bronze at the 2007 U.S. Championships. Took the silver medal at the 2001 U.S. Championships as a junior.

Alissa began skating at 1 1/2 when her mother started taking skating lessons. Enjoys rock climbing, reading, biking, learning foreign languages, acting and modeling and traveling. Has done modeling part-time. After her skating career, would like to pursue acting and modeling careers, further her education (possibly a master’s degree) and travel the world. Graduated summa cum laude from Bowling Green State University in May 2009 with a liberal studies degree. Majored in international studies, Russian and French.

Awarded “Outstanding Sophomore of the Year Award for International Studies” in 2006 along with the “First Year Russian Student Award” in 2006.Has participated in benefit skates for a Hurricane Katrina relief fund, the Jimmy Fund (Dana Farber Cancer Research Institute), breast cancer research foundation (“Skate for Hope”) and the Mary Louise Wright Foundation. Has been on the Dean’s List throughout college. Twin sister, Amber, was also a senior ladies national and international competitor .

VLAD: Hi Alissa! In the first place I’d like to say thank you for your amazing skating!

ALISSA: Thank you very much!

- Alissa,what was the most delightful moment in the figure skating in your childhood?

-  I have many delightful childhood memories of skating, and I spend much time skating with friends and family. All those moments make great memories that I will cherish forever.

- About your decision to be a figure skater. Can you think back to that period?

- I began skating when I was about two years old, so I do not specifically recall deciding to be a figure skater. I do remember, however, always wanting to skate and always wanted to go the the Olympic games.

- Your skating is a great combination of beauty,artistry,mastery and many others wonderful things. How do you make it?

- Throughout my career, I have studied ballet in addition to figure skating, and I think that the ballet lessons have greatly helped my artisty on the ice.

- It must be difficult to combine skating,study,free time. Isn’t it?

- It was a lot of hard work and dedication to study and skate at the same time and it did not leave me with much free time! But earning a degree from the university was well worth the hard work!

- You are the U.S.National Champion. What’s it like to be the first in your own country?

- Winning the U.S. National Championships was a dream come true for me. It made me realize that my hard work and dedication had paid off.

- About how much time does your training take you in a week?

- I usually train about 15-18 hours per week on the ice and an additional 5 hours off the ice.

- The U.S.Nationals and the Olympics are on the doorstep. What do you think about it?

- I’m very excited for the upcoming National championships, and I am working to skate my best there so that I can qualify to compete at the Olympics, which has always been my dream!

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

- I think that skaters become accustomed to the frequent travel from figure skating competitions. I still find it difficult sometimes to cope with the jet lag, but I try to get as much rest as possible.

- You increase steadily in your mastery. Who is your main inspirer? Your great coach?

- Brian Boitano and his coach Linda Leaver have been mentoring my coach and me, and they have greatly helped me in my skating and training. Brian has also inspired me, because he has helped me understand his experiences and what he did to accomplish his goals.

- What is your main dream in skating and in life?

- I hope to continue skating, competing, and performing for many years. I love to skate and I want to make a career out of my skating. Also, my dream is to compete at the Olympic Games.

- Alissa,once again thank you so much! I wish you good health,great performance at the U.S.Nationals!Also,we will be waiting for your amazing skating at the Olympics!

- Vlad, Thank you very much for your support and encouragement!

WFS - An independent online sports magazine