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Equipment Issues Bother Skate Phenom

Posted November. 22, 2006 06:55,   


Kim Yu-na (16, Suri High School), who won the ladies free skating program at the Bompard Figure Skating Tournament in Paris, is having some problems with her skates.

“She can’t wear same skates for more than a month, unlike her competitors. Her feet seem to change rapidly, so we have to prepare new skates for every competition, and Kim has to go through adjustment training every time,” said Kim’s mother Park Mi-hee at a press conference Tuesday after coming back from Incheon Airport.

Skaters need skates that fit well to fully perform. Other skaters usually use the same skates for 4 months. However, Kim had to change her right skate in much less time, since her skates didn’t fit after her second contest of the season in Canada.

Park, who always accompanies Kim as a manager and trainer as well as her mother, said that she has no idea what is causing the skate problem. It made Kim call the Korean Skating Union two months ago to say that she wanted to quit as a player.

“It might be a problem based on Kim’s sensitiveness, her growth, or the skates themselves. I’m planning to visit a Japanese artisan to order new skates for Kim.” Park said.

Kim said in an interview, “I was pleased to win the ladies’ program and want to have a better performance in the grand-prix final. I was not in the best condition because of skate changing and lack of time, but the results came out better than I expected.”

Kim will focus on physical training in preparation for the grand-prix final which will be held in Saint Petersburg, Russia on December 14. She will also meet Korean fans when she participates in Figure Skating Ranking Contest 2006 for two days starting November 27 in Korea.