Student’s passion for figure skating

Gelila Reta has been a figure skater since she was five years old and has competed in numerous competitions

Students passion for figure skating

“I love ice-skating because it makes me feel so free and calm,” junior Gelila Reta said. “It takes me back to my childhood in Canada and the fact that it is not an aggressive sport makes me like it even more.”

For Reta, ice-skating has always been a form of relaxation and something that allows her to find her inner self. Reta started ice-skating at the age of five years old when she was in Canada. Figure skating, a popular sport in Canada, got her to take interest in it from such a young age.

Reta practices an average of three hours a day, three times a week.  For Reta, an IB diploma candidate who is involved in honor societies and clubs, time management is a critical skill so that she can manage her daily schedule. She tries to balance her time by doing her homework during the day because her practice is at night.

“I like that it’s not a team sport because I’m really competitive,” Reta said. “I prefer to be an individual because I can only blame myself for mistakes and not other teammates.”

In her competitions, she has to have a routine made beforehand and the person who makes the least mistakes wins. Reta has been in a pair before, but didn’t like it because she believes she works better alone.

“My best memory was winning first place in the Fairfax Regional Ice Competition recently,” Reta said. Gelila has won a medal, but prizes vary from competition to competition.

“I deal with my nerves by listening to music before a competition, usually hip-hop,” Reta said.   

For Reta, improvements in ice-skating consist of perfecting her jumps and getting higher scores in her compertitions. Her biggest inspiration is Gracie Gold who won the Gold Olympic gold metal for ice-skating.

“My worst memory of ice-skating is when I fell during a performance, but I just got back up again and continued my routine. At the end of the day that is all that matters.” Reta said.

The fact that her parents support her makes it easier for Reta. Knowing that she has a support system since she was five years old makes her feel good about competing. Ice-skating is something that she plans on continuing throughout her life time because it has been a part of her childhood.

Ice-skating takes patience and grace and that to Reta makes it different than other sports because it separates her from the rest. The fact that she can incorporate her individuality makes the sport personal to her and allows her to enjoy it.