Dedication to figure skating isn’t something 14-year-old Katharina Wetzig has questioned. Each week, Wetzig can be seen on the ice at the South Cariboo Rec Centre.
“I practice four times a week,” said Wetzig. “I often practice for an hour and then spend the other teaching younger skaters. It’s fun, we get to be a role model to the younger skaters and they look up to you.”
Wetzig has been skating for the 100 Mile House and District Figure Skating Club for roughly six years.
“I love this club,” said Wetzig. “It is a nice community of people and everyone is always willing to help one another. We are basically a big family.”
Last year, Wetzig travelled to Revelstoke in November to compete in the Mountain Gems Competition. Wetzig competed in the Ruby Skills division and received gold for her elements, which consisted of crossovers, spirals, waltz jumps, toe loop jumps, salchow jumps and others.
The routine also consisted of a 30-second creative dance without any prior practice.
“They judged us on how well we performed and our overall execution.”
In November, Wetzig travelled to Kamloops for an on-ice training seminar with Zdenek Pazdirek, a senior coach with the Coquitlam Skating Club and previous two-time Czechoslovakian Senior Men’s Champion, World and Olympic competitor.
Wetzig worked on her inside and outside edges through a 45-minute stroking exercise instructed by Zdenek. He broke down jumps into easier to understand steps (execution, take-off and landing) and he taught them how to properly use a skating spinner – a device that mimics a skate and teaches balance and control. Wetzig is a skater in the StarSkate program who recently completed her Star Skate Level 3 test.
“The test consisted of camel spin, a sit spin, waltz jump, waltz toe, a flip, a loop and a solo,” said Wetzig. “I’ve been working on achieving this for a while.”
Outside of skating, Wetzig is an avid drawer and often spends time with her horses outside. When asked about future plans for figure skating, Wetzig said she doesn’t see herself stopping anytime soon.
“I enjoy the freedom of being able to do what I want on the ice,” said Wetzig.