ת.ד 331 מרכז קנדה, המרכז הלאומי לספורט החורף, מטולה 10292, ישראל, טל. 04-6817194, פקס. 04-6943187
P.O. Box 331 Canada Centre, The National Winter Sport Centre Metula 10292 Israel
Tel. 972-4-6817194, Fax. 972-4-6943187, E-mail: info@iisf.org.il

 
 
Our Skaters >Tamar Katz
 

ISU: International Skating Union
משרד התרבות המדע והספורט
וינגייט: היחידה לספורט הישגי
המועצה להימורים בספורט
הועד האולימפי

 
Tamar Katz – 26/09/89
Coach: Peter Burrows | Choreographer: Lea Ann Miller

Year

Competitions

Place

2003

National Championships

2

2004

Pokal der Blauen Schwerter

12

 

JGP Harghita Cup

8

2005

World Championships

16 QR

 

World Junior Championships

22

 

National Championships

1

 

European Youth Olympic

9

 

JGP SBC Trophy Japan

12

 

Skate Israel 2005

4

 

Golden Spin

2

2007

World Championships

23

 

European Championships

13

 

National Championships

1

 

JGP Croatia

16

 

JGP Bulgaria

9

2008

National Championships

1

 

European Championships

16

 

World Championships

 

Tamar Katz and Galit Chait:
how passion, continuity and maturity can make a nice triple combination


Tamar Katz was called "a promising young skater" and a "revelation of the 2007 season" by some figure skating TV presenters. Her skating was noted for being artistic, expressive and well-aligned. She finished 13th in the European Championships and 23d in the World Championships, in which about 50 female skaters took part. It was a real pleasure to talk to Tamar, whose answers reflected a self-inspecting and fast-maturing personality:

-Tamar, this year you made through to the free programme both in the Europeans and the Worlds. When it first happened in the Europeans, how did this experience act for you in the Worlds a few weeks later?
-You know, when I went into the European Championships, I didn't think "Oh I have to qualify."  It really wasn't my goal.  Usually prior to a competition I set out goals that I want to reach.  I used to make my goals impossibly hard to reach, which made me nervous, and following the event I often felt extremely disappointed with myself.  Since this was the first time I competed at the Europeans I decided that I just wanted to go out and skate for fun, just for the joy of skating.  After all, I did start this sport for the love I have for it.  After the Europeans, however, the expectations rose and I was expected to qualify for the Worlds.  In fact, it became all about qualifying.  Following the European Championships I injured my back and was off the ice for over four weeks and had a hard time trying to prepare for the Worlds.  My confidence was short and I came to the World Championships highly unprepared.  Even though I didn't realize it at that time, through my experience at the Europeans I had learned a lot about myself and was able to use my new experience under the less-than-ideal circumstances.

- How old were you when you started skating?

- I actually did rhythmic gymnastics, at the age 6, in Israel, before I started skating.  When I was eight, we moved to the US, and found out that rhythmic gymnastics wasn't too popular in the area; in fact I couldn't find anywhere to practice.  I was a highly active child and there was an ice rink the area.  I didn't like skating at the beginning since I was dedicated to rhythmic gymnastics.  Therefore, I didn't start skating seriously until I was 10 years old.

- How many hours a day do you train?

- Do you mean just on ice or all together?  It depends on the time of year.  Right now I am in the phase known as the off-season.  I actually spend more time training now than I do during the competition season.  This is the time where I try to develop new skills, try new things; develop strength, stability, and flexibility.  I am generally skating around 3 hours a day right now and another hour and a half off the ice.  During the competition season I skate 2 hours a day and spend one hour training off the ice.  If I had time I would skate more and wouldn't do any off-ice training.  The only part I like about being a competitive ice skater is skating; I don't really enjoy any of the "extra" things required.

- Which kind of music do you prefer for your programmes – classical, popular, folk, or other? Who makes the choice of music for you?

- I am actually in the process of picking my music for next year right now.  I always want to try different things, although I do have certain styles I like and dislike.  This year I am getting a lot of outside help in picking my music.  I usually pick out some pieces and then I have to have them approved by my coaches.  This year I am working with Galit Chait on improving my skating skills and while we work together we both bring in different pieces and we will make the final choice together.  I have generally skated to classical pieces only.  I've never skated to folk music, or pop.

- You are being coached by Galina Zmievskaya who has brought several skaters to the Olympic podium. What have you already learned from your renowned coach?

I have been working with Galina for less than a year now, and I've definitely learned some things.  I've worked with several coaches and I have been able to learn something from each one.  Every coach has his/her own distinct style and system, and I've actually had an advantage of working with so many coaches, which has enabled me to have a wide circle of knowledge.  I believe that knowledge is power; you should never have a closed mind, you can learn something new everyday.  I also believe that you should never work with one coach, it's important to have a strong support system behind you.  This year we are reworking my team and it's definitely looking good.  I am also getting substantial financial support from the Israel Ice Skating Federation, and will sign a new contract with Avner Stepak, current VP of the Meitav Investment House.

- What elements would you like to improve first and foremost in your performance?

- For me, at this moment, the most critical element I must perfect is the triple+triple combination.  In order to challenge the top spots in the future I must be able to land these jumps consistently.  I also want to improve my confidence when I skate.  I think a skater that exudes confidence gets higher marks than a skater that might be just as capable but hesitant.

- Have you already started preparing your next season's programme?

I haven't technically chosen my music nor done any choreography, but I have started working with Galit Chait in order to prepare for this stage.  We are working on improving my skating skills, transitions, and the interpretation of the music.  I need to improve as a skater and I believe that Galit is the best for me in this department.

- What was the first thought that came to your mind when you finished your free programme at the last Worlds? Were you capable of thinking of anything at all?

I am not sure you want to know the answer to this question.  It's actually kind of funny.  I had a very rough couple of months between the European Championships and the Worlds, as I mentioned earlier.  I had injured my back and was not able to train properly.  I was extremely happy that I qualified for the long program but I actually really wanted the competition to end so I could heal my back and concentrate on all the changes I wanted to make.  The first thing I felt when I finished my long program at the Worlds was relief, my second happiness.  It was time to move on to the next step in my career.  The ending pose of this program marked the end of the season, which had had many ups and downs, so I was definitely happy it was all over.

- Frankness reflects maturity and the ability to be self-critical.  Do you set goals for yourself? If yes, what is your next goal?

I think it's important to set goals for yourself in whatever you do in life.  Without goals you don't have a direction.  I set short- term goals and long- term goals.  I have a goal for every month, every competition, every season, and every year.  Right now I just really want to improve so many things and get a triple- triple combination.  My long -term goal this year: top 10 at Europeans and top 15 at the Worlds.  I think that's something I am capable of doing even with the content I possess now.

- How would you define your main character trait?

- Passion.  This is a positive and negative aspect of my character.  I believe that when I skate you can see that I am passionate about what I do.  I love to skate and I want people to come and watch me skate.  I like to satisfy everyone.  Unfortunately, I can be too passionate at times and it disrupts my concentration.  I hope to be able to work on this so that I am able to keep my emotions in check when I need to.

- We are wishing you to make passion your servant and to master new and successful programmes with its help.
- I will certainly be delighted to do that!