Just arrived, this team already "electrifies" its category
Team Electric during the interclub qualifications in November. (Credits: S.J. Photos - 2020)
Non-ISU categories are getting more popular in Finland also. This year, three completely new teams have been created in the Junior B division. Let's meet one of them: Team Electric who finished 2nd at their first-ever competition.
Elsa, Vilja and Suski (Susanna) are the captains of Team Electric. While the first two are studying in high school, the third (aged 15) is still in primary school.
"Skating is a big part of our lives"
The skaters come from all around Finland's capital city Helsinki and also from Espoo. They are training in HTK, the Helsingin taitoluisteluklubi.
During this exceptional period, Team Electric is doing alright, "although sometimes it can be a bit hard to have faith that we’ll get through these hard times". The skaters take a particular interest in their own personal hygiene, and they are very vigilant when it comes to wearing masks. "We are also trying to stay positive and make the best out of this situation. After all, remaining healthy is our top priority."
Juniors and Juniors B: what differences?
The requirements of skating skills and the elements for the programs also differ from each other. Juniors in the ISU category have two programs; short program and free program and Team Electric only have a free program.
"The topic is pretty heavy and our interpretation of it is heroically epic. Our program is called “Ragnarök - the last one standing” which refers to the destruction of the battle since almost all living creatures get destroyed in it. We have created our own story to it and we perform and tell it through our program. The music for our program is quite intense at times which shows how critical the battle is at some points of the story. Regardless, the ending of it is victorious and yet at the same time melancholic because the world as we know it, doesn’t exist anymore," explained the captains.
"Because of the pandemic, we don't know anything for sure. We only know tentatively about some competitions for example the second qualifications will maybe be organized in February. However many competitions were cancelled and some were postponed," the captains regret.
Why do you think this division is becoming popular? "We think that with high school starting at our age people start to think more about the future and want to shift their focus more to their education. At the same time, people need their free time hobbies and this keeps us sane. We keep skating for the love of the feeling you get of the flow on the ice. You often get your closest friends from skating so you get to spend time with them at practices when you're in the same team."
However, it can be hard for some to "adjust to the lesser amount of training but at the same time, that’s one of the perks of our category because you have more time for other things. Since the skaters come from various skating backgrounds, it can be hard for the team to have cohesion and make a suitable and challenging program for the skaters. Our coach Emma has managed to do that beautifully."
Due to the pandemic, Team Electric - as many other teams - is still not allowed to practice. While waiting to be able to skate again and participate in competitions, the skaters continue to develop their team spirit.