"Faces of Synchro", the person behind the scenes
Elodie evolved as a synchronized skater for several years, and she is now taking time to support Jura Synchro and OneTeamMVMT. Let's learn more about her.
This question brings me back to the age of 5. I was going to the ice rink with school once a week. After every session, I was coming back home, telling my mom: Skating is so much fun!
After three months of skating with school, my mom signed me up for lessons at the rink. I started figure skating.
One day my mom was stuck at work, so I had to wait after my private lessons, watching my coach on the ice with her synchronized skating team. Seeing me waiting, she invited me to take part in the session. I put my skates back and jumped on the ice. This is how I discovered synchro!
I started synchro in Compiègne, France, at the age of nine years old. My first team was called Les Droopies. When my coach Cécile left the city, the name of the team changed to Les Black Diam's (season 2001-2002).
I left the team to pursue my dreams and evolve and went skating up north with an inter-league team Les Phénix. The coach was the aunt of my former coach who introduced me to the synchro world.
My passion was deep, I decided to move to Bordeaux, south-west of France to join Les Atlantides. I spent six years with this team, skating at the senior level. I found my best friends during this time. I finally got a bigger dream and move to Canada to join Les Suprêmes in 2010, where I skated until the end of the season 2015 and finally became a coach and a technical specialist.
If I have to pick one I would say my last World Championships in 2015. I was skating in my country, as I was officially a Canadian citizen since February 2015.
Skating our free program on Bob Fosse's music was unreal. As a team, we took the ice with the feeling we had nothing to lose. We were convinced our program was really good and we wanted to give a memorable show to the audience and have a lot of fun altogether.
In the end, this competition week is the best memory. It is not just on the ice that you create memories. It is also with your teammates, coaches, managers off the ice, warming up, eating, discovering the city, etc. I remember everybody was having fun, laughing, sharing with each other. Every single minute was so precious to us, to me.
When I was younger, I had a few like sitting at the same spot in the room, putting my left skate first, adding the tape a certain way. But at a point I realized I did not need these rituals to take the ice. Trusted my training, and I was going on the ice with the idea to skate as I did at home.
I love lifts because you can see the team's strength and the creativity of the coaches.
I also love the "Moves in the field". This element shows flexibility, but you can also have many options to do this element. When building a program, you have to consider what the skaters can do or not, but you also want to be creative and try different patterns on the ice.
Yes, I did. When I was a kid, I did not realize what I was going through microaggressions, racial injustices, jokes, comments about my skin colour, hair texture etc. I felt lonely, but my passion for the sport was more important than anything else. I decided to try to be better, always do more, and be an example, to excel at what I was doing on the ice and off-ice and push my dreams above the limits.
Growing up, I realized what I was experiencing. However, I still found it is really difficult to talk about racism and discrimination to people who do not realize what they are doing or saying. Despite the 2020's events, some people are still uncomfortable talking about this subject. Education and awareness are key.
Once again, being a kid, I was following the flow, trying to fit. It is really when I arrived in Canada, I took the responsibility to take care of myself. I went shopping my own make up based on what was decided for the rest of the team, I found my hair gel product.
I learnt how to do my buns and offered to help others in my team. My recommendation is communication on both sides. One side needs to ask question and the other side also needs to express themselves when they are not comfortable. It is a team effort!
There is only one thing: Do it!
This sport is amazing and has so much to give you. This is a life experience you will never regret.
I think we talked about advice in the last few months. Organisations must educate themselves and their skaters. It is also essential to keep the conversation going as minorities cannot turn off a switch and decide they want to be done facing injustices and racism. Their reality is not just only at skating; it is on a day-to-day basis.
No, I am not. At the end of the season 2019-2020, my organisation and I decided to stop our collaboration for multiple reasons. The pandemic situation gave me a good opportunity to fly back home to France, spending precious time with my loved ones. In Canada, teams still cannot train as we used to do due to the distance restrictions, etc.
In the meantime, I am writing for Jura Synchro as a volunteer and running the project Faces of Synchro. I am also supporting OneteamMVMT the best I can. Finally, I help coach friends brainstorm ideas to keep their skaters motivated and prepare for the next season.
I hope that I will be able to go back on the ice in the future, helping teams and coaches develop their projects.
The idea was born after a phone call I had with Lisa (founder of OneTeamMVMT) where we were talking about the news, the virus, the Black Lives Matter. We were feeling we wanted to offer a safe space for our community to express themselves, to talk about their experience.
We also wanted to talk about skaters, not the top teams, highlight the work which is done behind the scenes by the volunteers, the managers and the organisation. We wanted to share the passion of the coaches and the specialist (judges and technical specialists). After this idea came up, we organized a call with Amélie and Remo (the founders of Jura Synchro).
So if you are interested, please note you do not need to be stuck at home while your interview is published and the take over is running. We have a team well organized behind the scene! Amélie and Remo are taking care of Jura Synchro; Theresa is publishing your videos and pictures on Instagram.
After I have to update the calendar for the team and upload the Jura Synchro interview (the texts are translated into French or English), the last step arrives, but not least, I have to double-check videos and pictures and upload all of them on a drive for Theresa.
Maybe I have contacted you, and my email is stuck in your junkman. Please take a look; we never know!
Nominate yourself or someone you know with a unique story to share, for our next Faces of Synchro feature! Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information!