Faces of Synchro
This skater wants that athletes feel comfortable with their identities
Abigail, cofounder of the account LoveInsynch, on Instagram.
Abigail is 18 and is the cofounder of LoveInSynch on Instagram. She started her first year of college in Vermont where she is doing an environmental science major and a gender, sexuality, and women’s studies minor.
My older sister used to skate and I remember wanting to try it. So my parents signed me up for a free skate session and I loved it!
I started skating when I was six years old. Since then, I have become a USFS double Gold Medalist in Moves in the Field and Solo Free Dance. I skated for Starlights for seven years, competed at Synchro Nationals five times, and been part of Team USA (2018-2020)!
It is so hard to choose! My best skating memory is when my team and I got off the ice after skating our long program at Britania Cup 2020! I remember feeling so confident after our skate and I was so proud of all of our hard work!
I would always do triangle breathing which is just a way to sort of ground yourslelf before you get on the ice.
I personally have not experienced any discrimination in the synchro world, but that does not mean that it does not exist. I have noticed that many mircroagressions and heteronormative ideas have been normalized in the world of skating (tights only coming in one color and having to pay more if you want a different color, women expected to compete in a dress, etc.).
We have to be aware of these things and do something about it. I think that there is not enough discussion about discrimination in figure skating and that needs to change. We can start the conversation!
This sport has taught me so much, but the most valuable thing I have learned from it is to trust the process!
Your coaches and teammates are all working towards the same goal, so it is really important to remember that even if things are not working they way you had imagined, trust the process and you will achieve the goals you all set!
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Keep your head up!
It is really easy to feel defeated after struggling to learn a new skill or after a hard practice, but keep your head up!
Although it might feel like your work is not paying off, I promise you it will! This sport is so hard and you should be proud of yourself for doing it!
I do not think I will skate synchro this season as I am adjusting to college. But I will definitely still be keeping my skills up, practicing my ice dances, and following the season as it happens!
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Hello! Welcome to Love In Synch! This account is run by Safia and I (Abigail)! Both of us are synchro skaters and identify as part of the LGBTQIA+ community. We both acknowledged that we felt like we had nobody to talk to while we were struggling with our own identities. We felt like we were alone. We wanted to do something about that so nobody has to go through the struggle alone, so that’s why we created Love In Synch! Our goal is to create a safe place for questioning skaters, out skaters, and allies to share their feelings and get some advice; an outlet for people who may be struggling with their identity to ask questions and know they are not alone. Shout out to @dime_fruit for the amazing logo!
Love In Synch was founded by Safia Moussaoui and I (Abigail Berkowitz). We met at the 2019 California Cup after we talked about what it is like to be a queer synchro skater!
The account was officially launched June 10, 2020. Safia and I both felt kind of alone in the synchro world when we were coming out to our teammates. We wanted to make sure that no other skaters felt alone in their struggles so we came up with the LoveInSynch! We know from our experience that it is important the environment must be accepting and not changing how queer skaters are treated. Supporting a queer skater is a key to make them feel accepted.
With this project, we want to embrace the inclusivity of everyone in all disciplines of figure skating. We also would like to provide a safe place for lgbtqia+ skaters and allies can come for support or to ask questions!
It is important that all skaters are feeling comfortable with their identities. It is necessary to spread awareness!
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Since pride month is over now, we decided to share how we celebrated! My town had a Drive By Pride Parade since the tradition parade was canceled! This was my first pride I’ve even been to and even though it wasn’t what I was expecting, I still had an amazing experience! Also, since I graduated this year, I asked that instead of gifts, people donated to @trevorproject ! How did you guys celebrate? Let us know in the comments! And remember, just because pride month is over doesn’t mean you should stop advocating! #pride #loveislove🌈
In the future, I would love to see the page grow more and do more collaborations with other queer spaces. I would love to collaborate with teams from all over the world! I want to see how they are making their team a welcoming and accepting place and how they are celebrating pride!
It would also be cool if the account is being run by other people who help us add some relevant content! I do not know when that would happen, but when it does, I want to make sure that they are just as passionate about it as Safia and I are!
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!