Faces of Synchro
"We stay motivated because we know we will be back on the ice one day"
Team Aura - UK
This Sunday, let's meet Harriet Rushmer, a skater from Team Aura. She is answering Jura Synchro's questions from London, UK.
I discovered synchro a few months after I started skating as an adult (when I was 24). I was approached by another adult skater at the rink, and she suggested I come along and try synchro in the adult team.
After joining the adult synchro team (Orion), I fell in love with synchro. After a couple of seasons skating with the adult team, I felt ready to try out for the Mixed Age team (Aura). Last season. Aura started competing as a Senior B team and we won the 2020 British Championships in our category.
I have so many amazing synchro memories it's so hard to choose! My first one was with Aura when we won the British Championships in 2019. This was the first time I had ever won a national championship and that memory of jumping up and down and hugging my teammates on the Kiss & Cry will stay with me forever.
My other memory was when our club went to Eindhoven for the Lumiere cup in 2019, this was such an amazing experience just being able to skate and hang out with my teammates. Team Orion also came first in the adult category at that competition, we were so happy we were singing so loud in the changing rooms afterwards!
We always do a team huddle before our skate. That's our tradition. I really love that because it makes us feel so unified and ready for our performance as we know no matter what happens, we are always there for each other.
I love doing pairs element. We do pivot Y's in our programme, and when we get them perfectly synchronized, it's such an amazing feeling! I also love intersections as they are amazing to watch & such a crowd pleaser!
I hope that anybody regardless of their colour would feel welcomed into the synchro world. I feel that a lot of us still have a lot to learn and it is still a sport which lacks diversity.
Open communication is key and we need to welcome conversations about uniforms and hairstyles as it's clear these aren't always suitable for everyone. It's so important that we talk about these topics and make it equal and open to all.
I would say an organization has to actively show an understanding by recognising bias and take immediate action in these instances.
By creating an inclusive culture within the sport in which you can truly be yourself without fear of discrimination will encourage more people regardless of colour to try synchro. The governing bodies need to actively engage with the under-represented groups to discover what barriers exist and how they can be overcome.
As a team, we set ourselves a goal of creating a new warm-up block (off ice on Zoom) that we can choreograph and learn together and then when we come out of lockdown, we will be able to do it on the ice!
We have also set ourselves some personal goals. Mine is to improve my flexibility to improve my spread eagle on the ice and also to continue to work on my strength/fitness, so I am prepared for when we start doing our lifts on the ice again.
Sometimes it is hard to stay motivated in lockdown as the uncertainty of when it will be over can be quite disheartening, but I try and stay motivated by doing my workouts and practicing yoga. We know we will be back on the ice one day.
Also a massive thank you to the club's committee members who have had to constantly stay up to date of ever-changing circumstances and organising everything so we can continue training in one form or another!
Learn more about Harriet and Team Aura today on the OneTeamMVMT's Instagram page with her "Take Over".