Kristi Yamaguchi (Asian Americans of Achievement) - download pdf or read online

By Judy L Hasday

As a child, Kristi Yamaguchi needed to conquer a foot deformity simply to be capable of stroll more often than not. the belief of placing on a couple of ice skates, not to mention excelling as a world-class determine skater like her hero, Dorothy Hamill, couldn't were greater than a dream. but the made up our minds younger lady, born to oldsters who lived during the unjust internment of the japanese in the course of global struggle II, labored demanding, setting up numerous hours on the rink and accepting the sacrifices essential to reach her aim. Her efforts have been worth it: In Albertville, France, in 1992, Yamaguchi's grace and dignity at the ice earned her the Olympic gold. Kristi Yamaguchi is the tale of a girl who has exemplified her motto: continuously dream. even if as a competitor, champion, or the founding father of her personal charitable starting place, Kristi Yamaguchi's motto has served as her own concept.

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Cofer provided Kristi with what she needed—structure. She asked her young pupil to keep a log from every practice, encouraging Kristi to write down what she did during each session. An entry from her journal dated February 20, 1981, in Always Dream illustrated how Kristi broke down her entry—Jumps, Spins, and Footwork, and how many of each type of jump and spin she accomplished. When Kristi entered skating, compulsories (school figures) were a required part of any competition. School figures were a way for judges to evaluate how well an ice skater controlled the edges of the blades on each skate.

In the beginning, Kristi fell down a lot. All the kids did. Over time, though, the group demonstrated the ability to stay up on their skates. Then it was time for them to learn the basic moves of ice skating—spinning, crossovers, spirals, skating backwards, and even jumping. The first jumps are like the bunny hop—skipping along the ice from one foot and landing on the other. There are six major jumps to master in figure skating—axel, salchow, toe loop, loop, flip, and lutz. Jumps can be executed individually or in combinations.

Any attempt to realign or straighten the feet by hand was futile. Kristi had, in fact, been born with clubbed feet, a birth defect that affects about one baby in every 300 born. Twice as many boys as girls are affected, and though physicians are not sure what causes the condition, it is treatable. Jim and Carole took two-week-old Kristi to an orthopedic specialist for evaluation and treatment, which usually involves three different aspects—undergoing physical therapy and wearing corrective shoes and a specially designed brace while sleeping.

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