The flexibility in the body of figure skaters on the ice rink when jumping, skimming, gliding, spinning, make every spectator mesmerised and transfixed. The strenuous stunts and ferocious pace of the skaters leave everyone stunned and astound; you can’t take your eyes away from them when they are performing such mystical, inconceivable and spellbinding moves as they are too good to be true. But who are the 4 best figure skaters and ice skaters in the world? Well! Here is the list of top figure skaters and their magical trademark jumps.
This Japanese champ has achieved thumping and resounding success in his life that no one has gained at that age. He first came into the international limelight when he won the world junior championship in March 2011. The 25 years old figure skater had staggered the world with his breath-taking and mind-blowing performances when he participated in the 2014 Winter Olympics, becoming the first-ever figure skater to break the shackles of crossing 100 points in the short program.
Yazuru exhibited a prodigious display of high-class jumps and moves and became the youngest skater ever to win a gold medal and first Japanese to clinch this feat. Despite falling down twice in the first minute of his free skating, he went on to display one of the best performances of figure skating in the Olympics. Yuzuru manifested sensational and phenomenal triple axel jump, quadruple and lutz-triple toe jumps with sleek smoothness and extraordinary perfection in Sochi 2014. He must have had a great pair of skate shoes in his arsenal, want to check out some nice skate boots, click here.
Yuzuru Hanyu did not stop himself here from achieving more in his career. His triumphant victories and titles are unimaginable and who can believe he came across a great tragedy at a naïve stage in his life. He was just 16 years old when he experienced a very devastating earthquake and tsunami in his home town Sendai and he barely escaped from the calamity and catastrophe a year before he won the World Junior Championship.
He himself stated that he almost lost everything in his life and this incident changed his values. Indeed a blessing in disguise, Yuzuru wanted to make every competition count therefore, he came out of his boundaries and won almost every tournament that he participated in. He transpired to retain his title in the 2018 Winter Olympics and won consecutive four titles of Grand Prix Final in the years 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 and became the first skater to do so.
He was winning titles effortlessly in the years 2013 to 2016, although he put behind momentous hard work and diligence, his dominance showed that he doing it with fun. He won World Championship in 2014 and 2017, won Japenese Championship four years in a row from 2013 to 2016 and was a Four Continent silver medalist in 2017. His bucket list made a halt in 2017 and since then he was unable to clinch any prominent titles. But Hanyu is quite confident, optimistic and imperturbable about the 2020 Olympics and he is looking forward to grabbing another title as he is approaching towards the later part of his career.
Recently he has been awarded the Most Valuable Skater by the ISU 2020.
YUZURU HANYU TRADEMARK JUMP
There is no single move or jump that Yuzuru has mastered but he has molded the moves in his own way. Nothing can be more enrapturing and enthralling than the Yuzuru’s doughnut spin. Doughnut spin is the member of camel spin which is one of the three basic spins in figure skating. In this spin, the skater grasps the skate with the opposite hand from behind the head, leans towards the hand by which the skate is been held, making a circle or a doughnut with hand, leg, and torso, parallel with the ice rink. This spin is not a facile thing to achieve, it requires great flexibility, strength and hours-long training. When performing it in front of a massive crowd, in a tournament like Olympics, it demands hefty mental toughness and temperament. Yuzuru Hanyu has proved himself a great demonstrator of doughnut spin. He is second to none when considering the rotational speed and pace that can be achievable during the move.
Other moves that are associated with Yuzuru are the triple axel and quad loop. The triple axel is considered as one of the oldest and most difficult jumps in figure skating with many skaters are still struggling to complete the move on the rink and land immaculately, Yuzuru not only effortlessly performs it but he every now and then makes some adjustments and advancements to make it even more challenging and hence makes it more picturesque. Not overlooking his Biellmann spin, when he is in full form, it appears to be that no one could even come close to him and it appears to be that he is spinning in the heavens. This is why he is included in our 4 best figure skaters in the world.
Unsurprisingly, another Japanese in the list, well, they really have absolutely flexible bodies, Shoma Uno is a gem in the figure skating world and one of the 4 best ice figures skaters in the world. He has recently defeated his countryman Yuzuru who has broken many records in the figure skating world. Shoma Uno has many big titles in his bucket list that any figure skater can only dream of. The 22 year old skater, after announcing his new coach, is quite confident of improving his skills for coming tournaments that could be decisive for his career.
Shoma Uno has some unique records under his belt, he is the first skater to land the quadruple flip successfully in an international event. He held the record of the highest score in the short program by a junior. He is the 2017 World silver medalist, he has won a bronze medal in 2017 Four Continents, he has won bronze medals in Grand Prix Final in the years 2015 and 2016, he is the 2017 Asian Winter Games champion, and the 2016–17 Japanese national champion.
The best part about Shoma Uno is that he is just 22 years old, young and energetic, he has a dynamic and zestful personality and he wants to show his top-notch performance to the world in big tournaments. He knows his strengths and weaknesses, and he is not among those who hide their frailty rather he accepts his susceptibility and works diligently to overcome them. He is courageous and once took part in the world event without his coach that shows he is not afraid of taking decisions. He just needs to focus more and rather than attempting too many things, he should concentrate on tuning simple things.
SHOMA UNO TRADEMARK JUMP
Shoma Uno is clearly one of the elites in figure skating sport in Japan and he has shown the world tremendous performances with his exuberant moves and jumps. One of his trademark moves is the cantilever, not everyone can perform this act and it is considered as one of the difficult moves in figure skating. In this move, the skater glides along a deep edge with knees bent. It is similar to the eagle spread, the skater like a cantilever bends the back backwards parallel to the ice. It is not a kid’s stuff, it really is a difficult stunt and Shoma Uno can just walk in the ice rink and casually maneuver the move without any fuss around. He is among the few finest skaters in the figure skating world who when performs a task, does that with absolute ease and effortlessness. He looks smooth and picture-perfect when he is attempting such moves, and on his day he can be as good as any in the world.
Although she has retired from international figure skating in September 2019, she can clearly be a part of the 4 best ice figure skaters list in the world. She has proven to be one of the best figure skaters in the world and grasped all the titles that are beyond the imaginations and comprehensions. The Canadian star, partnered with Scott Moir, had enjoyed numerous world titles and Olympic trophies. She started her partnership as young as 7 years old, whilst Moir was 9 years old. They became top ice dancers in Canada at a very young age. The two times Olympic gold medallist had everything in her from flexibility to strength, from pace to accuracy and precision in take-off and landing. She barely failed in her jumps and moves; perfect in her execution and spotless in her demonstration, Tessa Virtue is a magically mystical performer that definitely mesmerised the audience with her sleek smooth stunts.
Her career lasted for 22 years; the years of determination, persistence, resolve and obstinacy. She has participated in three Olympics in the years 2010, 2014, and 2018, where she secured one gold medal in 2010, two silver medals in 2014 and two gold medals in 2018. Mentioning all Tessa Virtue’s achievements in her career without giving credit to her partner Scott Moir is unjust and gratuitous. Scott is equally responsible for everything this couple had achieved on the ice rink; every single move attempted by Tessa during her performances was completed and perfected by Moir’s fantastic and terrific skills.
TESSA VIRTUE TRADEMARK MOVE
Who can forget her signature move ‘the goose’ that transfixed the crowd watching her with her partner? This illustrious and renowned move was never performed as skillfully as Tessa performed with her ‘skate-mate’ Scott Moir. This is indeed one of the difficult lifts in ice dancing and it requires great diligence. In this lift, the male partner glides sideways with knees bent and balances the female partner on his back with one knee outstretched. Adding to the innovation of Scott and Tessa, Tessa spilled into Scott’s arms making the lift ever so pleasing. Scott and Tessa did not only mastered the lift but it was called by their name in Canada.
Mirai is one of the greatest figure skaters in the USA and made her mark in the figure skating world. Her hard work and diligence transpired her to break records and she continues to do so making her whole nation proud. She began skating at the age of five, Mirai Nagasu has come a long way in her figure skating career and she inspires and exhilarates many young girls watching her gliding on the ice rink. She was the first American woman to land a triple axel jump at an Olympic. Mirai made history in the 2018 Winter Olympics when she became only the eighth woman to achieve the successful landing of the rarest triple axel jump and got her team a bronze medal in the tournament.
The 26 year old skater has enjoyed remarkable success in all her professional life. Winning her first medal in a major event in 2007; participating in the World Junior Championship securing a silver medal and the very next year, she won a bronze medal in the same competition. The two times Olympian got hold of three medals in Four Continents Championships. Although she has not earned a medal in World Championship, she participated twice in the years 2010 and 2016. In the US national championship, with one gold, Morai earned a total of seven medals in the competition.
MIRAI NAGASU TRADEMARK JUMP
Without any startle and surprise, Mirai’s trademark can not be other than a triple axel jump. Perhaps the most prominent reason for the fame and popularity of the American skater. She clearly and unquestionably had stunned the world when she landed perfectly performing the triple axel jump in Pyeongchang Olympics in 2018.
The Triple Axel jump is the rarest and the most difficult move in figure skating, a jump that scares many skaters because its execution requires speed, spin, flight, and pin-point accurate timing and balance in landing. The way Mirai performed it in the Olympics, it required sheer hard work and hours-long training. This made our vote to include Mirai in our 4 best ice figure skaters of the world.
We give our thanks to the Swedish National Ice Skating team for supplying their images for this article. Our lead picture shows Greta Crafoord & John Crafoord performing at the JVM in Tallinn, Estonia.
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