Figure skating is a talent that not many people possess. Even though many young girls dream of becoming an elegant, graceful figure skater, this dream is not reached by many. However, for freshman Rose VandeVegt, this dream has become a reality.
VandeVegt began skating at the age of 4. It all started at a carnival when her mother signed her up for Learn To Skate, which is a skating program made for beginners. Getting on the ice for the first time sparked a passion inside of VandeVegt that would quickly ignite into a love for skating.
VandeVegt has competed in numerous competitions and has been very successful while skating for Figure Skating Club of Omaha. Skills like hers do not come easily, so VandeVegt’s practice schedule is a full-time commitment.
“I practice six days a week. On school days, I wake up at 3:30 a.m., and I’m on the ice by 4:15. I do that Monday through Friday, and Saturday I skate from 7-12. To be the best, you have to be committed 100 percent every day,” she said.
Just like her rigorous practice schedule, VandeVegt’s competitions are not a small undertaking.
“I travel around the United States quite a bit. The beginning of October is when regionals begin, which is when you compete with skaters within your time zone. The results from regionals are directly related to who gets to compete in sectionals. Then, whoever does well at sectionals goes to nationals. I competed at regionals, which was held in October, and I was one spot away from going to sectionals,” VandeVegt said.
Many people have watched Figure Skating on TV and wondered if those athletes were insanely dizzy. VandeVegt said that dizziness is something she learned to become familiar with on a daily basis.
“I get so dizzy when I do a layback spin. My body is completely bent backwards it’s in such an awkward position,” she said.
Not many people get to experience the exhilarating feeling of spinning at rapid speeds on ice. Many skaters claim that it’s a feeling that is irreplaceable.
VandeVegt said, “When I am introduced to something new, it’s really scary. But once my body gets used to it, it’s exciting when I land my jump for the first time. I’m never really sure what happened because everything happens so fast, but I’m like, hey, I didn’t fall!”
Gracing the rink with poise, undeniable talent, and an abundance of sequins, VandeVegt hopes to continue her passion in college.
“Colorado University in Boulder has a phenomenal skating program, and they even sponsor young, dedicated skaters. I want to skate in college, especially at Boulder, because a bunch of those skaters go off to the Olympics. That is my dream…to be in the Olympics one day,” VandeVegt said.