Skating Fridays

Online Webinar – Christopher Dean

Christopher Dean

Last week I shared some insights from Olympians and Olympic coaches Scott Hamilton, Kori Ade and Tom Zakrajsek. A few days later, I attended a webinar featuring Scott Hamilton and Christopher Dean.

Here are some insights from Olympic gold medalist Christopher Dean:

  • A day missed is a day wasted; it allows your competition to get ahead of you.
  • It comes down to the work, the perseverance, repetition and desire to achieve something on every session you attend to.
  • Each day, make yourself happy about what you did that day – the way you felt in a certain move. End the day on a positive. Nothing is wasted if you look at what you’ve done. Keep looking forward.
  • Have a desire to improve what you want to improve.
  • Listen to what speaks to you, musically and conceptually.
  • Whatever level you take on, there is always a discipline or something that you can take away from it. Responsibility for the way you are, the way you train or how you push yourself. All of these elements are character building.
  • Find the enjoyment in the difficulty.

From Scott:

  • If the effort is there, it creates the image of quality.
  • Find enjoyment in the challenge, failure, commitment and difficulty.

Christopher told us an interesting story about his gold medal-winning program set to Ravel’s Bolero (with Jane Torvill). At the time, they wanted to use this piece, but their music arranger was only able to cut it down to 4 minutes and 28 seconds. However, the rules in ice dancing stated that the official timer wouldn’t start until the blade started moving on the ice. In order to use the entire 4 minute and 28 second music cut, Torvill & Dean started their program on their knees and shaved away some time before they got up. This ingenious strategy got the skating world talking and made them trailblazers in the sport.

Hope you enjoyed this write-up!


  1. May 1, 2020 / 6:19 pm

    Fascinating fact about T&D’s program. I’m glad they improvised and didn’t just hack the music to death (we’ve all heard program music with terrible cuts). Thanks for the fun post, Eva–hope you are doing okay.

    • evabakes
      May 1, 2020 / 7:57 pm

      I loved learning about Bolero and how it came about. These aren’t stories that we’d normally hear so it was fascinating to listen in and be part of the discussion. Things are well here – just missing the rink. Hope you are well too!

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