Saturday, 20/1/2018 | : : UTC-8
Skate Today

Johansson Setting Records for Sweden

Lina Johansson

Sweden’s Lina Johansson, only 16, achieved the highest placement by a Swedish lady in several years by finishing 19th at the 2005 World Figure Skating Championships in Moscow even though she was hampered by an injury to her landing foot, which prevented her from using the triple lutz in her programs. It was the first Worlds for the youngster from Malmo, who also finished 17th at the European Championships.

During the 2004-05 season, Johansson also made history be becoming the first Swedish skater to qualify for and medal at the ISU Junior Grand Prix Final, where she won the silver. She won the Sofia Cup and placed second at Skate Bled in the 2003-04 season to qualify for the Final. She also finished second at the European Youth Olympic Days in 2003. During the 2003-04 season, Johansson competed at the senior level, winning a silver medal at The Nordics and placing ninth at her first senior Grand Prix, Skate Canada in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Johansson came from an athletic family. Her mother was a distance runner and her father played handball, but they didn’t skate. She began skating when she was six. “My brother played hockey and I played hockey in school,” she recalled. “My mother’s friend had a daughter who was a skater and she told me about figure skating. I tried it and liked it more than hockey. The only other sport I tried was football (soccer), but I got hit by a ball in the head the first week and it hurt too much so I didn’t play anymore.”

When she was about 12 or 13, Johansson landed her first triple toe loop. “That’s still my best jump,” she said. “I have landed the triple toe-triple toe in practice but it’s not consistent enough to put in my program. I hope to have it by next season. I’ve tried the triple flip-triple toe but it wasn’t successful so I haven’t tried it again. Last summer, I tried the triple axel and quad toe loop. Maybe I’ll try again when I go to the training camp in Oberstdorf in the summer.”

“I like jumping,” she continued. “I like to go to skate at practice and learn new things by myself with just my coach. I’m still trying to find my own style as a skater.” Johansson trains in Tyringe and Malmo. Sweden, but has attended training camps in Switzerland in the summer for a few weeks each of the past two years. Ela Magnusson, who has trained her since the beginning, coaches her. Johansson usually trains on the ice for three hours a day, five days a week, plus another hour or so on Saturdays. She also does about two hours every day of off ice ballet and conditioning work.

Hana Gradevik and Salome Brunner choreograph Johansson’s programs. For the 2004-05 season, Johansson used the soundtrack of “Romeo and Juliet” by Nino Rota for the short and “Otonal” by Raul di Blasio for the long. “Both of my programs were new last season,” Johansson said, “and we will change them again for next season. For the short program last season, my coach and I were just listening to music while we were doing something else and we heard it and liked it. For the long, my coach gave me the music and it just felt right. I usually like to skate to classical music because it fits my personality. I tried Latin music one time but it didn’t go so well.” Johansson used Robbie Williams’ “Rock the DJ” for an exhibition program last season.

Off ice, Johansson said, “I just listen to radio music and MTV. I watch lots of TV. On Sunday when it’s my day off, I like to lounge around and gather energy for the week.” She also likes to go out with her friends, shop, and watch comedy movies, but not scary ones. Johansson still lives at home, so she can keep a pet, a small soft-haired dog. She keeps all the stuffed animals she receives but said she had to put most of them in her closet because they no longer fit on her bed. She enjoys traveling to competitions and most enjoyed her trip to Halifax in Canada. She hopes to visit New York and Los Angeles some day.

Johansson will be starting tenth grade in the fall. Although she doesn’t like school too much, she enjoys learning English and also took some classes in Spanish. She isn’t sure what she would like to do as a career, but noted that coaching skating was a possibility. “I plan to skate until it’s not fun anymore,” she said. “That will be a while.”

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Skate Today was created in November 2004 to showcase the people of the skating world, skaters and coaches and others, who make figure skating and ice dancing a pleasure to watch for fans from around the world. The goal was to create a site that would give viewers an insight into the personalities of the people involved in this sport and to give you a more personal connection when watching them live at an event or on the television. Our staff knows how much time and dedication is put into this sport and that's why Skate Today was created.

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