When did your love for skating start?
When I was little, my parents took me skating, and I also loved dancing, so when I was four, I started taking skating lessons....
What about the sport thrills you, and what do you find difficult?
The beauty of this discipline and also the combination of athleticism and art. The thing that thrills me is the freedom of movement united with creativity. It leaves room for expression. I also like the jumps. I have more difficulty with spins because they make my head spin.
What has been the most satisfying aspect of the sport for you so far?
Competing twice in the Olympic – regardless of the results – and the medals at Worlds. Other than that, the sport has given my the opportunity to travel and to know people and cultures all over the world.
How did “Opera on Ice” get started and what does it have in store for us?
It was Giulia Mancini’s idea. It was just a dream and, incredibly, it has become reality. It drew a standing ovation before a crowd of 12,000 at the Verona Arena, with a company of 200, including a chorus, an orchestra, and singers and a rink of 800 square meters . . . . It was truly a one-of-a-kind experience! I cannot wait to participate in the next show at the end of September.
How do you confront challenges?
I give the most that I have at the moment; I can’t do anything more than that. There is no guarantee that you will always succeed.
What is your training like? What is your daily regimen?
I do on-ice training sessions of two to three hours twice a day, once in the morning and once in the afternoon or evening. In addition, I do “recovery work,” stretching, yoga, physiotherapy, swimming. I also do off-ice training, in the ballet room, on the sports field, or in the gym.
Whom do you credit for your success so far?
First and foremost, myself, and then the people who have been close to me: my family and my “management
Do you like to cook?
Yes, I very much like to cook. I cook almost every day.
What do you like to cook?
In general, I like to eat what is fresh and homemade, but I will eat anything and I am very greedy. I love Grana Padano [a brand of cheese], and find it to be a whole food.
What are your guidelines for cooking?
Simple, fresh, and fast! When I am traveling or between one training session and another, I use protein bars as a meal substitute.
What things are never missing from your dining table?
Water and breadsticks.
What do you do in your spare time?
I’m outdoors, preferably in the mountains of the Alto Adige! Other then that, like every woman my age, I like to go out with friends, I go to movies, I read....
What would you advise someone who wants to take up skating? Is there a right age to start?
In order to compete, it’s advisable to start when very young, but skating can be fun for everyone. It gets you moving, it activates your balance system, and it promotes good health!
In the wintertime in many cities, there are ice rinks for adults and children. Do you have any advice for those who go there?
I recommend wearing warm clothes and protection for the knees, elbows, and head, because when the ice is very crowded, it can be dangerous.
Three pieces of advice for a better life....
Follow your own heart, be humble, and respect nature.