To Slava, goal setting with every skater and their family is an important part of his process. He feels, “We should all be focused on the same common goals. We work together to create landmarks and objectives for the year. If we don’t have a clear destination in mind, how will we know when we have arrived?”
Growing up in the Ukraine, Slava’s coaches and parents watched as he developed new skills at a quick pace using his talents and that intangible internal motivation quality that makes champions. At just 8 years of age Slava landed his double axel. Two-time Olympian and 6 time medalist at the European Championships, including a Gold in 1996, Slava also earned a Bronze medal at the 1994 World Championships. In 1989, Slava was the first man to land two triple axels in a competition. From 2000 – 2006, Slava skated in professional shows and competitions around the globe. He shares the lessons he’s learned and his competitive spirit with every skater he works with on the ice.
Back in the day, Slava was a master of compulsory figures and known for his stylized costumes and lyrical skating. During the high point of Soviet and Russian ice skating history he skated with the likes of Gordeeva & Grinkov, Oksana Baiul, and Viktor Petrenko. He was one of the brightest stars of figure skating. As a successful professional figure skater and producer of skating shows, Slava’s experience incorporates a rare combination of technical expertise and accomplishments all at an extremely high level. Yaroslav Paniot, a Ukranian Men's Champion, was able to complete all of the quadruple jumps under Slava’s supervision and develop his skills to become an Olympian in men’s singles, an extremely difficult accomplishment today. He employs a method of training which includes bio-mechanical fundamentals while helping his skaters maintain their unique personality and joy of the sport, which all shines through in their performances.
– Sheppard Clark, U.S. National Champion and Junior World Silver Medalist
I have worked with Slava for four years now. I am continually impressed at not only what a great technician he is but even more so at what a good person he is. We have worked together with National Champions, European, World and Olympic competitors always in a great cooperative working relationship. When you watch Slava teach it is evident as to why he was a Junior World Champion and World Bronze Medalist.
– Phillip Mills, World and Olympic Choreographer
To Slava, it doesn’t matter if you are an Olympian, a World competitor, striving to get to Regionals or just setting a goal to get to that next level in your skating. Because when Slava is coaching on the ice those around him see his total commitment to each skater at every lesson. “When developing my students, my philosophy includes nurturing them to be good people. An athlete’s approach to skating should be the same as their approach to life – be the best person you can be and don’t give up.”
The mental process of developing technical skills to Slava is the same whether a skater is starting out with single jumps or moving on to triples or even quads. Lessons always begin with unusual and focused exercises to enhance each student’s skating skills which include turns, edges, body positions and body line. Slava feels that a foundation of strong skating skills is essential for every skater in order for them to reach their potential. If an athlete does not have a well-developed sense of how to turn, check – or hold a position out of jumps and spins, sustain a deep edge, or hold the body correctly, it negatively impacts the rate and degree of success in mastering spins and jumps.
JUMP & SPIN
SLAVA'S COMPETITIVE & PROFESSIONAL DAYS
BUILDING STRONG FOUNDATIONS
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