Page 1 of 4 1 2 3 4 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 57

Thread: skaters, cigarettes and stamina

  1. #1
    Custom Title
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Italy
    Posts
    1,243

    skaters, cigarettes and stamina

    Some years ago a user in a forum said that he/she attended many events and claimed that saw many skaters smoking. That was later confirmed by Joubert, by some skaters that admitted they had the habit after quitting it and by the incident at 2003 Worlds where some skaters illegaly smoked in the locker rooms. Skaters with cigarettes in their mouths were seen also in the smoking room at the airport by a goldenskate user.

    Of course they are free to choose the path they want. But the question is: how is it possible to practice such a demanding sport as FS is, while smoking? I mean, when you smoke, you run out of breath easily. How is tobacco affecting their stamina? What about the health of their hearts? Isn't that dangerous to pressure the heart with cigarettes together with such a physically demanding sport?
    Are they smoking because they don't want to gain weight? Weir confirmed that for himself in an interview. Or is just stress?
    And how is that actually affecting their programs? Is nicotine negatively affecting their programs? I just imagine how much better Tonya would have been without that habit.
    Last edited by gio; 01-23-2011 at 03:37 PM. Reason: spelling and grammar errors

  2. #2
    Tripping on the Podium
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    55
    I'm sure it all depends on how many and how often. Re the locker room story, I remember reading that French tennis champ Suzanne Lenglen used to smoke cigarettes and drink brandy between sets.

  3. #3
    On the Ice
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Bay Harbor Islands,Florida
    Posts
    43
    In some parts of the world, such as the former Soviet countries and especially France, the public is very tolerant of smoking by pre-teen children. It's very sad.

  4. #4
    Trixie Schuba's biggest fan! blue dog's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    2,079
    Wasn't Tonya Harding a smoker (and an asthmatic?!)?

  5. #5
    Custom Title
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Posts
    9,450
    Yes, blue dog, I recall that Harding was both.

    I know that this is one area where Americans tend to be more puritanical about it than other countries. The public antismoking campaign has had a lot of impact over the course of several decades. (This isn't universally true even in the States, of course.) I think people in Russia and France as well as other European countries and Asian countries are less worried about smoking, unfortunately. I am a lifelong nonsmoker, so I have have never understood how athletes could take up the habit. But in a lot of places it's just part of growing up. It depends on the amount that people smoke, of course. Also, I imagine that the bulk of the damage to lung capacity is done long after a skater stops competing, which is typically in his/her twenties.

  6. #6
    leave no stone unturned seniorita's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    5,580
    Skaters with cigarettes in their mouths were seen also in the smoking room at the airport by a goldenskate user.
    I had said that. But it was after the end of championships. And most skaters I ve seen it is either after competitions or after a show, all of them are doing great in competitions so i m sure they cant be regular smokers, maybe they do one -two once in a while to stress out. Not that this is good but i suppose it is better than smoking on regular basis, I doubt they can smoke often and be on the podiums.

  7. #7
    Custom Title
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Massachusetts
    Posts
    2,616
    I used to work with a guy who smoked only 3 or 4 butts a day.

    Of course, it would be interesting to see a skater light up in the kiss & cry.

  8. #8
    On the Ice
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    38
    Quote Originally Posted by seniorita View Post
    I had said that. But it was after the end of championships. And most skaters I ve seen it is either after competitions or after a show, all of them are doing great in competitions so i m sure they cant be regular smokers, maybe they do one -two once in a while to stress out. Not that this is good but i suppose it is better than smoking on regular basis, I doubt they can smoke often and be on the podiums.
    I really would not be so sure about that. I know the dance world much better than the skating world at this point, but there are a lot of similarities and cross-over. As mentioned previously, smoking is very common in other (non-U.S.) countries, and dancers, both in the U.S. and elsewhere tend to be, more often than not, smokers.

    And when I say dancers smoke, I mean dancers smoke A LOT. Besides the cultural issue, many dancers, and especially many female dancers use it as an appetite suppresant so chain-smoking is pretty common. Smoking in New York theatres is illegal now, so whenever a foreign dance company like the Kirov, Paris Opera Ballet or Royal Ballet visit, you see a mob of dancers outside the stage door, frantically puffing away before they have to go in the theatre again. I'm actually quite shocked when I meet a non-U.S. dancer who doesn't smoke, because really, it's pretty much a given.

    Skating like dance (and tennis for that matter) is an anaerobic activity, so smoking doesn't affect it like it would an aerobic activity like bicycling or long-distance running. Unfortunately, being thin matters a lot more and has a much greater effect on your competitiveness.

    As an aside, I'm more surprised at the number of professional singers who smoke because of the breath control issue and the long-term damage to the voice (listen to Judy Garland at 16 and then listen to her at 45, and you'll know what I mean). Unfortunately, the cultural issues and need to be thin still tend to outweigh those factors.

  9. #9
    Custom Title
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Posts
    9,450
    Golly, Sidwich, it makes me sad to hear how many dancers smoke, and smoke a lot.

    I agree that Judy Garland's voice showed wear. And her voice was one of the great instruments of the twentieth century. One thing that fascinated me on first hearing Susan Boyle (who's in her mid-to-late forties) was how youthful, almost girlish, her voice sounds. I'd be willing to bet she doesn't smoke. But if you really want to hear the effects of smoking on a voice, listen to the wispy, childlike voice of Marianne Faithfull in her first hit, "As Tears Go By," and then listen to stuff she did in her forties. Totally, totally gone. Like two different people. At least you could always recognize Garland when she sang.

    (On the other hand, look at Paul McCartney, whose voice has inevitably aged a bit but is still largely the smooth tenor of forty years past. Wonder if he quit when George died.)
    Last edited by Olympia; 01-23-2011 at 08:48 PM.

  10. #10
    Trixie Schuba's biggest fan! blue dog's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    2,079
    Quote Originally Posted by Olympia View Post
    Golly, Sidwich, it makes me sad to hear how many dancers smoke, and smoke a lot.

    I agree that Judy Garland's voice showed wear. And her voice was one of the great instruments of the twentieth century. One thing that fascinated me on first hearing Susan Boyle (who's in her mid-to-late forties) was how youthful, almost girlish, her voice sounds. I'd be willing to bet she doesn't smoke. But if you really want to hear the effects of smoking on a voice, listen to the wispy, childlike voice of Marianne Faithfull in her first hit, "As Tears Go By," and then listen to stuff she did in her forties. Totally, totally gone. Like two different people. At least you could always recognize Garland when she sang.

    (On the other hand, look at Paul McCartney, whose voice has inevitably aged a bit but is still largely the smooth tenor of forty years past. Wonder if he quit when George died.)
    Or, Whitney Houston- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7CSYn_drgDA

  11. #11
    Custom Title
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Posts
    9,450
    Oh, yes indeed, Blue Dog. But then, Houston's decline is a tragedy all around. She too had one of the great instruments. The word wasted in several of its meanings comes to mind. If only it were just cigarettes!

    Back to skaters, I haven't seen them in close-up situations, so I don't know who is a heavy smoker. I hope none of them! Sidwich, you pointed out something I didn't realize, that skating is an anaerobic activity and not an aerobic one. (I would never have guessed that.) So maybe the damage wouldn't show up right away, or during the skater's career at all.

    This weekend I just watched the movie The King's Speech, about George VI of England and the voice therapist who helped him overcome his stutter. There was a lot of talk about smoking in the movie, because one of his physicians actually recommended smoking to "relax the larynx." However, the therapist actually forbade smoking, because he said it was unhealthful. George continued to smoke. (Probably it relieved performance stress, as it does for some skaters and dancers, alas). The irony is that smoking is one of the things that contributed to George's early death, shortly after the War. I'm sure the filmmakers had that in mind when they made smoking so prominent in the storyline.

  12. #12
    Custom Title
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    2,615
    I remember watching one of those Olympic fluff pieces; it was on Artur Dimitriev (but I can't remember if it was 92, 94, or 98). Anyway, he was smoking a cig and drinking something, I presume vodka, and talking about how he had to get back into shape to be in Olympic form. Made me giggle then....but I get your concern, not funny at all.

  13. #13
    Trixie Schuba's biggest fan! blue dog's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    2,079
    Quote Originally Posted by emma View Post
    I remember watching one of those Olympic fluff pieces; it was on Artur Dimitriev (but I can't remember if it was 92, 94, or 98). Anyway, he was smoking a cig and drinking something, I presume vodka, and talking about how he had to get back into shape to be in Olympic form. Made me giggle then....but I get your concern, not funny at all.
    1998! He had gained a lot of weight over the summer, and was smoking. He lost the weight, and went on to win Olympic gold.

    Also, in My Sergei, Katia wrote that Tatiana Volosozhar, who coached her and Sergei for a time in the early nineties was a chain smoker herself.

  14. #14
    - * - blue_idealist's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    2,747
    Quote Originally Posted by blue dog View Post
    1998! He had gained a lot of weight over the summer, and was smoking. He lost the weight, and went on to win Olympic gold.

    Also, in My Sergei, Katia wrote that Tatiana Volosozhar, who coached her and Sergei for a time in the early nineties was a chain smoker herself.
    Tatiana VOLOSOZHAR? COACHED Katia and Sergei?

  15. #15
    Trixie Schuba's biggest fan! blue dog's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    2,079
    Quote Originally Posted by blue_idealist View Post
    Tatiana VOLOSOZHAR? COACHED Katia and Sergei?
    Woopsie. I meant Tatiana Tarasova!

    I read an essay in my last year of college that people with the "artistic temperament" tend to take up smoking. Perhaps this is one of the reasons why skaters take up smoking?

Page 1 of 4 1 2 3 4 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •