Yulia Lipnitskaya, the darling figure skater of the Sochi Olympics, said she hasn’t seen her skates since November and spent a long time in an Israel health clinic to treat health problems before retiring.
Lipnitskaya, who won team event gold in Sochi at age 15, retired following a three-month treatment for anorexia, it was first reported in August.
“Anorexia is a disease of the 21st century, it occurs quite often,” Lipnitskaya said in an interview published by the Russian Figure Skating Federation, according to a translation. “Unfortunately, not everyone overcomes it. I’ve considered that there was nothing bad if I’d openly speak about it. I only regret that I did not do this earlier, because this is not the first year this has been going on, nor the second or third year.”
Lipnitskaya struggled after becoming the youngest Olympic figure skating champion since 1936 and winning a world silver medal the following month.
In fact, she said in the interview published Tuesday that she wanted to try ice dancing after Sochi. That didn’t happen.
Staying in singles, she was ninth and seventh at the next two Russian Championships and ended her career at the Rostelecom Cup in November, finishing in last place.
“I came home, put my skates in the closet, and I have not seen them since,” she said, according to the translation. “I’m no longer attracted to the ice. In January, I left for the clinic. That’s the whole story.”
Lipnitskaya said that while she was in the Israel clinic, her phone was stolen. She purchased a new phone, but she only knew one person’s phone number by heart — her mom.
When Lipnitskaya returned home from the clinic, she and her mom decided together that she would retire.
Non-competitive ice shows have made her offers, but Lipnitskaya said she has no desire to participate in them. Her mind may change, but for now she is focused on enrolling in a university.
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