Former Olympian and United States figure skater, Gracie Gold, made her return to international competitive figure skating in Moscow during the Grand Prix. After a series of disappointing competitive seasons and missing out on the 2018 Olympics in PyeongChang, Gracie Gold revealed to the public and respective global media that her mental and physical health has been in a diminishing road of decline. These intimate issues included depression, an eating disorder, and anxiety.
Gracie Gold comeback performance in the Rostelecom Cup competition in Moscow resulted in a disappointing short program with an overall 10th place position. Despite a coaching change and different approach to competitive training, Gold missed out on several jumping passes that were significant in the scoring system. Subsequently, Gold announced that she will be withdrawing from the competition before the long program division in order to focus on her mental health and developing circumstances.
"The expectation wasn't to come here and set the world on fire. I just needed to compete," the United States figure skater said. "On-brand for my personality is to go to one of the hardest Grands Prix in Moscow to do it, not at some tiny competition. The goal was just to show up and try to be brave."
Gracie Gold's attempt to come back to competitive figure skating at a senior level is complex and quite difficult. Although Gold depicted efforts of recovery, she had a support team that potentially placed pressure on Gold to compete. The figure skating world is quickly evolving, with young female teenagers completing quadruple jumping passes. Gold's performance in Rostelecom Cup investigates the topic of figure skating trumping the significance of mental health.
Several former competitors in various international circumstances have faced retirement due to the psychological and physical requirements that the sport needs for success and respective achievement. If Gracie Gold decides to continue her competitive career, I hope she will approach the sport in a gradual method that takes care of her psychological well-being.