Katherine Reutter, Speed Skater
Name: Katherine Laine Reutter
Event: Short Track Speedskating (500m, 1000m, 1500m, 3000m, 3000m relay)
Awards: Olympic Silver and Bronze Medal; 3 time National Champion, 23 time World Cup Medalist
Words to Sweat by mantra: If you rest, you rust.
The Sassy Side of Speed Skating
For those who are new to speed skating here are some fun facts:
- The funniest thing about my sport has got to be the uniform! Full body spandex can be daunting, but at least it’s fast.
- Speed skating is an individual sport , but we train as a team. This means that we all have each others’ back, but also that on race day we have to compete against each other for our own spot.
- Relays are the most difficult and most confusing thing in the world of speed skating! It’s fun to watch as 16 skaters from four different countries all skate on the track at different times, but as an athlete, relays are without doubt the most terrifying thing! One mistake can take a whole pack down.
- Our sport can be very confusing because a lot of disqualifications come at the discretion of each individual official, but for the most part everything evens out in the end. For every one time that I’m disqualified there are two times that someone else is disqualified in my favor.
- Short track blades are “bent” and “rocked.” They are bent to the left to match the radius of the track. Rocked is a term used for the amount of the bottom of the blade that touches the ice. Only about a third of the blade is touching the ice at any time based on if I’m accelerating, just skating, or using power and technique to skate.
- Racing skill is the number one factor in who is going to win a race. There are girls who can skate way faster than I can, but my strength is my strategy and it lets me skate with the best girls in the world.
Root for Reutter!
People worldwide band together to root for Katherine Reutter. You’ll find them donning her signature green color cheering her on to victory. If you’ like to learn more about Katherine, she has a personal website and more Olympic-specific information can be found on the Team USA website.