Nam Nguyen Vietnamese -Canadian, 11 years old, golden medalist in Free Skating Long Program
11 years old
At the age of eight, Nam Nguyen was the youngest Figure Skater ever to become the National Juvenile Men's Champion at the Canadian Figure Skating Championships. He has retained his national title every year since and has now moved up to the Novice category."I am a very energetic and disciplined boy and I am passionate about Figure Skating," says Nam, who currently trains at the BC Centre of Excellence in Burnaby with world and Olympic coach Joanne McLeod.
Like many other children his age, Nam lists playing electronic games and chatting with friends among his favourite activities. "I also love school, especially reading and math," says the Brentwood Park Elementary student. "And I play the piano and guitar in my spare time."
As someone who has achieved a great deal at such a young age, Nam hopes that his demonstration of how hard work and determination can pay off will inspire other children. "I was very proud to be asked by the City of Richmond to participate in a Countdown to 2010 Olympic Event and also by Premier Gordon Campbell to represent BC Youth Athletes at the grand opening of the Olympic Speedskating Oval in my hometown of Richmond."
"It is very difficult for my family to keep up with the costs related to my Skating including coaching fees, ice time, competition fees, travel and equipment," explains Nam. The generous support of his Growing Champions sponsor Port Metro helps to lighten the burden for his family and allows him every opportunity to reach his potential as a world-class Figure Skater.
Nam Nguyen is Why the Vietnamese Will Be Watching Men’s Figure Skating at 2018 Winter Olympics
Viet Nam is a country in Southeast Asia not exactly keen on winter sports, never mind figure skating, never mind men’s figure skating in a its macho patriarchal culture. I know. I’m Vietnamese. It also means I can also tell you it’s a hypocritical patriarchal society because everybody knows the Mother runs the house. That’s why our ultimate cursing is towards the Mother, and nobody cares much for cursing our Fathers. Wow, that link was insightful! I just looked up a link to demonstrate what I knew of Vietnamese cursing and never knew there were so many. But trust me, all of it is mostly rare compared to the curses towards one’s Mother.
Anyhow, at the 2018 Winter Olympics, wherever it may be held, there just might be huge Vietnamese interest in men’s figure skating. That would be due to a kid named Nam Nguyen from Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada. At just eight years old, Nam was the youngest skater ever to become the Canadian National Juvenile Men’s Champion. He has retained his national title every year since and was the Junior Men’s Champion in December 2010. His outstanding free skate there is below. The kid didn’t miss a jump and was also very artistic.
That earned Nam a chance to perform at the 2010 Winter Olympics Figure Skating Exhibition Gala Saturday night. He was quite the showman there, though nerves probably caused him to fall on his first jump. Watching him, the only show man in the building who could have outdone him was Evgeni Plushenko. Canadian champion Patrick Chan had better watch out! This kid could jump and punch the lights out, has a ton of charisma to boot, and doesn’t look like he needs a face lift to have a genuine emotional reaction.
That said, the nerdy get up they dressed Nam in didn’t exactly do his image a lot of good, despite tearing off a jump suit to start his routine.
It’s hard to predict the future, of course. Lots of people who try don’t do very well, whether their name is Nostradamus or Not a Damn Chance. However, if Nam continues to work hard, stays injury free and his Parents don’t make him study more than he skates as Vietnamese Parents are prone to do in a culture that values education so much, the kid has got an incredible future in figure skating. He won’t be able to compete until the 2018 Winter Olympics due to age restrictions. However, he should be able to make an impression on the Canadian national titles a few years before that.
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