November 08, 2021
Nickname: Lo or Lolo
Hometown: Lévis, Québec, Canada
Spirit Animal: Panda – “The panda is very popular in my origin country, but it also represents calm, peace and strength; 3 qualities that I have. It is also a very sweet animal that loves to eat and sleep.”
Born in China, but proudly Canadian, Lori-Ann currently trains in Ste-Julie, Quebec just outside of Montreal with her partner Thierry Ferland.
“I started skating when I was 4 years old in my hometown skating club. My mom was a figure skating coach at the time, so she initiated me to this sport. After that, I started doing competitions in singles, and at the age of 8, I had my first skating partner. We were beginners, but it was a great way to learn pairs and I’m very grateful to have had the chance to learn some pairs technique at a very young age. A few years later, around the age of 12, I started skating with my current partner, Thierry. We were both very young, had the same singles coach, and skated in the same skating club, so we gave it a try. Ten years later, we still skate together!”
“Until I was 17, I was doing both disciplines, pairs and singles… I can tell you, it’s not easy to do a competition with 4 programs in 2 days! When I started doing JGP in pairs, I decide to focus only on that discipline. At that time, we were still training in Quebec, but for our second year of junior grand prix, my partner and I decided to move to Montreal to a pair skating school.”
“I moved to my own apartment in Montreal when I was 17 years old. After that, we improved a lot, I have gained more maturity, and my motivation is stronger; despite the ups and downs I had.”
In 2018, Lori-Ann and Thierry won the Junior National title, leading to their participation in the World Team Trophy last April.
“It was an amazing experience and my biggest competition so far.”
This year the pair is participating in their first Senior Grand Prix Series, most recently placing 7th at Skate Canada.
Describe yourself in one word: Empathetic
Q: Who is someone in your life that inspires or motivates you?
“My parents and my family because I want to make them proud of me. They are always there for me, and they did, and still do, so much things for me. Even if I no longer live with them, I talk to then almost every day and I know I can count on them.”
Q: Who was your skating ‘role-model’ when you were younger?
“For sure Joannie Rochette. She was probably the role-model of everyone in Quebec. It was crazy to think that someone from a little hometown and someone who speaks French as a first language like me could make it to the Olympics. That motivates me because I saw that everything is possible. You can come from anywhere in the world and go to the Olympics if you work hard.”
Q: What is your favourite element in skating?
“My favourite element is lifts because we worked so hard to make them look easier and to get levels 4 on all of them. Now, they are super easy and we work on details. We are not nervous to do them anymore.”
“My least favourite element is twist but I still like to do [it], just not as much as other elements. We do a lot of off-ice to try and make it bigger [and perfect] technique. It is such a timing [focused] element that we have to be very precise and consistent physically and mentally so that everything will become effortless one day.”
Q: What is your favourite type of off-ice training?
“I love gym! You can work on so many things without always doing the same things, there’s a lot of variation movement and exercises you can do. I always feel so good after a good [workout] and it built my confidence.”
Q: What is your go to hype up song to get you in the zone?
“I change my mind very often but right now my hype up song would be How will I Know by David Guetta.”
Q: Do you have any pre-competition rituals or superstitions?
“I don’t do anything precise before competition, but I always tie my left skate first.”
Q: Do you do any type of visualization or meditation?
“I like to do visualization; it really helps me to focus and feel the good technique. I started at a very young age. My coach would let me visualize my solos before my warm-up at competition so that I wouldn’t forget my program! Now, I [still use visualization] before competitions, and sometimes when I feel like I need to do it to make me more confident.”
Q: When competing in high pressure scenarios, how do you remain composed?
“I would say to myself, “One thing at the time” and “t’es bonne, t’es fine, t’es belle t’es capable”. My mom always said that to me when I was younger before my competitions. It means, “You’re good, you’re nice, you’re pretty, you can do it.”
Q: Did you ever endure some type of adversity in your career?
“When I was between 15 and 17 years old, I struggled with foot and ankles injuries because of too many repetitive wrong movements. When I think about it today, I think I was skating way too much and not necessarily in a healthy and safe environment, which lead to injuries, mental stress, anxiety, and lack of confidence issues. Luckily, my team and I managed to find solutions and today, things are going so much better.”
“Balancing school and skating was also a big struggle and it’s still not super easy. [When I was younger], my motivation for school wasn’t the best. All I wanted to do was to skate. My parents pushed me to continue school because, of course it is so important, and today I study in a field that I’m interested in, so motivation is [much] better. When I was in my last 3 years of high school, I was in a program called sport-étude, so I would go to school in the morning and then skate in the afternoon. Because of that, school was a little bit harder because we had to learn the same [material as everyone else, therefore], everything was a little bit more rushed I would say, but totally worth.”
“In Quebec, we have something call CEGEP and it is like the transition between high school and university. For me, those years were the worst, mostly because of a lack of motivation. I was at a point where I didn’t really know what I wanted to do after my skating career, so it was hard to study in [subjects I was not] passionate about. I finally graduated from CEGEP and now I know what I want to do after my skating career, because even if I do not plan to retire soon, it’s important for me to have a plan B because we never know what can happen.”
Q: What is something that most people do not know about you?
“It’s not very funny, but in spring 2017 I broke my elbow and I had to have a surgery to get screws to repair it. Luckily, I was able to compete during the summer competition and I got ready on time for the junior grand prix season. It is crazy because this happened the same year that I won nationals, so 8 months after the accident.”
Q: What is your ultimate goal with skating?
“Since I’m very young my ultimate dream/goal is the Olympics, and it is still a goal for me today.”
Q: What is one major life lesson you’ve learned from skating?
“Skating has taught me so many things about life. It mostly gave me the sense of responsibility and discipline [at an early age] which helps me in life in general.”
Q: On days that you don’t feel like training, what keeps you motivated?
“Because I do pairs skating, I feel like I have to respect my partner. If I don’t feel motivated, I still do my best to make him feel good, and if one of us doesn’t feel so good at a practice, we try to adjust and work on things different. It’s mostly the respect of each other.”
Q: What is it that you love most about skating?
“I love training with my training mates every day. It’s like a second family and we all live the same life, so we all understand each other. I also like to go to competitions because you get so see more skaters and live more life and skating experience as well as travelling the world.
Q: If skating didn’t exist and you could be anything else in the world what would it be?
“I think I would do gymnastic or dance. I have always been attracted to artistic sports and I love watching these sports.”
Q: Do you have any hobbies outside of skating?
“I love dogs and I love doing my nails! I also love playing the piano but unfortunately, I have less time to play.”
Q: What are your aspirations or career goals after competitive skating?
“My goal outside of skating is to find a job that I like as much as I like skating right now. I plan to continue university and find a good full-time job after my skating career.”
Lori-Ann currently attends university online and studies communications.
“Outside of skating, I’m very proud to have been able to continue my school and my education because it is very important for me to have something else besides skating.”
Q: Where is one place you’ve never been but hope to visit?
“The United Kingdom, because of the culture and the many types of views you can have.”
Q: What’s your favourite memory from skating?
“When my best friend and I shared the podium at the 2018 nationals in Vancouver. After that, we both stayed in Vancouver for the rest of the week to enjoy the city and to watch the senior events because of the Olympic year! We were rooming together, and we had so much fun before, during and after the competition.”
Q: Any advice for young and aspiring skaters?
“Take care of your body and your mind. Also, don’t give up when things are not going [as you would like for them] to. Good things take time so don’t rush the process.”
Lastly, what does it mean to you to have a #ChampionshipMindset?
“For me, to have a #ChampionshipMindset is to have a positive attitude no matter how a practice or competition went. It is also important to respect yourself and enjoy what you do. Even if figure skating is an individual sport, being humble and respectful with your training mates and competitors is very important.”