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Updated : January 29, 2021

Introduction of Olympic torchbearer 03

  A “Little Mermaid” born and raised in Fujimi City wishing to convey a Torch of Gratitude

【 Fujimi city, Miyosa town, Fujimino city 】 Ms. Sora Nakatani

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Ms. Sora Nakatani won the Junior Olympics for artistic swimming at Grade 6. With hopes of being an active member at Mermaid Japan, she trains hard everyday. She states that the support she receives from people of Fujimi City is what holds her up when competing. Ms. Nakatani hopes to articulate her gratitude for the people of the region by running as torchbearer.

 

—When did you start artistic swimming?

I started artistic swimming in second grade when I watched the Olympic games in London. I’ve been going to swimming school from the age of 4 with my older brother, but I was fascinated at how synchronized swimming (artistic swimming) not only uses the component of swimming much like in competitive swimming, but also incorporates expression alongside music and this was what led me to tell my parents that I’d like to try it. Although this is also a sport performed in water, what really was appealing to me was how each person has their own moves which is different to that of competitive swimming. I was hooked ever since I started a trial at a school in Minami-Yono which takes over 30 minutes to commute. 

 

—What makes artistic swimming so appealing?

I’m very good and am passionate about performing solo; it’s fun to express what I want alongside music. On the other hand, performing as a team and/or duet requires synchronization. During practices, we’d communicate as a team, give each other feedback on each other’s performance, and work on synchronization. When I first started, I was able to push through because of the support those older than me gave me.

 

 

—What’s something you’d like to work on in the future?

Many people tell me that I have beautiful legs and that I should perform something that would show more of it, but I prefer a performance where I show the upper half of my body. Performances that show my legs require me to dive in water, which is very tough. I’ve been told that my legs will be thick when using the quadriceps, hence, whenever I go up the stairs, I try to consciously move my butt muscles similar to when squatting. I’d like to train hard working out to maintain good posture as my trainer tells me that a weakening of my back muscles will lead to poor posture.

 

—Starting the sport in second grade and winning the Junior Olympics in grade 6, it seems that you’ve been improving smoothly.

We won as a team in sixth grade. It made me really happy as I did not expect us to win given how strong the Kansai team is. Ever since starting the sport there has not been large hurdles and I’ve been having fun practicing; however, it was difficult that I could not go out to play in elementary school. I’ll be preparing for examination(s) soon and will need to balance both my studies and training. It makes me nervous whenever I think about how people are studying while I train.

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—I heard that Yukiko Inui, an active competitor in both, the London and the Rio Olympics, is an athlete you look up to.

Yes. She has been the representative from the time the London Olympics took place, and even to this day, she is one of the main athletes that represent Japan. The fact that she has been in the leading position for a long time, along with her strong expression, charismatic eyes, and her artistry as a performer are all things that make me look up to her. In addition, Yumi Adachi is another athlete I look up to as she comes from the same club team in Minami-Yono and she visits our team once a year for a lecture, where I received her signature.

 

—Lastly, please share with us what you are enthusiastic about as a torchbearer!

I’m very happy to run as a torchbearer around Fujimi City where I was born and raised. I’ve been fortunate to be able to participate in Fujimi City’s events, to be on the magazine for public relations, and to have been able to join pep rallies that the city has opened prior to tournaments. The support I receive from the citizens of Fujimi is reassuring and I feel the encouragement from the people in the region. I’d like to give my fullest when running to give thanks the local people.

Ms. Sora Nakatani recommendation

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Fujimi city’s Park

Check the other torchbearer

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Ms.Himena Otaka
Mr.Takumi Aizawa
Mr.Masami Horikoshi
Ms. Yui  Kimura
Mr. Masato Arai
Mr. Ian Scott

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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