by Thailan Pham
Sports Illustrated/Getty ImagesAs the newly crowned U.S. national champion, ice skater Gracie Gold is showing up to the Sochi Olympics on a swell of positive momentum. Now the Smuckers spokesperson and skater has her sights set on the podium -- and it doesn't hurt that the 18-year-old couldn't have a luckier last name. Poised to win, ya think?
For Gold, performing is "a way to share what I love to do with the rest of the world. You can share that emotion, like an actor," the ice skater says.
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If you've seen her powerhouse triple-triple combinations, you'll agree she's quite a pro at pairing athleticism with artistry.
"Skating can make you feel athletic, graceful, beautiful," says Gold. "That's what makes [the sport] so special."
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To stay strong for all the show-stopping flips and balancing acts she does on ice, the skater focuses on her core in the gym. Her favorite do-anywhere move? Core rotations with a resistance band, which target her obliques. Get a few of these in under your belt and you'll be ready to hit the ice thanks to overall increased balance (and a whittled waist, to boot!)
THE MOVE: Core Rotation with Band
Courtesy of subject
Wrap a resistance band around a pole or a bench at a height even with your elbows. Stand at a distance that will give you medium resistance, grasping the handles in front of you with both hands, palms facing your body. Keep arms bent so that handles are in front of your belly button. Twist to the right and then the left, being sure to keep your entire lower body rigid and back straight. Do 2 sets of 10 on both sides. If you find yourself getting tired and moving your hips, do more sets with less reps, such as 4 sets of 6.