Yurkiw making the best out of return from injury

17 October 2010 10:16

Canadian Alpine ski racer Larisa Yurkiw is hoping she can inspire young skiers with more than just her performance on the World Cup slopes.

Yurkiw, a FIS World Junior Championships medalist and two-time GMC Canadian champion, is working to return to snow after a crash during a World Cup race in Val d'Isere, FRA last December required surgery on her left knee.

Along with the hard work being done to get back to World Cup racing, Yurkiw said she spent time in the last few months speaking to young skiers about the sport.

"I have been speaking a lot. It's getting easier and something I am getting more comfortable with," said the 22-year-old Yurkiw of her recent public speaking engagements.

"I was talking to Toronto Ski Club kids at their fitness testing day a few weeks ago. It's a lot of fun. They are really energetic about the sport and about ski racing," said the national downhill and super-G champion.

"I am just taking to them about the sport and answering any questions that they have. I also go into a little bit about dealing with adversity. It's been good for me in ways that I did not anticipate, as they motivate and inspire me to work out hard and get my knee back in shape to return to snow."

Yurkiw has another two engagements this week, speaking to the Alpine Ontario Coaches Conference and signing autographs with Senator Nancy Greene Raine, an Olympic ski racing champion and Canadian female athlete of the 20th century, at the GMC Booth during the Toronto Ski Snowboard and Travel Show on Friday.

Yurkiw said her objective remains as it has always been, to return to snow early in the new year.

"My recovery is going as smoothly as it can and the plan to be patient with it is paying off," she said. "I am going to be in Calgary in the next few weeks to train with (ACA Conditioning Coach) Matt Jordan. And I am focused on returning to snow in January but I know that it is okay if that doesn't happen. We will just continue to be patient with it."