Her last name Zavialova indicates it: Ekaterina hasn't been born in Canada but in Russia, where she also grew up.
Her parents decided to move to North America when she was twelve years old and this is when her journey to an athletic career began.
She discovered snowboarding.
“It started off as a search of social belonging in a foreign country; search of environment that didn’t judge me, allowed me to be who I am and also didn’t require me to talk much – speaking English was still out of the question,” posted Ekaterina on a website to fundraise some money for her Olympic dream.
Because meanwhile, her goals with the sport of snowboarding did change a lot.
“Slowly my goals had expanded to achieve something greater than I ever intended. I wanted to go to the Olympics.”
However, wanting something very badly might result in set-backs if you don't make it. Especially if less than half a second decided of being chosen or not.
“So far my biggest disappointment to date was probably missing the Olympics in Vancouver, by probably less than half a second and being named the alternate.”
An ironic fact as her father was also an alternate for the 1984 Olympics in Sarajevo (luge).
“This only fueled me to work harder and rewrite history.”
And she did, constantly progressing her riding and finally making the Canadian National Team in 2012.
But last season, she was thrown back once again when the young athlete tore her ACL. However, Zavialova aims to come back even stronger than before thus fulfilling her biggest goal of finally qualifying for Winter Olympics. This time at Sochi, 2014.