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In Her Shoes

Sofie Roberg skates her way to success (and right smack into our children’s hearts!)

EDITED Sofie_1 Have you ever been asked the question ‘What are you passionate about?’ and suddenly found yourself groping for words? Well, you are not alone. Most of us spend a lifetime trying to figure out our true calling. Sadly, with our busy and fast-paced lifestyle, it’s so easy to confuse hobbies with passion, or jobs with passion, for that matter. Some people, however, are lucky enough to have found their passion early in life. Some are even luckier to have turned their passions into fulfilling careers.

Sofie Roberg, a principal skater of Disney on Ice’s upcoming show – Treasure Trove, is one such person. She knew she wanted to skate at age of seven. Growing up in a small town of Bollnäs, Sweden, at the time when they didn’t have skating classes for young children, Sofie persevered. “I was doing gymnastics as a young kid since they didn’t have skating classes for young ones at that point in my city,” Sofie shared. “I went for a new group of gymnastics for higher level but no one except me showed up. Luckily, we found out that the teacher also was a skating coach and was soon starting a new group. We received a phone call that the new skating group was about to start. From then on, at the age of seven, skating has been my sport.”

Since 2009, Sofie has been putting smiles on children’s faces all over the world as one of the lead performers of Disney On Ice, a series of touring ice shows produced by Feld Entertainment. Amidst the excitement and challenges of travelling and performing, Sofie draws inspiration and fulfilment from the audience, especially the children. “My favourite part of performing is seeing how excited the kids are to see their favourite characters,” she enthused.

This month, we will have the chance to see Sofie perform in Disney On Ice presents Treasure Trove, an action-packed ice adventure that takes audiences on a journey through their favourite stories from different Disney animated features.

Pretty, passionate and fun-loving, Sofie, indeed, has all the wonderful qualities we love about our favourite Disney princesses.

Ezyhealth: What inspired you to become a professional skater?

Sofie: I always watched Disney On Ice as a child whenever they came to Sweden, and from then on it became a dream of mine to be a professional skater. I also had a Russian coach that had been a performer for Disney On Ice, and I wanted to follow in her footsteps.

Ezyhealth: What do you like most about skating and performing in general?

Sofie: It is an amazing feeling to perform in front of a big audience, knowing that you are a role model for so many kids. I love seeing all the smiling kids and hearing them scream while we skate on the ice. It’s a wonderful job that I am so grateful for!

Ezyhealth: Please tell us about your role in the Disney on Ice Treasure Trove show.

Sofie: I portray the role of Rapunzel from the movie, Tangled, and I absolutely love it! All the kids are very excited to see Rapunzel, and so many kids like to dress up as her. That makes me so happy that I get to play a character that is so popular. Rapunzel has a strong personality, full of many endearing behaviours. She is defiant, kind, sweet, shy, romantic, energetic, confident, adventurous, creative, funny, and child-like. Rapunzel is 18 years old and is mostly known for her signature, golden blonde hair, which in length is around 70 feet.

EDITED Sofie_2Ezyhealth: What did it take for you to be part of the show?

Sofie: I started to skate as a kid and have been skating my whole life as a competitive skater until I applied for Disney On Ice in 2008. I had to write a resume and send them a video of myself skating. I was honoured to be hired.

Ezyhealth: How did you prepare for this role?

Sofie: I was first an understudy for Rapunzel for a year before I became principal and that prepared me a lot. I also watched the movie Tangled many times and learned about the character from there.

Ezyhealth: What can we expect from the show?

Sofie: It is a great show that is a lot of fun to watch. Some of the audience also get a chance to be part of the show – from riding in the teacup with Alice in Wonderland or raising the lantern with Rapunzel and Flynn Rider. But first the audience will get a chance to warm up with Jessie and Woody from Toy Story. You will see Peter Pan and Tinkerbell, as well as Aladdin and Jasmine on the magic carpet. The show has a little bit of everything, so every generation will enjoy it! In the first act you will see parts from Toy Story, Alice in Wonderland and Peter Pan. Second act starts with Lion King followed by Snow White, Aladdin, Little Mermaid, Tangled, Princess and the Frog, and will end with a finale that will leave you speechless. Of course, you will see Mickey, Minnie, Donald and Goofy as well in the show. So really, it is a great and fun show for all ages!

Ezyhealth: Is life on the road really that fun and exciting as it seems?

Sofie: Yes, it is a lot of fun and very exciting, especially when we’re touring in Asia, and get to go to so many new and different countries. I love to meet all kinds of people, learn about new countries and cultures, as well as try new kinds of food. I don’t take for granted this great opportunity of being able to travel and see the world while working my dream job.

Ezyhealth: What’s your typical work-day like?

Sofie: It depends on how many shows we have that day, but I always do some kind of workout. Either I go to the gym, do some yoga myself, or just use the time at the venue for some exercises. I always skate a session with my partner/boyfriend, Matvey Matveev, to prepare ourselves for the show and maintain our skating level, as well as work on new elements/tricks. I also try to Skype my mum and dad for a bit every day. During spare time, I’m just online reading news and staying in touch with friends at home or reading about things to do for sightseeing. The Internet is my everything on the road. I also just found a new hobby, Sudoku, so I do that to kill some time. I always take a nap between shows if we have more than one hour to rest for the next one. I like to sleep and need a lot of sleep just like a baby.

Ezyhealth: What do you do when you’re not working/on tour?

Sofie: I try to spend as much time as possible with my family at home in Sweden. I have a step family that I lived with for five years while I went for school/skating in a different town. That is an eight-hour drive from my parents’ house, so it takes up some time to be able to visit both places. I also try to see all my friends at home as much as possible. Even if I don’t see them much while I am on tour, we have a really good relationship and they are very supportive of what I am doing, which I am grateful for. I also spend a lot of time at the gym, doing yoga, running, or just walking with our dog. I love all kinds of exercise. It also makes me stay fit and keep up my shape before I go back on tour.

Ezyhealth: Any beauty and wellness tips you learned while on the road?

Sofie: It is harder to keep  a healthy lifestyle on the road since it is a lot of travelling and eating out, and sometimes it can be hard to find gyms to maintain your workouts. But what you can do is to make the best choices when it comes to food. There is always a healthy option. Try to cook as much food as possible yourself; home cooked meals are always better. It is maybe harder to do on the road and takes more effort, but your body will thank you for doing that. There is always a way to workout even if you don’t have access to a gym or any equipment. Just put on your running shoes and go for a run or walk and explore the new city – you accomplish two things at the same time. I love to do that. Also, use your imagination and maybe do some yoga/stretching in your room or find a park where you can exercise. The best you can do for your body is to make sure you sleep well, and go outside for at least a little bit everyday to see the sunlight and get some fresh air.

Ezyhealth: Can you share with us the fitness benefits of ice/roller skating?

Sofie: You get really good balance and coordination as well as strong legs from ice skating. You also become very flexible. That’s what I would say the most common benefits of ice skating that apply to me.

Ezyhealth: For those who want to take up ice/roller skating for the first time, what tips do you recommend?

Sofie: Try to practice your balance off-ice first with different kinds of exercises that would make it easier for you on the ice. Everyone can dance, and skating is dancing on the ice, so just put on your favourite song and let it flow and have fun! Remember, it is never too late to start ice skating, and everyone can do it. I met a woman one time that was past 70 years old and was skating! It just made me smile.

by Maripet L. Poso
Posted by ezyhealth on Mar 5 2014. Filed under Cover Stories. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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