RL Japanese skaters on Yuri!!! on ICE part 2

Satsuki-Muramoto

Satsuki Muramoto’s photo is from the official website of
the Figure & Speed Skating Association of Thailand

And here’s my second translation from the guidebook. This time, we have former ladies singles skaters Akiko Suzuki and Satsuki Muramoto, who have both continued to be involved in the figure skating world even after they retired from competition in 2013. Suzuki is the skater who joined Kenji Miyamoto as “course lecturer” on this special Yuri!!! on ICE figure skating program back on March 3. And as the above image shows, Muramoto is the model for Phichit’s coach at his home rink in Thailand. Please read on if you want to hear their thoughts on the impact that Yuri!!! on ICE has had on their world.

Akiko Suzuki

She says that her favourite program is “In Regards to Love ~Eros~.” Today, we ask her about her memories of being a lecturer at a Yuri!!! event and how she felt about the entire series.

“The human relationships that encompass the skating world and the bond with one’s coach really struck me to the core.”

Could you tell us what you think of the show?

The movements in figure skating were captured really accurately, and it was just beautiful to watch. On top of that, the human relationships and mentality that encompass the world of skating were depicted in such great detail, it all felt real, and that the relationship of trust with one’s coach has really stayed with me. The charm of this anime is, I think, the way that little parcels of amusement are scattered throughout the beautiful and delicate world of skating. And finally, when I was having tea out in town one day, the people at the table next door were excitedly chatting about the show, which made me incredibly happy.

From your point of view as a skater, what would you say you focused on?

I felt that I could really see the choreographer, Kenji-sensei in the skating programs in the show. Like, in the movement of the arms and the head, and how the skaters use their free leg during the step sequence. And the scenes depicting squabbles between skaters and their coaches—it felt like I was watching my own quarrels with Nagakubo-sensei.1

Could you tell us about the time when you appeared on the program “An Intensive Course that will help you enjoy Figure Skating 100x more!”

The fans that gathered for the Course were more passionate than I could have ever imagined, so it was pretty overwhelming. But I was really happy to see that so many people watched Yuri!!! and become interested in figure skating. This was also the first time I’d spoken with Kubo-sensei, but her love for figure skating wasn’t just leaking but streaming out—it was fantastic! I remember thinking that if this love didn’t exist, then this show would never have been born. Other things that have stuck with me include how Honjou Yuutarou, who plays Ji Guang Hong, resembles (Japanese junior skater) Sota Yamamoto, and that the luches were pork cutlet bowls and someone added pirozhki on top of that.

Finally, could you leave a message for the fans?

I’m incredibly happy that many of you have come to like figure skating because of this anime! Let’s get even more excited about it all together from here on out. Please cheer for the real life skaters as well!

Photo caption: For “Eros,” I really like the how you can see Yuuri’s provocative side, and also the way his free leg is used to accentuate that landing of the last jump.

Profile: D.O.B. March 28, 1985. From Toyohashi City in Aichi Prefecture. She is the 2013 Japanese National Champion, and came 8th at both the Vancouver and Sochi Olympic Games. Amongst other things, she’s currently active not just as a professional skater but also as a choreographer.

Satsuki Muramoto

Satsuki-san, who is also said to be the model for one of Phichit’s coaches. *Yuri!!! on ICE is incredibly popular in Thailand, where she’s working as a coach, and they even have fans coming for photoshoots at the rink.*

“There are people who come here in cosplay for photoshoots, too.”

You’re said to be the model for Phichit’s coach in Yuri!!! on ICE.

That made me happy. There are everyday people who come to the rink in Thailand where I coach in order to have cosplay photoshoots.

Do they call out to you as “Phichit’s coach”?

They do. I’ve even taken photos with them. Yuri!!! on ICE seems to be incredibly popular in Thailand as well. So there are many people coming to the rink to cosplay (as the characters) and do photoshoots, even going so far as to recreate the judges in the anime. We get both guys and girls coming to do that, in quite impressive numbers.

So there’s been an increase in the number of people coming to the rink as customers?

Indeed there has. The rink is actually outside of the city, so not many people usually come to skate here. But since Yuri!!! on ICE started, there have been a lot more people coming on weekends. We haven’t seen an increase in the number of students yet, but I would be pleased if that were the case in time to come.

Photo caption: (Above) Next to Phichit is a lady who looks very much like Muramoto. (Below) This is the only Olympic-sized rink in Thailand.2

Profile: D.O.B. May 15, 1990. From Hyogo Prefecture. A former ladies singles skater, she came 8th at Japanese Nationals in 2008. She retired in 2013, and has since worked as a coach in Thailand. Her younger sister is ice dancer Kana Muramoto, who also represents Japan.


  1. Hiroshi Nagakubo is a retired skater who now works as a coach. 
  2. A better range of Muramoto’s competitive performances are available on nicovideo. You can also see her at work at the Imperial World rink in this video. One of her students, Promsan RATTANADILOK NA PHUKET THA, has been competiting on the Junior Circuit for the past few years. 

About karice
MAG fan, freelance translator and political scientist-in-training. I also love musicals, travel and figure skating!

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