From 14 to 26 June, two-time Olympic champion Kaitlyn Lawes spent 12 days in Japan, sharing her passion for curling through the Federation’s Olympic Celebration Tour, organised by the Japan Curling Association.
During her stay, Lawes visited high schools in Wakkanai, Tokyo and Karuizawa, and held ten sessions of curling practice.
“This Olympic Celebration Tour was originally scheduled to happen in 2020. Unfortunately, due to the pandemic it was postponed. When the opportunity came up to finally make it happen, it was an easy yes for me,” explains Lawes.
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“I love teaching and sharing my experiences. It makes me so happy seeing the smiles on everyone’s faces when they try something new or when they get to hold the Olympic medals. Japan is a very special place to me and I am so grateful for all the participants that attended one of our ten clinics over the last two weekends.”
Thinking of her best memories in Japan, she adds, “It’s hard to pick just one thing as my favourite part of my time in Japan. But if I have to choose, it’s the people. Everyone welcomed me with open arms, the biggest smiles and showed me immense kindness. I hope I can pass along those values to my daughter.
“Everyone was open to trying my suggestions on the ice. We also had lots of great conversations and laughs along the way. My heart is full, and the future of curling in Japan is very bright,” she concludes.
The World Curling Federation’s Olympic Celebration Tour is supported by the Foundation for Global Sports Development and is a series of instructional tours with Olympic curlers intended to promote curling. Click here to find out more about the Olympic Celebration Tour and how to organise one.