Mar 29, 2013 8:45 PM by Greg Smith
It only took a few minutes at the end of January to turn Max Aaron into the the next contender in men's figure skating. Since then, life has been different for the 21 year-old, but his skating style and ambition haven't changed.
It's been a wild couple of months for Max Aaron. A national championship will do that.
"Definitely this season has been crazy and really intense," Aaron said. "But I love every minute of it and every second of it. Coming back from the championships after the big title, it was really surprising and really amazing to have that title under my belt."
It was even more surprising to his detractors. Because of his hockey background and relative newcomer status, Aaron has had more doubters than most.
"I've heard that for years and years and years," Aaron said. "But it's something you get used to. Emails, twitter messages, bad facebook messages, you know, I kind of read it, but I kind of brush it off, and I use it as motivation to train. It makes me who I am today, because that makes me so motivated to compete well, and just prove all those people wrong."
The number of people he's proved wrong will keep growing now that he's mastered his signature quadruple jump.
"I'm actually going attempt at another quad in each program," says Aaron. "So i'll have 2 in the short, and 3 in the long. That's huge because not many men do that. I just want to have that challenge. I need the quad because I can't make up the points in components, I can only make it up in the air. So, its definitely difficult, but I make it happen."
It's clear he's got the mental toughness, but sometimes he has to display the physical toughness. He had to draw on both after a wipeout during warm-ups of the world championships.
"I really slammed my head against the wall," Aaron said. "But I kind of brushed it off. I think it would've shaken someone else who didn't have the hockey background. I've been hit in the head so many times playing hockey, and I've been knocked out, but I didn't ever want to lay on the ice, you know, you never want to show weakness. You know, you learn from that. They're all experiences that you learn from and you take into life, and that's what happened, and I kind of brought up the past and I learned how to handle it."
If a wipe out in warmups leads to a title, lets hope he gets knocked out before the world team trophy event in two weeks.