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Big surprise for slalom skater

Photos by RICKY LAI 

Grigg demonstrating her freestyle skills to an appreciative audience. Instructor Azrril Zulkifli giving some pointers to the young skaters.
IT was a big surprise for world-renowned freestyle slalom skater Naomi Grigg. 

The 27-year-old schoolteacher was in Malaysia at the invitation of Skateline Malaysia recently for a three-day freestyle slalom skating demonstration. 

During her stay in Malaysia, Grigg, who is from Swindon, England, had the opportunity to watch young skaters from Skateline Malaysia's development programme. 

“I am surprised with the young kids’ skating skills. They were simply superb for their age. I am confident they have the potential to excel in slalom skating as well. The local instructors have taught them the basics of skating. 

“My responsibility was to give them an insight into slalom skating.  

“Some of the young kids can skate beautifully and they were enthusiastic,'' said Grigg after a demonstration at Kiara Park in Kuala Lumpur. 

Slalom is a skating technique that requires skaters to navigate, in a variety of styles and moves, through a zig-zag path between and around a set of evenly spaced cones without knocking any over.  

Though requiring utmost precision, a good slalom skater makes the moves look artistic and effortless. 

About 50 skaters attended the demonstration where Griggs surprised the participants with the graceful and effortless slalom skills. 

Skateline Malaysia instructor Eusoffe Chua said they were fortunate to have a famous slalom skater like Grigg to share her experiences. 

“She is one of the best in the world. Our young skaters had a wonderful time with her.  

“In fact, they are motivated after seeing Grigg go through the routines with ease,'' said Eusoffe. 

Grigg demonstrating her freestyle skills to an appreciative audience. Instructor Azrril Zulkifli giving some pointers to the young skaters.
Grigg, who started skating when she was 15 years old, ventured into slalom skating four years ago.  

Surprisingly, she did not have any instructors and learned the skills by watching videos.  

Soon, she was taking part in competitions.  

However, her first few attempts ended in failures. She came back strongly and tasted success in the 2004 British freestyle unisex slalom championships. 

Grigg became the champion and, the following year, Grigg finished fifth in the Spanish championships. 

However, Grigg did not want to be a slalom skater only.  

She wanted to be an instructor and spent almost a year designing a freestyle course. Now, she is actively promoting slalom skating in Europe and the United States. 

Grigg said she was also impressed with Skateline Malaysia's efforts to promote skating in Malaysia. 

For more information on Grigg, visit or or call 03-7727 7758. 


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