Mikayla Fabbro laughs that she misplaced her spinner, a figure skating tool that helps athletes stay in the spin, but on dryland.

It was probably symbolic for Sudbury’s lone competitive figure skater, symbolic of fatigue with dryland training.

In the months prior to relaunching her final year at pre-novice, Fabbro also took up boating, tubing, wake surfing and running on her treadmill. But even though it started up with reduced ice time and video competitions — there’s nothing like skating again.

Representing the Sudbury Skating Club, Fabbro aims to compete in the Sectionals championships in November in Flamborough, near Hamilton.

In order to do so, she’ll need to finish with one of the top 60 scores after two upcoming competitions in the Sectionals Series Events through Skate Ontario. They are slated for Sept. 18-24 and October 6-15. She will go somewhere to a hub, be videotaped skating her short and long programs.

“It’s going to be different, but with COVID, it’s better than nothing,” Fabbro says.

On a hot, sunny Wednesday afternoon last week, COVID-19 felt far away. We are meeting in person for the first time in the 18 months interviews have been happening, in an effort to keep a finger on the pulse of how the grassroots sports world has been faring.

In all cases, the novelty of dryland training and patience have long worn off.

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