Finswimming World Champion Johanna Schikora (GER) has qualified for The World Games 2022 to be held in Alabama, Birmingham. “I think it will be an unforgettable experience for me! I’m sure our team will have a great time together, and I am also looking forward to the opportunity to speak with athletes from other sports”, Schikora says. Johanna Schikora is our this week’s athlete Building up to Birmingham!
Johanna Schikora started finswimming at the age of 11, in 2013. “I trained once a week to have another activity than playing piano which used to be my main hobby when I was a child. The first competition in which I participated was the Berlin Championship in February 2015. There I fell in love with competing.” Schikora says finswimming is like an opportunity to dive into another world. “My passion for Finswimming developed because of the mix of speed, dynamics, strength and endurance, which makes the sport so beautiful and so hard at the same time”, she adds.
At The World Games 2022, Schikora would love to watch Sport Climbing, DanceSport, Gymnastics, Kickboxing, Powerlifting and Life Saving. “But I’m open for new experiences”, she says, “I also want to visit something completely new for me.” If she had to choose another The World Games sport to compete in, she would do Life Saving – the closest sport to Finswimming. “Besides Finswimming, I have tried other water sports such as Wakeboarding, Diving and Underwater Orienteering. And of course, I also do classical swimming sometimes.”
Finswimming training is divided into training in water and to gym sessions. “In the water, I start swimming without fins, continue with two small fins and end with the big monofin. With this, I swim specific sets for my main distances and work on my technique, speed and endurance. In the gym, I spend much time on exercises for leg and core strength and also on improving my endurance. The months before The World Games I will prepare physically as well as mentally. I work hard together with my coach and my team and enjoy the road.”
Besides training Finswimming, Johanna Schikora also bikes and runs. “I also enjoy canoeing and bouldering, but only in off-season. Besides sports, I study Psychology. In my free time, I enjoy reading and spending time outside with family and friends. I think it’s important to „escape the cycle“ sometimes to be able to give everything I have when I need to.”
Johanna Schikora also answered to several questions from social media.
What is your goal for 2022?
My main goal is to reach my limits and stretch them a little bit more.
What has been the biggest challenge on your career?
For me, the biggest challenge was to overcome the season 2020/21 before the World Championships. Especially through the lockdown, the training was not easy, especially mentally. It took much power, but I’m proud of myself that I did it.
Who is your idol/idols in Finswimming?
My biggest Finswimming idol is Adam Bukor. At my first World Junior Championship I saw him swimming and breaking multiple Junior World Records on the distances I swam too. Last year at the World Championship, we hugged each other, both with a gold medal on the neck. For me, he is an outstanding athlete.
What’s your favorite food and favorite food before competition?
My favorite food before competition is easy: Pasta. In general, I love good Sushi and Pizza.
The World Games is a multi-sport event staged every four years by the International World Games Association, organised with the support of the International Olympic Committee. The 11th edition of The World Games will be held in Birmingham, Alabama, USA, 7-17 July 2022. 3,600 athletes from 34 sports and over 100 countries will take part in The World Games.