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Yuzuru Hanyu is a Japanese men's single discipline figure skater. He is most famous for winning gold in two consecutive Olympic Games, 2014 Sochi and 2018 Pyeongchang (being the first male figure skater to do so in 66 years, after American skater Dick Button). He started skating at the age of four, following his sister Saya to a rink for fun, and has since then become the most prolific figure skater in history. He has broken world records 19 times to date. Consistently excellent in both technical skills and artistry, he pleases both fans of figure skating as a sport and those who prefer it more as a form of art.


After winning the Junior Worlds Championships in the 2009-2010 season, Hanyu debuted as a senior skater and has been active there since. He's had his share of misfortune. Injury has held him back at times, most notably in the 2017-2018 season, where he only got back to jumping his most difficult jumps just a fortnight before the Olympic Games.

Hanyu trains in Toronto Cricket Club under Brian Orser, Tracy Wilson, and jump coach Ghislain Briand who together have coached several other accomplished single's skaters, including Yuna Kim, Evgenia Medvedeva, and Jason Brown.


Tropes associated with Yuzuru Hanyu:

  • The Ace: Considered by many as the best figure skater the men's discipline has ever seen, he is a two-time back-to-back Olympic Champion, two-time World Champion, four-time consecutive Grand Prix Final champion, four time Nationals champion, and his count of silvers and bronzes are too many to list. He holds all the historical world records, and is current holder of the new short program world record under the newest judging system.
    • Of the six quadruple jump types, toeloop, Salchow, loop, flip, Lutz and Axel listed in order of increasing base value, Hanyu is capable of jumping all excluding the quad flip, and the quad Axel which has never been done before in competition history. Taken Up to Eleven with him currently attempting the previously-thought-impossible quadruple Axel (4A), and rumours are he is mostly able to succeed in practice.
  • Achilles' Heel: When Hanyu was younger, his stamina was the major source of him dropping points later in the programs. His jumps were slower and lower, with his spins and steps more commonly losing levels in the second half as compared to the first. His asthma also plays a role here, a chronic condition that he has struggled with and learnt to train through since he began skating. In recent years, notably from his second olympics onwards, he has improved his stamina so that it no longer impacts his skating.
  • Anti-Mentor: A hilarious example in one video where he teaches beginner children skaters. Watch an olympic-level skater be reduced to 'tontonton', 'shuu', 'paa' to explain basic movements.
    • A subversion of this trope, more exactly, as many interviews have shown that he is more than capable of explaining complex concepts in laymen's terms for wider audiences.
  • Always Someone Better: He was this for more established skaters up until his 2014 gold medal win at the Olympics. This was partly because his technical content was of greater difficulty. He is now dealing with this himself as he competes with younger skaters with even more difficult jumps in their arsenal. Many Japanese skaters who are younger than him or have entered senior circuits after Hanyu note that their idol is Hanyu himself, despite him being a direct rival.
  • Back for the Finale: His 2018 Olympic performance ended up becoming this. He withdrew from all competitions since the Grand Prix Rostelecom Cup until the Olympics itself, also fading from the media's eye for nearly three full months. When he landed in the airport, he had armed bodyguards to control the crowd of rabid fans and media that had not seen him since months before. Bonus points for also then winning the entire event by quite a margin, too.
  • Back-to-Back Badasses: Has a moment of this with Javier Fernandez during a Fantasy on Ice opening, with them leaning against each other's back and shooting at the audience with finger guns.
  • Badass Adorable: Has a scrunchy smile that makes his eyes disappear, makes the strangest poses while thinking, once curled into a ball after a popped jump in an exhibition - and remains as the most formidable men's skater still competing. He was this when he was fifteen, stepping into the senior circuits for the first time and then winning a World Championship bronze in 2012 at the age of seventeen, and he still is this now at twenty-four, tripping on dry land, giggling at odd things, rambling about earphones.
  • Beware the Silly Ones: Off ice, he is as adorkable as it gets. He also cries easily, has a face expressive enough to tell its own story, is known for his noodle arms and childish pouting about wanting to be taller. But, on ice? This is two-time Olympic Champion Yuzuru Hanyu, world record breaker nineteen times over, the pinnacle of men's figure skating and a trailblazer that continues to push the boundaries of the sport after a decade in senior circuits.
  • Beyond the Impossible: Quad Axels, 4As. There are entire scientific studies regarding the possibility of this jump, and some have concluded it might not be biomechnically possible. For Hanyu, who eats impossible for breakfast, he has a reported 30% success rate without assistance.
  • Big Brother Instinct: He acts like this to Shoma Uno at times, holding up his hands to make him wave after they won gold and silver at Pyeongchang. Uno has said he sees him as an older brother somewhat.
    • Also has this for many other juniors, including patting the head of young Russian skater Alexandra Trusova, or coming up from behind to photo-bomb younger compatriot Yuma Kagiyama.
  • Bishounen: A real life example, as he's very slender and good-looking. Hanyu himself doesn't think so, mentioning that he thinks he has a plain face and doesn't quite fit the Tall, Dark, and Handsome trope, lampshaded word for word. By popular opinion, however, he is a brilliant example of Tall, Dark, and Handsome.
  • Boke and Tsukkomi Routine: Primarily with Nobunari Oda, who is more playful and dramatic than already rather dramatic Hanyu. The two together are always hilarious, with Nobu tending to play the boke and Hanyu the tsukkomi, and the two of them lampshaded the trope when the roles were reversed once.
  • Boots of Toughness: Subversion of the traditional trope, but all figure skaters must have these. It can make or break a performance, as Fernandez and his boot issues (or Medvedeva and her boot issues) can tell you.
  • A Boy and His X: Some might disagree, as the X here isn't alive, but Hanyu and Pooh is a combination that has taken over the skating world so thoroughly that the ISU itself has referenced the combination.
  • Breather Episode: The World Team Trophy can be viewed as this. The skaters still compete, but there's nothing too important at stake. Hanyu has used it to experiment with his skills.
  • Brick Joke: The on-podium wedding ceremony. Started during GPF Marseille 2016, where it was Uno's first time on such a large podium and he panicked and linked his arms with Hanyu's, instead of wrapping around the back as per the traditional group victory pose. Lampshaded by Japanese media, and then later referenced back in a re-enactment by Hanyu during the Grand Prix Final 2017, and then again for the ceremony of - this time with a different compatriot, much to fans' joking calls of jealousy - Grand Prix Skate Canada International 2019.
  • Bridal Carry: Invoked by Xinyu Liu, a Chinese pairs skater who has lifted Hanyu this way for photos during banquets and backstages at least thrice before.
  • Bug Catching: Is known for cleaning up the ice, even while skating. During Challenger Series Autumn Classics International 2019, many fans nearly lost their minds when he stopped to pick up a tiny bug and then set it free outside of the rink.
  • Call-Back: His exhibition programs are sometimes his older short programs, adapted free skates, or previous exhibitions. Of note, during Grand Prix Skate Canada International 2019 he brought back Parisienne Walkways, his Sochi Olympic-winning short that was the first program in history to break 100 points, complete with three jumping passes. Many fans left with sore throats from screaming at every more he made during that.
  • Catchphrase: Kuyashii. There are videos that have compiled him saying this, often right after his skates. Translates to a sense of frustration or irritation.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: He has his moments.
    • Crawled on Olympic ground out of politeness to avoid the cameras interviewing a teammate.
    • Thinks bees are cute. Not cool or scary, cute.
    • Can't ride a bike, even after properly trying to learn in the past.
    • Once talked to a koala hand-puppet on cameras. Controlled by his own hand.
  • Career-Ending Injury: Many thought that any of his injuries would become this. We have the terrifying collision with a fellow skater during Grand Prix Cup of China in 2014, which at the time was a major concern for concussion and broken bones (and later indirectly led to an invasive abdominal surgery and months of strict rest). We have his 2017 Grand Prix Rostelecom Cup injury, which stirred up the media and fans as it appeared to mean he would not be recovered in time for the 2018 Pyeongchang Olympic Winter Games. We have him skating through lisfranc ligament injuries, serious quadriceps contusions, and all sorts of minor sprains and strains and bruises that are never officially reported to the media.
    • Averted, however, because it's 2020 and Hanyu is still going strong. A decade in senior circuits with enough injuries to make a physiotherapist cry, and he is currently healthy and the peak of the sport.
  • Child Prodigy: Hanyu was blasting his way through novice competitions the moment he started doing them, with videos of him winning dating back to 2008. During his last year of middle school he went to a training camp that also had Asada Mao, known for her triple Axel. He took one look at her 3A, and then tried it and succeeded on his first try. For comparison, the vast majority of the ladies' field today doesn't have a 3A.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: When his opponents aren't being overscored and he isn't being underscored, Hanyu is known to be able to defeat rivals by absolutely insane point gaps. In Grand Prix Skate Canada International 2019, he set the new record for the largest point gap between gold and silver - a solid 59.82 points. Some skaters also competing in the senior circuit at the same events might only get this for an total segment score.
  • Cute Bruiser: Overlaps with Lightning Bruiser. Very adorable, very fast, and also strong enough to launch himself 85cm into the air to rotate four times using nothing but his own body muscles. His kick could likely break somebody's leg.
  • Cuteness Proximity: He's well known for his love of Winnie-the-Pooh. He always brings a tissue box with a Pooh-shaped cover to competitions for good luck, and his fans always throw him Pooh-themed plushies and other merch after he performs (which results in so many Poohs being thrown that they're known as "Pooh rains").
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Subverted. It's not something he is ashamed about, or something he has tried to hide, but he is a survivor of the 2011 Touhoku earthquake and tsunami. In his words, he was training when the shockwaves first hit, and had to run out of the rink in his skating boots to flee to the evacuation centre. The Hanyu family stayed at the evacuation centre - a nearby school gymnasium - for the beginning of the disaster, subsiding on very little food and water.
  • Dark Horse Victory: Any of his wins prior to his 2012 World Championships bronze could be counted as this. Notably, with Japan's men's single skating field being so deep, he was once boo'd at Nationals because he had overtaken a past fan-favourite, Daisuke Takahashi. The moment remains as one of the most anger-inducing ones for his fans, who note that he won completely fairly.
    • Somewhat averted past 2012, then completely so past 2014. He was the Olympic, World and GPF champion, sweeping all three major competitions within the one season of 2014-2015, and since then has only given better and better results. At this point, most people expect his victory and are more concerned with the quality rather than the actual win.
  • Debut Queue: Subverted in that it's not from a story, over episodes, but galas tend to begin by introducing the skaters one by one, often finishing with the medallists.
  • Determined Expression: And that's an understatement. Fans have often joked about the way he glares when he concentrates. Crosses over into Kubrick Stare when he's really into the zone, such as finishing his programs.
  • The Dreaded: To every rival men's skater. Beyond being the historical world record holder for all items prior to the scoring system change, and then a WR holder for one of the there afterwards anyways, his intensity and devotion to figure skating is feared even by fellow competitors. News stations have described him as a 'training demon', and he has never seemed completely satisfied with a performance, even after smashing records and expectations.
  • Everything's Better with Sparkles: Within the already rather sparkly figure skating costume world, Hanyu is likely this trope played to its straightest. Not a single one of his costumes has featured anything less than fifty rhinestones, with his latest Origin 2.0 costume blinding people as he skates by. He makes it work.
  • Fan Nickname: Yuzu, the Alien. Alien here referring to his outerworldly skills.
    • Yuzuri, after commentators and M Cs forever getting his name wrong.
    • Yuzura Hanya, after his first show in Canada wrote his name this way on the pamphlet.
  • Fountain of Memes: The Winnie the Pooh rains, his strong expressions, signature skills, off-competition goofiness and no holds barred costumes make him this. Every single podium with Hanyu turns everyone involved into a meme. Just see Roman Sadovsky's Youtube channel.
  • Friendly Fandoms: Lots of Fernandez fans like him and vice versa, because of their friendship. Same for fans of Evgenia Medvedeva, probably helped because they were friendly and often participated at the same galas. In generaly, TCC rinkmates are all very supportive and friendly with each other, leading each skater's own fandom doing the same for what would normally be rivals.
  • Friendly Rivalry: Yuzuru Hanyu is known for getting along well with his rivals. Most notably, he established a bond with rink mate Javier Fernandez. Despite often competing for the same titles, they often encouraged and spoke well of each other.
    • Deconstructed when it is revealed that, when he first came to Toronto to train in 2012, he thought he would have a bitter rivalry with Fernandez akin to that of Yagudin and Plushenko. The latter two were in similar positions, often swapping 1-2 positions, but were notorious for their dislike of each other. However, the moment he met Fernandez, it was only warmth from the other skater and it ultimately developed into a friendship so epic Japan and Spain gave them actual awards for it.
  • Friendship Moment: With many skaters, often rivals. An example is when he won the Grand Prix Final in 2016 and Javier made a point of bowing to him jokingly. Likes hugging and supporting fellow skaters in the green room as they are pushed off the podium by later skaters, and is known for always being welcoming to everyone, skaters or photographers or fans alike.
  • Genius Ditz: Is undoubtedly a genius, picking up and replicating jumps within just a few times of seeing them, and able to change his programs while performing them. However, he has also slipped on dry land and then curled up like a bug afterwards whining about it being scary, if given the chance would rant for hours about earphones, is never seen without Pooh (even when the olympics banned franchises that weren't official sponsors, he snuck Pooh in as an actual tissue box underneath his generic strawberry shortcake tissue box cover).
    • For all that his actual skates are nothing short of intimidatingly elegant and perfect, his warm-ups are...less so. They involve playing catch, laying down with his arms splayed, copying nearby skaters, violently lip-syncing, running full-force down corridors, and sucking the life out of juice pouches.
  • Good Luck Charm: He brings his Winnie-the-Pooh shaped tissue box cover with him to competitions, and he frequently squeezes its head before a skate for good luck.
  • Men Don't Cry: Averted often. From one video, badass? more like sadass.
  • Living Legend: As from all his records and history mentioned above. Hanyu is also known for being extremely humble and modest, genuinely helpful whenever he can (clearing up desks after presscons, fixing fellow competitor's microphones), a kind and compassionate man and all-around good guy. Nobody has anything bad to say of him which is of substance, and a oft-asked question, only half-jokingly, is is Yuzuru Hanyu even real?
    • His skating is untouchable. There has never been a figure skater like him, blending artistry and technical skills so thoroughly, able to performance each routine to such perfection and still strive further, and there likely never will be again.
  • Losing Is Worse Than Death: Invoked and lampshaded by Hanyu himself. He is a perfectionist and competitive to his very bones - to the point where he isn't even satisfied with a gold that he may have gotten from someone else's mistakes.
    • Notable example of this is the backstage video right after 2019 World Championships in Saitama, where he took silver. He could only mention that losing does not mean winning, supporting and cheering on the gold medallist but clearly frustrated and all to ready to dive back into training. To most skaters, silver at a worlds may be the peak of their career. To Hanyu, it was a disappointing result, even recognising that he was skating on an injured ankle and just recently having come off rest.
  • Made of Iron: As all athletes are. Hanyu's list of injuries would make anyone flinch, and many wonder how he is still competing at such a high level after so many serious injuries that would mean a career end for any other skater.
  • Married to the Job: While he also stars in advertisements, appears on talk shows, is referenced in everything from history books to textbooks, Hanyu has mentioned that figure skating is his entire life. For someone who seems to carry the entirety of his nation's expectations and hopes on his shoulders all the time, it makes sense.
    • He has mentioned he would like to try an instrument, but doesn't have the time. In one interview with Miyamoto Kenji, he walked into the room so obviously exhausted that Kenji mentioned he should take a proper rest; only for Hanyu to respond that he simply didn't have the time.
  • Master of All: Is the most complete skater, combining every type of jump (and every type of quad excluding just one), many spins unavailable to other men's skaters, incredible step and choreographic sequences with emotionality and artistry. He is also an incredibly consistent skater, able to deliver under immense pressures.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: Ice Prince Hanyu. He has also been colloquially called the god of figure skating.
  • Nerves of Steel: All athletes must have this, to perform at their best under pressure, but special mention to Hanyu. The pressure he is under has been continuous since he was fifteen, and only increased by the day. At this point in time, you could stop any random person on the streets of Japan and they would know who he is; his stardom has also reached to other countries, notably China and Russia. The pressure he is under is unlike anybody else's, both as the current reigning two-time olympic champion, and because of his incredible performance time and time again. He has mentioned that he tries to think of it as a force to push him from behind, rather than force to crush him from above.
  • No Challenge Equals No Satisfaction: For someone as competitive as Hanyu, this is invoked to its completion. During one backstage video from the Shib Sibs, they had to do a countdown for watermelon smashing so that Hanyu would finish his turn (he split it in half like the monster he is). Recently, he has said that he has regained his love for his sport partially due to the challenge it gives him.
    • The feeling of having someone to beat, something to challenge, it sends shivers down my spine. I've always liked it.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: The moment someone so smiley and generally bright as Hanyu frowns down at a score, you know there's likely something wrong.
  • Ridiculously Photogenic: It's more of a challenge to find a bad photo of Hanyu than it is to find a good one. Candids from fans at the worst angles under the worst lighting always turns out beautiful, and no need to mention official photographs.
  • Signature Move: He's known for the triple Axel and the hydroblade. This is emphasised as he is the only skater currently training the quadruple Axel. Additionally, both the Ina Bauer and Biellmann spin are not often done by men due to the incredible flexibility necessary, but have been his staples for many years.
  • Team Spirit: Invoked directly by World Team Trophy, a more casual competition which awards points for 'best cheering from team'. Watching Hanyu react to his fellow compatriots skating is almost as entertaining at the skating itself.
  • Teen Genius: See Child Prodigy above.
  • Wolverine Publicity: Often features on covers of magazines about figure skating.
  • Workaholic: Called a 'training demon' by Japanese news outlets, he is known for training until his asthma prevents him from moving. Upon losing his rink, he signed up and participated in 60 ice shows during one off-season. He took every spare moment to train on the ice of the ice shows.
    • An interesting case, as he was the aversion of this when he was younger. His childhood coaches have noted that he used to be unable to focus for more than five minutes at a time, running off to play baseball with friends or complaining about training. Completely the opposite of the current Hanyu, which has been attributed to him losing his rink due to financial reasons, and then the 2011 disaster.

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