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Special Feature: Chinese Woman Coaches U.S. Short Track Skaters


Li Yan is head coach of the U.S. Short Track Speedskating Team. That means she oversees not just the women but also the men. She told VOA Sports she does not have a problem coaching the men.

Li Yan can command respect because she brings solid credentials to her job. She was a member of the

Chinese National Short Track speedskating team from 1987 to 1994. When Short Track was a demonstration sport at the 1988 Calgary Olympics, she won one gold and two bronze medals. It became an official Olympic sport in 1992 at the Albertville Winter Games and Li won a silver medal. That sameyear she won two gold medals at the World Championships.

After that Li Yan became an assistant coach for the Chinese National Short Track Team, and she coached the Slovak Republic team from 2000 to 2002, which included a World Championship and the Nagano Olympics.

Li joined U.S. Speedskating in January 2003 as the Short Track Development coach at the U.S. Olympic Education Center in Marquette, Michigan. In June of 2003 she was promoted to her current position as National Short Track Coach and works with the team in Colorado Springs.

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