MANILA, Philippines – Filipino figure skater Michael Christian Martinez intends to take some time to rest before making the next step in his sports career.
The 21-year-old has had a busy couple of weeks, as he represented the Philippines in the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea. He was unable to advance to the final round, collecting a score of 55.56 points in the short program to finish in 28th place.
"I was really, really happy," Martinez said of his performance in a press conference on Thursday at the SM Skating Rink at the Mall of Asia. "My coach is very proud of me. I skated my very best… Whatever the score was, I did my best and I loved it."
Martinez, who first gained national attention when he competed in the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi, only had two-and-a-half weeks to prepare for Pyeongchang, having learned of his qualification to the Olympics on very short notice.
He opted to stick to his tried-and-tested short program routine of Emerald Tiger, instead of debuting a new short program.
"The crowd loves it, so I said, I might as well use it. It's for me, it's for my body, so I said I might as well do it," Martinez explained.
He returned to the Philippines almost immediately, and has been busy with media responsibilities.
Afterward, Martinez plans to take a break first before thinking about what he should do next.
"Like any other athlete, after the Olympics, we all have time for ourselves," he said. "We take a break then we'll take it from there."
"I just want to recollect everything," he added. "Just go to the beach and relax, reset my mind so I wouldn't be burnt out on anything I would do for the future."
Martinez did not make any definite statement about possibly retiring or switching sports – he had been into body-building before competing in the 2018 Winter Games – but did say that the upcoming Southeast Asian Games in 2019 is something he looks forward to.
"Of course, it's in my mind," said Martinez. "But definitely, I want to take my break first, then take it from there."
(For more sports coverage, visit the ABS-CBN Sports website.)