Artistic Swimming Duo Mashiro Yasunaga and Moe Higa Take Paris by Storm! | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Artistic Swimming Duo Mashiro Yasunaga and Moe Higa Take Paris by Storm!

World Championships gold medal winning pair unveils their new performance for the first time!

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Higa, who is 8 years younger than Yasunaga, often supports Yasunaga during the performance. Their breathtaking performance, which shows no age difference at all, is a must-see!

The queen pair of the artistic swimming world makes a magnificent start.

On April 7th, Maika Yasunaga (24) and Moe Higa (16), who shone with a gold medal at the 2023 World Swimming Championships, appeared at a public practice session for the Japanese national team preparing for the World Cup in May, which also serves as a test event for the Paris Olympics.

“The two have only formed their pair for a little over a year. Yasunaga, an OL working for Okamura Livic Corporation, and Higa, a high school girl, have an age difference of eight years and a height difference of 5 cm. It’s quite rare to see such a pair in artistic swimming, where pairs are often of similar height,” said a Japan Swimming Federation official.

Yasunaga, attracted by the combination of swimming and music, which she loves, started the sport, while Higa began swimming at her mother’s suggestion despite having no prior experience. In this sport, where perfect synchronization is required, the two, who are completely different in every way, continue to progress, using their differences as weapons.

“The most attractive aspect is the acrobatic move where the tall Higa launches Yasunaga out of the water at the beginning of the performance. There were challenges initially due to the height difference, such as their legs not aligning properly, but Yasunaga has practiced so much, saying that ‘being underwater is easier than on land,’ and is overcoming those challenges. With the Tokyo Olympics held this year, Japan has a good chance of winning its first gold medal,” the same source added.

During the public practice, the two revealed that they would change the theme of their free performance, which was “Black Panther,” to “Pegasus.” The unique pair, now equipped with new wings, will soar on the stage in Paris.

Posing before entering the water at last year’s World Championships. The duo took advantage of their difference in physique to fascinate the audience and the judges with their acrobatic stance.

From the April 26, 2024 issue of FRIDAY

  • PHOTO AFLO Kyodo News

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