Louie Vito: 'Dancing with the Stars' helped deal with Olympic pressure
By Christopher Rocchio, 02/16/2010
Louis Vito feels competing for Dancing with the Stars' ninth-season mirror ball trophy prepared him in his current quest for Olympic gold.
"Doing Dancing has helped me with pressure. Dancing With the Stars was pressure like I've never dealt with before. Every week you're kind of going out there wearing clothes you'd never even really wear on Halloween, and even more so you're doing something you don't have a lot of confidence in every week in front of a live audience with 22 million people," wrote Vito in the first installment of his Winter Olympics blog for People.
"In snowboarding, I'm wearing what I want to wear, doing what I know I'm good at and what I know the judges want to see and it's just a lot more relaxing in that sense."
The 21-year-old snowboarder said that competing in front of the show's live audience helped him deal with all the eyes that will be watching when he goes for Olympic gold on Wednesday.
"Dancing With the Stars is a lot more mainstream than [fourth-season Dancing champ and fellow Olympian] Apolo Ohno's sport is and even more so than snowboarding, but it doesn't really bother me at all," he wrote.
"Any kind of thing like that is a positive look for me! I have people here in Canada who even tell me that they voted for me. It's great."
Vito added he's currently living in Olympic Village in Vancouver with several teammates and has enjoyed the experience so far.
"It's nice to be able to wake up in the morning and go chill on a couch and kind of do whatever rather than always walking down to the Olympic Village, where there are thousands of people," he wrote.
"When you're in the Village, though, everyone's wearing their team getup and you're wearing yours, and it's cool to represent the country. Whereas I would never wear a Team USA snowboard jacket on a normal day, when you are in the Village and all of the other countries are wearing theirs, and you're with your homies from the USA, it definitely gives you a sense of pride."