Karen Kwan

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Karen Kwan
Personal information
Country represented  United States
Born (1978-06-01) June 1, 1978 (age 37)
Torrance, California, USA
Former coach Frank Carroll
Retired 1997

Karen Wingyan Kwan Oppegard[1] (born 1 June 1978) is best known as the older sister of figure skater Michelle Kwan. Karen is two years older than Michelle and was an elite figure skater herself.

The Kwan sisters began figure skating at the same time and trained and competed against each other for years. Karen, like Michelle, was coached by Frank Carroll at the Lake Arrowhead training center. Though Karen's results never quite matched Michelle's, she was known for her long legs and arms that added a lyrical style and an elegant dimension to her skating. She also had consistent triple jumps and good technical spins. Karen also represented the United States at numerous international skating events, and won the bronze medal at the 1996 Nebelhorn Trophy in Germany. At 5 feet 8 inches (1.73 m) tall, Karen stands about 12-foot (15 cm) taller than Michelle. She retired in 1997 to focus on school. She attended Boston University.

Since ending her competitive skating career, Kwan has maintained her connection to the sport. She has worked as a choreographer and is the skating director at the East West Skating Palace,[2] in Artesia, California. The Kwan family owns and operates the rink.

Kwan graduated from Boston University in 2000 with a bachelor's degree in communications. She interned with clothing designer Vera Wang (a relative), who is noted for designing figure skating costumes and personally designs Michelle's costumes. Kwan is married to three-time U.S. pair skating champion and 1988 Olympic bronze medallist Peter Oppegard. They have two daughters.


Event 1994-1995 1995-1996 1996-1997
Pacific Coast Championships 1st 4th[3]
U.S. Championships 7th 5th 7th
Trophée Lalique 7th
Nebelhorn Trophy 3rd


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