Maia Shibutani | Career, Tumor & Awards

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One of the competitive ice dancers, Maia Shibutani, is a well-known face in the professional arena. She is best known for her partnership with her brother Alex Shibutani. 

Her sibling duo with Alex has gained multiple word titles and recognition. They are popularly known as Shib Sibs.

Though her initial journey commenced as a single skater, she later flourished in partner skating. 

Ice Dancer Maia Shibutani
Ice Dancer Maia Shibutani (Source: Instagram)

Before we dive right into the details of Maia’s career and works, let us first get through a quick dose of facts. 

Quick Facts

Full Name Maia Harumi Shibutani
Date of Birth July 20, 1994
Birth Place New York City, US
Current Residence Ann Arbor, Michigan
Nick Name Shib Sibs (with her partner, Alex Shibutani)
Religion Unknown
Nationality American
Ethnicity Japanese
Zodiac Sign  Cancer
Age 29 years old
Height 1.60 meters (5 feet 3 inches)
Weight 52 kg (114 lb)
Hair Color Dark Brown 
Eye Color Dark Brown 
Build Athletic 
Father’s Name Chris Shibutani
Mother’s Name Naomi Shibutani
Siblings A brother, Alex Shibutani
Education Clague Middle School
Huron High School
Greenwich Academy
University of Michigan
Marital Status Unmarried 
Boyfriend None
Profession Ice dancer
Country Represented United States
Coaches Marina Zueva, Massimo Scali, Oleg Epstein, Johnny Johns
Choreographers Marina Zueva, Massimo Scali, Renée Roca, Stéphane Lambiel
Skating Club SC of New York
Training Locations Canton, Michigan
Active Years 1998-present
Net Worth $1.5 million
Social Media Instagram, Twitter
Last Update  May, 2024

Body Measurements

Maia Shibutani is a fit and gorgeous lady standing at the height of 1.60 meters (5 feet 3 inches). With her fit, slender, and healthy-looking shape, she weighs 52 kg (114 lb). 

As for her physical appearance, Maia is a lady with confidence and an appealing facial structure. She has fair skin and natural dark brown hair with eyes of similar color. 

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Workout & Diet

Maia is all about cardio, talking about her gym workouts and training regime. She mostly does her workout at the Dogpound, a popular gym in New York City.

Among her all basic workouts, cardio is the most important to her. She trains herself with the slide board skate, a lateral (side-to-side) cardio, and a lower-body strengthening exercise. 

Maia is into foods
Maia is into foods (Source: Instagram)

Not to mention, she works on single leg reverse deadlift to work on her balance and strength. She works on the plank jack with gliders which helps to engage the muscles in the thighs.

Likewise, Maia is quite skeptical when it comes to her diet. She ensures to maintain her health and balance in her life. She highly depends on eggs, oatmeal, green tea with lemon, plus grapefruit juice or orange juice.

Maia Shibutani | Early Life

Shibutani (fully named Maia Harumi Shibutani) was born on July 20, 1994, under the star sign of Cancer. She is the second child of her parents, Naomi Shibutani and Chris Shibutani, born in New York. 

Furthermore, she also has an elder brother named Alex Shibutani, three years older than her. At the same time, they are also professional ice dancer partners. 


Maia Shibutani first enrolled at the Greenwich Academy in Greenwich, Connecticut, in 1998 at the age of four. Not long after it, her family moved to live in Colorado Springs from 2005 through 2007. 

During those years, she was homeschooled for the time being until they again moved to Ann Arbor, Michigan, in 2007. Following it, she joined Huron High School in Ann Arbor. 

After her high school graduation in 2012, Maia enrolled at the University of Michigan in the fall of 2012. 

Family Background

Additionally, Maia doesn’t come from an athletic background, and in fact, her parents are accomplished musicians. Talking more about her family background, Maia’s parents initially met as Harvard musicians. 

Her father, Chris, played the flute back in the day while her mother, Naomi, was a concert pianist. When her parents met together as music students, they developed a deep appreciation for music and performance. 

Later, her father worked as an anesthesiologist before changing his sector to finance. During his tenure at the Harvard-Radcliffe Orchestra, Chris was the flutist from 1981 to 1985. 

In the meantime, he was also the assistant conductor for the Harvard Ensemble Society (Chamber Music). He had recorded studio and soundtrack recordings with WGBH/Boston.

Altogether, both of Maia’s parents are of Japanese heritage. Though her father was born in Chappaqua, N.Y., her mother grew up in Miami, Florida.

Moreover, her parents never really played sports seriously. But yes, her father did skate for fun. 

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Maia Shibutani | Career

Among both the siblings, Maia Shibutani initially started skating. She stated that their house was always filled with classical, jazz, or contemporary music. 

When Maia started learning to skate at birthday parties while her mother fueled her interest, her mother would often put together some lengthy CDs for her to practice freestyle. 

Early Career

As she started skating for the first time at four, Maia went to the ice rink with her father and brother. When she developed a love for this sport, she initially trained as a single skater. 

Back then, Slavka Kohout Button taught her in Old Greenwich, Connecticut. At that time, she was a student at Greenwich Academy. 

“Although I don’t remember everything about that first experience, I remember having a lot of fun. Later, I began taking group lessons with a coach at our local rink. I loved being on the ice, so I asked my parents for private lessons very early on.”
– Maia Shibutani

Altogether, it was only in 2003 when the siblings got inspired to pursue ice dancing.  

Their Intermediate Level

From 2005-to 06, Maia moved to her intermediate level, where she first worked with choreographer Tom Dickson. She bagged first in every compulsory and free dance segment at the Lake Placid Ice Dance Competition. 

Maia and Alex with their win
Maia and Alex with their win (Source: Instagram)

During her time at the Colorado Springs, the Shibutanis won the Southwestern Regional Championships. Right after it, they took second place at the 2006 U.S. Junior Championships. 

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National Junior Level

After the 2007 event, they moved again to Michigan, and also their competition moved to the national junior level.

For a year, they did have to wait until Maia became age-eligible to compete on the international junior circuit. 

They started the journey with the ISU Junior Grand Prix (JGP) and bagged the gold. Then, in their second Grand Prix, they bagged the silver medal, which was closely followed by another silver at the 2009 U.S. ChampionshipsThey now bagged gold medals forThey now bagged gold medals for the 2009–2010 sea at both their JGP events. 

Advancement to Senior Level

They made their senior-level debut at the 2010 Nebelhorn Trophy. However, they bagged bronze in the 2010 NHK Trophy and the 2010 Skate America.

By 2011, they became the first figure skaters of Asian descent to ice dance at an ISU championship event. Additionally, they were the youngest world medalists in the discipline of ice dance in over 50 years.

In the 2011-12 season, they packed their first senior Grand Prix title. The following season, they bagged several medals in multiple events. 

After qualifying for the 2014 Olympics, they won the 2014 Ondrej Nepela Trophy. They became the top finishers in the 2014-2015 ISU Challenge Cup serieTheyhey had four silver in various eve by the end of the seasons. 

During the 2016 Four Continents Championships, they had their first ISU Championship title. They became the first ice dancers of Asian descent to win an ISU ice dance championship with the win. 

Maia at the LA premiere night for Soho
Maia at the LA premiere night for Soho (Source: Instagram)

In 2017, they won their second consecutive national title at the U.S. Championships. By the end of 2018, they had won several medals and titles. 

Maia Shibutani | Awards & Achievements

Shibutani is one of the finest ice dancers, and today, she is a two-time recipient (2012, 2014) of a Travel & Training Grant from the Women’s Sports Foundation. 

In the meantime, she and her partner Alex are also the two-time winners of the Edi Award. Professional Skaters Association honored them with this title for outstanding ice dance performances at US Nationals.  

Again in 2017, the Shibutanis were named the Sports Envoys by the U.S. State Department’s Sports Diplomacy Office. 

Moving on, they have bagged Team of the Month titles multiple times. Some of the other few achievements are listed below. 

  • Olympic Games (two bronze in 2018)
  • World Championships – 2016, 2011, and 2017 (two bronze and silver)
  • Four Continents Championships – 2016, 2011, 2017, and 2015 (one gold, two silver, and bronze)
  • Grand Prix Final (two bronze)
  • World Junior Championships (silver in 2009)
  • Junior Grand Prix Final (one bronze)

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Maia Shibutani | Injury

In December 2019, Maia Shibutani underwent surgery to remove a tumor found on her kidney. She initially got sick in October and had to go to the ER while she was in New York. 

After they ran a few tests, they stated that she had a stomach virus. With the follow-up tests and an MRI, she was tested to have a small mass on one of my kidneys.

As a result, she had surgery that removed the tumor successfully. Furthermore, her doctor stated that there would be a 60/40 chance that the cancer was malignant versus benign. 

Following her surgery, Maia stayed in the hospital for three days before finally moving to her house. Maia, herself revealed that her post-surgery days have been a lot more painful than the ones when she had typical injuries. 

As of 2020, Maia Shibutani became cancer-free, and today, just during their early years, she still trains and skates alongside her brother, Alex. 

Maia Shibutani | Net Worth

Maia Shibutani’s career earnings and salary are not disclosed yet. However, she is expected to have a net worth of around $1.5 million. 

Not to mention, she has had several brand endorsements and sponsorships. At present, she is the brand ambassador of Tumi Inc. Since 2013, she has also been Right To Play Athlete Ambassador. 

Some of the brands she endorsed are as follows. 

  • Ralph Lauren Corporation 
  • Intel – Global Team Intel Athletes for the 2018 Winter Olympic Games
  • Coca-Cola Corporation’s Minute Maid brand
  • The Hershey Company’s Ice Breakers brand
  • Smucker’s Milk-Bone brand


Well, the Shibutanis have also been very active with the charity activities. They have often lent support through skating performances, fundraising, and social media engagement. 

She has done charity help, including The Jimmy Fund, Charity: Water, One Fund Boston, and the NOH8 Campaign. 

Likewise, for Maia’s birthday in 2017, she raised over $10,000. 

Television Appearance

In 2017, the Shibutani siblings stood as the guests on the Nickelodeon television show Nicky Ricky Dicky & Dawn. They were there in episode 304 as themselves. 

At the same time, they have had several appearances on NBC’s The TODAY Show. Right then, they performed on the Rockefeller Center rink and introduced Ralph Lauren-designed outfits for the 2018 US Olympic team. 

Maia with her book, Kudo Kids
Maia with her book, Kudo Kids (Source: Instagram)

They again appeared on The TODAY Show in September 2020 to discuss their new children’s book, Kudo Kids. 

Maia Shibutani | Personal Life

When it comes to her personal life and dating phase, Maia Shibutani is entirely private with it. To date, she has not been involved in any dating rumors or scandals. 

Additionally, she is currently single and is not dating anyone. 

Social Media 

The Shibutanis are the top athletes who are pretty active across several social media platforms. They together run the YouTube channel @ShibSibs, which she established in 2012. 

Today, their channel has 153k subscribers. Also, their videos consist of several behind-the-scenes with their training and travels. 

You can also check out her other accounts for her uploads and pictures. She is on Instagram as Maia Shibutani (@maiashibutani), with 380k followers. 

Likewise, she is on Twitter as Maia Shibutani (@MaiaShibutani), with 106.4k followers. 

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Maia Shibutani | FAQs

What is Maia Shibutani’s score like?

Maia Shibutani’s ISU best personal scores are 194.25 in combined total, 79.18 in the short dance, and 115.26 in the free dance. 

Has Maia Shibutani retired?

Unfortunately, Maia and her brother retired from figure skating in 2018. They chose to do so because Maia’s tumor got found, and Maia needed to focus on her health. The fans supported her decision and prayed for her recovery.

Rajani Gurung
Rajani Gurung
Hey, I'm Rajani! As a digital content writer, I write for several websites on a wide range of topics. At Playersbio, I cover to write about hot trending celebrities and news. My professional experience makes me write the hard topics in a simplified manner for easiness.

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