Joined Professional Ranks
In need of surgery on her hip, Lipinski withdrew from amateur ranks in April 1998. She joined the tour of Stars on Ice and resumed competing at events such as the 1999 World Professional Championship, where she won the gold medal. Lipinski also pursued an acting career with appearances on Touched by an Angel, The Young and the Restless, and the television movie Ice Angel. Her commercial endorsements included deals to promote Snapple beverages, the DKNY children's clothing line, and awareness of deep-vein thrombosis, a malady that Lipinski herself had faced after her hip surgeries.
Although she was criticized by some commentators for abandoning her amateur career—which had lasted little more than two years at the senior level—Lipinski's
accomplishments during that period included national, world, and Olympic titles. Indeed, the teenager proved capable of becoming not just a superb technical skater, but an artistic one as well. The most outstanding jumper of her day, Lipinski's command of the ice allowed her to make the transition to a professional skating career at the age of fifteen. "I feel that I accomplished everything I wanted to, and now I can look back with such happiness while I pursue a pro career and keep expanding my horizons," Lipinski told David Barron of the Houston Chronicle in December 2001, "It makes skating as a whole so special to me."
Famous Sports StarsFigure SkatingTara Lipinski Biography - Figure Skating Prodigy, Endured Family Separations, Chronology, Won National And World Titles, Awards And Accomplishments - SELECTED WRITINGS BY LIPINSKI: