Miki was born on December 18, 1987 in Aichi, Japan, in the Aichi Prefecture. As a girl, she tried her hand at many athletic and artistic activities such as swimming, ballet, piano and calligraphy.
Miki started to skate at the age of nine. Her first triple jump, a Salchow, came two years later. She was the first female skater to land a quadruple jump, also a Salchow, in competition. Her first quad was performed at the 2002 ISU Junior Grand Prix Final in the Netherlands when she was barely 15 years old.
Among Miki’s early competitive highlights are winning her two Japanese National Ladies Senior titles in 2004 and 2005, her bronze (2002), silver (2003) and gold (2004) medals at the World Junior Figure Skating Championship, gold medal at the 2004 Junior Grand Prix Final, and her fourth place finish at the Senior Worlds in 2004, weeks after winning the World Junior title.
2004-05 saw Miki successfully debut full-time in senior international competition, during which she won bronze and silver at two senior Grand Prix events, finished fourth at the prestigious Grand Prix Final in Beijing, and finished sixth at the World Championships in Moscow, skating in the final flight of skaters.
In 2005-06, Miki left Japan and her coaches Nobuo and Kumiko Sato, the parents and former coaches of Yuka Sato, for Cleveland and 1960 Olympic champion Carol Heiss-Jenkins. Under Carol's tutelage, Miki rediscovered her love for skating, but was unhappy with her training situation and life in Cleveland. Despite winning a silver medal at Cup of Russia and being named to Japan's Olympic team, she was disappointed with her 15th place result in Turin. Japan Skates was privileged to interview her during her time in Cleveland, at such an important juncture in her career.
In 2006-07, Miki finally realized her great potential in winning the ISU World Championship. Under coaches Nikolai Morozov and Yuko Monna of Ice House in New Jersey, Miki skated a stunning, near-perfect performance in front of a screaming crowd in Tokyo.
2007-08 saw Miki skating unevenly but indicating that she may be have been peaking toward the Worlds. She was unable to defend her world title, however, due to an injury aggravated during the short program, forcing her to withdraw while attempting her free skate. 2008-09 was an up-and-down year for Miki, but she finished on a high note with an excellent free skate at the 2009 Worlds in Los Angeles, coming in second on the day and third overall for the bronze medal. Miki had a solid 2009-10 Olympic season, earning fourth place finishes at the both the Olympics in Vancouver and the World Championships in Turin, by working on perfecting triple-triple combinations and cleaning up her spirals and step sequences.
In the 2010-11 season, Miki moved her training base to Latvia after initially considering Moscow. Despite some back injuries, she had an outstanding season, winning two Grand Prix events, the All-Japan Championships, and the World Championships, help in Moscow after being moved from Japan following the Tohoku earthquake and tsunami. Miki sat out the 2011-12 season while considering her future in the sport, but has confirmed, despite some personal reservations, her commitment to the 2012-13 season.
Miki’s skating idols include 1994 World Champion Yuka Sato, as well as her close friend and former teammate Shizuka Arakawa. Miki found Shizuka’s performance at the 1998 Nagano Olympics particularly inspiring.
Miki is a charming young lady on and off of the ice. While she can be quiet and shy around strangers, she warms up quickly. Her English is very good and she gives enthusiastic interviews. Miki’s favorite comic strip character is Snoopy, and she can be seen clutching Snoopy toys after her programs.