The US Ice Skating industry is nearly a billion dollar industry which is growing year after year. So, to do ice skating first you have to learn about ice skating. Well, then don’t worry, now you don’t have to go anywhere else because this article is specially written for you. In this article, you will learn How to ice skate for the first time. What are the tips for ice skating and ice skating techniques as well? So, what are we waiting for? Let us just dive into it and learn how to ice skate.
Statistics show that only in the UK 62500 people started learning about Ice Skating. As days pass by numbers are increasing worldwide. Because the pandemic is ending. During a lockdown, all of us realize how much it is important for us to spend time with our loved ones. Considering this fact people start to learn about ice skating as winners are coming and what can be a fun way than skating with your family in a frozen lake.
Types of Skating?
People usually consider skating a simple sport but most of them don’t even know that skating is a vast sport. Skating involves different types of skate shoes used for different purposes on different grounds. For Example, if a person says to you I’m going skating it doesn’t mean he or she is going street skating maybe he is going ice skating or roller skating etc. You get my point.
Ice skating and roller skating are the 2 most famous forms of skating. Street skating or roller skating has wheels in the shoes while Ice skating involves blades down the shoes. There are different types of blades involved which we are going to discuss later in this article.
What is Ice Skating?
Ice skating is the most famous form of skating since 1876. In Ice Skating you have to wear ice skates that have a blade attached to them. Ice skating can be done inside or outside. Most people prefer to do ice skating on a frozen lake with their loved ones.
Different types of ice skates come with different benefits which we will discuss later on in this article. So, here is the fun fact that I think most of you will find amazing. You see most sports help people to lose weight but I know you are wondering Is Ice skating helps me to lose weight?
So, the answer is yes. Just like other sports through ice skating. Harvard Medical School shows that a person can burn up to 210 calories in just 30 minutes through ice-skating. Well, now you don’t have to worry about sparing time and going to the gym. You can still lose weight and spend quality time with your family on a chill frozen lake.
Things you should consider before ice skating
Select a proper Fit
Before you start skating make sure you are wearing properly fitting clothes. As I have already told you, skating is an exercise. So, when you are skating your body gets warm and you may get sick if you are not wearing fighting clothes.
Make sure that clothes are in proper fit but not to fit so that you cannot even freely move. Avoid wearing heavy clothes as it will slow down your speed and also you face difficulty while moving. Tank top with a warm sweater is preferred for men and tights are preferred for women.
Properly fitted Ice Skates
1 thing you should pay a lot of attention to is your Ice Skates. Ice Skates come in different forms with different kinds of blades attached to them. You should never buy an Ice Skate first when you just start learning. Instead, you can rent an ice skate. This will help you to increase your exposure and you can easily see which kind of ice skates work best for you.
Make sure the ice skate you are buying or renting fits you properly. Otherwise, you can face many consequences. If you are not wearing a perfect fit then it may come out from your feet while skating which causes you injury. On Amazon, there are a lot of ice skates that come in adjustable sizes. You can check them out to solve this issue.
While skating you need to keep your body warm and you should go for different alternatives rather than just wearing cotton. Now there is one question that comes into your mind and that is why we should avoid cotton?
When you are skating your body gets warm and you begin to sweat. Cotton socks moisture and when this happens cotton causes your body to cold. You can go for skating tights and into the feet, you can wear microfiber socks to avoid moisture while still keeping your feet cold.
Take Safety measure
When you just start skating you will fall on the ice which may injure you. So, to avoid this you should take safety measures as they will help you to avoid any minor injury. You can use a skating helmet to cover your head.
For knees, you can go for knee covering, and for the hands, you can use leather or rexine gloves. So, when you get unbalanced and fall you do not get injured.
Learn the basics first
Remember, when we first start learning English. What is the first thing that school teaches you? Of course the alphabets of English. The reason is very simple because the basics always come first. Either you are talking about theory or practical without learning the basics you can’t move forward to the next step.
The same goes for ice skating for beginners. You should always learn the basics of Ice Skating before stepping your first foot in the game.
We all make mistakes when we start learning. Mistakes are part of the learning process. To be frank, when you make mistakes you explore new ways not to do this type of thing again. So, the same thing happens in ice skating.
Although as you have read above you should first take safety measures but moving forward You should know whenever you are unbalanced and begin to free-fall there is a right way to fall.
- Just bend your knees and comes in into squats position
- Always fall sideways and before falling place your hands on your lap to reduce shock.
By using any of the above two techniques you will not face any injury when you fall while skating. You can use both techniques when you are falling or just get unbalanced while skating.
Learn how to stop while skating
Once you are comfortable and start learning the basics then the next thing you need to learn is how to stop. Most people make a big mistake and get them to fall. They usually get down and come into the squat position and think that their weight might help them to stop the skate but this is the wrong process and you should avoid it.
You need to learn the right technique to stop when you are ice skating and that technique is quite simple. You need to move your one foot away from the leg and that foot causes a force that will help you to stop. In other words, just moving one foot away will help you to reduce your speed. Sounds simple right? Go and give it a try.
Think about Gliding
The first and the most basic step of ice skating is to learn about gliding. Gliding will help you to move forward. Let me explain it in easy words. In gliding, you are just marching or we can say that moving forward. First, you need to take 2 steps forward and slightly move your body in a forwarding position so you begin to move.
Do this several times. Once you get comfortable then the next step is to repeat this process but this time you will take one foot forward and bend your o=body as you begin to move forward and start gliding. You will lift your foot and move forward and gliding makes you comfortable while doing that.
Just consider stroking as the more advanced version of gliding. Stroking will help you to move forward quickly. Stroking is known as the 2nd most basic fountain when it comes to ice skating.
In stroking you just move one foot above and push another foot in the forward position and then repeat this process until you begin to glide. Practice stroking again and again until your subconscious brain gets familiar with it. Once you become familiar with that then you need to move to swizzles.
After swizzles, you will get comfortable with the basics of gliding. In swizzling, you just do stroking while keeping your toes together. By learning to swizzle you will get comfortable lifting your one foot and glide easily.
Look Forward while moving
This is the most common mistake that a lot of people make when they are just starting Ice Skating. You see, ice skating is all about technique. They get it but using the right technique is much more important. They learn all the basic techniques which I told them above. But, when they go skating they look down to their feet to see if they are doing it right or wrong.
Before skating, you first have to enter all techniques into your subconscious mind so when you are going to skate you naturally do it and you don’t need to look down.
- You may collide with someone because you are looking down
- While gliding when you look down your body moves forward and it can cause you to fall.
So, all you just need is to look upward or forward while you are skating. Before skating makes sure that you have done all the basic drills that I have to tell you above.
One foot Glide
Gliding is the first step of Ice skating. Once you have mastered that it is very easy for you to learn all different types of basics. One foot glide is the next and advanced form of gliding. In one foot glide, you march forward in the straight position and then start gliding. Once you have started gliding then you just palace one foot upward in the air while still making a parallel path.
This way you can still glide on one foot and maintain a proper balance while gliding. One foo gliding is also used in ice skating dance videos.
1 tip for beginner ice skaters: Always balance with your upper body, especially with your arms and shoulder. This way you can easily maintain balance when you are gliding on just one foot.
Ice Skating tips for beginners
Ice Skating Shoes
Till now you have learned all about how to ice skate. But, you can’t implement this without an Ice Skate. So, when you are going to buy Ice Skaters you will see there are 3 different forms of ice skaters. You need to know all about these 3 so you can buy the one that suits you the most.
- Hockey Skates
If you are teaching your kids how to ice skate and want to buy ice skates for your toddler. Then Hockey Ice Skate is the perfect fit for your child. Professional athletes always prefer these skates for their toddlers. Hockey skates’ outer shell is very hard but deep inside it’s very soft and comfortable and keeps your child’s feet warm all day. It has a hockey-style blade attached to it
- Figure Skates
Figure Skates are designed for growing kids because their age is increasing year by year. So their foot size also increases and their old skaters get smaller. So, you need to buy figure skates as they have 4 adjustable sizes which require no external tool. Figure skates get their unique look by the leather finish. Leather provides great warmth to your child’s feet and provides ankle support as well.
- Hybrid skates
Hybrid skates almost look the same as Figure skates but they have attached 2 blades. If you are learning how to skate then for beginners. These 2 blades provide great support and help you to balance. They come in a traditional look. They are comfortable as well.
Perfect Fit & Ankle Support
Whenever you are buying clothes for ice skating or ice skaters. This is the most important point that you need to consider. Fitting is most important when it comes to skating. When it comes to clothes you need to buy perfect fitted clothes that keep you warm. Their weight should not be heavy as it slows down your speed.
When it comes to the shoes you should see either this shoe that you are going to buy has breathable material and also provides ankle support. Ankle support is the most common thing that people ignore when it comes to buying ice skates. Also, you have to buy the perfect fit so your experience won’t spoil when you are skating.
Don’t go too fast
As you are still a beginner you don’t need to go too fast. It means don’t just put on ice skates and start skating. Because, winters are here so, your body is not warm. First, you need to go and do some warm-up. After warm-up does some exercises like repeating the gliding drills that I have told you above.
So, now you are prepared for Skating. But, as you are still a beginner ill suggest you don’t go to the center just stay around the corner of the barrier. This will help you if you lose balance to grab the barrier and gain balance yourself.
Bend your Knees
You have observed this hundred times in your life that it is hard for someone to push you when your knees are bending. Laws of physics say that when the gravity of the height is low it is easy to maintain balance. The same Science applies to skating.
In the beginning when you are skating then you should bend your knees. This knee bending will help you to reduce the gravity and form more stability. After some time whenever you are feeling comfortable just open your keys and you will see the major difference that it is now easy for you to stand on the ice and then you can start gliding. And surely in no time, you can say with ease, this is “how to ice skate”
Dos & Don’ts for Ice Skating
So let’s first start with Dos of Ice skating as a beginner.
- Get perfect fit skating shoes
- Ice Skate Blade should align with your skating style
- Always see forward
- First, learn basic skating drills
- First practice & Warm-up
- Observe others and learn
So let us discuss the don’t of ice skating.
- Don’t look down
- Don’t feel bad if you are not performing well
- Don’t stop learning
- Don’t lean on the backside while gliding
- Don’t forget to have fun
- Don’t practice too much
Pain after Ice Skating
Many people complain that they followed all the guidelines but still, they are feeling pain. Then let me tell you it’s perfectly normal for a skater to feel pain when you are just starting. So, don’t worry, just take a chill pill and relax.
Nothing can be built overnight, the same goes with ice skating. You need to be patient and keep practicing but don’t even practice enough that your ankles start paining. Always remember you are not the only one who feels pain. There are a lot of people that you see skating, they also go from the same spot. Back
Well, now you have learned all about ice skating. But, just remember I have given you theoretical knowledge. To learn you have to go there and start practicing. Now you only have one thing remaining to learn and that is to overcome your fear. Once you have conquered that nothing can stop you. Don’t get afraid of failing. Just keep practicing.