Hard to believe, but I actually have friends in the real world who… gasp, know nothing about figure skating – at all! Imagine that! The following post is based on actual discussions I have had with friends and colleagues in my day job about ice skating.
1 We trip over our picks, step on the heels of our blades and face-plant more often than you can imagine.
2 As long as we’re on the topic of falling down, we do this pretty much every time we get on the ice – even world champions. Does it bother us? Nope. The more we fall, the more we improve; in fact, watching our friends fall is often a source of mirth and merriment amongst us.
3 We don’t practice in sparkly, bling-encrusted costumes. Most of the time, it’s the same combo of black leggings/pants/t-shirt/yoga top. In fact, assuming a figure skater participates in a minimum of 4 competitions or figure skating test sessions in a year, a $500 to $1000 frock will be worn at most for a total of 4 hours.
4 We find it really difficult to skate on rental skates. The boots are too soft and usually the sharpening is poor.
5 Most of the time, we don’t like skating outdoors. It’s too cold, the ice is too bumpy and it wrecks the sharpening on the blade. It’s also hard to jump and spin with all those layers of clothes!
6 … and speaking of sharpening… we can and do obsess for hours over this! We will also travel insanely far distances to seek the perfect sharpening for our figure skating blades.
7 We get dizzy doing spins. Over time, we adapt (much like astronauts do), or just learn to hide it really well.
8 Only a very tiny number of us will ever go to the Olympics, and most of us don’t do triple jumps and we are OK with this. Lots of us do ice dance or interpretive / creative movement.
9 Straight guys figure skate too… who you choose to be with is your decision and we all get along just fine. Just get the %&*# out of my way when I’m doing a run-through!
10 We have weak ankles too, but a well-fitted pair of figure skates do wonders to correct this problem.
11 I know, I know, I said “ten,” but this is a really good one!! You can learn to ice skate at any age. Adult figure skaters are always delighted to welcome newbies to their ranks.
What are the most common questions you get from your non-skating friends and family? What is the strangest question you have ever been asked by a “dry-lander”? Have you ever been able to encourage anyone to begin ice skating? How are they doing?
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