Here are some useful top tips for ice skating to get you started. Remember that proper instruction is important, especially if you are wanting to make the step up to more advanced skating used in figure skating, ice hockey or speed skating. Click here for our skating camp
Don’t look down when skating — It’s amazing how many people starting out in skating spend all their time looking at their feet rather than in the direction they are going. Instead, keep your head up and look in front of you so at least you can see who or what you are about to collide with!
Tie skates the correct way — The right skates for you will not be the correct ones if they are tied incorrectly. Make sure your skates are not too tight or your feet will likely go numb while having your skates too loose will not provide the proper support for your ankles.
Warm up slowly — Given that skating takes place generally in a cold arena, then your muscles are initially going to be cold. Prior to skating, it’s not really wise to just throw your leg over a barrier and start stretching. Stretching in a cold environment can lead to muscle tears, so wrap up well (but not as to restrict your movement) and start with some bend and work up to stretching.
Get some lessons — If you really want to master the basics, then taking some lessons is an absolute must. Take a few group lessons which are available at most rinks and for a variety of ages. Also take a friend along, as learning with someone will help you relax on the ice.
Don’t lean backwards when skating — Leaning back will likely send you flying on your backside or worse. The best advice is to keep your knees bent and your weight forward. Hold your arms out in front of you and open them wide to help you stay balanced.
There’s no stopping you! — Naturally, one of the basics you’ll need to know is how to stop. To stop, bend your knees, turn the toes of each foot inwards, point your heels out, and push out on your heels. This will slow you down and bring you to a stop, rather than barreling into an unfortunate stranger.
Don’t take it too seriously — When you fall down (and be sure you will), have a laugh about it and get right back up on your skates again. Don’t take yourself or your skating too seriously, after all, even the best end up on their backs from time to time. It’s even funnier if you do it in style!