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Parks and Recreation

Steps to Public Skating Happiness

Begin Off the Ice

  1. Unlike street shoes, ice skates must fit tightly to avoid the “wobbly” (ankles). Your toes should touch or nearly touch the end of your skates. If the lace opening shrinks as you lace, your skates are probably too big. Generally, wear skates smaller than your shoe size. You might need a smaller size than you think!
  2. Pull the skate laces tightly and cross the laces over and around each hook all the way to the top!
  3. Practice standing still with ankles and blades standing up straight. If you have trouble holding your ankles and blades up straight, your skates are too big and/or not laced tightly.
  4. Practice marching before getting on the ice.
  5. Heels together.
  6. Turn toes out into a ‘V’ position.
  7. Bend your knees so that your knees are out front over your toes.
  8. Arms out to the side.
  9. Take small marching steps while keeping your feet mostly side by side.
  10. Now march backward with your toes turned inward and together like the letter 'A' or the roof of a house.
  11. Learn to fall down and get up properly.
  12. Stand up straight with your arms stretched out in front of you.
  13. Bend down into a squatting position.
  14. Fall sideways to the floor onto your thigh, not forward onto your knees or back onto your rear end.
  15. Quickly bring your arms into your chest. Don’t leave your hands on the ice for long.
  16. Now roll over onto your hands and knees (like a puppy dog), with your knuckles on the floor.
  17. Carefully pull one leg up and bring the knee to your chest.
  18. Slowly stand up by slightly raising your rear end into the air and pushing up with both of your hands.
  19. As you stand up, keep your knees bent and extend your arms outwards to help keep your balance.

Now You Are Ready to Get on the Ice!

  1. At the door, carefully step sideways onto the ice while holding the wall.
  2. Begin marching on the ice as you did off the ice.
  3. Then, practice falling down properly as you did off the ice.
  4. A little more confident? Now try a few basic skating moves.
    • Backward Marching.
    • Two-Foot Glide. Take about five marching steps and then place your feet together, side by side and parallel, keeping your ankles and blades standing straight up.
    • Dip. Skate your two-foot glide then slowly bend down into a squatting position, holding your hands outstretched in front.
    • Forward Swizzle. Start with your heels together and toes pointed outwards as when you march. Then bend your knees, lean your blades inward on the inside edges and glide your toes farther apart. As soon as your toes begin moving apart, turn them inward and bring them together. Bend your knees again and repeat to Swizzle continuously.
    • Backward Swizzle. Same as forward, except begin with your toes together.
    • Forward Zig-Zag. With your feet side-by-side about eight inches apart, bend your knees, swivel your hips back and forth while keeping your upper body facing forward. Then, press slightly toward the back of your blades to begin Zig-Zagging forward.
    • Backward Zig-Zag. Same as forward, except press slightly toward the front of your blades.