WHAT IS FIGURE SKATING AND HOW DO I GET MORE INVOLVED?!?!?
First a Figure Skating - History
Humans have been skating for thousands of years. The first skates were made from animal bones and attached to the feet with leather straps. People used skates as a way of crossing frozen lakes and rivers in the winter. In the 1850s, figure skating started when skaters started trying various spins and jumps on ice. Second Figure Skating - How to get more Involved
If you're somewhat coordinated and aren't afraid of falling on ice, figure skating can be a great way to get exercise and have some fun. The only equipment you really need is a pair of skates and you're ready to go. If you'd like to get started, ask about figure skating programs in the skating school office or contact Metropolitan figure skating club
Introduction to Figure Skating
Figure Skating is a sport with many dimensions. its many disciplines include: Singles Freestyle, Pairs Freestyle, Dance, Precision, Figures, and Moves-in-the-Field. Skaters normally begin to skate in a group lesson environment, such as the USFSA's Learn-to-Skate program, often called "Basic Skills". Basic Skills classes are taught regular basis throughout the year, and are a very cost-effective way to learn the basics of skating, whether your interest is in competitive figure skating, recreational skating, or hockey. When skaters have learned the basic elements of skating in this group environment, many will join a skating club, like Metropolitan figure skating club and begin to further develop those skills by working with a private instructor, or "Pro". In order to join most clubs, skaters must have passed through, or have demonstrated capability in all of the skills through the "Basic 6" or "Basic Eights 8" level of the Basic Skills program.
Club skaters typically practice anywhere from 1 to as many as 12-15 hours per week, depending on their level of interest, competitiveness, and budget.
Many skaters compete, and when they do so, they compete within groups of other skaters with similar ability levels. These abilities are proven by the passage of official USFSA tests, taken in front of USFSA appointed judges at designated "test sessions". The tests establish several "Levels" of skating in each discipline. When you watch skating on TV you are watching skaters who have passed all the way to the top of the test structure, called the "Senior" level. But there are many levels below Senior, and most club skaters are somewhere on that ladder, moving upwards. Competitive skating levels are not determined by age, although often in competitions, age will be used as a secondary factor to group smaller "flights" of skaters within a single test level.