Ice skating is a great sport to learn, especially if you live in a cold weather environment where you can ice skate outdoors. Here are some tips that will help you learn how to ice skate safely.
1. Fitting your skates
One of the first things you can do to is to get skates that fit properly. Whether you are renting from an ice skating rink or buying your own pair of skates, they should be a snug fit. They will feel comfortable without giving your feet or ankles any room to wiggle around. Don’t be afraid to ask for help while you’re trying on skates — an ill-fitting skate could cause an ankle injury or worse.
2. Practise falling
When you’re learning to ice skate, it’s inevitable that you will fall from time to time. It’s a good idea to practise falling so that you aren’t afraid of it and you know how to get up. While you’re on your skates, bend your knees and go into a dip, then fall to the side until you are sitting on the ground. From there you can turn over on your hands and knees and push yourself back up to standing position. Repeating this will help you gain more confidence as you are practising.
3. Hold onto the rail
There is no shame in holding onto the rail while you are learning how to ice skate. It will help guide you and let you get more comfortable with being on skates. Everyone works at their own pace, so give yourself time to get accustomed to the ice and what it feels like to have skates on your feet.
When you’re ready, you can slowly move away from the rail. Staying close to the rail, yet not holding on to it, is a great way to gain confidence without getting too far from safety. In a crowded rink, this will also keep you out of range of the more experienced, faster skaters, who will be whizzing by you at higher speeds.
4. Practise gliding
When you’re ready to, the best way to get used to the skates on your feet is to practise gliding. This involves stepping forward and then letting your back foot push your body forward. The motion of your front foot coming forward will propel your body, so you just have to stand there and get used to the feeling. The rest will come naturally after a little practise.