Learn To Skate
Over 50,000 people a year complete a formal Skate UK Learn to Skate Course, and you could be one of them. The success of 'Dancing On Ice' has helped to make this extremely popular, and with the Winter Olympics fast approaching there couldn't be a better time to join in. As a sport, ice skating could help you burn about 400 calories an hour: what a great and fun way to keep fit. Our Learn To Skate sessions (except Adults on Tuesdays) are mixed so that the whole family can learn together!
Please note that each Skate UK session includes a 30min lesson as well as practice time.
To find out more about Skate UK go to NISA's webpage www.iceskating.org.uk
6 week course £60
Course fee includes:
Find some good skates.
Rentals are adequate at a good rink for your first steps. Find a companion. Learning with someone will help in relaxing on the ice.
Learn to maintain your balance on the ice.
This is crucial. Try to find your center of gravity. The keys to skating well are relaxation and technique.
Trust the ice
This may sound silly, but think in your mind, I trust the ice!!! You will find yourself more comfortable on the ice. Try to walk. This may sound ridiculous, but learning to walk will help give you ankle support and help you get used to the friction of the ice. You'll do better not to hold onto anything. The wall can become a crutch. Instead, hold your arms out at just below shoulder level to learn to balance yourself. bend your knees slighty and lean forward, not back, you don't want to crack your head.
Lean on your weak foot, then push in a diagonal direction outwards with your strong foot
as if you were shoveling snow behind and to the right of you. This will then propel you forward. Then bring the right foot back in next to the left and repeat the process.
Keep this up and begin to take longer strokes and try to glide.
If you try to give an extra flick of the toe/ankle at the end of each stroke, it will give you more power and make you a more efficient and faster skater.
Bend your knees and move your body with the strokes.
To stop, place one skate behind you with the toe facing away from you and gently drag it behind until you come to a halt. When you do this, your balance will be put on one foot only, so practice skating on one foot to perfect this technique.
Bend Your Knees Very important! Knees should be bent enough so that you can't see your toes and your shoulders should be forward and above your knees. Stability is greatly increased and you will not fall backwards as much when learning.
When moving (at all) on the ice, do NOT stiffen your body. It actually makes skating harder. Keep your body loose and relaxed and you will find it much easier to glide along. Don't be afraid to fall over, and you probably won't! People who are most afraid of falling over usually do it the most. Use your arms for balance if needed.
Well fitting and properly sharpened skates are very important. Your toes should just touch the front cap of the skates and the skate should be snug enough so that your heel does not lift off of the boot's bottom.
Practice makes perfect. Enjoy the fresh air and movement. Don't expect to be Wayne Gretzky the first day, but you are started on your way to becoming a great skater!
Don't be discouraged by or worry about falling. Everybody around you has fallen and will fall again - and often in odd and embarrassing ways. It is part of the learning process and worrying about it will hinder your progress. It can actually help if you "practice" falling to learn how to do it without over-reacting and hurting yourself.
Just hanging around on skates or skating loosely while talking to a friend is a good way to soothe your anxieties and make you more comfortable on skates.
Use standard inlines/rollerblade protective gear to protect your knees, elbows and wrists. If older and worried about your hip joints and coccyx then consider wearing a pair of crash pad pants like motocross, snowboard or skateboarders use.
Wipe the blades dry with a towel after skating and remove the skate guards to air the blades and prevent rusting.
- An hour and a half session,
- Including 30-min group lesson,
- Skate hire,
- SKATE UK badge and certificate on completion of the 6 weeks course.