If you are reading this article, you are definitely thinking of taking up skating as a leisure activity or serious sport. Whichever your reason, there are a few basic fundamentals you must know before commencement.
As such, below are some tips for you are a beginner that will save you potential embarrassment in the ice rink.
- Invest in good skates
Since you are a beginner, having a good pair of skates is critical. It is essential to buy a pair that is comfortable and fit properly.
I remember as I was starting out, my sister-in-law who is a pro- figure skater, recommended Riedell. Long story short, I am in my 6th year of skating and they are still my favorite brand.
If you decide to hire skates, take the time to fit them. Skates that are a size bigger may cause trips and even make your ankles to twist inwards. Those that are of a smaller fitting will hurt your toes. If you are having any problems with your fitting, ask for assistance from the center’s attendants.
Additionally, tie your skates the correct way. Tying them too tight will likely numb your legs while letting them hang too loose will not provide your knees with the much-needed support.
- Wear appropriate clothing
Make sure you wear clothes that fit properly so that you are able to move around with ease. Also, make sure you wrap up and keep warm by wearing coats, gloves, and hats. Even covered rinks can become chilly very fast.
Since ice rinks are generally cold, avoid stretching and warming up too fast. The cold can cause muscles to tear when done rapidly. The secret is to start with slight bending then working your way up to complex stretches.
- Do not look down
As a beginner skater, you may have the urge to look down at your feet to see if your movements are correct. As much as you are tempted to do that, do not! Instead, keep your head up and look towards the direction you are headed to avoid colliding with your fellow skaters.
The correct posture when skating is to slightly lean forward and bend your knees. Avoid leaning backward as this may cause you to fall on your back or worse. To ensure you maintain balance, stretch out your arms in front of you and keep them wide open.
- Learn how to stop
Stopping is another crucial thing to learn during your first skating session. Stopping requires technique. You first have to bend your knees, curl your toes inwards, make sure your heels are pointed outwards and push out. Doing this will slow you down eventually bringing you to a halt.
By doing this, you will escape the embarrassment of bumping into people.
- Consider taking lessons
If you are serious about learning and mastering the basics of skating, you will have to enroll in classes. There are various rinks that offer classes to people of different age groups.
To make the experience better, tag a friend or relative along. This is one form of moral support that will make you feel at ease on the ice.