10 skating tips that will save you from falling repeatedly

Whether you’ve never tried skating before, or just haven’t laced up a pair for a while, here are some tips from Skate Canada that will help make your time on the ice more fun!

SKATING TIPS FOR BEGINNERS:

1. Start with a good fitting skate

Skating is fun and your feet should be comfortable and supported. Look for skates that stand up straight when your feet are in them. The skates should not lean in or out. You should be able to wiggle your toes comfortably.

If you have feet that are growing, please do not have anymore than one finger width behind your heel when you push your toes all the way to the front of the skate (otherwise the skate is too big and will not support your foot properly).

2. Lace your skates carefully

When lacing your skates, be sure there is some room at the top of the skate to allow your ankle to bend. You need to be able to bend your ankles in order for your knees to bend! Generally, you should be able to put a finger between the top of your skate (tongue) and your shin.

3. Always wear a helmet

This helmet should be a CSA approved helmet meant for ice (not a bike helmet, etc.).

4. Bend your knees

When stepping on the ice for the first time, always keep your knees bent. You want to lower your center of gravity and keep pressure on your blades. Try to keep the balance point of your body between the ball and the middle of the foot.

5. Take baby steps

Start with transferring your weight between your legs to get a feel for the ice. Once you feel stable, you can start to do pushes. Be sure to make them small pushes at first and always use the side of the blade to push. Bring your feet back together again with your knees bent immediately after you push. Repeat on the other foot, always remembering to bring your feet to a resting position between pushes.

6. Go with the flow

As you start to build momentum, you will feel yourself gliding. This is good! When you are first starting, work towards gliding on two feet between every push.

7. Keep yer head up kid

Always keep your head up, so you can see the horizon. This helps your body stay balanced.

8. Dress warm, but comfortably

Do not wear clothes that will restrict your movement (like snow pants that are too small).

9. Watch out for tripping hazards

Be sure that nothing is dragging on the ice (scarves, laces, pant legs, etc). This is a tripping hazard. Also, be mindful of any bumps or holes in the ice that may cause you to lose your balance.

10. Everybody falls

Learning to fall will allow you to feel more comfortable on the ice. Falling is normal when you’re just starting out, so practicing how to fall properly is essential. Always try to protect your head and limbs when falling.

Now go hit the ice, enjoy one of Canada’s iconic winter activities, and check 8/150 off your 150 Play List.