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Behind the scenes with CBBC Ice Stars’ Afton

For 16-year-old Afton ice skating has been a passion from a young age. Afton made her Ice Stars debut last Tuesday alongside team mates of the Nottingham Icicles. We caught up with Afton to hear how her skating journey began and what being involved in a TV series was like... 

Who/what inspired you to step on the ice and how old were you? My Mum and I always enjoyed ice and roller skating together and we wanted to improve our skating skills, so when I turned 12 we both joined the Skate UK programme. We also both enjoyed watching Dancing on Ice and in particular loved watching Torvill and Dean.

Did you complete the Skate UK programme and how did you find it? I completed the Skate UK programme at the National Ice Centre and really enjoyed it! It was fun and I made lots of new friends. It was challenging but if you pushed yourself you could improve quickly which appealed to me.

Does anyone else in your family skate? Not anymore but we all enjoyed skating as a family when I was a bit younger. My Mum and Dad both have their own skates, but they haven't been on the ice for a while.

What made you decide to join synchronised skating over speed skating/figure skating etc? After completing the Skate UK programme because I enjoyed skating so much I wanted to carry on. I was told about a Synchro open day so went along to try it out and that was it ... I fell in love with the discipline and never looked back. 

Do you have a favourite band/music type? I listen to most types of music but I love Ed Sheeran, The Weeknd and Ella Eyre. 

What was it like having cameras follow you around? It was certainly strange having cameras follow you around but you soon got used to it and you forgot they were there.

What was your favourite part of CBBC Ice Stars? I liked skating in the NIC Gala for Ice Stars because it was more relaxed than some of our competitions like the British or World Championships. I had fewer nerves and could enjoy the crowd and atmosphere at my home rink.

What has been a highlight from the show so far? My highlight has to be watching the footage of my team and I skate at the British Championships. Seeing my coaches and all the team's celebration and reaction to our high score which meant we were going to the World Championships for GB was amazing!

What is your favourite subject at school and why? My favourite subject at school is Psychology because I find it really interesting. I enjoy finding out and understanding how things in people’s lives and upbringings affect their behaviour.

What is your favourite thing to do when off the ice? I don't have lots of free time but when I do I enjoy seeing friends and going to music gigs.

Afton’s Mum Michelle told us that every time she sees Afton and her team mates compete it makes her burst with pride, and her proudest moment to date is when the girls represented Great Britain at the World Championships in Zagreb. Michelle told us;

“It makes me very proud to have a child who is so passionate about something she loves and is very committed to. To see Afton and her team mates be so successful in a sport they love and put so much effort into is a wonderful thing in life for any parent and makes me very happy.

“Like any high level sport it requires early mornings and missing lots of social events for both you and the child. I travel an hour to take Afton to her ice skating sessions and have had huge support from many of the other Icicles Mums.

“For any parent or guardian my final bit of advice would be to enjoy the moment because it’s a special time in their lives which all the family can be part of!” 

Find out how to do Synchro make up here.

Remember to use the hashtag #IceStars on Facebook and Twitter.

28th September 2015