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LEARN TO SKATE

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How Do I Learn to Skate With SKATE UK?

Skate UK is the approved Learn to Skate course developed by British Ice Skating (‘BIS’) on as the fundamental training scheme for anyone wanting to learn to skate.  The Skate UK program teaches movement and basic ice skating skills for skaters of all ages in 8 clear stages. Most rinks in the UK will have some kind of registered Learn to Skate course but BIS can only advise that you register for a Skate UK course.


Skate UK is delivered by BIS qualified coaches and provides you with a high standard award scheme. We must state that not all the rinks in the UK offer the Skate UK course, however BIS would always recommend you book a course tutored by BIS Qualified Coaches.

Find out more...

Click one of the following to learn about the Skate UK programmes:

Why Learn to Skate?

 

Ice skating is a hugely popular activity that forms the basis of many winter sports you will see in the Winter Olympics, including figure skating and speed skating. 


This graceful sport sees individual skaters or groups perform a series of dance routines in time with accompanying music. Incorporating spins, jumps and fast turns, figure skating certainly offers a more artistic form of ice skating.

 
Speed Skating

 

This competitive individual sport sees participants race each other across a specified distance of ice. Speed skating competitions may take place over long distances, or can just be restricted to sprints.

 
Health Benefits Of Ice Skating

 

Whether you simply want to try ice skating for a bit of fun, or aim to skate competitively, this enjoyable winter sport offers a number of key health and fitness benefits.


Improve joint flexibility through ice skating - If your leg joints creak every time you rise from your bed in the morning, ice skating could offer a real solution. With its emphasis on quick foot movements and supple knees, your leg joints will receive a great workout and hopefully feel more flexible in no time.


Building leg muscles through ice skating - Your legs may currently resemble knobbly-kneed, trembling twigs but ice skating exercise could really change all that. Focusing on lower-body movement, ice skating offers fine exercise for the leg muscles, building them up over time. So get rid of your chicken-legged blues today by skating towards better fitness!


Boosting the cardiovascular system through ice skating - Ice skating may not appear the most obvious way of boosting your cardiovascular system, but an intensive session could really work out your heart and lungs, feeding muscles with oxygen more efficiently.


Keeping mentally fit through ice skating - Although offering a number of physical benefits, ice skating is equally useful for improving mental fitness.  Requiring high concentration, strong memory skills and spatial awareness, your mental attributes should develop the longer your ice skating training goes on.


Better balance through ice skating - If you normally topple over at the drop of a hat, ice skating could really help you improve your balance through fun and positive exercise. Travelling across an incredibly slippery surface should quickly train you to stay on your feet; otherwise you'll be crashing to earth with a bump and receiving an icy reception!

USEFUL LINKS
Skate Tots
Skate UK
Skate UK Star
Resources
Skate Tots

Skate Tots

This programme is focused on skaters under 5 years of age. This can be taught on a parent and toddler sessions before they are introduced to the regular Skate UK Programme.

Level 1
  • Sit and stand (off ice)

  • Walk forwards 10 steps in skates (off ice)

  • March on spot (on ice)

  • Little Man on spot (on ice)

 
Level 2
  • March forwards 10 steps on ice

  • Sit and stand on ice with help

  • March around on spot both directions

  • March forwards 10 steps and two foot glide

Level 3
  • March forwards and Little Man

  • March backwards 5 steps

  • Sit and stand on ice independently

  • March forwards and head, shoulders, knees and toes while gliding

 
Level 4
  • March forwards full width

  • March forwards half way, half turn (marching), march backwards to the end

  • March forwards 10 steps and 3 forward lemons

  • 2 Foot jump standing still (from Little Man position)

Basic Skills

The Skate UK is a programme of basic skills; these are the fundamentals of the sport. Once a skater has completed this programme then they have the basic knowledge of the sport. This programme is tested under a progressive and continuous testing structure.

Level 1
  • Sit down and stand up

  • March forwards across the ice

  • Forward two foot glide

  • Skate and Dip (Little Man)

  • Turn around on the spot

 
Level 2
  • Backwards Marching across the ice

  • Forward Swizzles (Lemons)

  • Forward two foot glide on a curve (left and right)

  • Two foot turn on the spot (forwards to backwards, back to forwards)

  • Snowplough or T-Stop

 
Level 3
  • Forward stroking (showing correct use of blade)

  • Moving two foot turn (forwards to backwards, back to forwards)

  • Backwards Swizzles (Lemons)

  • Back two foot glide

  • Forward one foot glide (left and right)

 
Level 4
  • Forward outside edges on a circle (left and right)

  • Forward inside edges on a circle (left and right)

  • Basic forward Slalom (basic outside / inside edges)

  • Backwards Stroking

  • Forward continuous Chasses around a circle (left and right)

 
Level 5
  • Backward outside edges on a circle (left and right)

  • Backward inside edges on a circle (left and right)

  • Backward continuous chasses around a circle (clockwise and counter-clockwise)

  • Forward crossovers (clockwise and anti-clockwise)

  • Forward outside three turns (left and right) from standstill

 
Level 6
  • Forward inside three turn (left and right) from standstill

  • Backward outside edges step to forward outside edge on a circle

  • Backward crossovers (clockwise and anti-clockwise)

  • Backward two foot Slalom

  • Two foot spin (min 2 revs)

 
Level 7
  • Forward inside open Mowhawk (left and right)

  • Backward crossovers to landing position glide

  • Continuous forward outside edges along a straight line (as per Level 1 - Field Moves)

  • Continuous forward inside edges along a straight line (as per Level 1 - Field Moves)

  • Basic forward Cross rolls

 
Level 8
  • Continuously outside three turns around a circle (3 in a row); left and right

  • Continuous inside three turns around a circle (3 in a row); left and right

  • Step sequence: Three turns, Mowhawk, Cross rolls, Twizzles, Toe steps ect.

  • Forward inside single Twizzle (left and right) (Hockey skaters forward Drag; left and right)

  • One foot spin (min 2 revs) (Hockey skaters 2 foot spin; min 4 revs)

Skate UK - Basic Skills Programme

Speed Skating Grades

Skate UK - Speed Skating Grades

Completing the Skate UK Speed Skating Grades will mean that the individual has the skills and technique to be able to maximise the return for their power and endurance.

Level 1
  • Continuous skating (any body position; 5 laps)

  • Snow plough stop

  • Scooter around the corner

  • Standing start

Level 2
  • Continuous skating (5 laps)

  • 2 Foot glide (3seconds)

  • Co-ordinate swinging both arms (5 laps)

  • Slalom (2 feet, standing position)

Level 3
  • Straight pushes (feet together)

  • Corner glide (2 feet, standing position)

  • Standing start followed by a run period

  • Slalom (2 feet)

Level 4
  • Straight pushes (push to the side)

  • Corner glide (2 feet, outside edge; skate specific)

  • Straight line glide (1 leg, 3seconds)

  • Crossovers (stepping)

 
Level 5
  • Straight pushes (full extension)

  • Outside foot corner glide

  • Inside foot corner glide

  • Crossovers (outside foot pushing)

 
Level 6
  • Straight pushes (transferring weight)

  • 1 Leg dip and glide (toe on ice, 3seconds)

  • Swinging 1 arm (5 laps)

  • Crossovers (outside edge)

Skate UK Star - Free Skating Grades

The Skate UK STAR is a programme of basic skills relevant to the Free Skating discipline; these are the fundamentals of this discipline. Once a skater has completed this programme, they have the basic knowledge of Free Skating and is able to progress up to the British Ice Skating National Test Structure. This programme is tested under a progressive and continuous testing structure.

Bronze
  • Forwards and backwards crossovers in a figure of 8

  • Forward outside spiral on a curve (left and right)

  • Spin on one foot (min 4 revs) optional entry and exit

  • Waltz Jump from 4-5 back crossovers (held landing for a count of 3)

  • Bunny hop into drag

 
Silver
  • Single Salchow

  • Spin on one foot (min 4 revs) entry from backwards crossovers, stepping into a forward outside edge, with a landing position exit

  • Backward spiral on a curve (left and right)

  • Backwards crossovers around a circle into an extended landing position for the count of 3 (left and right)

  • Teapot on either foot (forwards or backwards)

 
Gold
  • Backwards outside one foot spin (min 1 rev)

  • Single toe loop (with correct take off - not a toe three jump)

  • Spiral sequence: Forward outside spiral, forward outside three turn, two backwards crossovers, back inside spiral (spirals held for 3 seconds) clockwise and counter-clockwise

  • A simple step sequence: Must have three turns, Mohawks, Chassés, Crossrolls, Toe Steps; these can be done on any edge, forwards or backwards

  • Combination of skating movements: To include turns, jumps and spins in a short routine; with or without music (max 1 minute and 30 seconds)

Skate UK Star - Free Skating

The Skate UK STAR is a programme of basic skills relevant to the Ice Dance discipline; these are the fundamentals of this discipline. Once a skater has completed this programme, they have the basic knowledge of Ice Dance and is able to progress up to the British Ice Skating National Test Structure. This programme is tested under a progressive and continuous testing structure.

Bronze
  • Fordward open Chassés/crossed (closed) Chassés continuously on a circle (min 3) left and right

  • Left Forward Outside Mohawk, cross in front onto Left Back Inside and Step forwards to Right Forward Inside (3 times) left and right

  • Forward progressive runs

  • Two consecutive Left Forward Outside three turns followed bu a sustained outside edge with the free leg extended for a count of 3 (left and right)

  • Forward spiral inside and outside edges (either foot)

 
Silver
  • Forward progressive runs in a figure of 8

  • Backward open Chassés (3 on each foot) in a Serpentine sequence

  • Backward progressive runs in a figure of 8

  • A 7 step dance sequence as follows: Right Forward Inside open Mohawk, Right Back Outside run, Right Back Outside cross in front Left Back Inside, Step forwards to Right forward Inside edge and repeat twice

  • Forward inside single twizzles, left and right (min 4 in a row)

 
Gold
  • Forward fun, forward slip Chassés (3 times) in a figure of 8

  • Basic backwards crossrolls

  • Solo novice Foxtrot with music

  • Forward inside double twizzles (left and right)

  • A 9 step dance sequence as follows; Left Forward Outside progressive run, Left Forward outside closed Chassés, Left Forward Outside progressive run, Left Forward Outside open Mohawk, Step behind to a Left Back Inside edge and repeat twice.

Skate UK Star - Ice Dance Grades

Skate UK Star - Ice Dance

Skate UK Star - Pairs Grades

The Skate UK STAR is a programme of basic skills relevant to the Pairs discipline; these are the fundamentals of this discipline. Once a skater has completed this programme, they have the basic knowledge of Pairs and is able to progress up to the British Ice Skating National Test Structure. This programme is tested under a progressive and continuous testing structure.

Bronze
  • Forward stroking side by side (min 4 pushes) focus and emphasis on unison

  • Forward stroking in hand and hand hold (min 4 pushes)

  • Basic upright spin side by side (min 2 revs) any entry and exit

  • Bunny hop side by side

  • Forward spiral in a straight line side by side

 
Silver
  • Forward stoking in Kilian hold (min 4 pushes) focus and emphasis on timing and unison

  • Forwards crossovers around a circle in hand to hand hold (clockwise and counter-clockwise)

  • Side by side Waltz jumps from 3 backward crossovers (emphasis on unison)

  • Two foot spiralling curve in Kilian hold

  • Forward spiral in a straight line in Kilian hold

 
Gold
  • Forward crossovers in a figure of 8 in hand to hand hold

  • Backward crossovers around a circle in hand to hand hold (clockwise and counter-clockwise)

  • Side by side single Salchow from 3 backward crossovers

  • Simple pairs spin (min 2 revs) in Kilian hold, any entry and exit

  • Spirals: One skater forward spiral/one skater backward spiral hand to hand hold

Skate UK Star - Pairs

Skate UK Star - Synchro Grades

The Skate UK STAR is a programme of basic skills relevant to the Synchro discipline; these are the fundamentals of this discipline. Once a skater has completed this programme, they have the basic knowledge of Synchro and is able to progress up to the British Ice Skating National Test Structure. This programme is tested under a progressive and continuous testing structure.

Bronze
  • Forward block (full length of the rink) in the shoulder hold using alternating left and right chasses

  • Forward line (full length of the rink) in the shoulder hold using alternating left and right chasses and swings

  • Forward circle (at least 2 revolutions in both directions) in hand hold, facing inward using continuous chasses

  • Forward pin wheel (at least 2 revolutions in both directions) in shoulder hold, using consecutive chasses. 2, 3 or 4 spokes may be performed depending on the number of skaters

 
Silver
  • Block in shoulder hold. Push left, push right, left cross edge, right cross edge, LFO 3 turn, right back cross edge, left back cross edge

  • Line in shoulder hold. Push left, push right, left cross edge, right cross edge, LFO 3 turn, right back cross edge, left back cross edge

  • Circle in elbow hold (tea pot hold), facing in and out performed in both directions. 2 consecutive of; forward chasse, forward cross, FO 3 turn, backward chasse, backward cross, step to forward inside edge to repeat

  • Forward intersection using alternating forward chasses. At least 3 pass throughs. Drag position maybe introduced for variety

 
Gold
  • Forward line in shoulder hold turning to a back line into elbow hold. Steps may be a combination of chasses, progressive runs and back crossovers. Movement to be performed using the full length of the rink

  • Block introducing a change in axis. Commence in shoulder hold down long axis. Push left, push right, left cross edge, right cross edge, LFO 3 turn, right back cross edge, left back cross edge. Change to elbow hold, backward right chasse, right cross, right chasse, right cross, step to right forward inside edge to repeat.

  • Change of confirmation wheel, from 2 spokes to 4 spokes. A combination of forward chasses and crossovers and a 3 turn to backward chasses and crossovers. At least one change of hold must be performed.

  • Forward intersection with a one revolution turn at the point of intersection (e.g. an inside twizzles or Austrian 3 turn). At least 3 pass throughs to be performed. 

SkateUK Star - Synhro
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