3 Fundamentals Your Child May Partake in When Beginning Ice Skating Lessons

Ice skating is a fun and beneficial sport or pastime for children. If you have a grade school child preparing to take ice skating lessons (or if you are contemplating enrolling your child) you might be wondering what he or she will be taught. There are various steps involved in the training when taking ice skating classes. In most cases, the classes will be designed for beginner, intermediate, and advanced skaters. If your child is just beginning his or her classes, here is what you might expect at the start: 

1. A Preliminary Meeting With the Teacher or Instructor

For the very first class or lesson, the instructor will most likely want to assemble the students for a meeting. At this time the students will become acquainted with the instructor and other students. The teacher or instructor of the class will offer a brief explanation of what will be taught. He or she will then check the students ice skates and make sure they are fitted properly. Helmets may be required or optional.

2. A Pre-Skating Warm-Up

Although it is not considered mandatory, many ice skating instructors prefer their students to warm up before beginning an ice skating class. This helps the child "loosen up" and prevent sore muscles that might occur after the lesson. A warm-up typically involves gentle stretching exercises off of the ice. The instructor may demonstrate stretch exercises for the calf muscles and leg. In some cases, a simple running in place may be all that is warranted.

3. Beginner's Lessons and Games

There are various steps involved in the ice skating learning process. Initially, beginning students will be instructed to step out onto the ice while holding onto the hand rail. It may seem a bit intimidating to some of the younger students, but parents may stand close by if they desire.

After the child feels comfortable on the ice, the instructor will have him or her slowly let go of the rail. The instructor may demonstrate to the students how to safely fall or land on the ice and get up to a standing position. The falling and standing up process may take several attempts before the student is ready to begin to skate. Gliding on the ice is typically taught first, then dipping or squatting may be taught next. Injury prevention techniques will also be demonstrated. To add to the fun, the instructor may allow the children to play games on the ice.

Most ice skating rinks offer lessons for children of various ages and skill levels. Group lessons and private lessons may be arranged.