What is figure skating?
Figure skating is when you skate alone, in pairs or ice dance.
Ice dance is performed with music, such as the tango, blues, rumba, waltz and foxtrot.
In single, there are elements included as a double axle, double jump, a flying jump spin, and many others. The skaters can perform these moments in the order as they choose.
And in free style they choose their own music, moves and choreography.
In pairs partners skate together.
The history of figure skating
It has been an Olympic game since 1920. The word skate comes from the word “schake”, meaning a shank or leg and that’s because in the beginning skates were made of the carved rib or bones of reindeers or elks, they were used to cross frozen lakes and streams. Later on iron or steel blades replaced the bones.
From being just a means of trasportation it developed into a popular sport in all society classes.
Figure skating as we know today was brought over by an American ballet master, Jackson Haines, in the 1870. It didn’t become popular in America until Sonja Henie started her legendary career, in 1927, at the age of just 13; she won of 10 consecutive world championship titles. During her career she also won three Olympic golds.
Figure skating, Italy vs. Sweden
Figure skating as a sport has grown over the years. In the beginning Sweden had a great success in this sport. They won the Olympic games several times. But as the sport grew bigger Sweden became less successful.
Nowadays Italy is more successful in figure skating than Sweden. Italy won a bronze medal in Salt Lake City and earlier they had won a gold medal.
Countries that are big in figure skating are northern countries like Russia, France, Canada and Japan, but above all the States.