Bashir Abdullahi's Blog

Skating 101

with 5 comments

Have you ever been on the ice rink? If not then you are really missing something.

Me and the Birthday Girl on the Ice Rink

Finding myself on the ice rink for the first time created a feeling in me that can only be described by someone who’ve been there.

If you want to know how it feels, then try going on the ice.

But before you go, here are some facts you need to know:

Ice skating according to Wikipedia is “moving on ice by use of ice skates.

It can be done for a variety of reasons, including leisure, traveling, and various sports.

Ice skating occurs both on specially prepared indoor and outdoor tracks, as well as on naturally occurring bodies of frozen water such as lakes and rivers.”

First Day at Rink

I’ve been planning to go skating long ago, but my dream was fulfilled when a friend and colleague celebrates her birthday and invited me over to go skating at Somerset House.

I was anxious and nervous at the same time, as I was afraid of falling on the ice.

The first time we were ushered to the rink I almost fell off, but for the timely intervention of one of the ice marshals who held my hand and coached me on skating 101, the tricks, dos and don’t s of ice rink.

There and then I realised my mistake of not doing a proper home work before I went to the ice.

My advice for you is if you want to go skating, then learn a bit about what it involves.

First steps

Here are some tips from Wikipedia:

  • Ice skating works because the metal blade at the bottom of the skate shoe can glide with very little friction over the surface of the ice.
  • Slightly leaning the blade over and digging one of its edges into the ice (“rock over and bite”) gives skaters the ability to increase friction and control their movement at will.
  • Choosing to move along curved paths while leaning their bodies radially and flexing their knees, skaters can use gravity to control and increase their momentum.
  • You can also create momentum by pushing the blade against the curved track which it cuts into the ice. Skillfully combining these two actions of leaning and pushing— a technique known as “drawing”— results in what looks like effortless and graceful curvilinear flow across the ice.


Despite the fun and euphoria that comes with the exercise, there are also some dangers associated with it.

I will first of all warn you that you should anticipate to fall at least once on your first time at the rink. Don’t ask me whether I did.

Here are a list of inherent dangers of skating according to Wikipedia:

  • The first main danger in ice skating is falling on the ice, which happens on rough, icy surface, the design of the ice skate, and the skill and experience of the skater.
  • While serious injury is rare, a number of (short track) skaters have been paralysed after a fall when they hit the boarding.
  • An additional danger of falling is injury caused by the skater’s own metal blades or those of other skaters.
  • Falling can be fatal if a helmet is not worn to protect against serious head trauma. Accidents are rare but most common with collisions or pairs skating.
  • The second, and more serious, danger is falling through the ice into the freezing water underneath when skating outdoors on a frozen body of water.
  • This can lead to serious injury or death due to shock, hypothermia or drowning.

However, these ‘anticipated’ dangers shouldn’t scare you away from trying out you feet on the ice rink.

I enjoyed my first time skating and hope to go back to the rink soon. Will you join me?

Written by danmakaranta

December 5, 2009 at 11:28 am

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5 Responses

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  1. An interesting skating how-to article involving personal experiences. I like your idea. Good job.

    Now David is talking:
    * Wouldn’t it be better if you bulletin point the three facts about skating as you did about dangers?
    * The artcile is well-structured, but try to add two or three sub-headings to see if they make it better.

    Now I’m talking again 🙂

    Short sentences, short paragraphs, bolded first paragraph, active voice, one idea per paragraph… (somebody stops me!)

    This blog post is really nice, but I still have two questions:

    1. How did you add that caption below your picture?
    2. Did you fall on the ice? How many times? haha

    Yong Wang

    December 17, 2009 at 12:10 pm

  2. As for how I added the caption, I will show or tell you when we meet. Cheers man.


    December 17, 2009 at 2:12 pm

  3. but its necessary to fall over and over again(as long as its not me!) in order to enjoy the experience!
    also, had you not fallen, would you have remembered to blog about it? hehe!

    Zalak Modi

    December 20, 2009 at 11:14 pm

  4. i myself was gonna fall cos i had to come all the way infront of you to see your face and make sure that it was you bashir :D!! I couldnt recognise you, gragging your feet, soooo careful so as not to fall :p!!


    January 6, 2010 at 9:15 pm

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