Ice Skating Facts

Ice Skating Facts
It is believed that ice skating has existed for more than 3,000 years, when people in southern Finland strapped sharpened, flattened bone to the bottom of their feet. This form of ice skating was more like gliding than skating, and it wasn't until an iron blade with sharpened edges was used that true ice skating was possible. The Dutch created ice skates with iron, sharpened-edge blades in the 1200s or 1300s. In the 1600s ice skating was introduced in England, and in the 1740s the first organized skating club was formed, called the Edinburgh Skating Club. Today ice skating is a competitive sport, form of transportation and leisure activity that can be done on indoor and outdoor rinks and naturally occurring frozen bodies of water such as rivers, lakes and ponds.
Interesting Ice Skating Facts:
Ice skating is used in several different competitive sports including ice dancing, figure skating, speed skating, ringette and ice hockey.
Figure skating began in the 1850s when skaters began experimenting with different jumps and spins on ice.
In 1896 the first men's World Figure Skating Championships were held in Russia.
In 1906 the first women's World Figure Skating Championships were held in Switzerland.
During Olympic figure skating competitions the skaters are not permitted to use music to accompany their routine if there are vocals. The music must be instrumental only.
Speed skating, figure skating and ice dancing are all Olympic competitions. Ice hockey is also an Olympic sport.
When ice skating was still a new past-time in Europe it was limited to the upper class. This was true in China as well during the Song dynasty and the Qing dynasty.
By the mid-1800s ice skating had become popular in Britain among the middle and upper class.
'Rink mania' occurred in 1841 to 1844 when early attempts were made to construct artificial ice rinks made of hog's lard and salts.
Racing on ice skates began as a spectator sport among the lower class and laborers.
The first ice skating book with instructions was published in 1772 and was written by Robert Jones, a British artillery lieutenant. The book was written for men as skating was not yet a women's past-time in the late 1700s in Britain.
There have been two major theories about why it is possible to skate on ice. One was called 'pressure melting' and the other was called 'friction heating'. Both theories proved incorrect.
Accidents while ice skating are most common during hockey games, collisions and in pair skating.
Falling through frozen ice is a major danger of skating on naturally occurring frozen water bodies as the ice is not always as solid as people believe.
Kite ice skating is becoming more popular and involves wearing skates and using a controllable kite to propel oneself across a frozen lake or river.
Tour skating is another popular form of skating and involves long distance skating on natural ice tracks or ice tracks on the ground.
Michelle Kwan is a famous U.S. figure skater that has won five World Figure Skating Championships.

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