Hockey Vs. Figure Skates

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Pothole// Flying across the ice, a dangerous amount of ice is missing from the ice. This big of a hole can cause people to fall and injure themselves. (photo by Addy Stanton)

by Addison Stanton 

Ice skating is considered to be a very difficult task. When people decide to take a trip down to the lovely ice rink, two types of skates can be seen: the smooth, round blades, more commonly known as hockey skates, or the violently straight blades with the jagged shark-tooth looking spikes at the front, more commonly known as, figure skates. 

When going to a hockey rink without your own skates, the default rental is the figure skate. You can only imagine the nightmare on the ice when the holidays skate around and all the seasonal skaters come out of their hibernation. Not only do you have the amateur skaters, but you also have the somewhat skilled figure skaters who think they own the place – two negatives. Just remember basic math, a negative plus a negative equals a bigger negative. Personally, I’d recommend staying at least three feet away from the somewhat skilled figure skater at all times if you want to keep your limbs. The way they contort their body while whipping that leg around in the air in the middle of the rink-it should practically be considered attempted assault with a deadly weapon. Also, be sure to watch for the seasonal figure skaters as they tend to trip on the toe picks and their legs fly up with those blades ready to slice and dice.

It is possible that these skaters might look graceful and smooth, which sometimes can be true, but for the most part, it is not. When you see this type of animal, think about the damage done to the ice as they do their deer-like jump. The little jagged spikes at the front of the skate puncture holes in the ice. The technique of a jump is to push off that toe spike, launch your body in the air, and attempt to do a little twizzler-twist. The holes that those leave, cause people to fall as it is essentially a pothole on the ice. Not sure why they are called figure skaters when they might as well be considered ice fishermen with the holes they leave. Let’s also just remember that the rink is made for hockey, painted for hockey, and even sized for hockey. I am a firm believer that they are just damaging the rink because they are jealous of the fact it is meant specifically for hockey. Hockey skates leave little damage as they glide across the surface.

Now let’s consider another fact: the music. The music that the figure skaters dance to is the equivalent to scraping nails on a chalkboard. It makes you truly wonder about their music taste outside of skating. Depending on the rink, figure skaters can request their songs to be played over the loudspeakers for practice. Not only do we have them flying around like helicopters, but we also have their evil ear-piercing music. Never heard figure skating music? Imagine Beethoven’s Für Elise on steroids. A) There is more musical clutter, a.k.a, random instruments thrown in at random times. B) It is just bad.

The last point of contention is the outfit. You may look at hockey players and see their layers of protective padding so they don’t crack their precious bones. Figure skaters, on the other hand, practically have nothing on. Their form-fitting short skirts fly up at any movement through the air even when they catch the toe pick and face plant. Half of the time their exotic colors of the costume result in a neon sign right in the middle of the rink; it’s like something you’d see on the strip. 

To say that there is no difference between the two would be like saying an infant and an adult are the same height. The vexing figure skater made up of bad music, weird costumes, flying blades, and an ego is obviously harder to swallow than the hardened, tough, and real ice sport of hockey.