Adult Skating Program Information
Whether you are new to the sport of figure skating or a seasoned veteran ready to return to competition, the U.S. Figure Skating Adult Skating Program has a place for you!
Where do I begin?
Some adults are new to skating and have never taken a lesson, while others have competed on the national level as children and want to return to the ice for fun and fitness. Whether you are an "adult who became a skater" or a "skater who became an adult," the U.S. Figure Skating Adult Skating structure has a place for everyone to learn, enjoy and participate through a variety of skating programs, proficiency tests and competitions on the local, national and international level.
Opportunities in Adult Skating
Getting Started - Adult Basic Skills Program
The U.S. Figure Skating Basic Skills program offers an introductory skating curriculum for the adult who has never skated. It is divided into four levels in which beginner adult skaters will progress at an individual rate while being challenged and motivated. The curriculum is designed specifically to teach the adult skater the basic elements of forward, backward, turns and stops before advancing to more challenging skating moves. This is an exciting program for those who look to skating as an enjoyable recreational activity to stay fit and healthy. Whether you want to skate during your lunch break or get a coffee club together, the rink is the place for you. As Basic Skills members, adults may enter Basic Skills competitions at their level. This is a great opportunity for adults to showcase the skating elements they have learned. Many adults enter these events to meet a specific goal or to satisfy their need to compete.
Figure Skating Clubs
The best way to be a part of U.S. Figure Skating is to become a member of your local U.S. Figure Skating club. With more than 600 member clubs nationwide, you should be able to find one near you that meets your needs. Clubs serve many purposes to their members, offering weekly or monthly practice sessions, private instruction, test sessions, ice shows and exhibitions, nonqualifying and qualifying competitions, seminars, dance weekends, and providing a social network for adult members. Most skating clubs are non-profit associations run by volunteers. If possible, take the time to volunteer; through involvement, you will learn more about skating and at the same time create a training "home" for yourself. If there is not a club in your area, you can always join U.S. Figure Skating as an individual member.
The test structure is the base for U.S. Figure Skating. Passing proficiency tests allows a skater to advance to the next level. Each level has specific requirements that a skater must perform in front of a panel of qualified judges. Adults can choose to test in the adult testing structure or the standard track testing structure; either structure allows the adult skater to participate in adult competitions and events. There are two divisions in adult skating: adults and adult masters. Adult skaters who have passed standard track tests of intermediate free skate or higher are considered adult masters-level skaters.
The adult skating test structure is broken down into four levels: pre-bronze, bronze, silver and gold. The standard track test structure is comprised of eight levels ranging from pre-preliminary to senior. Testing disciplines are diverse and include the following areas:
- Moves in the field (MIF)
- Free skate (FS)
- Dance: solo, compulsory and free dance
Adults interested in all-adult competitions will find no shortage of events to enter within U.S. Figure Skating. Adult nonqualifying events are hosted nationwide throughout the year. Adult sectional championships, an annual qualifying event for the U.S. Adult Figure Skating Championships, are held in each section of the country (Pacific Coast, Midwestern and Eastern) and include open/nonqualifying events. Adult sectionals take place approximately six to eight weeks before the U.S. Adult Championships - the highlight of the adult competitive season. Several opportunities also exist for adults to compete internationally.
Adult skating competitions divide competitors by age and test level, and most offer free skate events, as well as interpretive, dance, pairs, compulsory moves, jump/spin contests and dance events.
Section Standard Track to Adult Track Equivalencies (pdf)
Age groups are as follows:
- Group I: 21-30 years
- Group II: 31-40 years
- Group III: 41-50 years
- Group IV: 51-60 years
- Group V: 61 and older
Synchronized skating is a fun, team opportunity for all types of adult skaters. There is a wide array of opportunities for adults interested in synchronized skating. Visit the Synchronized Skating home page for more information.
Adult Skating Training Camps and Clinics
Training camps and clinics are held annually for adult skaters to learn the basic principles of sports science that are important for figure skating performance and injury prevention. Camps introduce skaters to the importance of a correct training regimen and proper training techniques, both on and off the ice. Participants range in ability from beginner to advanced, and staff members are selected from the best coaches and celebrity skaters available. Training camps are held for singles, pairs and ice dancers. Information is available on U.S. Figure Skating Online and in SKATING magazine.
Adult Skating Committee
U.S. Figure Skating has an extensive volunteer network of committees supporting all disciplines and aspects of figure skating. The Adult Skating Committee (ASC) is dedicated to the growth and advancement of adult skating within U.S. Figure Skating. Committee representatives exist in most areas of the country, and are a valuable resource in assisting adult skaters with information regarding testing, clubs, rule interpretation and, most of all, networking with other adult skaters. To get in touch with an ASC member near you, or to get involved, go to the Adult Skating contacts page.
Download the Adult Skating Program brochure (PDF).