Frequently Asked Questions

Read the questions and answers below to prepare for your first Learn to Skate USA class.
Have a question that hasn’t been answered? Send us a message.

When should I arrive at the rink on the first day?

We recommend new skaters arrive at the rink on the first day 30 minutes before the class begins. For Saturday classes, we will begin introducing coaches and dividing skaters into levels at 12:15 p.m., 15 minutes before the first class begins. We ask all skaters to have their skates on and be ready to listen to our Learn to Skate coordinator then.

My skater has to miss a class. Can we make up the lesson or receive a refund?

Skaters enrolled in Sycamore’s Learn to Skate USA program can make up lessons at the Winter Club of Indianapolis. Skaters must receive a signed form from Sycamore ISC and present it at Winter Club’s registration table upon their arrival. Skaters must make up their class within a month of their missed lesson.

Winter Club has Learn to Skate classes most Sundays from 3:15 to 4:45 p.m. and on Thursdays from 5:15 to 6:15 p.m. Junior Club for skaters in Basic 4 and above meets on Tuesdays from 5 to 6:15 p.m., and Senior Club for adults meets on Thursdays from 6:30 to 7:15 p.m. Additional information on Winter Club’s classes is available here.

What should my skater wear to group lessons?

We recommend skaters wear layered, comfortable clothing, thin socks and gloves. Layered clothing prevents skaters from overheating. Socks should fit comfortably and snugly. Thicker socks often cause blisters. Not only do gloves keep your hands warm, they also prevent ice burn when falling.

Do we need to purchase skates?
No, you do not need to purchase skates when your skater is first learning to skate. Perry Park has skate rental available for an additional cost for group lessons and public sessions.
When your skater is ready to purchase skates, please check with his or her private coach or group lesson instructor for recommendations. Many of our skaters and coaches have good quality, used skates available for purchase, and we want to make sure your skater has the appropriate boot for his or her level and the correct fitting for his or her feet.
How should skates fit?

Whether you’re renting or wearing your own skates, skates should fit tightly in the heel but allow the skater to wiggle his or her toes easily. You can start with shoe size, but you may need to switch your skates for a larger or smaller size depending on the brand and model. Lace skates tightly from toe to ankle, and then criss cross laces to the top of the skate. If you need help sizing or tying skates, notify a Sycamore ISC experienced skater, parent, coach or volunteer, and we will be able to help.

Should my skater wear a helmet?

U.S. Figure Skating strongly recommends helmets for beginner skaters of all ages. A helmet should be comfortable and snug. Be sure that it is level on your skater’s head — not tilted back on the top of the head or pulled too low over the forehead. It should not move in any direction. The chin strap should be secured so the helmet does not move during a fall. If your skater plans to wear a helmet, please bring his or her own.

My skater is struggling on an element in her level. Are there options to get extra help?

Coaches Elizabeth Finn Murdock and Ellie Price are available for private lessons to complement skaters’ group instruction. Contact Elizabeth or Ellie to discuss scheduling.

What happens if my skater doesn't pass his or her level after completing a session of classes?

Skaters are tested on the last class day to determine if they have mastered the elements well enough to move up to the next level. Not all skaters will pass their level at the end of a session. Some levels include more challenging elements, and all skaters progress at their own pace. Our coaches are available at 1:30 p.m. on Saturdays after the hour of group lessons to explain which elements your skater needs to improve. We encourage your skater to keep practicing, so he or she can pass that level next time.

When can my skater compete?
Skaters as young as three year olds in Snowplow Sam can compete in U.S. Figure Skating’s Basic Skills competitions. Local competitions are available each year in Indianapolis, Carmel and Columbus, Indiana. Contact coaches Elizabeth (Finn) Murdock and Ellie Schuler to begin preparing for the competition.

Have a question that's not answered here?

We understand skating can be a complicated sport, and we’d love to help clarify anything and answer all of your questions!

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