Do you or your kids have a passion for ice skating? Below is my selection of some of the best figure skating books to read - including learning the techniques, biographies of figure skaters, history of the sport, and stories for all ages.
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Technical figure skating books to learn and improve
On ice training
Let's start with books about practicing ice skating. Understand all the moves that create routines.
The official book of Figure Skating
by the US Figure Skating Association
Instructions for over 40 skating moves with diagram
Profile of renowned skaters
Photos of figure skaters
The complete book of Figure Skating
by Carole Shulman
A very comprehensive book about techniques and training methods to master skills at all levels (and in all disciplines; singles, pairs, ice dancing and synchronized skating). Covering: choosing your sport, equipment conditioning, nutrition and all the skills.
Ice skating books for beginners
Ice skating for the first time can feel overwhelming. The sensation on this thin blade are extremely different. Balance needs to be found.
Below are books for parents of beginner kids or adults getting into ice skating.
First day on the Ice
by Jocelyn Jane Cox
Tips from a professional skating coach and mom. An easy read for parents of beginner ice skater to help get the skater and themselves ready.
Ice skating - Steps to Success
by Karin Künzle-Watson and Stephen . DeArmond
Overlook the old style cover. The content is great for beginners with clear instruction to learn the basics of ice skating (adult).
As the skater advance and gets serious about the sport, off-ice practices become an important part of training. Below are books to guide the skaters on how to work out off ice in order to improve on ice.
Ballet secrets for skaters
by Barbara Denise Files
How to practice ballet to increase your artistic competitive edge: tools, tips and techniques to improve posture, upper body placement, to commend the audience's attention.
Conditioning for Figure Skating
by Carl Poe (MS / CSCS)
Techniques to improve conditioning for figure skaters (single, pairs and ice dancing) - illustrated moves for warm-up, flexibility, cool down, strength training, jumps, endurance...
The inners champion: a mental toughness training manual for figure skaters
by Choleleen Loundagin
Biographies of figure skaters
Figure skaters will love to learn more about their favorite ice skating legends: their practice routines, their path to success, their determination, the obstacles they had to face... Stories that will inspire. There is nothing better than learn from people who have already done it. They are great figure skating gift ideas (see more gift suggestions here).
Finding the Edge: My life on the Ice
by Karen Chen
US National champion shares her story on and off the ice, from when she started at 5 years old to her title at 17 including her nearly career-ending ankle fracture!
Beautiful on the outside
by Adam Rippon
Olympic medalist Adam Rippon shares, sometimes with a fun tone, his story and how the smile on his faces did not show the hardship in his real life.
Only with Passion
by Katarina Witt
Katarina Witt is an ice skating legends with many titles, including 2 Olympic gold medals. She shares her story will giving advice to young skaters, not only on how to be a champion but also on how to create a fulfilling life.
A skating life: my story
by Dorothy Hamill
Olympic gold medalist shares her story from her skating careers to her adult life. She opens up about love, family, depression and how skating was the constant that allowed her to escape her heartache.
Tessa & Scott
by Tessa Virtue, Scott Moir and Steven Milton
The careers of the most titled ice dancing pair from childhood to Olympic gold and their comeback.
The books include many photos of the pair.
by Toller Cranston
If you are looking at a very different perspective on the sport, learn more about the 6 time Canadian champion and his work after the Innsbruck game - how to push to boundaries of the sport.
Landing it: my life on and off the ice
by Scott Hamilton
The life of Olympic Champion Scott Hamilton, from his childhood between disease and skating. It covers his route to the Olympics, his feelings about the skating world, his relationships with other skaters... A personal book that steers a lot of emotion.
The long program: Skating toward life's victories
by Peggy Fleming
Olympic gold medalist Peggy Flemming shares her story from athlete, to mother to role model and cancer survivor. She explains has she developed inner strength that has applied both to her skating and her life.
Other books about ice skaters
For an introduction to the stories of various figure skaters
Figure skating's greatest stars
by Steve Milton
The illustrated profiles of 60 ice skating champion in women, men, pairs and ice dancing disciplines : their career and the events that made them legends (jumps, spins...).
Taking the ice - Success stories from the World of Canadian Figure skating
by PJ Kwong
Ice skating is way of life for Canadians. This retrace the stories of legends who have made the Canadian Dynasty.
by Christinne Brennan
The chronicles of a group of figure skaters during one season. Stories about the famous skaters who came before them have been incorporated, covering the history of the sport with the point system, the judging scandals...
However note that it was published in 1997, so do not expect recent skating stars or stories.
Figure skating books for kids - 4 to 7 years old
In this section I have gathered some for the best figure skating books for kids with charming stories of fictionnal and non fictional figure skaters.
Dream big little pig
by Kristi Yamaguchi and Tim Bowers
Olympic gold medalist Kristi Yamaguchi tells the story of Poppy, a pig with big dreams. She loves gliding, swirling and twirling and wants to be the star of the rink.
by Rose Vina and Claire Almon
The illustrated story of Mabel Fairbanks who broke down the color barrier of the figure skating sport in the 1930s.
Tallulah's Ice Skates
by Marylin Singer and Alexandra Boiger
Tallulah is a ballerine who loves skating. She is sure that with some hard work she can be as good on the ice. But she will learn that having fun is sometimes more important than being the ebst.
A is for Axel
by Kurt Browning and Melanie Rose
World champion Kurt Browning glides through the alphabets explaining figure skating; the techniques (such as A for axel), the history and specific moments of the sport.
Barbie: you can be an ice skater
by Random House
Barbie joins an ice skating club and wants to complete at the Winter Wonderland Ice show. The storybook includes 50 stickers.
Stories featuring figure skating - 8 to 12 years old
As you skater gets older, there are some fantastic stories about figure skaters.
However, I am sorry, I have not found any where the main character is a boy...
Breaking the Ice
by Gail Nall
After a meltdown in front of judges and crowds, Kaitlin is dropped by her coach and her club. She has always dreamed of becoming a champion figure skater, but no other club is accepting her. She finally joins a club nicknamed 'Fall down club' and faces challenges to reach regionals.
Courage on ice
by Jake Maddox
A figure skater with a chinese heritage loves her latest routine with a Mandarin song. But a fall forces her to take time off the ice. She discovers how to face the obstacles of getting back on track and the other skater making fun or her song.
by Noel Streatfeld
Discover the classic re-edited: Harriet's doctor prescribes ice skating after an illness and she makes a new friend Lalla, brought up to be a skating champion. But their feeling for ice skating will take them on different journeys. Will their friendship survive?
Taking the Ice
by Allye Ritt
Khalli trains with one of the toughest coaches in the area. Although starting just a few months ago, she gives all to the sport to taker her first national test. But finding balance on ice and in life is not easy.
Gold Medal Winter
by Donna Feitas
Esperanza is going to represent the US at the Olympic and new attention is coming her way.
She faces a whirlwind of a new world while trying to master an impossible secret jump she needs to win. Will she succeed?
Young adult books featuring figure skating
Young adults, with a passion for ice skating, might enjoy the following stories about figure skating, young love, dreams and friendships on and off the ice.
Jesse and the Ice Princess
by Michelle MacQueen
Jesse, the captain of the Gulf City high hockey team discover the biggest secret of the coach's daughter, the Ice princess. Even though she seems focus on her figure skating goals, he has game.
As he gets to know her and learn her techniques, it seems her place is next to him on the ice. But how will all that fit?
Being Sloane Jacobs
by Lauren Morrill
After falling from grace at the junior national, a skater bumps into a hockey player with an aggressive approach to skating. They decide to switch places for the summer to escape the stress and pressure from their sports. How will they handle skating in each other shoes?
by Sarah Ockler
Her skating dream ended after a betrayal changed her life. Now she stays under the radar baking cupcakes. But her dream is still inside her. Will she find a way to go back on the ice?
Sugar on ice
by Kate Messner
Claire loves skating on the frozen pond at her family's maple farm. She goes whenever she can. One day, a professional coach offers her the opportunity to train with Elite skaters. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and she is thrown into the competitive world of figure skating. Can she find the strength to keep going?
Figure skating notebooks for training log
Journal or take notes about your ice skating practices in one of those notebooks.
The following notebooks can be personalized:
I have also create notebooks sold on Amazon. They can't be personalize. However I have been able to create a special inside: under the lines there are silhouettes shadows of figure skaters. An inspiring notebook to write a diary. See all of them here.
Want more ice skating inspiration? Check out my article listing the ice skating movies.
History / culture of figure skating
It is also important to better understand the history and culture of ice skating so that we can make it move forward and become more inclusive. Below are some books worth a read to gain perspective, especially when it comes to diversity and perceptions.
History books about figure skating
Figure Skating - a history
by James R. Hines
A comprehensive book about the history of figure skating and how much changes happened during three periods separated by the World Wards.
- First, you discover the evolution of functional and recreational ice skating through into a sport and the creation of the International Skating Union,
- Second, you dive into the changes that occurred as the sport expanded and became what it is today,
- Third, you learn how ice skating became increasingly athletic and intense following World War II, with the profiles of 148 World and Olympic Champions.
It also covers discussions about social, political, and ethical concerns that have affected the sport.
Figure skating history: The Evolution of Dance on Ice
by Lynn Copley-Graves
The evolution of ice dancing including: the invention of moves, the development of the rules, the struggle for acceptance, the solutions to dance related problems and the views of renowned ice dancers.
Skating on Air: The Broadcast History of an Olympic Marquee Sport
by Kelli Lawrence
Figure skating is often considered the center piece of Winter Olympics and media loves commenting on it. This books reviews the ways in which media has impacted the sport . It includes interviews with over 30 commentators, skaters and producers.
Figure skating in the Formative years: Singles, pairs and the expanding roles of Women
by James R. Hines
Hines analyses the early evolution of figure skating with the increasing number of women - starting with Madge Syers who entered the male sport at the 1902 World Championship.
I used to be only a socializing and courtship activity. But it has before a popular competitive sport where female athletes have a public profile equal to that of men.
Reflection on the figure skating culture
The Second Mark
by Joy Goodwin
Dive deep into the preparation and performances of the 3 top pairs from the Salt Lake City Olympic. Understand how they were impacted by their very different cultures and skating coaching systems (from Russia, China and Canada). The difference played on the artistic merit, the second mark, and how it unleashed a worldwide debate on how figure skating is marked.
It was billed as the greatest event in the history of pair skating: three of the best teams of all time battling for Olympic gold on one night in Salt Lake City. Technical ability was approximately equal. It was the artistic merit score that would decide the gold medal -- the second mark.
Why black and brown kids don't ice skate
by Joel Savary
Joel Savary, the founder of Diversify Ice Foundation highlights the many issues in the sport when it comes to diversity. He offers strategies to address it.
Artistic Impressions: Figure Skating, Masculinity, and the Limits of Sport
by Mary Louise Adams
In North America, figure skating is considered by most as a 'feminine' sport. Few boys dare taking up this demanding sport.
This book traces how figure skating transformed from a male-only sport to a 'girls' sport. Take a look at the rules, the techniques and how gender has been reflected in the media.
Red Nails, Black Skates: Gender, Cash, and Pleasure on and off the Ice
by Erica Rand
The story of Erica Rand who started figure skating in her forties and quickly entered the world of adult figure skating. As a queers femme, she shares her pleasure for skating and the practices that prevent some from experiencing it. She explains her mixed feelings about participating in a sport with rigid standards for gender-appropriate costumes and moves.
Ice skating coloring books (adult and kids)
Want to relax while dreaming about ice skating? Check out these coloring books for adults and kids.
These are the ones I created:
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