Did you know most ice skating schools let you try one or two lessons for free? We tried a family lesson and had loads of fun! Obviously it is mainly aiming to teach kids ice skate but my husband thought he might get a few good pointers too (but honestly, for somebody who stood on ice skates for the first time as an adult he does quite well even supporting our kids on their skates!).
I was first thinking “why pay for lessons when we can just go for free when we feel like it and have fun ourselves”. In the winter there are ice rinks all over Helsinki, the ones without services are free to be used and even the more maintained rinks only cost a few euros. But then a beloved godmother reminded me of how I use to hate ice skating all through school to the point were I “accidentally lost” my ice skates in high school to avoid the classes where we had to play ringette. And I always loved sports at school! The things was, I could ice skate good enough to not get any tutoring how to do it better but not good enough to enjoy being on the ice skates. Feeling insecure on the ice skates didn’t get any better in a very fast game with class mates training on their skates every week. So, it wasn’t until about ten years ago when friends asked us to join them on the ice, just for fun, that I found how an enjoyable way it is to enjoy the winter. Therefore, as 4-6 years is an age were kids learn relatively easy the basics for ice skating, we decided to invest some time in it this year hoping to give them the basics and then they can later on in life decide if they want to build on the basics or not.
I didn’t expect the lesson to be so much fun though! First we had to learn how to fall. Cool, we were all great at that!
Then we walked like penguins, went for “fruit” to put back in the basket and played a number of other games too. One of the best parts was that there were no frames around, so our children did a lot of ice skating and finding their balance and speed.
Our children had improved heaps since last winter, and both wanted to go back. Also, I bet 15 times this autumn will get us all pretty used to our ice skates. As our daughter is pretty good on her skates already, she has also been offered to transfer to a group without parents. But for us it is a fun way to spend time together and we are welcome to and play all together too.
Ice skating schools are not free: one season (September-Christmas or January-April) cost about 150e for about 15 lessons. Considering the cost of children’s hobbies here, it is not a bad price. But if you are not sure if your child or you yourself are up for it, you are allowed to try one or two lessons for free depending on the school you choose. I recommend it, it is fun!
Outdoor rinks in Helsinki will come, when it is chilly enough, usually in November. But the indoor rinks have free ice skating times as well, here are the schedules for last year but with links to the homepage were to check the times for this year. And yes, the season is on, even though it feels weird to back finger gloves along when it still is warm outside…