top of page

pro guest blog


When it comes to all things "skating" there is no loss for varied opinions on everything from first glides to competition results. Home Ice Boston can offer valuable technical and equipment advice, inside looks at testing, competing and tour skating, but we think it's important to provide additional professional opinions, which can answer the many questions that come up in today's world of on and off ice training. You can look forward to  exciting NEWS items, controversial topics, and essential information about the sport that we all love.

"Be your own hustle. That's really what it comes down to. The successful ones will run further, not because of any advantage but because their passion fuels and drives them to success!"

Adam Blake

My Journey to Professional Skating:

Building a Performance Toolbox Through Theatre on Ice


By Gillian Robidas



      This summer, I spent a few days in Sun Valley, Idaho. As a skater, the iconic year-round, outdoor skating rink at the Sun Valley Lodge had been sitting on my travel bucket list for a pretty long time. Each Saturday night, throughout the summer, National Champions, Olympians, and timeless professional skaters join forces to present the Sun Valley Ice Show. This amazing summer showcase of talent began when young employees were required by Union Pacific to work at the resort in other capacities. After some basic instructions, they were given costumes and skates, improvising programs around lodge guests who were often used in the chorus numbers. Figure skating and Sun Valley have come a very long way since then.


      This past July, I traveled there to participate in the ProSkaters Auditions and Performance Seminar, sponsored by the ProSkater organization to help link prospective show skaters with ice show producers. The three-day event began with an open competition on the outdoor rink; an artistic event available to members of ProSkaters and judged by local celebrities, show producers, and other big names in the skating world. The following night held auditions, for skaters to perform solos for the producers and then meet with them afterwards for feedback. On the final night, there was a seminar that went over everything from life on tour and show tricks, to jumping on small ice and improvisation.


      While this was my first time in Sun Valley, this was not my first time exploring the artistic side of the skating world. In the past, I’ve participated in the Knoxville, Tennessee ProSkater events, gone to the American Contemporary Skating Festival, and participated in every creative, performance-focused workshop I could find.


      Events and workshops like these are meant to push skaters outside of

their comfort zones. Emphasizing focus and instant recall, dance steps are

taught quickly, and edge classes require complex upper body movements

plus ultra clean turns. Large segments involved improvisation. As skaters,

we often become vehicles for another’s creativity. We might be good at

taking on someone’s technique, or executing another’s choreography, but

taking that step into allowing ourselves to be individual artists is definitely

scary. I remember when I first started going to workshops that asked me

to improvise, I would resolutely find a corner as close to the back as

possible, and spend more time watching other people than moving myself

. Now, doing improv is one of the things I enjoy most. It was an incredible

experience and more information on upcoming events is available at



Looking back, there is a very clear catalyst that took me from being the awkward skater in the back, to someone actively seeking ways to explore movement and push herself artistically. I joined the Theater on Ice program in Boston during my senior year in high school.

From the start, my goals for joining theater centered around gaining experience that I could leverage into a professional skating career. Along the way, however, TOI Boston became more than just something to put on a resume: it helped me identify what I uniquely bring to the table as a skater, and how to, most effectively, showcase that.


      After 4 seasons competing with TOI Boston, it’s incredible to look back and see my growth as a skater, and also a performer. Theater on Ice brought out a love of performing in me that I didn’t even know existed. It’s taught me the importance of experimenting with movement and encouraged me to learn more about different styles of dance. TOI has given me the opportunity to skate alongside incredible, technical skaters, improving everything from my confidence going into jumps, to my edges. With two programs a year for four years, TOI Boston has exposed me to many different choreography styles, and it’s been incredible to let those experiences influence my personal skating.


       In my personal skating journey, I still have so much I’m excited to learn and try. As show skating continues to be something I pursue, I know that the lessons I’ve learned from participating in TOI Boston will stay with me. While a passion for skating and the desire to learn and improve was in me, far before my Theatre on Ice experience, I’m forever grateful for the platform, direction and portfolio of performance techniques on which I can draw, for the many skating opportunities ahead,


      For anyone interested in improving performance skills, having a blast on ice, trying something new and different, and possibly looking ahead to a future with a touring Ice Show. Auditions for all the Boston Theatre on Ice teams will be held on August 19th. Information is available on the Theatre on Ice Boston website


MOSCOW (AP) — Olympic figure skating medalist Denis Ten was killed on Thursday, and prosecutors in Kazakhstan said they were treating the case as murder.

Ten was stabbed after a dispute with people who allegedly tried to steal a mirror from his car in his home city of Almaty, Kazakh news agencies reported.

Doctors in Almaty say he died in hospital there. He was aged 25.

Born in Kazakhstan to a family of Korean descent, Ten’s bronze at the Winter Olympics in Sochi in 2014 made him Kazakhstan’s first medalist in figure skating.

Canadian skater Patrick Chan, who won silver in the same competition, said on Twitter he was “honored and grateful to have shared the ice” with Ten. “One of the most beautiful skaters to have graced our sport. My thoughts are with his family during this unimaginable time.”

The International Skating Union said it was “deeply saddened” by news of Ten’s death.

“Today is truly a dark day for all of us who knew and loved this young figure skater and were inspired by his talent and creativity,” Kazakhstan Olympic Committee president Timur Kulibayev said in a statement. “Throughout his sporting career, Denis set an example with his motivation, strength of spirit and his champion’s personality.”


The ISU's application for inclusion of Synchronized Skating was however not successful and the ISU acknowledges the challenges the application was facing, namely the universality of the discipline, the media and broadcast impact and, last but not least, the addition of a substantial number of athletes. The ISU will nevertheless continue its efforts to further develop Synchronized Skating and increase its popularity in cooperation with the ISU Members.


"The programme features the addition of signature new events with monobob ("REALLY?")and freestyle ski big air, as well as dynamic mixed team formats including short track mixed relay, a ski jumping mixed team event, mixed gender team aerials and a snowboard cross mixed team event."




Announcing Jackson Ultima Skates’ Partnership with OneTeamMVMT
WATERLOO, ONT, March 2018 – Jackson Ultima Skates is proud to announce a partnership with OneTeamMVMT.  Jackson hopes that this support will help OneTeamMVMT in their great cause of getting synchronized skating into the Olympics, while continuing to grow the sport worldwide.
The Jackson Ultima Skate Company is a leader in developing and innovating skating products.  With the new Apex Synchro blade as their most recent product development, along with their tried and tested dance boot already worn by many elite synchro skaters, OneTeamMVMT is proud to have their support for the 2018 season as they align themselves with the Synchronized Skating community.      
“Jackson Ultima Skates is proud to announce our partnership with One Team Movement,” said the company’s president, Mr. Kim Bauer.  “At Jackson we hope this support helps One Team Movement in their great cause of adding Synchronized Skating to the Olympics and to continue to grow the sport worldwide.  Synchro is a huge part of the skating world and we will be working closely with OTM to successfully grow the sport.  At Jackson we treat Synchronized Skating as a dedicated category that deserves the focus of our product development efforts.  We have an exciting platform of new and existing products to be introduced shortly.  We look forward to this great partnership.”
As a partnership initiative, OneTeamMVMT will be attending the Junior and Senior World Synchronized Skating Championships with Jackson (in Croatia and Sweden respectively), to show the synchro world just what Jackson has been developing for the synchro market. With free product giveaways and other exciting initiatives to promote a positive and fun environment at the prestigious World Championships, the future looks bright for these two organizations who proudly support the growth and development of synchronized skating.
“It’s a natural fit.” said founder, Lisa Miadovnik, of the partnership with Jackson Ultima. “With our growing momentum and the Jackson brand behind us, we feel empowered and excited about influencing and advocating for the progression of synchronized skating as a sport. We are grateful to have Jackson’s support as we launch our development camps this summer in Canada and the USA, which are open to all teams and will provide valuable development opportunities for skaters and coaches. We believe that synchro belongs alongside other ice sports currently in the Olympic Games. And with the support and recognition of companies like Jackson, we will be able to make a growing and positive impact on the sport.”   


OneTeamMVMT creates opportunities for youth via the female-driven team sport of synchronized skating. Through community consultation, OneTeamMVMT has identified the need for greater Awareness, Education and Connection. We encourage the development of synchro at the grassroots levels by bridging the gap between teams and resources needed to succeed, while promoting global awareness of the sport so that more youth can participate in this dynamic discipline of figure skating.   
                    Call for further information OneTeamMVMT +1 416-648-5844

                            for US Synchro:

  ...yes there are other Olympic sports

so let's clarify some terms



Sport in which two teams of four players slide stones across ice toward a target of concentric circles.


What it sounds like it is: An item to secure clothing; a means to an elevator.

Translation: The 1-foot circle at the center of the house (the circular scoring area).


What it sounds like it is: Conclusion of a movie, game, event or book.

Translation: A division of play similar to an inning in baseball. An end is complete when 16 stones have been shot. The score is determined at the conclusion of each end. There are 10 ends in men’s and women’s curling and eight ends for mixed doubles.


What it sounds like it is: To cut or chop with heavy blows; a shortcut or more efficient way.

Translation: The rubber foothold where curlers begin their delivery. It’s located 125 feet from the center of the house.


What it sounds like it is: A tool with a heavy metal head used to break things or drive in nails; a famous ’80s rapper.

Translation: The last stone shot in each end.

Hog Line

What it sounds like it is: A line of adorable pigs in matching outfits kicking in unison.

Translation: The line behind which a player must release a stone. It’s located 21 feet from the tee. If a stone does not travel beyond the far hog line, it’s removed from play.


What it sounds like it is: A structure in which people live; the reason why Quicken Loans wakes up in the morning.

Translation: The circular scoring area made up of four concentric circles measuring 12, 8, 4 and 1 feet in diameter from outside to inside.


What it sounds like it is: Solid material used for building; a gem or jewel.

Translation: A polished, rare, dense granite weighing about 42 pounds that’s quarried on a Scottish island named Ailsa Craig.




Sport where one or two people ride a flat sled down a frozen track lying face up and feet first.


What it sounds like it is: Material with flat surfaces on each side; area bounded by four streets; where Jenny’s from.

Translation: The beginning of the start motion when the athlete rocks the sled forward.


What it sounds like it is: Pirate treasure; cute fall shoes that are shorter than boots; that honky-tonk-ba-donk-a-donk.

Translation: The name for a luge racing shoe.


What it sounds like it is: Reducing size or volume by pressing together.

Translation: The phase of the start motion after the block. The athlete uses the hips to push the sled backward.


What it sounds like it is: A part added to enlarge or prolong something.

Translation: The phase of the start motion after the pull (the forward movement of the start). The athlete extends the legs to lock into the sled.


Sport where a person rides a small sled down a frozen track while lying face down.


What it sounds like it is: Source of warmth; intense feelings in a moment; what Michiganders dream of in winter.

Translation: A single run down the track during a race. All Olympic races have four heats.


What it sounds like it is: A narrow mark or band; the thing you forgot to say in high school drama club; cheese-puff commentary in social settings.

Translation: The fastest route down the track. A high line takes the sled close to the top lip of a turn, while a low line takes the sled closer to the bottom of a turn.


Sport in which participants use skis to glide on snow.


What it sounds like it is: The most amazing selfies taken with a drone.

Translation: Airborne, gymnastic-type maneuvers performed on skis. Done by freestyle skiers who first ski off a jump.


What it sounds like it is: That tiger-headed stick you received over the holidays at the White Elephant gift exchange.

Translation: A move when the skier touches his back with the tails of both skis, legs together with his knees bent underneath his body and skis parallel.


What it sounds like it is: Strong covering to hold book pages together; an obligation that can’t be broken.

Translation: A binding is what keeps the athlete connected to the snowboard. Also used in skiing, a ski binding is designed to eject the skier in the case of a fall, which does not happen with a snowboard binding.


What it sounds like it is: A warning of something to come.

Translation: An athlete who takes a run down the course before a race to ensure that the course is safe.


What it sounds like it is: A stylish mechanism to fasten hair.

Translation: Two race (slalom) gates set vertically down the hill in sequence.


What it sounds like it is: A well-known powerful or rich person.

Translation: Mounds of snow formed by skiers repeatedly turning and compacting the snow into piles.


What it sounds like it is: A word that should never be used in a poem.

Translation: A ski race down a winding course marked by flags or poles. It has the shortest course and the quickest turns.


What it sounds like it is: What every rapper wished to be in 1994.

Translation: Stands for super giant slalom. A speed event that requires more technical skills than a downhill race.


What it sounds like it is: A term stolen from the Summer Olympics.

Translation: A position where the skier squats and keeps their arms close to the body to reduce wind resistance and maximize speed.


Sport that involves a snowboard attached to a rider’s feet while descending a snow-covered slope.


What it sounds like it is: Those things we have 206 of in our bodies.

Translation: To straighten out one or both legs during a trick. “Boning out” a leg while grabbing the snowboard can add flair to a trick.

Chicken Salad

What it sounds like it is: The thing we ate for lunch every day in January in an attempt to follow a resolution.

Translation: Move where the rear hand reaches between the legs and grabs the heel edge between the bindings while the front leg is boned.


What it sounds like it is: A bottle stopper; a popular sound on New Year’s Eve.

Translation: An off-axis rotation. If a rider inverts twice, the trick becomes a double cork; a third invert makes it a triple cork, etc.


What it sounds like it is: A vanilla-and-chocolate ice cream cone at that one burger place.

Translation: Named after skateboarder Mike McGill, it’s an inverted aerial where the snowboarder rotates 540 degrees or more and does a front flip..

bottom of page