More Champions

What a whirlwind of discussion in the last post! Sometimes a picture is worth a thousand words, a first time commenter, Mark Virtue, is from the Bremerton speed skating club.

I wandered by that site, and noticed some extensive galleries from their regional competition; literally thousands of photos showing many age categories. I picked a few images of kids at warp speed to illustrate what I was talking about earlier.

I have always believed that we are SKATERS first, ice or inline, sprint or marathon, almost as an afterthought or circumstance. To prove that theorem, here is another gallery of skaters that I stumbled across, of a bunch of Dutch guys out for a ramble across a frozen lake.

I looked and looked, but could not find an email to ask offical permission, so I will just put one here (politely invoking karmic forgiveness), and say check out their site.

These lake skaters could probably have a very lengthy and happy discussion with the American indoor inline kids- 5,000 miles away, about equipment, technique, training, love for the sport, and some really good crash stories…

We are all skaters first,…..

3 Responses to “More Champions”

  1. WOW, look at them rock! Little one’s with big wheels and a big love of skating. How much fun could it be? About as much fun as four old guys skating out on a frozen lake.

  2. Man, where do they find little kids who can skate like that?! At our Wednesday night Oval races (long track), we typically have 4 junior skaters–one little guy with four-wheel racing skates and a skinsuit, whose mom and stepdad-to-be both race; his cousin, who races in four wheel rec skates and camouflage shorts; and two cute little wobblers in rec skates and full pads, who we cheer wildly for when they finish their one lap race without falling. Ice long track is ALL kids; inline is NO kids (at least in my area). What gives? How do we get them interested? While I certainly don’t agree with those who want to push us Masters out of the sport, I also realize that all sports need an influx of new participants to stay alive, and I just don’t see that happening with inlining in our area…

    Oh, and I totally agree–we are all skaters first…

  3. Re: finding kids like that.

    I think it is a regional thing. We have 11 (might be more mental math is not working) teams in this region with the all except 4 within a 30 mile radius. There are more indoor rinks than there are ice rinks, which might explain the bias. My local ice rink is exactly the same distance travelwise, but it’s public hours are horrible…M-f 10am to 5pm! Nothing on weekends, occasionally there are sessions then but I cannot count on it. The rest of the time is devoted to hockey or figure skating.

    Speedskating (both types) demand a different bred of athlete, we are probably a lot closer to dancers in that we have to really work on the small details. My daughters dance instructors find that her speedskating is doing wonders for her in dance (They were teaching her the ballerina walk and were amazed that she could do it off the bat…it turns out that it is the same as a duck walk! I’ve spent 3 months working with her on that!).

    I think inline speed for kids is predicated on how good the scouting at session skates is. I know that I look at what the kids are doing and try to encourage them to try speed. The high initial price tags scares some parents away as well. Dropping $300-$500 to try the sport is a lot to ask for.

    Enought rambling for the moment.

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