Instead of the traditional blogroll on my blog, heres a list of the sites I visit almost daily and love.
Susan Chuns LifeSkate.com is where I go when Ive missed something figure skating-related on T.V. I can count on Susan to have the video from the latest Dancing with the Stars, an interview with a figure skater on some TV show, the results from high-level figure skating competitions, and my favorite: the Weekly Roundup of figure skating news usually with something kind of wacky included. My all-time favorite skating video is on Susans site. I tell you, this TV commercial never gets old.
About Susan: Susan Chun is the Founder and Editor of Lifeskate.com. She began skating in 1993 and instantly became addicted to the sport and that is why Lifeskate.com is for the addiction to ice. Susan loves the online figure skating community because it is so diverse, interesting and everyone can learn something from each other. As to Ice Moms Adventures in Figure Skating, Susan meticulously reads the sewing posts and one day, will have the courage to pick up a needle and thread to try her hand at the many simple and useful projects that Ice Mom lays out.
Allison Scotts Life on the Edge of Skating is my coffee break blog. Allisons skating mom blog is about participant figure skating, but from the point of view of a mom who has been there, done that, and whose skater has done it all, too. It reads like a good collection of essays. Each post is usually about a recent experience the Olympics, chat boards, injuries, and classrooms. Allison is a writer. Each post has a theme and she wraps them all up in the way all good essayists do with a satisfying end note. I can always count on her for a great read and a glimpse of a world Ill never see otherwise.
About Allison and Allen Scott: Allen and Allison Scott are both in media and communications. They are also skating parents and have lived life on the edge for more than 20 years.
Figure skating coach, parent, and adult figure skater Xan Nelson (in the red, left) writes XanBoni!, a blog full of practical advice about coaching, skating, and parenting. Xan tells it like it is and always with great wisdom and humor. If youre a skater, shell tell you to do what your coach tells you to do. And do what someone elses coach tells you to do, too. Dont argue about it. Just do it. If youre a parent, shell tell you to stop being insane and listen to the coachs advice. After all, thats what youre paying for. Shell tell you that the requirements to teach figure skating are few and that you need to change your kids class if the instructor is yelling more than the kids are moving. I love Xan because she always tells the truth, even when people might not like to hear it.
About Xan Nelson: Xan is an adult figure skater who got the teaching bug in her forties and went through several years of coaches education so she could follow this passion. She is Senior Rated in Group Instruction through the Professional Skaters Association and has passed US Figure Skating and Ice Skating Institute tests on the Adult track in Ice Dance and Moves in the Field and on the Standard Track in School Figures. Her daughter is a high-test skater who has competed nationally and is now a professional skater with an ice show, so shes seen the sport from many perspectives.
Jenny Hall is a former ice show skater and the author of Ice Charades: Penguins Behaving Badly and Other Follies from the Road (left) also has a blog of the same name, Ice Charades. Her blog is a lot like her book. Its fun. I dont know much about the world of ice show skating, but it sounds like a ball. I read Jennys blog to find out things like how to fix fishnet stockings, how to get a hotel room clean in Japan (and extra towels), whats going on in the show skating world, and why Brian Orser is the man. Really, I read it for her unique perspective on skating and her sense of humor.
About Jenny Hall: Jenny Hall grew up in St. Paul, Minnesota and started skating at the ripe old age of eleven. At twenty, she joined Holiday On Ice in Europe in 1983 after two years of college. She skated one season with Holiday On Ice and thought she was done with ice shows. But three years later, she was on a plane to Japan for a six-month show. She loved it so much she skated every summer in Japan for the next five years. Besides Japan, she also skated in ice shows from South Africa to Santa Rosa, California, and several points between, all while her former college roommate reminded her, “I thought you said the last ice show was the last ice show.” That made for a skating career of thirteen years in as many productions all while in and out of college and a host of crappy office jobs. Five years ago, Jenny started writing Ice Charades with the goal to tell an ice show story from the chorus point of view. And to make it funny. Hopefully, you will agree.
You might know Aaron Harris Axels, Loops, and Spins blog about figure skating news, and most helpful for me, figure skating analysis. Aaron isnt a skater, but hes a figure skating fan and a very, very knowledgeable one. When I am looking for figure skating analysis about televised events, coaching changes, or individual skaters, I can count on reading Aarons blog for well reasoned and respectful analysis. He entertains debate about skater rivalries, costume choices, and medals. Hes a class act in the blogging world and earned the well deserved honor of being Panasonics Gold Blogger for the 2010 Winter Games (the lucky dog). He is active on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and FormSpring. When I say active, I mean addicted. If you ever want to follow big-name figure skaters, watch who Aaron is following and follow them. Thats what I do.
About Aaron Harris: Needless to say Im crazy about figure skating! Im also a professional Figure Twitter (@skating102). I eat, drink, and breathe the sport! I have other passions as well including: Travel, Education, Politics, Civil Rights Activism, Globalization, and Volunteerism.
Alright. This isnt a blog. However, if youve been reading my blog for any length of time, you know Im cheap. Ryan Jahnkes MySkatingMall.com appeals to my cheap nature. Figure skaters from all over the world can clean out their closets and list their gently used figure skating costumes, accessories, boots, and blades and sell em to a huge audience. The benefits are many: for the first year, theres no listing fee for a basic, year-long listing. After March 2011, the one-year listing fee is just $1. Sellers can upgrade their listings for a small fee. The best part: every sale benefits the sellers or buyers figure skating club (if the club registered). When a gently used item is sold, it can result in anywhere from a 5% to 90% donation based on the wishes of the seller. Ryan has partnered with shops, too, so any purchase you make from the shops on MySkatingMall.com will result in a donation of 5% of your purchase price from the partner store. I love that.
About Ryan Jahnke: 2003 U.S. World Team member and PSA Master-rated figure skating coach Ryan Jahnke is the 1993 Novice Mens National Champion and the 2003 U.S. National Mens Bronze medalist. Jahnke coaches in Colorado and is the founder of MySkatingMall.com, an online market for both new and used figure skating items. A portion of every sale on the site benefits registered figure skating clubs.