Ice skating is the uncontrollable gliding and self-propulsion of an individual across an ice rink, with metal-edged ice skates fitted to their feet. Skaters use skates to glide and hop on a thin layer of ice, sometimes lined with cinder blocks. People usually skate for different reasons, for recreation, sports, exercise, commuting, or just for fun.
This winter season, ice skating has become one of the most popular winter sports in Asia. There are numerous winter ice rinks scattered across Asia's two biggest cities - Tokyo and Seoul - as well as other cities in and around Asia. Although this sport is popular in straits times, some Asian countries have yet to embrace it. Because of this, the International Skating Union has been promoting the sport in these countries as well, particularly in China and Japan.
History: In the late 17th century, Japanese farmers built small ice skating rinks to entertain their own children. These rinks soon became popular among the Japanese people and soon there were dozens of ice rinks scattered throughout the country. In addition, this winter sport became even more popular among the Japanese people when the first Olympic ice skating event was held in Japan in the early 1900's. This was the first time that this sport was showcased at an Olympic Games. In the early days of ice skating, blades used to be made out of wood, but later on blades of steel were made. The first skaters wore leather shoes.
There has been a lot of progress in ice skating equipment. This has been made possible by the invention of the nylon-made ice skating uniform. The uniforms today are specially designed to provide comfort and maximum performance. They come in a variety of designs and colors.
The earliest form of Ice Skating was played on open ice. This was practiced in the Dutch East Indies and the Pacific coast. In those days, nets were created using hemp fibers. Nylon fiber was not introduced until the latter part of the 19th century. In the early days, ice skating was a game that was played only among men, but nowadays women too can take part in this winter sport.
Ice skates for ice skating have evolved into a number of shapes. Originally, there were two types of skates used - straight and curved. Today, there is great flexibility in choosing the type of skates to be used for this sport. The most popular varieties are those with V-blades, which look like the blades of both blades of a skate. It is because of this that these skates are also called half blades.