Ice skating

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**1. History of Ice Skating:**
– Earliest ice skating in southern Finland over 4,000 years ago
– True skating emerged with steel blades in the 13th or 14th century
– Dutch added edges to ice skates in the 13th or 14th century
– Ice skating in China during the Song dynasty
– Rising popularity and first clubs
– First organised skating club, Edinburgh Skating Club, formed in the 1740s
– Skating club established in London in 1830
– Early attempts at artificial ice rinks in the 19th century
– Skating matches reported in the press by early 19th century
– First iron skates manufactured in 1572
– Ice skating limited to upper classes in some regions historically

**2. Ice Skating as a Sport:**
– Skating as a sport developed on Scottish lakes and Dutch canals
– Formal sports involving ice skating
– Various sports involving ice skating emerged since the 19th century
– Ice hockey, bandy, rinkball, and ringette are team sports
– Synchronized skating derived from figure skating
– Figure skating, ice cross downhill, speed skating, and barrel jumping are individual disciplines

**3. Ice Skating Locations and Surfaces:**
– Natural ice surfaces used for various winter sports
– Man-made ice surfaces include ice rinks, hockey rinks, bandy fields, and more
– Ice skating on naturally frozen bodies of water and human-made surfaces
– Ice tracks and trails used for distance skating and speed skating
– Ice skating accommodated in enclosed areas and arenas

**4. Physical Mechanics of Skating:**
– Ice skate glides due to a layer of less tightly bound ice molecules on the surface
– The slippery layer is in a semiliquid state, providing lubrication
– Friction melting explains the low friction between skate and ice
– Skating is more destructive than gliding, leaving a visible trail behind
– Skating rinks need regular resurfacing due to the plastic deformation caused by skates

**5. Safety and Regulations in Ice Skating:**
– Ice skating safety depends on ice roughness, skate design, and skater skill
– Serious injuries are rare but can occur, especially in collisions during hockey or pair skating
– Falling through the ice poses a significant danger, leading to potential death
– Skaters are advised not to skate alone on frozen bodies of water
– Accidents can be fatal if skaters do not wear helmets to protect against head injuries

Ice skating (Wikipedia)

Ice skating is the self-propulsion and gliding of a person across an ice surface, using metal-bladed ice skates. People skate for various reasons, including recreation (fun), exercise, competitive sports, and commuting. Ice skating may be performed on naturally frozen bodies of water, such as ponds, lakes, canals, and rivers, and on human-made ice surfaces both indoors and outdoors.

Outdoor ice skaters in 1925
A postman in Germany during the winter of 1900 (stamp from 1994)

Natural ice surfaces used by skaters can accommodate a variety of winter sports which generally require an enclosed area, but are also used by skaters who need ice tracks and trails for distance skating and speed skating. Man-made ice surfaces include ice rinks, ice hockey rinks, bandy fields, ice tracks required for the sport of ice cross downhill, and arenas.

Various formal sports involving ice skating have emerged since the 19th century. Ice hockey, bandy, rinkball, and ringette, are team sports played with, respectively, a flat sliding puck, a ball, and a rubber ring. Synchronized skating is a unique artistic team sport derived from figure skating. Figure skating, ice cross downhill, speed skating, and barrel jumping (a discipline of speed skating), are among the sporting disciplines for individuals.

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