Figure skating in Val Gardena
One of the most popular sports in Val Gardena is figure skating. It‘ s a winter sport, but the ice rink is open all over the year.
The association’s name is „Eisclub Gardena“, it counts about twenty members. There are many girls and only one boy. Their ages are very different. The beginners are about five or six years old and the oldest one is twenty years old. The official training rink is in Selva, but sometimes in winter they practice on the open rink in Ortisei. Fifteen years ago, there was also a very big and nice ice rink, but an avalanche destroyed it.
The members of any sports club should have fun while training, but this is not the case everywhere. Of course a figure skater needs a lot of practice to become good, but some people exaggerate. They do much private coaching out of training hours and they also pay a lot of money. Although the usual training hours are definitely a lot. The older skaters train six days a week, three or four hours a day, while the little girls three times a week for one hour and a half. These many training hours include ballet and off ice working.
All over the year there are many competitions and shows. The competitions are always distant from our valley. Sometimes they are far away for example in Valle d‘ Aosta or in Friuli. Not everyone wants or has to compete; it’s optional. Usually only the bigger ones take part in them. There are three big shows on the ice rink of Selva: the Christmas Show, one around Carnival and the third one around Easter. The club organizes a choreographer for these events, who chooses the music and directs the choreography. This a quite a lot of work because at the same time training has to go on, but everyone likes this extra coaching. Some people think that these are too many hours, but those who want to succeed, have to work for it. Of course not everybody can become as good as Carolina Kostner. She is one of the world’s best figure skaters. She is twenty-four years old and she started ice skating when she was only four years old. Her coach noticed very soon that she was extremely talented that is why after the elementary school she went to middle school in Obersdorf in Germany, where she practiced much more and made her dream come true. She qualified for the European cup, the world cup, and the Olympics. In 2012 she won the world cup in Nice, France, and in Sochi in 2014 she won the silver medal. She is the idol of every ice skater in Val Gardena. She lives now in Obersdorf, but when she comes home to Ortisei, she often comes to the rink and practices with the little girls.
Figure skating is a very nice sport for girls and boys. It is a funny hobby and the many training hours keep us healthy. The only bad thing is, that so many people see this sport only as a competition and they completely forget the fun and their or their children‘ s health.
(c) Jenny Kostner
Jenny Kostner on the ice!