Welcome to STARSkate!
A fun and challenging program that provides skaters of all ages and abilities with many opportunities to “learn figure skating”
STARSkate stands for Skill – Test – Achievement – Recognition…Skate Canada’s learn to figure skate program. The transition from learning to skate in CanSkate, this program introduces skaters to Interpretive skating, Dance, Free-skating, Stroking and Skating Skills beginning with group lessons at the STAR 1 level (formerly intro-STARSkate).
Skaters in STARSkate are able to progress through the program at their own pace, exploring many avenues of interest. STARskate provides the tools for skaters to develop self-confidence, motivation, time management skills and determination. This is where most skaters develop a passion for the sport that carries with them for a lifetime. When your child lands their first jump, executes 3 turns or learns the Dutch Waltz, it is a very exciting time for them. They are learning skills and developing confidence in themselves. Friendships are made, goals are achieved and celebrated as skaters learn about themselves and develop their self-image.
Interpretive Skating – Encourages skaters to develop their artistic side with movement to music being the main focus.
Dance in the STARskate program consists of 6 testing levels (Preliminary, Jr./Sr. Bronze, Jr./Sr. Silver and Gold with 3-5 dances per level). For the keen dancers, there is also a diamond level with 6 dances. Skaters may challenge the dances for the female steps and/or the male steps. Each dance has specific steps, pattern and music… much like ballroom dancing, except on ice.
Free Skating levels match the dance levels for testing (Pre-Preliminary, Preliminary, Jr./Sr. Bronze, Jr./Sr. Silver and Gold). The testing correlates with the STAR competitive program in terms of criteria being taught and executed at these levels. Each Free Skating test consists of 2 parts: Part A – Elements in isolation and Part B – Program.
Skaters may try each part of the test separately if they wish.
Free Skate is a series of jumps, spins, field movements and footwork. When skaters are ready to compete or test, these elements are artistically choreographed to a specific timed piece of music. Examples of these elements your skater will become familiar with are:
Jumps – waltz, salchow, toe loop, loop, flip, lutz
Spins – 2 foot, 1 foot corkscrew, back spin, sit, camel
Field Movements – spiral arabesque, ena bauer, spread eagle, pivot
Footwork – turns, Mohawks, edges, mazurkas, gallops
Skating Skills: is the essence of skating. This program incorporates the language and skills of the sport that make skating unique (loops, counters, rockers, brackets). It’s back to basics with edges and turns for the skaters to have the opportunity to train balance, control and power. They are similar to the dances, but intricacy is increased as well as use of the ice surface. There are 6 tests that follow the same format as Dance and Free Skating (Preliminary, Jr./Sr. Bronze, Jr./Sr. Silver and Gold). For each level there are 3 exercises the skaters must perform solo.
STAR is the competitive structure which replaces the following levels in Freeskate:
Post-CanSkate – STAR 1
Pre-Preliminary – STAR 2
Preliminary – STAR 3 & 4
Junior Bronze – STAR 5
Senior – Sr. Silver/Gold; Pre-Juvenile/Juvenile
A Gradual Introduction to Competing
STAR provides a gradual introduction to performing elements and programs in a non-competitive environment. It also provides feedback for each element and program component. It focuses entirely on the learning outcomes in long term athlete development (LTAD) while providing a fluid structure for skaters to advance through. Specific criteria are evaluated and calculated for the overall result.
STAR 1 – Introduces skaters to performing elements in a group environment without the anxiety of competition. Skating within a group makes performing fun and removes fears as your coaches are on the ice with you! Focus is on the fundamentals! These skaters receive a report card and a simple ribbon corresponding to their overall assessment rating (Gold, Silver, Bronze or Merit).
STAR 2 – Preserves the rite of passage for skaters to “have their own program.” It introduces performing elements in a program without the anxiety of competition. At this point, the program is used for timing to music, focuses on fundamentals and assesses Skating Skills and Performance/Execution. Like STAR 1, these skaters receive a report card and a simple ribbon corresponding to their overall assessment rating (Gold, Silver, Bronze, or Merit).
STAR 3 – Introduces skaters to performing more challenging elements in a program without the anxiety of competition. Music becomes more important and Interpretation is assessed along with the fundamentals. The Axel jump is encouraged at this level, while trying to remove “axel anxiety” (until it’s consistent, that axel causes everyone stress!) Like STAR 1 & 2, skaters receive a report card and a simple ribbon corresponding to their overall assessment rating (Gold, Silver, Bronze, or Merit).
STAR 2 and 3 may share programs and choreography as skaters are not competing against each other.
STAR 4 – Introduces skaters to performing a program in a competition environment. It combines the CPC marking system with the STAR assessment process to produce a ranking. Execution of an axel is strongly encouraged at this level (even with a fall) to prepare skaters for executing more challenging jumps at higher levels. Skaters receive a report card listing their individual element assessments and rank for their group but no point total or overall assessment (Gold, Silver, Bronze, Merit and rank in that group on report card).
STAR 5 – Introduces skaters to performing in a competition environment on the CPC system with points scoring. It is like Jr. Bronze except there are only 4 components: Skating Skills, Transitions, Performance/Execution, and Interpretation. Choreography is not scored. This level allows skaters to attempt any two double jumps. Most skaters in this category have a consistent axel and are working on two double jumps.
Skaters Expectations of this program
Etiquette on and off the ice
Some expectations may include:
- Hair must be tied back away from face
- Skating attire must be worn – no jeans, long scarves, bobby pins, etc.
- Skaters must get up promptly after a fall, unless seriously injured.
- Skaters who are in a lesson or performing their program, dance or skills to music have right of way
- No standing in the middle of the ice
- Promote good sportsmanship by encouraging fellow skaters and respecting their work time on the ice.
- During practice time, spins should be done towards the middle of the ice and jumps to the perimeter.
- Arrive on time
- Music rotation
- Skates to be put on in the club room (dressing room)
- Any problems see your coach (if your coach is not coaching at this time, please speak with another coach that is on the ice)
- Use time wisely….if not in a semi/private lesson consult coach as to what to practice.
Parents’ roles and responsibilities
May include the following….
- To ensure skaters get to the arena on time
- To be supportive, patient and encouraging
- To work as a team with the coaching staff and skater to achieve goals
- To stay informed on club development and activities
- To know the contact person for their skater’s session
- To volunteer some time within the club’s operation
Now that your skater has moved up from Intro- STARSkate with group lessons and working into STAR 1 & 2 of the STARSkate Program, coach’s fees will apply. They are paid by the parent to the coach. A private lesson is a one-on-one lesson with coach and skater, and a group or semi-private lesson is 2 or more skaters with a coach during their lesson, where the coaching fee will be divided by the number of skaters in the group. Discuss with your coach the amount of lesson time you would like per session for your skater. These lessons are usually 15 minute time slots, however this can vary depending on the number of skaters a coach has on the session and the fee for lessons depends on the coach’s qualifications and years of experience. Discussing a budget with your coach is very important.
It is up to the parent to make arrangements with the coach for lessons (i.e. type and amount/week) and to discuss fees for lessons (the coach(s) of your choosing will have a fee schedule for you). Parents will also be responsible to pay the coach(es) for time involved in creating their skater’s music, and for coaching at tests or competitions. These fees can be paid directly to the coach who will bill you. Your coach is expected to provide you with a welcome letter to inform you of their own policies, fees, expectations, as well as their contact information.
Competition and Seminar Opportunities
There are a few competitions and seminars that skaters will be able to participate in. The eligibility of these vary by skating level. Your coach should communicate with you any opportunities that your skater is eligible for. Please refer to our current season schedule for up-to-date information.
For more information please refer to Skate Canada NL’s website - www.skating.nf.ca This is a very useful website to keep you up to date on upcoming events.
If you have any questions regarding your skater’s level and eligibility, please speak to your coach.
2015-16 Season Parent Handout
A parent orientation was held on August 24th for all STARSkate parents. For reference, the following handout was given to all attendees: 2015 Parent Meeting.docx