How much does competitive figure skating cost per year?

Another great question.

The cost associated with competitive figure skating depends on the level of skating competition you're talking about. The higher the level you compete at, the higher the cost. Even if you trained the same amount, higher levels of competition will see you flying across the country and possibly internationally to compete, there's a major expense involved.

So, start with ice time and figure on 10-20 hours on-ice. This will vary depending on your rink.

Then add in coaching for some of that ice time. Figure on coaching from 25-50% of the on-ice time.

There's probably some specialized coaching in the mix for spins or jumps or artistic expression (I'm not making this stuff up).

Then add in some off-ice training (stretching, core strength, yoga, ballet).

Add in some skates (boots and blades generally bought separately at this point). Hopefully your kid will only need one pair of skates for the year but kids have an annoying habit of growing.

Oh my goodness, we forgot about outfits. Dig deep, she/he has to look great on the ice.

And don't forget tights, socks, sweaters, gloves and other miscellaneous pieces of clothing.

Now throw in registration costs for competition.

Competitions that are out of town will also require travel expenses. Fuel for your car and/or airline tickets. Hotel and restaurant food costs. Stress medication (that's for the parents not the kids, they're usually fine).

Now remember that you have to bring your coach to the competitions and you'll have to pick up the expenses for the coach as well. Some of them are fairly conservative with their lifestyle but some of them aren't so don't underestimate what this will cost you. If the coach has more than one kid at the competition, the expense is generally split so you might want to only plan to attend events where your coach has other kids competing. Coaches may also charge for lost wages while they're away.

Woops, forgot about testing costs. Not usually a huge expense but it's a few more bucks.

Well, I think that covers the major expense categories. By the time you're done, you're not likely at less than $10,000 and probably in the $15 - $20,000 per year range. Yes, that's a nice new car every two or three years. Kids trying to skate at the national level are likely spending more than that.

The answer to your next question is "Yes of course your kid is worth it".



# Anita Van Dongen 2015-01-04 00:30
My daughter has been skating for about 6 years,she soon turns 13. I spend a lot if time on the road driving her, then more time at the rink wathching her skate. The expense? She skates 3 day a week and competes about 3 times a year locally. About $5000.00 a year for me to fork out. Is it worth it? Absolutely. This activity is wonderful to watch, builds confidence, strength, and may foster life-long friendships. Kids don't always make friends at school. Through their extra-callicula r activities they interact with other kids their own and who have the same interests. A cheper activity? Yes,there are, but my child is only interested in figure skating, so as long as she keeps the interest and puts out, I will continue to drive and pay.
# nina 2016-05-18 13:13
i dont even know where to begin. I think there have got to be cheaper ways to figure skate. it shouldnt be this ridiculously expensive. best is use public ice when you can. second, maybe even invest in your own synthetic ice rink if u have the space. go to your own gym or workout at home. it seems to me that figure skating is too much of a business, some skating summer camps are up to 5,000 a week!! how about advanced group lessons? There is no need for individual attention even at the intermediate level!!!
# skateradmin 2016-05-19 11:58
Hi Nina,
You have to be a little cautious about using public ice for figure skating. Most public rinks in our community don't allow jumps and spins or other figure skating moves during public sessions. Sometimes you can get away with spins in the centre ice area if it's not crowded.

Off-ice training on your own is definitely something that should be part of every competitive skater's development program. It supplements on-ice training and builds the strength required for skating but unfortunately can't replace the on-ice skills development. Using one of the various spin practice devices can also be helpful since many of them are more difficult to spin than on-ice spins.

I'm an advocate of effective group lessons as well. One of my daughters has been the beneficiary of many years of group lessons which have reduced our costs but they can't replace one-on-one attention for mastering jumps and spins. Don't forget about learning choreography as well and doing run-throughs of her program. That's all one-on-one.

A skater who is very self motivated and makes very productive use of their on-ice time can acheive a lot with less coaching and less ice time but ultimately, they are participating in a sport that requires the execution of physical actions that require surprisingly precise execution to do successfully. The trained eye of a coach that can identify the issues and prescribe corrective techniques will generally be required to continue to progress.

Skating doesn't have to be this expensive but if your objectives are to reach the national level, I don't think you'll find these costs are far off the mark. If your objectives are are less ambitious, you can definitely skate less and spend less and still do well in smaller competitions at lower levels.