Q:  Can I/my child take a trial class?
A:  Due to insurance requirements, we are unable to offer you a trial class without payment.  You are more than welcome to come observe a class from the stands/bleachers during our regular class times to see what the classes involve, however, you may not go out on the ice.  We also offer Public Skating (see Public Skate tab) which is a great way to try skating before deciding to sign up for a lesson.
Q:  Are ice skates provided?
A:  Yes, ice skates are provided for use at the rink during your skating lessons.  The skates must be returned at the end of each class.  If you have not worn skates before, please arrive at least 20 minutes early to your first class to make sure you have enough time to find skates that fit properly.
Q:  Do I need to buy ice skates?
A:  You do NOT need to buy skates.  You are welcome to use the skates that are available at the rink during classes. We have sizes from Toddler 6 through Adult Men's 13. Another option is the long-term rental program available through Crossovers Pro Shop, located within Madison Ice Arena.  These skates are yours to take with you and can be turned in for a larger size whenever you skater’s feet grow.  Send an email to fsrental@crossoversproshop.com for more information or to schedule a fitting.
Q: Can my child use double bladed skates during class?
A: NO! Double bladed skates do not let your child learn to skate just like training wheels on a bike don't teach a child to ride.  With 2 parallel blades they can not use the edges of the skates and that is what allows them to learn all the skills required for ice skating.
Q:  The ice skates hurt my feet.  What should I do?
A:  Ice skates do not feel like shoes and are known to feel tight and stiff when first learning to skate.  If you try a pair of skates and they are pinching your feet or causing them to cramp, please try a different/larger pair.  The skates should not be so big that your feet move around inside the skate and should be snug on your foot without pain.
Q:  What should I/my child wear to ice skating class?
A:  For everyone, we recommend wearing warm but loose fitting clothing that allows for ease of movement. Long pants (preferably not denim), a light sweatshirt and gloves/mittens are the perfect combination. The rinks are cool inside, but not cold.
Q:  Are helmets required?
A:  For all children under 6 we STRONGLY recommend wearing a helmet but we do not require wearing one.  A winter sports helmet (i.e. a helmet for sledding, snowboarding, skiing, etc.) is the best option because they protect more of the back of the head than a bike helmet.  These helmets are available at most sporting goods stores as well as Cross Overs Pro Shop, located inside Madison Ice Arena.  If you do not have access to a winter sports helmet, the next best option is a bike helmet that fits the head correctly without slipping forward or back.  If you forget to bring a helmet, the Madison Ice Skating School is NOT able to lend you one due to insurance liabilities.