Programs Designed to
Retain Figure Skaters

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College Club, Varsity &
Junior Varsity Skating Teams

    When an athlete starts looking for colleges with ice skating facilities and a figure skating teams, it is necessary to know the difference between a college club team verses a varsity team. This in turn deter- mines the particicpation in a Local State Interschool Federation,  NCAA, and USFS competitions.  

    The following information should provide insight on subject of college club figure skating:

Varsity Skating Team
     A varsity skating team is one that is funded by the high school, college or university. Some teams benefit from endowment fund or other financial support from generous alumni donations. They may benefit from the use of school facilities and transportation.  Often varsity teams use a facility that is either on campus, or quite close. There generally is a full-time head coach hired by the school and typically a second full-time coach. The coaches handle the politics, logistics, and paperwork required by the school administration and the governing bodies of high school or college sporting organization. This allows the athletes to spend much more time on training.

    A junior varsity or varsity team holds try-outs at the beginning of the competitive season. Not all students will make the team. Due to this exclusion, athletes on the team are required to attend all practices, which is not a equiremenet of club teams. 

    Varsity Teams have a different set of responsibilities for the athletes and the type of opportunities available for athletes. A varsity team provides more funding, more coaching, and more opportunities to compete. This means that varsity teams can travel and attend more competitions in and outside of their district. Varsity teams are able to interact with prospective students and recruit off campus with more ease, while a club team relies heavily on its members to build the team within the school student body.

    There are more opportunities for varsity teams to travel and enter competitions in and outside of their region.  Varsity teams are able to interact with prospective students and assist in recruiting skaters to attend their college while off campus.

    Coaches of a Varsity team will have a contract with the university to run the team and are paid for each semester from the budget provided by the University. The coaches role is to run practice, handle the team roster, and assign sailors to regattas.  This way they are able to relieve the students of the stresses of making decisions about their peers.  The school will not pay for private lessons for students on a team.

College Figure Skating Club
    A college figure skating club is one that is not fully funded by the school and generally is run by students.  A club team may or may not have a full or part-time coach.  All of the logistical and financial matters need to be handled by the student athletes.  The students do most of the recruiting and fundraising.  The students are responsible for making their team function. 

    A club team does not typically hold try-outs and will welcome anybody who is interested in joining.  Due to this flexible arrangement students may not be required to show up for every practice if they have other commitments, but the result of this could be they will lose a spot to compete on the team if they are not practicing as much as other athletes in the club.

    A college figure skating school club is required to follow the school’s club guidelines, which includes having a board of directors who manage the team, and officier such as a president, vice-president, treasurer, etc.  The experience of running a club team develops skills that will be used after graduation from school. A well planned program should not require crisis management skills.  Participation should provide skills typically found in running a small business.  Some college or universities may provide credits for serving as a club officer.

     Some college club sports are able to join forces with a local USFS club to coordinate efforts.

     A college club is composed of individuals who may compete as individuals or on a synchronized or Theatre On Ice Team. Teams require athletes to make a commitment and accept a responsibility to other athletess on the team. Particpation on such a team opens up very specific opportunities to compete. 

     A club team does not provide funding or coaching, and travel expenses to compete. A club team relies heavily on its members to build the team within the school student body. 

    A club team may not have the money to travel to competitions that are outside their district, so they generally will not be able to attend as many events. The students will have to conduct fund raisers and use their own resources to travel.  However, traveling less does not mean the team can not enter National competitions or big events; they just have to work a little harder to get there. 

    There is no right or wrong way to look at the two types of teams, especially because each school team carries with it a different atmosphere, it is more about what school best suits you.

    The most important aspect of skating in college is that disregarding the type of team you are on, you are guaranteed to make great life long friends and have a lot of fun in the process!

    Besides participating on a team, college skaters can enter as individual competitors in free skating, dance, and pair events at collegiate competitions.

Recommended Reading:

PDF  2010 U.S. Collegiate Champs Announcement

PDF  2011 Intercollegiate Announcement Rules 

PDF  Collegiate Handbook

PDF  Colleges with Synchronized Skating Programs

PDF  Colleges with Intercollegiate Skating Clubs


Aspiring To Achieve Elite Status
Team Ice Skating Sports
School Club Teams
PDF List of School affiliated Clubs
PDF How to Start a High School Program
PDF School Affiliated Membership Letter
PDF Application for Membership School Affiliated Club
Ice Skating Rink Index Ice Skating Disciplines
History of Ice Skating Facilities
History of Developing Refrigerated Rinks
Ice Skating Facilities List
Ice Rinks By States
List of Ice Rinks & USFS Clubs by states
ISI Rink List 16 USA administrative areas
ISI & USFS Basic Skills programs
State Games
USFS Basic Skating Skills Club List
USFS Club List
Recreational Ice Skating
USFS Basic Skating Skills Program
Basic Skills Competitions
USFS Competition Events
Skating Associations
High School Skating Clubs
College Skating Clubs


The following internet links have been gleaned from personal communications
combined with information from public institutions and athletic organizations/
associations that have a web presence with information concerning team and
individual sports programs:

School Skating Clubs & Teams
Synchronized Skating Levels Test & Age
Team Ice Skating Sports Adult Recreation/Competitive Opportunities
Leagues & Skating Clubs Mission Statement
Opportunities to Compete
College Club JV & Varsity Skating Teams
US Collegiate Championships
Collegiate synchronized skating: all levels
Collegiate Team Skating Programs
Synchro Teams Test & age requirements
College & University Synchronized Teams
Collegiate synchronized skating
PDF Colleges with USFS Skating

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The limited use of the materials for education purposes is allowed providing
credit is given for the source of the materials.

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