Besides the many health benefits of skating which I endlessly point out to my skaters and parents (pls see https://www.figureskatingetc.com/miscell2/2019/2/4/skating-promotes-fitness-and-good-health), I feel another important benefit of skating is social skills and development. Skating is a great way to meet new people and make new friends. If you visit a public open skate session, you never fail to see adults and children skating around laughing and having fun together. Those who attend group classes or camp are participating among a community of individuals who all share the same passion and with this common interest, many end up building lifelong friendships that extend beyond the rink.
Today was my last day volunteering at Figure Skating in Harlem. During my short time with the club, I had an incredibly rewarding experience and made so many new wonderful friends. In particular, Leah, a 9-yr old girl in my group class, quickly bonded with me. She was fascinated by my Asian eyes and hair and how young I was to be a skating instructor. She loved asking questions and learning about my background- where I lived, how many siblings I had, and if I had a boyfriend/girlfriend. She’s so funny and made me laugh so hard at times. She was always the first one to greet me on the ice and was so happy when I remembered her name. I will miss Leah and all my summer campers. While I’m sad that I won’t be able to see and continue working with these wonderful young children during the school year, I look forward to my time with them next summer and excited to making many more new friendships. I hope I made a small difference in some of the kids’ lives as they have enriched mine in so many ways.
Check out my friends’ Summer Dreams Camp video - https://www.facebook.com/FigureSkatinginHarlem/videos/2192064950922012/Asia