Figure skating is that one elegant sport on the TV that everyone watches in admiration – the performances are almost always flawless, the skaters beautiful in their own way, their moves reminding us that art can be brought to life and interpreted through movement on ice. However, they, the skaters, skate on a fine line between beauty and danger. Why danger, I can hear you ask. Well, unfortunately, something that is often overlooked when we’re talking about figure skating is how incredibly scary and dangerous it can be. It’s overlooked that the skaters can suffer from painful and sometimes even fatal injuries while doing their tricks – and it’s usually those tricks that make us glued to the TV screen in awe!
Since I haven’t stumbled upon many articles about dangerous figure skating tricks, I decided I would create a list of them so that you too can be informed about them. And next time, when you’re watching figure skating on your TV screen, look at the skaters in awe; know that they are risking their everything to perform their best for us, the audience.
The Quadruple Jump
This is an incredibly difficult move to master, and unfortunately, it was only successfully performed a few times by some of the world’s best male skaters. Before I continue writing about this, please know that I bear no hatred towards women – it’s just that this move has only been performed by male skaters; no female skater ever attempted it. The reason why this move is incredibly scary and difficult is because during it, the skater must spin four times while hovering in the air! Usually, skaters don’t jump high enough in order to complete it in time, and as a result, they end up suffering injuries.
The Quadruple Axel
Similar to the quadruple jump, quadruple axel is something that no player has ever performed successfully. Quadruple axel is even more difficult than the jump because it not only asks the skater to spin four times in the air, but they have to make another half-turn mid-air. Nobody has ever landed it.
The Triple Lutz
Another incredibly scary trick to perform is a lutz – especially the triple lutz! The reason why it is difficult and scary is because the skater has to jump by relying on their toe pick – which is the part of the skate that keeps players safe on the ice. The player has to jump off their toe pick on one leg and then land on the other – the landing part can get difficult and usually the majority of skaters fall instead of landing successfully.
The Triple Axel
This is maybe one of the most famous tricks that is at the same time very dangerous because it requires the skaters to spin three and a half times in the air without falling. The reason why this move is famous is because of Tonya Harding – I don’t know if you have heard of her, she was the US representative in 1992 Olympic games – who was the first lady to land a triple axel! Unfortunately, while she did land it during the tournament in 1991, she failed at performing it during the said Olympic games.