Careers in the Ice Skating Industry

Figure Skating Jobs

After spending years on the ice, figure skaters may be interested in a career in figure skating.  This article lists some careers in the ice skating industry.

Ice Show Skater

Disney On Ice: Frozen
Disney On Ice: Frozen. Photo Courtesy Feld Entertainment

Many young people begin thinking about college as their high school years come to a close, but some skaters decide that before, during, or after college, that they should take some time to use their skating skills professionally. Performing in a traveling ice show, like Disney On Ice, gives skaters that chance. There are also professional performance opportunities at resorts or on cruise ships. 

Learn-to-Skate Instructor

Learn to Skate Class
Learn to Skate Class. Photo by JO ANN Schneider Farris

Teaching Learn-to-Skate classes is a part-time job. Most ice arenas pay learn-to-skate instructors about $10 to $12 to teach weekly half-hour lessons. Ice rinks try to give their instructors two to four classes per week.

Those who are interested in making a living teaching skating must also develop a private skating lesson clientele. 

Full-Time or Part-Time Figure Skating Coach

Photo Copyright © JO ANN Schneider Farris's Guide to Figure Skating, Jo Ann Schneider Farris, Coaching an Ice Skating Student. Photo Copyright © JO ANN Schneider Farris

Figure skaters pay about $20 to $30 for a twenty-minute private figure skating lesson. Thirty-minute private lessons will range from $30 to $45. It is possible for a figure skating coach to make a lot of money if he or she is able to build up and maintain a large private student base.

Figure Skating Choreographer

A Figure Skating Choreographer
A Figure Skating Choreographer. Courtesy of The Colorado Springs World Arena

Some figure skaters have a strong sense of creativity and specialize in choreographing programs for figure skaters and/or ice shows. Since many figure skaters hire a choreographer in addition to a figure skating coach, this area of coaching can be a career in itself.

Skating School Director and/or Figure Skating Director

Wheaton Ice Dance Academy Camp 2010
Wheaton Ice Dance Academy Camp 2010. Photo by Mr. Gropman

Some ice arenas hire an individual to run its skating school or skating class program.  This is usually a management position.  In some arenas, a skating school director's job is a full-time position. The person not only hires and fires coaches and instructors, but assigns classes, coordinates private lessons, runs in-house competitions, does payroll, and has a say in the management of an ice arena.

Ice Rink Manager

A Zamboni Cleans the Ice
A Zamboni Cleans the Ice. Photo by Grant Faint - Getty Images

Most figure skaters do not go into rink management, but some figure skaters do.  The experience gained as a figure skater may cross over into managing an ice arena. Keep in mind that ice rink managers must have a strong business sense, may need to be able to do ice rink maintenance, be able to drive the Zamboni, and be able to deal with not only figure skaters, but also ice hockey players and the public.

Power Hockey Coach

A Hockey Player
A Hockey Player. Photo Courtesy Sharon Crowe

Figure skaters can teach hockey players how to skate and help experienced ice hockey players improve their skating skills.  The Professional Skaters Association certifies coaches in this area.  Teaching power hockey also is a great way for figure skating coaches to supplement their income.

Ice Rink Employee/Worker

Accenture Zamboni Cleans the Ice
Accenture Zamboni Cleans the Ice. Photo by Dave Sandford - Getty Images

Some ice rinks hire figure skaters to work at the rink.  Rink employees have all sorts of roles. Employees give out rental skates, work as cashiers, do ice monitoring or work as a guard on the ice, and do ice rink maintenance. These jobs are usually part-time but can be a great experience for a young person interested in a future in ice rink management.