Learn to Skate Program

Join us on campus for some skating fun! Class sizes are limited due to social distancing recommendations and new ice arena safety guidelines. Explore the skating options below and visit our registration site to book your place on the ice today!

download and complete this form before arriving to the rink. This is mandatory for each day of skating and for each person entering the Polly and Henry Uihlein Ice Arena, skaters and non-skaters alike.

For questions about the skating programs, please contact Jill Herbst at 414.540.3306. For questions about registration, please call the Office of Auxiliary Programs at 414.540.3350 or email us at 

Learn to Skate Classes

Snow Plow Tots (ages 3-7)
The Tot program is for young pre-kindergarten and kindergarten children. Skaters begin in Snow Plow Sam and quickly graduate to Basic Skills. Tots focuses on fun and interactive games as children learn how to balance, and skate forward and backward. For children interested in hockey, we provide sticks and pucks after skating skills are secure. Helmets and cloth face coverings are required.

Basic Skills (ages 5 to adult)
This program is designed for the skater who has passed through Snow Plow Sam, or, for the older skater who feels confident standing and walking on the ice. Skaters are moved quickly through skill levels and learn to skate fluently forward and backward, balance, glide on one foot, and turn from front to back while moving. Skaters will learn to stop, jump, and play an assortment of games with their friends. Helmets and cloth face coverings are required.

Adult Skating (ages 14 to adult)
This program is designed for both beginning and experienced skaters. Whether you are on the ice for fitness, both muscular and cardiovascular, or to improve technique, this class is for you. Skating is a lifetime sport, and helps increase balance, strength, and overall fitness! Helmets and cloth face coverings are required.

Advanced Figure Skating (ages 7 to adult)
For experienced skaters who have passed through the first three basic skill levels in Learn to Skate. Here, the skaters will choreograph skills to music, practice rhythm and flow, and begin to jump and spin. Class recitals will be held at the conclusion of the program – a commitment to attendance is particularly important at this level. Cloth face coverings are required.

Prerequisite: Completion of the basic skills program prior to registration (contact Jill Herbst at 414.540.3306 with questions).

Learn to Play Hockey (ages 4-12)
Children must have a basic level of experience on the ice. Each class will begin with new skills, and end with stick handling exercises. Hockey helmet with face mask and hockey stick are required.

Power Hockey Atoms (ages 5-6) and Mites (ages 7-8)
Skaters will work on increasing power, quickness, edge control and extension by reinforcing proper technique and using repetition to improve upon edgework. Hockey helmet with face mask and hockey stick are required.

Skating Levels

During the first class in each session, the Learn to Skate professionals decide the levels in which the skaters will be placed. Class assignments are dynamic and may be changed during the session if the skating professionals decide that another class may be more appropriate for the skater.
Skill assessments are done on a weekly basis so that there is no elaborate testing system at the end of each session. The "test free" philosophy results in the skaters learning the skills quickly and more completely.

History of Learn to Skate

The USM Learn to Skate Program began in 1986 using guidelines from the United States Figure Skating Association. Today, the USM Learn to Skate Program is unlike any other around. The skating levels are challenging, yet the skaters move quickly through the program without getting lost in the shuffle. 
The USM Learn to Skate program includes hockey skills at each level. Many sessions offer "hockey only" classes so that young hockey players can sharpen their skills.
The program includes all ages and skill levels. Class sizes are small in order to ensure quality instruction for all participants. Each session, running from October to March, lasts for five weeks. Classes are in session if there is no school, except if the school is closed due to inclement weather or road conditions.

Teaching Professionals

The USM teaching professionals have been involved in ice skating for many years, and are masters in their fields and have perfected their own teaching guidelines. The skating professionals meet regularly throughout the season to share new and exciting ideas and to raise the level of teaching within the program.
All professionals are encouraged to maintain their memberships in the ISFSA, ISI, or PSA.

Please contact Jill Herbst with questions at 414.540.3306.
Prekindergarten (age 3) - Grade 12 • Independent • Coeducational
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2100 W. Fairy Chasm Road, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53217 • 414.352.6000