Sponsored By:   Modern Heritage
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Our Learn to Skate program is perfect to get your child started on the ice.
Whether it be hockey or figure skating they may be interested in, it's important to start them young!


Graf Rink (28 Low Street, Newburyport, MA)


10-week program
 Begins Saturday, October 16, 2021
Every Saturday at 8:00am at the Graf Rink in Newburyport, MA

SESSION TWO (WINTER) begins - January 2022 (Separate Registration)




Applications will be accepted through November 28th or until space is no longer available.

Once registered, you will receive an email confirming your registration. 

Open to all under the age of 10 years old.


Learn to Skate Details

We’re going to let you in on a little secret. The first time you skate—you’re going to fall. We all fall. Olympic medalists have fallen hundreds of times. Thousands even. The best part, everyone gets right back up better than ever. Here are some tips for your first day!

  • Arrive early
  • Show up a good 20-30 minutes before class kicks off. 
  • No hockey sticks or pucks are allowed on the ice.
  • Parents are not allowed on the ice and are expected to remain on rink grounds during all classes.

Wear the right skating attire

  • Safety helmets
  • All beginning skaters should wear them. 
  • Hockey helmets are strongly recommended however a bike, ski, lacrosse or skateboard helmet is acceptable as long as it fits tight to the head.
  • Full hockey gear, elbow pads, and knee pads are not necessary. 


  • Make sure the helmet fits comfortably and snug.
  • Wear the helmet low in front to protect the forehead.
  • Keep it level and immobile. Avoid tilting back or pulling low.
  • Secure chinstrap buckle. Check the adjustment often for protection, in case of a fall or collision.
  • Replace your helmet immediately if signs or damage are visible.
  • Store the helmet in a cool, dry place.


  • Wear anything under the helmet.
  • Attach anything to the helmet.
  • Wear a helmet that does not fit or cannot be adjusted properly.



Comfort and the ability to move about freely is an absolute must for new skaters. Plenty of layers along with a jacket should be worn. While it’s easy to assume it’s warmer indoors, arenas do keep thermostats set at a brisk 50 degrees. 

Fitting skates
  • Gloves and mittens - They’re not just to keep your hands warm; they protect hands as skaters learn to fall and stand back up.
  • Socks - One pair of lightweight socks or thinner tights work best. 
    • Try on skates until the most comfortable pair is found. The rule of thumb: The closer the fit, the more control. Boots should be snug, giving toes just enough wiggle room without pinching. Feet should be immobile with the heel far back in the boot. A solid support is also necessary because staying upright takes a considerable amount of strength.
    • Double runner blades are not allowed.
    • Plastic and/or self-adjustable skates are not recommended. 
    • All skates should lace up completely (such as Riedell figure skates and Bauer or CCM hockey skates).
    • Note: Be aware that rental skates are designed to fit everyone. Shoe size also does not necessarily match skate size.
Lacing skates

First, tap the heel way back into the boot. Gently pull the tongue up and secure it straight up and down before tucking it beside the foot. Pull the second or third sets of laces from the bottom tightly to close the boot well over the front of the foot. Laces should be snug through the ankle area and bottom two sets of hooks. The top two hooks can be looser to keep the ankle flexible. Cross extra laces over hooks neatly. Avoid winding it around the skates as loose flying bows often lead to accidents. Now test it. Stick a finger between the back of the boot and leg to show skates were well laced. If the skate hurts or feels uncomfortable, relace and adjust. Practice walking in skates before entering the ice.


  • Make the most out of every lesson.
  • Be patient
  • Group classes are great for building a solid foundation for developing skills. There are no shortcuts or fast tracks. If skaters do not feel comfortable with a particular skill, they need to speak up and tell the instructor to go at a slower, safer pace.
  • Be polite
  • Think about the safety of other skaters in the class. Stay in control and within boundaries of the class to avoid interfering with others.
  • For beginners, marching across the ice is the first skill taught. Some skaters push and glide with ease. Others will play the cautious card by taking baby steps, and that’s good. Learning to fall and stand right back up will also take precedence. 
  • All beginning skaters will gain confidence and demonstrate the ability to skate reasonably well on their own, get up from falling, attempting to stop while moving slowly, and navigate a public session well. But it takes time and practice!