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Learn to Skate

Southside Learn to Skate

Southside LTS provides opportunities for skaters of all ages and skill levels to achieve their individual goals by encouraging sportsmanship, support for one another, mutual respect, technical excellence, confidence, and the joy of the sport. We follow the curriculum of Learn to Skate, USA, preparing skaters for a lifetime love of skating and to help them achieve their goals beyond learn to skate whether it's hockey, figure skating, or general skating abilities.

Learn to Skate, USA is fully supported by USA Hockey, U.S. Figure Skating, and US Speedskating and is recognized as the world's best ice skating program.

Our Skate School Structure

Snowplow Sam Basic Skills Hockey
Snowplow Sam is where new and/or beginner level skaters will start in Learn to Skate. Snowplow Sam includes 4 progressive levels, teaching young skaters how to stand up, march forward, balance and glide. Recommended for ages 3-6. Basic skills teaches the fundamentals of ice skating and includes six progressive levels which introduce forward and backward skating, stops, edges, crossovers, and turns. Our hockey curriculum is designed to teach the fundamentals of hockey skating. Skaters will learn hockey stance, stride, knee bend, use of edges and other necessary skills to be successful in hockey practices and game situations.

Learn to Skate 2017-2018 Season

The cost for each 7 week session is $84.00 (which includes skate rental).  You may pay by cash, check, or credit card at the first day of the session, or online by credit card through an invoice you will receive by email.

*Online payments will be available soon! We will update this page when online payment is available.*

SOUTHSIDE LEARN TO SKATE SPECIAL:  All first customers to Southside Learn to Skate pay a special discounted rate of $50.00 for their first session (a savings of $34.00!) 

BEFORE YOU REGISTER:  Your online Registration at Southside Learn to Skate or Cross-Ice must include your USA Hockey Registration confirmation number (cost is $45.00 or FREE for skaters 6 and under).   Your USA Hockey membership is good for the all sessions for Learn to Skate and Cross-Ice for the 2017-2018 season.  To register with USA Hockey, use this link:  Once that is complete you will receive a confirmation number that you can enter when prompted during the Southside Learn to Skate and Cross-Ice Registration.

Learn to Skate Frequently Asked Questions

What can I expect the first day of class?

Arrive 20 minutes early to be sure you are able to park, get your skates on, and bundled up before class.

All levels will meet their coach off ice on the first class of the session.

Parents are not allowed on the rink or in the hockey boxes during Learn to Skate.

Where do I start?

All beginning skaters are placed in the Snowplow Sam 1 class (ages 3-5) or the Basic 1 class (ages 6 and up).  The first day the skater will be evaluated to make sure they are in the right level. 

What do I wear? 

We highly encourage all skaters to wear helmets when on the ice. Helmets are required for skaters in Snowplow Sam and Hockey LTS Levels, and beginners at any level. 

Skaters are encouraged to wear layers, with a sweater or jacket, gloves, and a hat/helmet.  As skaters warm up layers are often shed as the skater acclimates to the cold.  As you move through our program and into our hockey or figure skating programs the skaters may be encouraged to change attire, however that will be determined with time.  When it comes to ice skates, thin socks work best. 

What skates should I put my child in? 

If you have a new skater, we recommend figure skates for the first three sessions.  Figure skates the skater to balance a little easier when they are first starting out.  If the intention is to move the skater to hockey skates, speak with your coach to determine the right time for the transition and make sure the skater is aware of the differences between the two blades.  This will prevent frustration and will prepare the skater for success.

Skates should fit snug, we recommend one size smaller than the shoe size and thin socks or nylons are suggested.

Should I buy or rent?

It is advised to rent skates from the beginning. Once the skater makes the choice between hockey and figure skating, buying can then be discussed. Our coaches have a lot of experience and can point you in the right direction with the skate brand and collection.

Ask the Learn to Skate Expert

Danielle Bozio

Learn to Skate Director

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Session Locations

Southside Ice Arena

66 100th St SW

Byron Center, MI 49315

Kentwood Ice Arena

6230 Kalamazoo Ave SE

Grand Rapids, MI 49508