CLEARWATER, Fla. — Global Synthetic Ice, a worldwide leader in the development of synthetic ice has announced the support of professional ice skating coaches for their Super-Glide(R) synthetic ice products. What if the “ice” in skating rinks never melted? What if the “ice” was not real ice at all, but synthetic ice minus the slippery feel and all the maintenance headaches and costs of frozen water? For coaches of tomorrow’s hockey stars and figure skating champions like former Olympian Oksana Baiul, synthetic ice is rapidly becoming their surface of choice. Synthetic ice can be set up anywhere, indoors or out, and used for unlimited hours of practice.
Take Latin America: Synthetic ice is bringing professional ice hockey to such unlikely nations as Mexico, Puerto Rico and Costa Rica, places where few would expect to find a sport often linked to winter and natural ice. According to NHL.com, the Costa Rican hockey program is played on a synthetic ice rink at a country club in San Jose — the only skating rink in Central America.
“The rink was long and thin, and the pucks would sometimes fly off into the food court while people were eating,” transplanted Canadian and Costa Rican hockey program founder Bruce Callow told the Tico Times. “But, it allowed our team to develop their skills, and provided an unlimited number of hours to train.”
Playing on synthetic ice can lead to building skating skills seen in National Hockey League stars like retired Canadian ice hockey defenseman Paul Cavalini. “I worked with my son for a week on our Super-Glider synthetic ice system,” Cavalini says. “He scored three goals his next game. He never scored a goal before.”
Synthetic ice helps figure skaters and would-be Baiul Olympians develop speed and endurance because the surface, with more resistance than ice, makes skaters press harder and get stronger, resulting in better jumps and spins and less fear of falling.
The Olympics and synthetic ice go back decades. In fact, synthetic ice first entered the long track competitions with the 1960 Winter Olympics, according to Wikipedia.
Synthetic ice is growing in popularity because no power source is needed for refrigeration. No ice resurfacer need be driven for grooming and no water supply is needed to keep the surface smooth. Synthetic ice can be set up anywhere and is extremely portable. Coaches and their skaters are growing partial to synthetic ice because it means that training time is no longer limited by the cost of ice time. The sole focus, coaches say, can be on technique and strength training.
According to Don Moffatt, director of facility programs for Serving The American Rinks (STAR), an association of the ice rink and arena industry and a joint venture between USA Hockey and U.S. Figure Skating, synthetic ice makes sense as energy costs rise. Synthetic ice today “is a lot closer to ice” than products of just a few years ago, Moffatt said.
Super-Glide synthetic ice was developed by Perry Boskus, a former award-winning hockey player and figure skater, as well as a coach for many young champion skaters. The Global Synthetic Ice company aims to share the joy of ice sports with the entire world.
For more information on Super-Glide synthetic ice visit