There are three ice arenas in the Colorado Springs area that offer ice dancing programs and ice dancing lessons. This article rates each program:
Gold: 5 Stars – Colorado College’s Honnen Ice Rink’s Ice Dancing Program
- Several highly qualified ice dancing coaches teach at Colorado College. Honnen Ice Rink’s manager, Linda Alexander, has gone over and above to accommodate the needs of ice dancers of all levels.
- All the competitive ice-dance teams that trained at Colorado College in 2012 qualified for the 2013 US National Figure Skating Championships.
- Donna Schoon, the Colorado College Skating School Director, teaches a weekly ice dance class for low level skaters interested in learning ice dancing basics.
- National and international ice dance coaches teaching at Colorado College include Patti Gottwein, Tiffany Hyden-Dombeck, Trina Pratt, and Todd Gilles.
- Some other coaches that teach ice dancing at Colorado College include Karen Kight, Donna Schoon, Andrea Johnson, and Jo Ann Schneider Farris.
- Several dance only sessions are available at Honnen Ice Rink at least three to four days a week.
- The cost of ice time at Colorado College is quite reasonable. Discounts are available for resident skaters, Colorado College Skating Club members, and Colorado College students.
- There are plenty of male ice dancers available at Honnen Ice Rink to take female ice dancers through ice-dance tests.
- Ice dancers sometimes have to practice on the same sessions as beginners, hockey players, and free skaters.
- Limited ice time for ice dancers happens once in awhile when hockey takes priority at Honnen Ice Arena.
Silver: 4.5 Stars – Sertich Ice Center’s Ice Dancing Program
- Doreen Denny, who coached Colleen O’Connor and Jim Millns to an Olympic bronze ice dancing medal in 1976 coaches exclusively at Sertich Ice Center.
- Special freestyle and ice-dance practice sessions for adults only are held at Sertich Ice Center five days a week at 9 am. These sessions are ideal for ice dancing.
- Bruce Hurd coaches at Sertich Ice Center and is available to partner ice dancers of all ages. Bruce is a gold medalist in ice dancing and a former pair skating champion and ice show star.
- Tiffany Hyden-Dombeck’s and Jill Hare Haubert’s Colorado Springs Ice Dance Academy calls Sertich Ice Center home. Hyden-Dombeck is a US national ice-dance technical specialist who has coached international and national level ice dancers.
- Other ice-dance coaches who are based at Sertich Ice Center include Sertich’s learn-to-skate director Karen Sulpizio (who competed nationally and internationally as a senior level ice dancer), Dianna-lynne Webster Wells a US championship adult ice-dance champion, Deb Shipwash a US national gold adult ice-dance champion, Rachel Tibbetts, a US national ice dancing silver medalist and junior world competitor, and Shay Lebron-Frank who is an ice-dance gold medalist.
- The sound system and ice conditions at Sertich Ice Center are considered the best in Colorado Springs.
- There are only a few ice-dance only sessions offered at Sertich Ice Center each month.
- Ice dancers at Sertich Ice Center must practice alongside free skaters who may not always be able to get out of the way since they don’t know or understand ice-dance patterns.
Bronze: 4.0 Stars – Colorado Springs World Arena’s Ice-Dance Program
- The Colorado Springs World Arena Ice Hall offers hours and hours of ice-dance practice sessions six days a week.
- Colorado Springs World Arena Ice Hall has been designated as an Olympic figure skating training rink and is committed to providing the highest quality programs to figure skaters from all over the world.
- An ice-dance class for low level skaters is held each Saturday morning at 8 am at the Ice Hall.
- Richard Griffin coaches ice dancers in the very early morning at the World Arena Ice Hall. He has coached ice dancing in Colorado Springs since the 1970s.
- The Pikes Peak Classic for Pairs and Dance is held annually at the Colorado Springs World Arena. The event draws hundreds of ice dancers to Colorado Springs each year.
- Elena Dostatni, the World Arena’s Ice Hall’s director of ice dancing, teaches mostly in the afternoons during the school year due to family commitments. Skaters who train exclusively in the morning may not be able to take lessons from the arena’s ice dancing director for that reason. Her husband, Andrzrei Dostatni’s time is only available on a limited basis.
- There is no full-time resident male ice-dance coach available to partner very high level gold and international ice dancers through ice dance tests; however, arrangements have been made for a male ice dancer to fly into Colorado Springs once a month to partner skaters at Broadmoor Skating Club’s test sessions.
- At this time, no competitive ice-dance teams or competitive male ice dancers train at the World Arena, so there are limited opportunities for ice dancers to find partners within the rink.
- Before you choose an ice-dance coach
- How to become an ice dancer
- Ice dance training session etiquette