Figure skating is the one of the most popular events in the winter Olympics, and for good reason. Watching glittering, be-bladed people leap, glide, and spin across the ice is mesmerizing and exhilarating. The technical skill and the strength needed to land those seemingly effortless jumps and turns is staggering. For instance, an airborne spin can take a skater into the range of revolutions per minute that has made astronauts in training pass out. They can reach up to 32 kilometers an hour (roughly 20 mph) moving across the ice in preparation for a jump or spin. Needless to say, executing moves properly in those sort of conditions takes immense precision. If any part of your body is out of alignment you’re going to spin out or crash or both. It’s very impressive.
The costume requirements laid out here mean no Blades of Glory style costumes for men in real life, which I think is a terrible shame.
Curious about curling? Here’s an infographic that’ll give you the basics on a less well known winter olympic sport that’s like a huge game of shuffleboard on ice. But also with brooms?