Sochi Olympics 2014: Guy’s Guide To Figure Skating

It is coming. You know it is. Figure Skating.

Feb 11/12 – Pairs Skating

Feb 13/14 – Men’s Programs

Feb 16/17 – Ice Dancing

Feb 19/20 – Women’s Programs

You will be casually watching the Sochi Winter Olympics and your significant other is going to really really want to watch the individual figure skating competitions. You can roll your eyes and grab your phone to check the rumors pages or you can remember how much the female in your life put up with your couch antics during the football season.

Not to mention, you can avoid a fight during Valentine’s Week.

Suck it up and embrace it. Remember figure skating is still a competitive sport and you love competition.

Here are the basics to help you get involved:

Skimpy Costumes

When in doubt, don’t forget you are watching women in skimpy tight costumes. They do nothing for the points total, but at least you can get away with some oogling. Your girl might be fashion obsessed and it is okay to join in the catty insults. She’ll let you get away with some “hot damn” approval nods if you mix in a few insults. For example, “Good thing, she is not being judged for those sequins because she might be the blind Japanese Liberace.

WARNING – some of the competitors are underage. Just a warning you before you say something stupid like “all figure skaters are hot.”

While you should pick a hometown hero, it is okay to do some homework beforehand and pick some of the sexier girls as your “favorite”. Here are a few to choose from:




If you still find yourself being bored, there is the big possibility at any moment of a crash. Think of it as the NASCAR principle. The bonus is figure skaters make funny faces as they go down. If you need to sound smart, bust out a, “Oh, that is going to hurt. That is going to knock them out of the medal contention.”

The Actual Sport

Okay, watching the girls and hoping for crashes will only get you so far (especially when it is the men only). You’ll need to know what exactly is happening on the ice.

There are two rounds – a short and a long (also known as “free”) programs.

The short program is more regimented with skaters required to complete a list of required moves. The long program has a lot more variation of in program chosen. The long program is where riskier moves are attempted.

Scoring is … nearly impossible to do at home. The judges award points based on skating skills, execution, choreography, transitions, and “interpretation”. The harder the jump the better chance for points. The worse the execution, the lower the points. Speed and grace count for something.

Skating has had a lot of judging scandal in the past, so things get even more complicated once the judges show their scores. Twelve judges score, but nine are randomly chosen by a computer and then the highest and lowest scores are tossed out.

Yeah… good luck if you want to play at home.

Instead, just blame the judges if your favorite receives a lower score. No one at home can argue it.

There are two major elements – spins and jumps. Listen to the commentary for the exact verbiage. Like in snowboarding or skateboarding, the more spins and twists, the better.

There is also a variation called Ice Dancing. If you know what is best for you, find someplace else to be. It is dancing for goodness sakes.

Here are the Americans:


Gracie Gold

Polina Edmunds

Ashley Wagner

Jeremy Abbot

Jason Brown


Marissa Castelli & Simon Shnapir

Felicia Zhang & Nathan Barholomay

Ice Dancing

Meryl Davis & Charlie White

Maia Shibutani & Alex Shibutani

Madison Chock & Evan Bates

Since you read an entire article on figure skating, here is a bonus photo of Kiira Korpi:

Brian Reddoch is a CraveOnline reporter and rabid fan of all teams Seattle. You can follow him on Twitter @ReddReddoch or “like” CraveOnline Sports on Facebook