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Melbourne ice skating

Melbourne ice skating

Wednesday, May 5, 2010
Thanks to the success of the 2010 Olympic Winter Games there has been a boom in interest in winter sports and that is expected to grow once the snow season hits.

The Olympic Winter Institute of Australia was established in 1998 and has a new home at the Icehouse in Melbourne. Who better to test drive for Getaway than the very athletic Jules Lund? After all, he has had some training from the world's best ever skaters, Torvill and Dean and he was on the Dancing on Ice program.

Icehouse has state-of-the-art ice training facilities for athletes and they have been able to expand their program to include figure and speed skating, aerial and alpine skiing, skeleton, snowboarding, mogul skiing and ski cross.

Icehouse comes complete with two Olympic-sized rinks and a stadium with seating for up to 1000. The world-class facility has opened its doors to athletes and the public to experience four ice sports.


Curling is played by more than 2 million people in 33 countries around the world, and has been an Olympic sport since 1998. More than 500 years old, curling is a game of fitness and finesse and a combination of strategy and skill. It's the perfect recreation for people living in countries which have long winters.

Sort of like lawn bowls on ice, players slide heavy polished granite stones across a sheet of ice towards a circular target area. There are two teams, each of four players, sliding the stones and scoring points for the stones resting closest to the centre of the target.

Speed skating

A little more energetic, short-track speed skating is all about strength, fitness, strategy and fearlessness all rolled into one. Athletes push themselves to the extreme as they race towards the finishing line.

It's very different from traditional long-track speed skating as competitors start in a mass start and the course is smaller and more technical. It's a highly technical sport involving tight corners and high speeds making it difficult to maintain control at all times, even for the world's best.

Ice hockey

This action-packed and exciting event isn't particularly widespread in Australia, but it has been on the Victorian sporting scene for more than 100 years.

Skaters use sticks to direct a puck into the opposing team's goal. It's fast and furious, exciting and energetic and is becoming popular in Australia with the number of indoor ice rinks increasing.

Icehouse is home training ground for the Melbourne Ice team. Captain Liam Webster says they are recruiting more young people than ever.

Figure skating

Athletic, graceful and skillful, figure skating is a beautiful combination of many things. Dancing on ice is popular with participants and spectators.

Katherine Firkin and Henri Dupont make up the champion Victorian ice dancing duo. They did their discipline proud with a James Bond-inspired routine at the launch of Icehouse.

As with all of the ice athletes, Katherine and Henri are excited at being able to practise their routines on proper-sized rinks.

Icehouse welcomes people of all ages and skills to learn, play or watch any of the four sports.


Melbourne's Docklands.


Icehouse admission starts at $14.50 for adults and $6 for children.

Virgin Blue has one way flights to Melbourne from.

  • Hobart $75
  • Adelaide $79
  • Sydney and Canberra $89
  • Brisbane $129
  • Darwin $169
  • Perth $23

There are limited seats which may not be available at peak times or on all flights. Fares quoted are one-way booked on the Internet. An extra $15 will be charged for phone bookings. A credit card surcharge of an additional $2 per person per one-way flight is applicable.

For further information

Virgin Blue
Ph: 136 789

105 Pearl River Road
Docklands 3008
Ph: 1300 756 699

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