Speed skating is pure racing! The gold goes to those who skate fastest. Few other sports can match the excitement of the head-to-head fights for positions between skaters hurtling themselves through the curves. Or the photo-finish drama that unfolds once they cross the finish line. To win, the skaters need not only sprinting abilities and stamina, they also have to grasp the race situation quickly and use all advantages to beat their opponents on the home stretch.
Speed Roller Skating features in The World Games 2013; check the event calendar for details about when it is scheduled.
DID YOU KNOW THAT...?
Speed plus ...
With the introduction of inline skates in 1992, the pace of the races has increased tremendously over the ones contested with quads – and new techniques and tactics have emerged to make them even more compelling. Regardless whether it is a sprint over 500 metres or an elimination race over 20 kilometers! Speed skating is fun, exciting, healthy and even socially rewarding. Skaters learn the importance of teamwork, of being disciplined and organized, and of setting and reaching goals.Since only roller skates are required, speed skating is an affordable sport which can be practiced by everyone.
Speed skating is obviously "racing on skates", but it is also what millions of skaters worldwide do regularly: skating on roads and squares, in parks and alleys. Over longer distances, it is an alternative to jogging.
At present, in-line skates are used at all the speed races and the quad skates have all but disappeared. There annual FIRS World Speed Skating Championships, both Track and Road, Junior and Senior. But there are also races staged everywhere for everyone to enter.
The history and the future ...
Organized roller skating sports developed as the popularity of roller skates increased in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The first World Speed Championships were staged in Monza, Italy, in 1937.
For a second time, speed skating made the shortlist of candidate sports for inclusion into the Olympic Sports Program in July 2011. In its previous bid for Rio 2016, the sport came up short against golf and rugby. "I proudly claim the right of roller sports to be part of the Olympics in 2020: we have the numbers, we have the sporting spirit, and we have the values," says FIRS President Sabatino Aracu.