The Thornhill Figure Skating Club offer various STARSkate programs. Please see below for general information regarding the STARSkate program and the types of programs offered here at Thornhill.
STARSkate has been Skate Canada’s mainstay of figure skating in Canada for more than 40 years. The STARSkate program offers opportunities for skaters of all ages to develop fundamental figure skating skills in the areas of ice dance, skating skills, free skate, synchro, and artistic skating. Unique in Canada, this program teaches figure skating skills in a group and/or private lesson format in a progressive and sequential manner and includes specifically designed awards and incentives. Skaters have the opportunity to take Skate Canada Tests through a nationally standardized testing system.
When you/your child registers for a STARSkate program at Thornhill, a Skate Canada sanctioned club, you also become a member of Skate Canada and will have access to:
- Opportunities to be recognized through a nationally standardized testing system for achieving specific figure skating skills
- Complimentary Gold Test pins
- Regional and provincial-level competitions, including the STARSkate championship stream
- Opportunity to be talent-scouted
- Opportunity for personal growth and the development of important life skills such as goal-setting, self-discipline, confidence, time management, healthy lifestyle and coping strategies to deal with success and failure.
Once a skater is in the Skate Canada STARSkate Program, there are several options. Skaters may choose to remain in the STARSkate Program, taking tests (although not mandatory) at organized test sessions and honing learned skills. Skaters may also choose to enter competitions, while still trying Skate Canada tests. Other skaters may feel that they have progressed to a point where they may wish to enter the Skate Canada Podium Pathway Program or become involved in synchronized skating, evaluating or judging, or participate as an adult or varsity member. Regardless of the avenue your skater chooses, STARSkate will instill a lifelong passion for figure skating.
Disciplines within the STARSkate Program
Freeskate – The focus of the Freeskate discipline includes the development of jumps, spins, and Program Components. Freeskate combines the artistry of our sport with the technical aspect. Skating skills such as turns, edges and power serve as a base for the performance of jumps and spins. Musicality, expression, and performance are developed through Freeskate Programs.
Ice Dance – The focus of the Dance discipline includes the development of skating technique while promoting
timing, accuracy and musicality through pattern dances. Pattern Dances involve the skating of prescribed Patterns to music with a defined Rhythm and Tempo. The Gold Rhythm Dance combines skating skills such as turns, edges and power with timing, expression and creativity. The aspects developed through Dance assessments benefit every discipline in skating.
Skills – The focus of the discipline of Skills is the development of edge and turn technique using “figure form”;
power and rhythm in skills exercises; and balance, strength and flexibility in field moves. The movements are derived from former compulsory figures, free skating and ice dancing. The objective of Skating Skills is the mastery of the basic fundamentals of skating – edge quality, control, power and speed.
Artistic – The focus of the Artistic discipline is the development of program components, musical movement and
creativity. Artistic combines skating aspects such as turns, edges and field moves, with creative spins and
the ability to project emotion and artistry. The aspects developed through Artistic assessments benefit
every discipline in skating.
Synchronizing Skating (Synchro) – The focus of the discipline of Synchro is the development of synchronized skating elements through a variety of skating skills and teamwork. Synchro elements are offered at STAR 2, 3 and 4 to bring awareness to the technique needed for program development. Synchronized skating is the only discipline in skating involving more than two skaters. It introduces skaters to a team environment while promoting awareness, teamwork, and skating development. Skaters will learn synchro elements that will include timing, power, balance, control, and spatial orientation. These attributes will benefit all disciplines in skating.
Competing within the STARSkate Program
STARSkate participants love to compete! Skate Canada’s feedback indicates that even though a skater may choose not to participate in the Skate Canada Podium Pathway Program, they still want the opportunity to test their skill in a competition situation. Skate Canada offers several opportunities to do this.
Club Competitions – Clubs offer competitions for their own members to compete against each other. The club determines the categories which generally follow Skate Canada STARSkate guidelines (e.g. length of program, category name, type of event offered, etc.) The club may also offer other creative events such as longest shoot-the-duck, similar pairs, spins and jumps, etc.
Skate Ontario Event Series – Skate Ontario, the Skate Canada section in which Thornhill is situated, runs and organizes regional and provincial-level competitions for STAR 1 and above skaters. These competitions may or may not be qualifying, depending on the skaters’ level. These competitions are held all over the province of Ontario and are generally open to skaters all across Ontario. For general information regarding the Skate Ontario Event Series, please see Skate Ontario’s Event Series Information.
LEVELS within the STARSkate Program
For more than a century, Skate Canada has been teaching Canadians how to figure skate while developing Olympic and World Champions in every era.
STAR 1-5 – The STAR 1-5 program offers the best-in-class figure skating curriculum in Canada, targeting athletes looking for a future in the sport. Taught by Skate Canada NCCP coaches, the program introduces participants to the basic figure skating elements to create the foundation for singles, pairs, ice dance and synchronized skating.
STAR 6-Gold – STAR 6-Gold is an assessment and event structure for skaters who completed the STAR 1-5 Progam. This structure builds on the skills acquired in STAR 1-5 and introduces skaters to more advanced figure skating elements.
STARSkate Programs at Thornhill
Thornhill has a long and proud STARSkate history; offering the STARSkate program since Thornhill’s first year back in 1975. Please see Our Champions for some of our past STARSkate champions!
At Thornhill, skaters are required to skate a minimum number of sessions per week depending on their level. Unless otherwise specified, lessons are not included in your fees paid to Thornhill and skaters must hire a coach. Please see Our Coaches for information regarding coaches and private lessons. Thornhill is primarily a Freeskate club.
STAR 1 – This is the very first level of figure skating. Skaters at this level at Thornhill FSC are required to skate a minimum of 2 sessions per week. Skaters may choose to participate in local regional or club competitions at this level.
STAR 2 – Skaters at this level at Thornhill FSC are required to skate a minimum of 2 sessions per week. Skaters are typically working on solos (or routine) for this first time at this level and have mastered most single jumps.
STAR 3 – Skaters at this level at Thornhill FSC are required to skate a minimum of 3 session per week. Skaters are typically working on their single axel at this level.
STAR 4 – Skaters at this level at Thornhill FSC are required to skate a minimum of 3 sessions per week and must be consistently landing their single axel. TFSC Co-Directors have final say on skaters’ eligibility to move up to STAR 4 and above sessions.
STAR 5 – Skaters at this level at Thornhill FSC are required to skate a minimum of 3 sessions per week. Skaters are typically working on and landing double jumps for the first time at this level.
STAR 6-Gold – Skaters at this level at Thornhill FSC are required to skate a minimum of 3 sessions per week. Skaters are continuing to improve upon and acquire new and more difficult figure skating skills at these levels.
Our schedule may vary from season to season. Please check our online registration system, Amilia, for the most up to date information.