ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – For 11 years Jamie Mathews has been teaching the strokes, swizzles and double-toes of figure skating at the Creve Coeur Ice Arena.

Some of her senior high and middle school pupils are regular entrants in figure skating shows and competitions. But teenagers are just a few of her students.

“I like to tell parents If they are running in tennis shoes they can get on the skates,” Mathews says. “So I’ve had as young as 2 and my oldest right now he is 72. And he is a blast and he is an Ice dancer.”

And figure skating is hardly just a sport for girls.

“It’s not just a girls sport,” Mathews says. “We have males that do it as well and it requires so much athleticism and maybe I’m being biased but I feel like the figure skaters can skate circles around the hockey players.”

Mathews says hockey players are even signing up for private figure skating lessons. And much like the number of hockey players in St. Louis is growing, so to is the number of talented figure skaters.

“Competitive skaters, we have synchronized skaters, we have a world team here that’s St. Louis synergy,” Mathews says. “We have so many rinks in the area for kids to go and practice.

“Figure skating is growing and it will continue to grow.”

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