#Synchro

A new country wants to develop synchronized skating


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Team Northern Lights was created in 2008 in Reykjavík and competed until 2016.

A new club fully dedicated to synchronized skating has just been created at the start of 2021 in Iceland. Will we soon see this new country at international competitions?

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Glacier Skating Club was just recently formed, in January 2021 in Reykjavík, Iceland's capital and largest city.

"Last week, we had our first practice, where almost 60 skaters showed up! We are hoping to start building up teams very soon," starts Elisabet Soffia Bender. At almost 26 years old, this synchro skater hopes that many skaters will join the club in the coming weeks. 


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Team Frostroses (Novices) skating their "Chicago" program in 2011.

Three synchro coaches are already embarked on the Glacier Skating Club's new adventure; Sunna Björk Mogensen, Sólveig Dröfn Andrésdóttir and Kristín Ómarsdóttir.

"Sólveig coached and formed Team Frostroses, Kristín coached and formed Team Northern Lights. Sunna assisted Sólveig with team Frostroses and later took over Team Northern Lights in 2012-2016," explains Elisabet who skated in several teams in Iceland and Great Britain during her studies in fashion.

"I have always loved creating and designing synchro dresses, and I have a licence as a tailor, and I am now doing my master’s in digital fashion. My love for fashion is as strong as my love for skating and synchro, and I have tried to nurture both as much as I can!"


New goals for the country
Synchronized skating is indeed not entirely new in Iceland. Two teams have emerged in recent years on this island of 356,000 inhabitants (Team Frostroses, Novices, 2006-2011, Björninn skating club and Team Northern Lights, Mixed Age, 2008-2016, Skating Club of Reykjavík) but for five years, the discipline has not been practised. With this new special synchro club, the objective is to build a solid structure for the discipline in Iceland.

Glacier Skating club (called "Skautafélagið Jökull") is located in Reykjavík and is currently skating at Egilshöll arena. "The goal now is to spark interest in the sport again and get it started in Iceland. Hopefully, we can build up teams, and the future goal is to have teams in all age levels," adds Elisabet.


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"As the team here in Iceland was formed just very recently we haven´t really had much experience working around the pandemic. We are lucky to be able to train on the ice," continues Elisabet.

There are some restrictions and rules that Icelandic synchro skaters need to follow. There are no dressing rooms open for people born before 2004. They need to keep the 2-meter distancing rule, so they are not allowed to hold each other for the moment. "But we will use the time well and work a lot on basic skating and some no hold elements. We don't have to wear masks on the ice and during training itself, but outside of that, we have to."

Two World Championships
"It has been a struggle to keep synchro developing through the years in Iceland due to many reasons. We hope that with the newly formed synchro club – Glacier Skating Club, we will be able to build the sport up and keep it growing.

There are also currently only 2 skating rinks in Reykjavík that are always full (including figure skating, hockey and public skating), so we hope that with our new club there will be more pressure to get a new rink built in the city," explains Elisabet Soffia Bender.

Through the years, Mixed Age has been the most popular division in Iceland, but the country also had synchro teams skating and competing in Novice, Junior, and Senior! 

Iceland has competed two times in the World Championships, in Rouen, France 2002 and Ottawa, Canada in 2003. "We are hoping that we will have our teams forming soon and hopefully competing internationally. Our future goal is, of course, to compete again at the World Championships!

Because Iceland is a small country and we usually only have one team in each category, and we have always needed to go abroad to compete. We also don't have any synchro judges yet."


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Elisabet Soffia Bender (in the left) and one of her synchro friend Alexandra.

Glacier Skating Club's goal now is to introduce synchro to new skaters and show them how wonderful and fun this skating discipline is. "We are using social media a lot by posting fun photos and videos, both from synchro in Iceland and from all the other beautiful teams in the world. Hopefully, when the covid restrictions are less we can start doing shows for more attention," explains Elisabet.

With the number of skaters we have interested in and signed up, this brand new club is hoping to start at least two new teams soon. Hopefully, synchro fans will be able to see them competing internationally as soon as it is again possible. 

Wanna learn more about synchro in Iceland? Follow the Glacier Skating Club on Instagram, Facebook and YouTube!