2015-06-17 07:57Press release

​Stockholm to host the World Synchronized Skating Championships in 2018

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The International Skating Union (ISU) Council, recently selected Stockholm to host the 2018 World Synchronized Skating Championships. The Swedish Figure Skating Association (Svenska Konståkningsförbundet) and the City of Stockholm were behind the application for the world championships in synchro, the team sport of figure skating. The event will be held at Hovet on April 6-7, 2018.

“Events lead to events. In January this year, the European Figure Skating Championships were held in Stockholm for the first time in 70 years. The event became a success, and it paved the way for Stockholm to host the world championships in 2018. With the synchronized skating world championships, we’ll now be able to offer Stockholmers and visitors the opportunity to share in this popular winter sport on location, and the successful Swedish skaters will get the chance to compete in front of a home audience. This kind of event stimulates the interest in sports among kids and young people, and exposes more people to organized sports, which is positive,” says Emilia Bjuggren (s), Vice Mayor of Labor Market and Sports in the City of Stockholm.

This is the third time that Sweden has hosted the world championships in synchronized skating, also known as synchro. Gothenburg hosted the championship in both 2005 and 2012. Sweden is six-time world champion in this the figure skating’s youngest discipline. The Swedish Figure Skating Association’s decision to keep pursuing the championships together with Stockholm supports the capital city’s position as a figure skating destination.

“We got the news today that Sweden landed the World Synchronized Skating Championships in 2018, with Stockholm as host city. That’s amazing! After the incredible success of the European championships at Ericsson Globe in January this year, both in terms of athletics and audience turnout, we’re looking forward to working with the city and welcoming Stockholmers and visitors alike to see figure skating’s team sport at the highest level,” says Katarina Henriksson, president of the Swedish Figure Skating Association.

With more than 140 clubs and over 20,000 members, figure skating is gaining ground in Sweden in all disciplines except pair skating and ice dancing. Stockholm's clubs stand out with many excellent juniors that also compete internationally. Synchronized skating can be found all over Sweden, but the biggest hub is in Västra Götaland, which is also home to the Swedish national team, Team Surprise.

“Major international championships are a driving force for many people, even at a young age. They motivate you to keep fighting to achieve your dreams, every day. You need models and competitions on your home turf to be inspired to keep up the effort. Our hope is that synchro will gain a stronger hold throughout figure skating in Sweden,” says Katarina.

The decision was taken this weekend by the International Skating Union (ISU) Council at their board meeting in Geneva. The World Synchronized Skating Championships will be held at Hovet on April 6-7, 2018.

Press contact

Ömer Oguz, press secretary for Emilia Bjuggren, +46 (0)76-12 29 234, omer.oguz@stockholm.se

Lisa Nilsson, press contact, Svenska Konståkningsförbundet (Swedish Figure Skating Association), +46 (0)70-722 84 64, lisa.nilsson@skatesweden.se

Ann-Charlotte Jönsson, PR Manager Stockholm Business Region, +46 (0)8-508 28 507, ann-charlotte.jonsson@stockholm.se

Synchronized skating in brief

  • Synchronized skating is the team sport of figure skating. It is the youngest discipline within figure skating, and official synchronized skating world championships have been held annually since 2000.
  • A competing team consists of 16 skaters on the ice and up to four reserves. The team competes with a short program and a free skate program. The programs consist of different elements, such as intersections, wheels, circles, blocks and lines, which are interwoven with different free skating movements and steps. The judges also assess various handholds.
  • Synchronized skating began in the US, but has spread across the world. In 1954 in Ann Arbor, Michigan, Dr. Richard Porter organized a group of figure skaters into a team that rode in formations on the ice. The first official synchronized skating competition was held in the same location in 1976. The first international competition was held in Mölndal, Sweden in 1989 with participating teams from seven different countries.
  • The first ISU World Synchronized Skating Championships were held in Minneapolis, Minnesota in 2000 and won by Sweden. In the world championships, each team goes only by the name of its country.
  • Find a guide to how the elements of synchronized skating are performed here (note that the sport used to be called team skating, but is now called synchronized skating): http://www.svenskkonstakning.se/ImageVaultFiles/id_2419/cf_78/team_mediaguide.pdf

    Read more about Sweden’s synchronized skating teams – http://skatesweden.se/sv/landslaget/

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