Why ice skating dates can be a slippery slope

Saturday, December 02nd, 2023

Ice skating has all the right magic for a super festive date, but beware the perils of a slippery slope even before you step onto the rink.

Close contact, hand holding for stability, a festive vibe, comforting après-skate treats and the cuteness of matching scarf and gloves! Ice skating has all the magic to be a great, intimate wintery date.

And yet, in a recent Muddy Matches poll, hitting the rink was given a cool reception by online daters.

56% said they would rather swerve the slide than try their luck with their prospective partner on the rink. Reluctance is rife.

Why? Well, for all the romance it conjures up, most of our singles are more worried about being Bambi on ice than the glamourous easy glider straight out of a rom com we all imagine ourselves as.

Holding on to a plastic penguin, whilst trying to demonstrate some form of grace and style, hardly sets the right tone.

So, striking the right balance between a good, and bad, ice skating date is a tough one. So we spoke to a few singles who had reservations about saying yes to the rink.

Here’s the top five take outs to think about before planning to propose a date on ice.

Make sure your prospective date is at a similar standard to you on the ice; too good and you run the risk of them getting bored. Struggling to stay on their feet could lead to them feeling self-conscious, uncomfortable, and intimidated even. None of those feelings lead to a happy memory.

A shared outlook about stepping out makes for a more pleasant, shared experience all round.

Make the date more about the après-ice activities than the actual skating.
From our experience, the prospect of spending some quality time chatting over a luxury hot chocolate or mulled wine in a fairy-light lit outdoor space with ‘maybe’ some ice skating (if we fancy it), is a far more appealing date.

Take the focus off the ice, make skating optional then gauge the mood. Add in a spot of Christmas window shopping or some Christmas market fun – but be flexible.

Don’t judge!
Your muddy match may be a 10 in your eyes but it doesn’t mean you need to score their skating ability – either verbally or physically. It might seem cheeky and a topical way to break the er, ice, but no one likes to be judged on a date. This isn’t the Winter Olympics or Dancing on Ice either. There’s also a fine line between being laughed with and laughed at.

Remember this is not your time to shine.
All our natural instincts are to impress on a date – but, if you are more than capable at racing around the rink, this is absolutely not the time to indulge your inner Torville and Dean. You may think you are doing wonders for your chances but it can do more harm than good. This is a shared experience, about bonding and building a togetherness. Your skills should be better used to reassure rather than showmanship.

Intimate isn’t always best
When it comes to picking the rink for a date, bigger is better. Larger rinks, especially those set up seasonally, offer more in off ice entertainment and bring a better vibes to bounce off. The community spirit of seeing more skaters of all levels is also comforting. Smaller rinks may sound cosier but can expose any awkward moments. And anyway, in reality a date at a garden centre, doesn’t sound all that romantic?

Don’t immediately assume close contact is ok.
This one put the dampeners on a lot of the stuff you read online about ice skating being a perfect ‘up close and personal’ date, full of tactile moments and intimate little touches that build chemistry. Those we spoke to said holding hands – even for stability and balance – was a no-no until they were comfy.

A touch on the arm to help onto the ice was also unwelcomed until a green light was given. Any ideas you have of immediately skating hand in hand, side by side as a couple, laughing should be put on ice. Sure, ask the question but don’t be put off if you get a frosty response and they favour a penguin.

Muddy Matches is the UK’s original home of farmer dating, and now the nation’s first choice online date site on which to love in the countryside and rural romance by a fair country mile.

Traditional, trusted and award winning, Muddy Matches has attracted over 3/4 million mud loving singles from all walks of country life. Who will you unearth?