What to Wear When Ice Skating – 9 Essentials

Teenagers in winter gear having fun skating on an outdoor ice rink.

Ice skating is a fun activity that requires you to dress in a particular type of wardrobe.

Whether you’re at an indoor or outdoor skating rink, you must wear thick clothing to keep yourself warm.

You should also cover exposed skin, especially if you are a beginner skater. Doing so prevents you from getting cuts and scrapes if you tumble on the ice skating rink.

However, you do not want to be so bundled up that you can’t move freely.

It’s best to don breathable and flexible ice skating outfits.

Below, we will share a list of the proper ice skating wardrobe to guide those who are clueless on what to put on. We’ll also include the clothing you need to avoid.

So without ado, let’s get on with the article!

Ice Skating Outfit Essentials


Amazon Essentials Men's V-Neck Sweater, Light Blue Heather, Large

A sweater is one of the most comfortable clothing you can wear to an ice skating session.

It offers warmth and protection from freezing temperatures.

At the same time, it keeps your body flexible for performing basic and advanced skating skills with ease.

What’s more, it is available in a range of colors, designs, and materials. Feel free to choose a sweater that suits your needs and fashion style.


Ice skating rinks, whether indoors and outdoors, are freezing places.

Consider dressing in layers if you get too cold.

For instance, you can wear a light jacket over a sweater or long-sleeved shirt. When you start to feel warm, you can remove the outerwear and continue having fun in the ice rink.

Below are the different types of jackets suitable for any ice skater.


Hanes mens Pullover Ecosmart Fleece Hooded Sweatshirt,Black,Small

A hooded jacket is a practical yet stylish choice for an ice skating session. The hood can keep your nape and head warm. It also helps protect your face and hair from falling snow in an outdoor rink. 

It even comes in various styles. Feel free to choose between a simple sweat jacket, a cozy puffer, and many more. 

Denim Jackets

Signature by Levi Strauss & Co. Gold Label Men's Signature Trucker Jacket, Rebel, Large

If you plan to ice skate in style, you won’t go wrong with a denim jacket. You can pair this versatile outerwear with a myriad of casual and smart casual outfits.

You can also remain warm and protected from cold temperatures when wearing them.

However, note that some denim jackets can restrict movement. It’s best to choose lighter and more flexible outerwear for those who want to try figure skating

Track Jackets

adidas Essentials Men's 3-Stripes Tricot Track Jacket, Black/White, 2XLT

A track jacket features ribbed cuffs and a waistband for maximum comfort in the ice rink. At the same time, it keeps you warm in chilly temperatures.

It is also among the top choices of professional skaters due to its sporty aesthetic.

Consider wearing track jackets if you want to ensure freedom of movement when ice skating.


Levi's Men's Arctic Cloth Sherpa Lined Field Parka Jacket, Navy, Medium

A parka is another jacket suitable for ice skating. It features a hip-length style with a hood often lined using fur or faux fur.

This cozy design can help keep you warm, even in freezing temperatures. As such, it’s perfect for ice skating in outdoor rinks.

Comfortable Pants

Champion Men's Powerblend Retro Fleece Jogger Pant, Black, Medium

Choosing bottoms for ice skating is easy. All you need are pants that can quickly adapt and stretch with your every move.

Sweat pants, joggers, and yoga pants are all great choices when ice skating. They consist of thick material for warmth and shielding against possible accidents in the ice.

Snow pants are another excellent option for ease of movement and protection. They usually feature an insulated and waterproof material to keep you dry and warm.

Ice Skates

Ice skates are among the most important gear when skating.

Owning a pair is not necessary as most ice rinks offer rental skates. Skate rental is inexpensive, ideal for the casual or beginner skater.

But if you want to be a hockey player or a figure skater, it’s best to get your own skate boots. This is because rental skates are not as comfortable as higher quality skates available in stores.

Below are the different types of ice skates you can consider buying.

Recreational Ice Skates

5th Element Stealth Ice Hockey Skates - 13.0

As their name suggests, recreational skates are designed for leisure. They are the best skates to wear if you simply want to have a pleasant time on the ice with your loved ones or friends.

They also have a lower price tag than the other kinds of ice skates on this list.

But since they lack padding or support, they are not suited for professional skaters.

Figure Ice Skates

Lake Placid Cascade Women's Figure Ice Skate, White/Gold Accent, Size 5

These types of ice skates offer ample padding for support and comfort, ideal for figure skaters. 

They also feature a lower cut to allow more boot flex. This is crucial when performing figure skating jumps, spins, and other acrobatic movements.

Moreover, figure ice skates can come with or without mounted blades. These give you the option to buy higher quality skate blades custom made for your needs. 

Hockey Ice Skates

Bauer Men's NSX Ice Skates, Black/red, 40.5 (EU)

Hockey skates are exactly what they sound like. They are the best choice for playing hockey because they are both comfortable and durable.

Most models are also lighter in weight despite the full padding. As such, they make it easier for you to move on the ice.

What’s more, they feature a blade that is about the same length as the skate boot. This blade has a front and back curve that allows faster movement in the ice rink.

Speed Ice Skates

Roces Ice Skates Podium, Mens, Black, 44

Speed ice skates are not like other skate boots.

They usually have leather construction for the most comfortable fit on your foot. This material also allows you to move in a natural running position.

On top of the impressive build, speed ice skates feature long blades that extend beyond the boot. These blades increase pushing power and forward momentum.

Due to their different design, they are not ideal for beginners and casual skaters. Instead, they are geared towards professional players who need to glide fast on ice.


Dickies Men's Dri-tech Moisture Control Crew Socks Multipack, White (6 Pairs), Shoe Size: 6-12

Socks are usually an afterthought, but they are important when ice skating.

Wear socks that are thick enough to offer comfort and warmth in cold temperatures.

It’s also best to dress in long socks, such as crew socks, that go past your ankles and hit right around the mid-to-upper calf. These offer protection if you tumble on the ice.


Team Issue Fold Beanie

When ice skating for long periods, you might begin to feel the chill on your face and ears.

To keep your head warm, you may want to wear a beanie.

A beanie is available in various styles suitable for different skaters, from a cozy ski hat to a stylish beret.


JBM Skateboard Helmet Impact Resistance Ventilation for Multi-Sports Cycling Skateboarding Scooter Roller Skate Inline Skating Longboard

Consider wearing a helmet for maximum head protection when ice skating.

It’s often recommended for young children and athletes who are at a higher risk of injuring their heads while skating. But a helmet is also useful for casual skaters.

After all, falling on the ice can happen anytime. It’s better safe than be sorry later on.

It does not matter if you buy a bike helmet or a hockey helmet. Both helmet types serve the same purpose.

Protective Gear

 JBM international Adult / Child Knee Pads Elbow Pads Wrist Guards 3 In 1 Protective Gear Set, Black, Youth / Child

Besides your head, you also need to protect your elbows and knees from injuries on the ice.

Consider buying protective gear if you want to minimize bruises and cuts if you stumble. You can choose to wear elbow guards, knee pads, wrist pads, or shin guards, depending on your needs.

But to ensure maximum protection, we recommend wearing them all with your skating outfit.


CRS Cross Figure Skating Gloves - Warm Padded Protection for Practice, Competition, or Testing/Examination (Black, Ladies Small/Medium)

Ice skating rinks can get very cold, so every skater might want to invest in gloves or mittens.

Not only do they keep your hands warm, but they also protect your hands if you fall on the ice. They can act as a cushion, so you have something softer to land on in case of stumbles. 

Thin gloves work most of the time. But you might want to buy thick padded gloves when skating in an outdoor rink.


Plum Feathers Super Soft Luxurious Cashmere Winter Scarf (Black Plaid)

There’s no telling how cold an ice rink can get. It’s best to bring a scarf that you can wrap around your neck.

It can keep your nape warm. At the same time, it adds a layer of uniqueness to your skating costumes.

What’s more, it is a versatile accessory that offers extra protection against the cold. It can be worn over your shoulder as a shawl or over the head as a bandana.

Clothing to Avoid in the Ice Rink

A little girl in a blue dress wearing red skates on an ice rink.

Dressing up comfortably and warm is the key when ice skating. However, most people wear tight or ill-fitting and inappropriate clothing, which negatively affects their skating ability. 

If you want to ensure optimal performance on the rink, avoid wearing the following clothing.


Ice rinks are cold places, which means wearing shorts is a no-no.

Shorts do not protect your legs from the cold. Plus, they leave your shins vulnerable if you fall on the ice.

Save yourself the trouble and wear pants instead. You can find several comfortable options on the market.

Tight Pants

And speaking of pants, do not wear tight-fitting ones such as skinny jeans.

Not only do they limit your movement on the ice rink, but they also prevent you from catching your balance.

Dresses or Skirts

Although dresses and skirts are fashionable, ladies should avoid wearing them when ice skating.

Like shorts, they do not offer protection from the cold and possible falls.

If you want to wear an ice skating dress, it’s best to don fleece leggings underneath.

Thick Socks

You should not dress in thick socks because they can restrict movement. They are also uncomfortable to wear.

They can even prevent the ice skates from giving you the proper support on the ice rink. As such, they increase the risks of accidents.

Make sure to wear a pair that is not too bulky for the most comfortable fit.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you wear jeans to ice skate?

Although you can wear jeans on the ice rink, you should avoid them. This is because a pair can limit your movement when ice skating. They also take too long to dry if you fall down the ice.

Should you wear a helmet while ice skating?

Yes, every skater must wear a helmet when ice skating.

Anyone is at risk of concussion and other head injuries because ice skating is a dangerous sport, no matter the type of skating.

Wearing a helmet can protect your head, thus reducing the dangers of falling on the ice.

Should ice skates be tight or loose?

Regardless of the type of boots, ice skates should fit snugly like a glove. There should be no movement in the heel, but they should not be too uncomfortably tight. This offers the best performance on the ice.


A man and a woman in ice skates at an indoor ice rink.

Wearing the appropriate outfit is crucial to having a good time on the ice rink. You want to ensure you are warm and comfortable but not too wrapped up as it can restrict your movements. Stick with long-sleeved shirts and add layers for a smooth day of gliding on the ice.

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