The Italian teams return gradually to training after more than two months


The Italian Senior Champions Hot Shivers have started to practice again. (Credits: Paolo Preziati - 2020)

Life starts again slowly in Italy, one of the countries most affected by coronavirus in recent months. Since last week, some synchro teams were allowed to return to training with strict rules, while other regions will have to wait a few weeks more.

For a few days, some Italian synchronized skating teams are back on the ice. "We started to practice again on Thursday 21st May. It was wonderful skating after a long time of stop! We were a little frightened at first, but then when we learned of the security measures that had been taken we were more relaxed," explains Arianna Bonora, one of the Hot Shivers team captains with Claudia Preziati.

Group of 10 skaters at the same time

The Hot Shivers stayed at home until the 18th of May according to the Italian Government's decisions. "We trained every day to maintain the muscles structure," adds Arianna.

Now Team Hot Shivers Senior practices three days a week in small groups of 10 skaters at a time. The athletes have also to maintain a minimum of 2 meters distance on the ice and aren’t allowed to hold each other for the moment. "We are doing individual technical exercises," says Arianna. 

Hot Shivers Senior hasn’t started yet to work on the new programs. "We will see, based on the situation, how it will evolve," explains the team.

Wait until June
The moment when skaters will be able to start and slide again on the ice approaches also for Shining Blades from Milan. "We are supposed to get back on the ice in a week due to some medical controls. Meanwhile we are keeping online physical training and ballet," explains Letizia Roverelli, a skater in the team. Athletes will have to specify beforehand if they have contracted the virus or if they have been in contact with it.

"At the beginning, we were a bit disoriented cause that situation was new for everyone, we started doing some home exercises by ourselves than our coaches worked to make them online. Coming back to our weekly off-ice training and seeing all of our teammates and coaches brought some normality in our lives," continues Letizia. 

Why do the Shining Blades still have to wait a few days? "At the moment only teams with a national interest for Worlds are allowed to begin earlier; since we are the third national team we have to wait a week more till June."

Others will still have to wait
Not everyone has a chance to get back on the ice. Team Ice on Fire from Trento hopes to be back on the ice in three weeks in Andalo, "a small town located in the mountains". Their own ice rink has been closed earlier this year due to the pandemic.

"The health emergency strongly affected our country and our region. But we didn’t give up! In the last 2 or 3 months, we organized many activities to keep training and keep our group united, even during such a difficult time!" says Caterina, a skater in the team. Indeed, this year would have been the first participation of the team in the World Championships in Lake Placid (two Italian teams can now be represented at Worlds).

After ballet, Latin American dances, pilates, physical exercises and stretching classes each week, Team Ice on Fire can’t wait to be back on the ice. "We really miss it and we have never been without training for so long. But we think that this situation helped us analyzing the things that we have to improve, but it also gave us even more energy to approach the season!"

Team Ice on Fire keeps a great positivity, their skates are ready.