Behind the artistry of today’s Olympic figure skaters lies some serious science. A new book by UConn professor Jaci VanHeest will make the research underlying elite skaters’ training accessible for the first time to coaches and athletes everywhere.
“Every sport has its mythology, but the science is critical,” says VanHeest.
Figure skating is one of the oldest Olympic sports, but there’s not a lot written about the science of it. Coaches who want data-driven training techniques have very little information to go on. Jaci VanHeest, associate professor of educational psychology in the Neag School of Education with a joint appointment in kinesiology in the College of Agriculture, Health, and Natural Resources, specializes in the performance of elite athletes and is a member of the Medicine and Science committee for USA Figure Skating. She and her coauthor and former graduate student in exercise physiology, Jason Vescovi, now with Skate Canada, wrote The Handbook of Sports Medicine and Science, Figure Skating to fill that gap. (Read full article)