Men In Tights: Are Figure Skating Outfits Too Feminine?
Earlier this week, the pairs and men’s figure skating short programs took place during the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics.
Whereas figure skating is already considered a feminine sport by many, the athletes’ costume choices often do not help.
Everything from bright metallic blue body suits to jeweled encrusted pieces lined the ice, making it look more like scenes from the comedy Blades of Glory than the Olympics.
Famed fashion designer Vera Wang has been known to create some show stopping creations for Olympic figure skaters, landing her a spot in the U.S. Figure Skating Hall of Fame.
She has designed for Nancy Kerrigan, Midori Ito, and most recently, male skater Evan Lysacek.
This has to be the coolest, most demure male figure skating ensemble that we spotted during the 2010 games:
“This is more pressure than an Oscar dress in a strange way” said Vera Wang. “I have to have the music for a skating costume, and that’s not the way I normally work.”
The challenge is to get an outfit to “sparkle like evening wear but function like workout gear”.
The question is, should male figure skating outfits be sparkling?
Take Johnny Weir, an American figure skater ranked 8th in the world, who was chosen to represent the U.S. during the 2010 games. His flamboyant style has landed him a new show on the Sundance channel, Be Good Johnny Weir, and also a bad reputation with PETA for his love of rocking furs on the ice (along with feathers, glitter and frills).
Check out a video clip from the upcoming show:
You can catch Johnny in action tonight, during the men’s free skating gold medal event at 8PM EST.
“I do find some of the costumes sometimes are over the top,” said Dick Button, the gold medalist in 1948 and ’52 who did commentary for NBC in Turin back in 06. “You almost feel you’ve been trapped in a windmill in the Metropolitan Opera House costume department.”
Do you think it’s time that men’s figure skating outfits are revamped?
Perhaps it should go back to what it was 1940s – conservative, masculine and lacking all the ridiculousness: