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Men In Tights: Are Figure Skating Outfits Too Feminine?

Submitted by on February 18, 2010 – 3:31 pm11 Comments

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.

Tatiana Volosozhar Stanislav Morozov

Samuel Contesti

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.

Vera Wang

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:

Evan Lysacek

“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:

Johnny Weir at the 2010 Winter Olympic

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:

Share your thoughts!

Source: CBS NBC Sports

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  • Oh, this is funny…

    I definately think that male figure skating outfits are too feminine. I think if a man wouldn’t usually wear it in everyday life, why in the world would you dress him in sequins and feathers on ice??

    The outfits could definately stand to undergo a make-under.

  • Cee says:

    Is Ice Dancing a sport? What’s the difference between ice dancing and ice skating? Why is it that the leading sport women will watch is ice skating and gymnastics? Honestly, I’d rather watch curling or we can call curling “ice bowling / circular ice horseshoes”.

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  • Cee says:

    Showing ice dancing on the Olympics tonight. Last night was Men’s figure skating. Tonight its couples’ ice dancing, which is different from couples’ figure skating. I don’t get how this is an Olympic sport. Must be a rating winner so its a keeper.

  • Oh that’s hilarious…

    I don’t see what the difference between dancing and figure skating is…

    Maybe ice dancing is more choreographed and they do it in styles like hip-hop and pop. I should google it.

  • I have see some of the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics game.I feel it is too dangerous for me.

  • Vivian says:

    Well, figure skating is a perfomance, after all.
    In perfomances, people wear “sparkling clothes” to concentrate public’s attention. I don’t see anything wrong in it.
    Usual clothes is what they can’t use. And to separate clothes by gender is becoming an old custom. Now-a-days, fashion is freestyle.

  • missy says:

    well whats the difference between this and women hockey where women have to wear these masculine shoulder pads and what not. it all depends on the sport. NO need to alter this

  • fgrsk8r says:

    The difference between ice dancing and figure skating in a nutshell is that ice dancing is when the skater does footwork (twizzles, turns etc.) and some lifts while figure skating includes jumps and spins. Also ice dancing is usually with a partner at olympic level while figure skating is alone. Pair skating is figure skating with a partner doing lift jumps.

    Also clothes need to be somewhat tight because loose clothing will slow the skater down while jumping.

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