beautiful smiling young couple teaching ice skating on an indoor synthetic ice rink

Ice rinks are becoming increasingly popular in locations with a climate that allows for them outdoors as well as inside buildings and businesses. When choosing the right option for your business, consider the pros and cons between indoor or outdoor synthetic ice rinks.

Indoor synthetic ice rinks are becoming more popular because they are environmentally friendly and less costly than outdoor ice rinks. They also require less maintenance, and you can place them almost anywhere indoors.

Outdoor synthetic ice rinks are also popular because they can be cheaper to operate and designed to fit any size or space shape.

 When deciding which type of ice rink to install for your business, it’s essential to consider the following:

  • the size of the rink
  • the skating experience you want to provide for your customers
  • your budget
  • your location
  • your business needs

KwikRink can guide your analysis before installation, depending on your business needs. Read on for essential factors to consider. 

What is the Climate Like in Your Area?

Thermometer Sun Sky 40 Degres. Hot summer day. High Summer temperatures in degrees Celsius and Farenheit.

Choosing between an indoor and outdoor synthetic ice rink will largely depend on the climate in your area. Installing an outdoor rink is the better choice for areas that experience mild weather for much of the year. This weather will allow for year-round skating without the added expense of heating and cooling the space. 

Yet, an indoor rink may be a better option if your area experiences more extreme temperatures, such as very hot summers or cold winters. It provides a consistent temperature for more enjoyable environmental conditions and an extended skating season.

How Much Space Do You Have for A Rink?

The amount of space you have available when choosing between an indoor or outdoor synthetic ice rink should be a primary consideration. 

An indoor synthetic ice rink is suitable for those who have limited outdoor space or who prefer to have year-round access to the rink, regardless of the weather. Indoor rinks also require less maintenance, as they are not exposed to external elements like debris, dirt, and extreme weather.

On the other hand, outdoor synthetic ice rinks are best for those who have ample outdoor space and prefer to enjoy skating in an open-air environment. The larger the outdoor space available, the more freedom you will have to customize the size and layout of the rink.

However, outdoor rinks require more maintenance, as they are exposed to natural elements like wind, rain, and sunlight.

What Is Your Budget for A Rink?

Budget sign on a wooden table for Indoor or Outdoor Synthetic Ice Rinks

The price of installing a synthetic ice rink depends on the following:

  • The size
  • The type of rink you choose
  • The materials you use to construct it

If you decide to install an indoor rink in an existing building, you may need to make additional modifications to accommodate the rink. If you have a limited budget, an outdoor rink is an excellent choice, as they require less maintenance and may be more cost-effective in the long run.

How Often Will You Use the Rink?

Indoor rinks have the benefit of being usable year-round, while outdoor rinks depend on the climate. If you plan to have skate sessions daily, an indoor rink may be the best option, providing you year-round access to the rink, regardless of the weather, and enjoying skating in a temperature-controlled environment.

On the other hand, if you only plan to use the rink on weekends or a few times a month, an outdoor rink might be more suitable. An outdoor rink provides a more natural skating experience, and you can enjoy the fresh air and natural light while skating. 

What is the Primary Purpose of the Rink?

If the primary purpose of the rink is for entertainment or recreational use, an outdoor rink with synthetic ice may be the best option. An outdoor rink can provide a fun and unique experience for customers, and it can be a great addition to amusement parks, festivals, or other outdoor events.

On the other hand, if the primary purpose of the rink is for professional training, coaching, or competitive use, an indoor rink with synthetic ice may be more appropriate. An indoor rink offers a temperature-controlled environment that can be used year-round, regardless of the weather, which is essential for professional training or competitive use.

Additionally, an indoor rink can be customized to meet specific business needs, such as adding spectator seating, locker rooms, or storage areas. 

Pros and Cons: Indoor or Outdoor Synthetic Ice Rinks

Indoor Ice Rinks

Indoor ice rinks offer a variety of benefits, including:

However, indoor synthetic ice rinks require a climate-controlled environment.

Outdoor Ice Rinks 

Outdoor synthetic ice rinks are often more cost-effective than indoor rinks in the long run. They are more resistant to weather fluctuations and don’t require a climate-controlled environment. They can also provide a more spacious and natural skating environment.

However, they may need more maintenance due to being exposed to the elements; and have limited year-round use.

Offer a Better Skating Experience with KwikRink

Different kinds of rinks can suit varying purposes and businesses better. KwikRink can help you research the best one for your business needs, whether you need indoor or outdoor synthetic ice rinks.

KwikRink Synthetic Ice panels provide game-changing technology for your business, delivering an exceptional experience for serious athletes looking to advance their skills. Our versatile panels can be installed in various indoor settings, offering a reliable and high-quality skating surface for your training, coaching, or competitive needs. 

By selecting the appropriate type of rink, you can provide a secure and pleasant skating experience for your customers. Contact us at (888) 275-2345 to get a quote.

Figure skating girl.

Competitive figure skating requires only the best equipment and practice space to ensure that skaters are at the top of their game. One question that often arises is whether synthetic ice tiles or natural ice offer a better skating surface for figure skaters. 

This article will compare the feel, performance, and maintenance of synthetic ice for figure skating to natural ice. It will also examine the advantages and disadvantages of artificial ice for figure skating.

Comparison of Synthetic and Real Ice

When it comes to the feel of skating on synthetic ice versus real ice, differences exist. But the advantages of using synthetic ice far outweigh those of natural ice. 

Feel of Skating on Synthetic vs. Real Ice

Tilted natural version, ice skates with reflection

Commonly, the synthetic ice surface for figure skating is slightly rougher and could require a little more effort. But the advent of new innovations provides almost the same smooth, gliding sensation as real ice. So much so, that KwikRink’s Synthetic Ice has only a 10% glide difference from that of real ice.

That 10% difference in glide between synthetic ice and natural ice presents a unique opportunity for skaters to improve their technique. The added friction provides a slight challenge that helps to isolate movements and build strength. This extra effort leads to greater control and more polished performance. By embracing the slightly different conditions of synthetic ice, skaters have the chance to take their skills to the next level.


You may notice some slight differences between synthetic and real ice when figure skating. Due to the slightly rougher surface of synthetic ice, you may have to adjust your technique and use a little more force to execute certain moves. This can be challenging for jumps and spins requiring precise edge control and power. 

However, the firmer surface of synthetic ice for skating may make it easier to feel the blade and control the balance, especially when practicing specific footwork patterns or turns. And, as mentioned earlier this can provide skaters with better technique training. 

Durability and maintenance

Regarding durability and maintenance, synthetic ice has a clear advantage over real ice. Synthetic ice tiles are high-density plastic material resistant to cracking, chipping, and melting, making them a long-lasting investment. They can be used year-round, regardless of weather conditions, and do not require refrigeration or water.

In contrast, real ice is prone to melting and requires constant refrigeration and resurfacing to maintain a smooth surface. This can be expensive and time-consuming for businesses or sponsors to manage.


Advantages of Synthetic Ice Tiles

Synthetic ice for figure skating tiles offers several advantages for figure skaters and businesses or sponsors, including the following:

Cost Savings Compared to Real Ice

Synthetic Ice for Figure Skating as cost saving compared to real ice

The benefit is significant for businesses or sponsors. Synthetic ice tiles are a one-time investment that you can use for years, unlike the ongoing costs of maintaining natural ice. This can be significant cost savings if you wish to create a practice space for figure skaters.

Ability to Use Year-Round

You can use synthetic ice panels year-round, regardless of weather conditions. This is a major advantage for businesses or sponsors in locations with harsh winters or limited access to real ice rinks.

Installation and Storage Convenience

Synthetic ice tiles are easy to install and can be stored when not in use. This is a convenient option for businesses or sponsors with limited space or the need to set up and break down a practice space regularly.

Environmentally Friendly Compared to Real Ice

You don’t need a refrigeration system or water to maintain synthetic ice, making it an environmentally friendly option compared to real ice. This can be a factor for those looking to reduce their carbon footprint.


Disadvantages of Synthetic Ice for Figure Skating

There are a few disadvantages to consider when it comes to synthetic ice for figure skating. These include:

High Initial Cost of Purchasing and Installation

Building a synthetic ice skating rink can be costly upfront, especially for a large rink. It’s crucial to plan a budget that works for you. However, the cost of maintenance is low and the limitless fun it offers makes the investment worth it in the long run. 

Potential for Reduced Performance Compared to Natural Ice

Despite the potential for reduced skating performance on synthetic ice compared to natural ice, advances in synthetic ice technology have improved its friction and glide properties, resulting in a much more authentic skating experience than in the recent past. 


Possible Negative Impact on the Blade Wear and Sharpening

The rougher surface of the synthetic ice can cause blades to be dull more quickly, requiring more sharpening. While it may require more time and effort to keep blades in top condition, it’s a small price to pay for year-round access to a reliable skating surface.


Key Takeaways

  • Real ice offers competitive skaters the most authentic skating experience but may be more costly and less convenient for businesses and sponsors to maintain.
  • The decision to use synthetic or real ice should be based on individual needs and preferences, as well as budget and availability of options. 
  • Synthetic ice for figure skating can be a cost-effective and convenient choice, but it is important to weigh the pros and cons before deciding. 

Ultimately, the best skating experience will depend on the individual needs and goals of the skater, as well as the resources and support of businesses and sponsors.


Let’s Help You Construct Your Synthetic Skating Ice Rink

Take advantage of the opportunity to provide your figure skaters with a top-quality practice space that is quick and easy to install in any indoor or outdoor location. Our synthetic ice for figure skating rinks is a cost-effective and convenient solution. It offers year-round use, affordable maintenance costs, and a safe and stable skating surface. 

Contact us today to get a quote and learn more about how a synthetic ice rink can benefit your business or organization. Be sure to give your skaters the best possible skating experience.