Figure skater Gloria Moore glides her way to a healthy lifestyle.
Austin Woman, February 2019
Gloria Moore grew up ice skating in Prospect Park in Brooklyn, N.Y., in the 1960s. She never had formal figure-skating lessons, but she thought the sport was beautiful and loved watching Dorothy Hamill and Debi Thomas glide gracefully and powerfully across the ice.
In high school, Moore studied dance at The School of Performing Arts in Manhattan, N.Y.
“I learned about body posture, graceful arms and looking up when I perform,” she says.
Then, in her mid-20s, Moore attended the University of Texas for graduate school and took her first skating lesson at Chaparral Ice in Austin. During the next 30 years, she got married, became a special-education teacher, had two children and moved to several states. But no matter what changes life brought, she always found an ice rink and carved out time to practice her spins, spirals and edges.
Today, Moore, who’s now 60, lives in South Austin and teaches hearing-impaired students in the Hays Consolidated Independent School District. She takes private and group skating lessons at Chaparral Ice and volunteers to help instruct a Special Olympics class for adult skaters with disabilities. Occasionally, she also competes.
Skating to Eva Cassidy’s version of “Over the Rainbow” last June, Moore won first place in her division at the Bluebonnet Open, a local competition. Her routine included an impressive salchow/toe-loop jump combination.
“I love expression and movement,” Moore says. “I don’t care if I win. I just want people to feel something when I skate.”
Here’s how this ice queen keeps gliding.
“I wake up at 5 a.m. every morning and get to work by 7 a.m. I believe in breakfast, so I have hot cereal and orange juice before I go. If I’m preparing for a skating event, I listen to my competition music over and over again on the drive. I have to know it well.”
“I skate once or twice a week for 45 minutes to two and a half hours each time; it depends on the class I’m taking and whether we’re rehearsing for a show. Skating tones leg muscles and works the core. You need power, flow and good technique. At work, I’m also constantly moving. I’m on my feet all day in the classroom and on the playground. It’s quite busy. Occasionally, I’ll do 20 minutes on my exercise bike at home.”
“I have high cholesterol, which is genetic, but I still try to eat a low-fat, low-cholesterol diet. I stay away from red meat, and I don’t drink alcohol. I do have a daily dessert without going overboard. My husband does most of the cooking at home. Spaghetti, turkey burgers and chicken are some things we like for dinner. I bring my lunch to work or have what’s served at school. I eat something simple before skating because I will exert lots of energy on the ice. Lately, I’ve been mixing two tablespoons of apple-cider vinegar and some cinnamon, honey and cayenne pepper into 20 ounces of water. The vinegar is supposed to help with anxiety and it may have factored into my improved cholesterol levels.”
“After the beginner levels of skating, you need your own skates. I wear Riedell Skates that I bought 15 years ago for $300, including the blades. A new pair would cost $900 or more today. I have my blades sharpened four to six times a year. I choose to wear a Crasche headband in case I fall. It’s reinforced with plastic and foam pads on all sides, and it protects the back of my head. As a special-education teacher, I know how important it is to protect against head injuries. For clothes, I wear a jacket, dry-tech shirts, tights and form-fitting pants that won’t get caught in my blades. I can always shed layers once I get moving. For my last competition, I bought a blue sequin dress online at Discount Skatewear. It cost $100, but it’s pretty!”
“I love the artistry of figure skating. It’s challenging and frustrating. When I’m on the ice, I can focus only on what I’m doing. I have to leave everything else behind.”
“Don’t give up!”
“I pray and say good night to my husband.”