We are reader-supported. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more.

Figure skating is a captivating and elegant sport with various prestigious competitions held worldwide.

These events showcase the incredible talent and athleticism of top skaters and teams.

Here is an overview of the most important figure skating competitions.

Most Important Figure Skating Tournaments:

  1. World Championships
  2. US Figure Skating Championships
  3. European Figure Skating Championships
  4. Four Continents Figure Skating Championships
  5. Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final
  6. ISU Grand Prix series
  7. World Junior Figure Skating Championships
  8. Olympic Winter Games
  9. World Synchronized Skating Championships
  10. Asian Open Figure Skating Trophy
  11. World Team Trophy in Figure Skating
  12. Skate America
  13. Skate Canada
  14. Cup of China
  15. NHK Trophy
  16. Rostelecom Cup
  17. Internationaux de France

#1 World Championships

  • 📍 Location: Varies globally
  • 📅 Established: 1896
  • 🔄 Held: Annually
  • 👥 Teams: Individual skaters and couples

The World Figure Skating Championships, organized by the International Skating Union (ISU), is the most prestigious event in figure skating. Medals are awarded in men’s singles, ladies’ singles, pairs, and ice dance.

Historical champions like Sonja Henie, Irina Rodnina and Michelle Kwan have left indelible marks on the sport. The United States, Russia, and Canada are among the strongest nations dominating the championships.

#2 US Figure Skating Championships

  • 📍 Location: United States
  • 📅 Established: 1914
  • 🔄 Held: Annually
  • 👥 Teams: Individual skaters and couples

The US Figure Skating Championships, held by US Figure Skating, determine the national champions in singles, pairs, and ice dance. Past winners like Scott Hamilton, Tara Lipinski, and Nathan Chen have contributed to the competition’s historical significance.

The championships serve as a stepping-stone for American skaters to qualify for international events, showcasing emerging talents alongside established names.

#3 European Figure Skating Championships

  • 📍 Location: Varies across Europe
  • 📅 Established: 1891
  • 🔄 Held: Annually
  • 👥 Teams: Individual skaters and couples

The European Figure Skating Championships are the oldest ISU competition for European skaters. Medals are awarded in men’s singles, ladies’ singles, pairs, and ice dance categories.

Legends like Katarina Witt, Surya Bonaly, and Yevgeny Plushenko have graced the European stage. The event has historically been dominated by skaters from Russia, Germany, and France.

#4 Four Continents Figure Skating Championships

  • 📍 Location: Varies across Americas, Asia, and Oceania
  • 📅 Established: 1999
  • 🔄 Held: Annually
  • 👥 Teams: Individual skaters and couples

The Four Continents Figure Skating Championships, also organized by ISU, cater to non-European skaters. Medals are awarded in the same categories as the World and European Championships.

The competition provides a platform for skaters from the Americas, Asia, and Oceania to compete on an international stage. Competitors from the United States, China, and Japan have been particularly strong in recent editions.

#5 Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final

  • 📍 Location: Varies globally
  • 📅 Established: 1995
  • 🔄 Held: Annually
  • 👥 Teams: Individual skaters and couples

The Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final is the ultimate event in the ISU Grand Prix series. It features the top six qualifiers in singles, pairs, and ice dance from a season of international competitions.

Past winners include Patrick Chan, Yuzuru Hanyu, and Alina Zagitova. The event showcases global talent, with Russia, Japan, and the United States consistently producing top contenders.

#6 ISU Grand Prix series

  • 📍 Location: Varies globally
  • 📅 Established: 1995
  • 🔄 Held: Annually
  • 👥 Teams: Individual skaters and couples

The ISU Grand Prix series is a collection of invitational competitions held annually, culminating in the Grand Prix Final.

The events include Skate America, Skate Canada, Cup of China, NHK Trophy, Rostelecom Cup and Internationaux de France. With top skaters from around the world, the series helps in the build-up to the Grand Prix Final and contributes to global figure skating prestige.

#7 World Junior Figure Skating Championships

  • 📍 Location: Varies globally
  • 📅 Established: 1976
  • 🔄 Held: Annually
  • 👥 Teams: Individual skaters and couples

The World Junior Figure Skating Championships showcase emerging talents in men’s and ladies’ singles, pairs, and ice dance.

Governed by the ISU, the event has introduced future stars like Mao Asada, Evgeni Plushenko, and Kimmie Meissner to the world stage. The competition has increasingly become a battleground for promising skaters from Russia, Japan, and the United States.

#8 Olympic Winter Games

  • 📍 Location: Varies globally
  • 📅 Established: 1924
  • 🔄 Held: Every 4 years
  • 👥 Teams: Individual skaters and couples

Figure skating at the Olympic Winter Games is a prestigious event that showcases the best skaters in the world.

It has a rich history with memorable performances by iconic skaters like Dick Button, Peggy Fleming, and Yuna Kim. Medals are awarded in singles, pairs, and ice dance, with dominating countries such as Russia, the United States, and Canada.

#9 World Synchronized Skating Championships

  • 📍 Location: Varies globally
  • 📅 Established: 2000
  • 🔄 Held: Annually
  • 👥 Teams: 24 teams

The World Synchronized Skating Championships highlight the teamwork and precise formations of synchronized skating teams.

Governed by the ISU, the championships have grown in popularity, featuring teams from around the world. Finland, Sweden, and Russia have historically been strong competitors with notable teams such as Marigold IceUnity and Team Surprise.

#10 Asian Open Figure Skating Trophy

  • 📍 Location: Varies across Asia
  • 📅 Established: 2007
  • 🔄 Held: Annually
  • 👥 Teams: Individual skaters and couples

The Asian Open Figure Skating Trophy, organized by the ISU, provides a platform for Asian skaters to demonstrate their skills and gain international experience.

The competition includes singles, pairs, and ice dance. Asian countries such as Japan, China, and South Korea are strong contenders, delivering top talents like Yuzuru Hanyu, Shoma Uno, and Wenjing Sui.

#11 World Team Trophy in Figure Skating

  • 📍 Location: Varies globally
  • 📅 Established: 2009
  • 🔄 Held: Biennially
  • 👥 Teams: 6 national teams

The World Team Trophy in Figure Skating is a unique competition that combines individual skater performances to form a cumulative national team score.

Organized by the ISU, this event brings together the top skaters from six leading figure skating nations, fostering camaraderie and national pride. Powerhouse countries like Russia, Japan, and the United States have showcased exceptional performances in the World Team Trophy.

#12 Skate America

  • 📍 Location: United States
  • 📅 Established: 1979
  • 🔄 Held: Annually
  • 👥 Teams: Individual skaters and couples

Skate America is part of the ISU Grand Prix series and gives American and international skaters the opportunity to compete in a prestigious setting.

Stars such as Michelle Kwan, Brian Boitano, and Ashley Wagner have participated in this event. Skate America’s results contribute to the selection process for the Grand Prix Final, with top performers from various countries competing.

#13 Skate Canada

  • 📍 Location: Canada
  • 📅 Established: 1973
  • 🔄 Held: Annually
  • 👥 Teams: Individual skaters and couples

Skate Canada is another event in the ISU Grand Prix series, showcasing Canadian and international talent. With a rich history of successful participants such as Kurt Browning, Elvis Stojko, and Tessa Virtue, Skate Canada is a highly anticipated competition each year.

The event’s results help determine the skaters who will compete in the Grand Prix Final.

#14 Cup of China

  • 📍 Location: China
  • 📅 Established: 2003
  • 🔄 Held: Annually
  • 👥 Teams: Individual skaters and couples

Cup of China, also known as the China Open, is part of the ISU Grand Prix series and highlights the growing figure skating scene in Asia.

It features strong performances from Chinese talent like Shen Xue and Zhao Hongbo while also including international skaters. The competition’s results contribute to the selection process for the Grand Prix Final.

#15 NHK Trophy

  • 📍 Location: Japan
  • 📅 Established: 1979
  • 🔄 Held: Annually
  • 👥 Teams: Individual skaters and couples

The NHK Trophy, an annual event in the ISU Grand Prix series, showcases the talents of Japanese and international skaters.

Notable participants such as Yuzuru Hanyu, Shoma Uno, and Mao Asada have given memorable performances in this competition. NHK Trophy’s results play a crucial role in determining skaters’ eligibility for the Grand Prix Final.

#16 Rostelecom Cup

  • 📍 Location: Russia
  • 📅 Established: 1996
  • 🔄 Held: Annually
  • 👥 Teams: Individual skaters and couples

Rostelecom Cup, formerly known as the Cup of Russia, is part of the ISU Grand Prix series and highlights the depth of figure skating talent in Russia.

Historic performances by Russian skaters like Evgeni Plushenko, Irina Slutskaya, and Alina Zagitova have made this event a significant milestone on the road to the Grand Prix Final.

#17 Internationaux de France

  • 📍 Location: France
  • 📅 Established: 1987
  • 🔄 Held: Annually
  • 👥 Teams: Individual skaters and couples

The Internationaux de France, previously known as the Trophée Lalique, is a crucial competition in the ISU Grand Prix series.

French figure skating legends such as Philippe Candeloro and Surya Bonaly have graced this event with their performances. The event’s results contribute to skaters’ rankings and their qualification for the Grand Prix Final.

FAQ

What is the most important figure skating tournament?

The World Figure Skating Championships hold the highest prestige, awarding medals across multiple categories in figure skating.

What is the oldest figure skating tournament?

The European Figure Skating Championships, established in 1891, are the oldest figure skating competition.

What is the hardest figure skating tournament to win?

The World Figure Skating Championships and Olympic Winter Games are significantly challenging, due to the high level of international competition.

I'm a sports enthusiast who loves all kinds of ball and water sports. I run stand-up-paddling.org (#1 German Paddleboarding Blog), played competitive Badminton, took part in the German Mini Golf Championships, started learning 'real' Golf and dabbled in dozens of other sports & activities.

Subscribe
Notify of
guest
0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments