Select Page

Some Useful Information!

The tabs below will help you better understand the different qualifications, accomplishments, and certifications of all of our professional instructors. If you have any questions or wish to set up a private lesson, please feel free to contact us with the contact form at the bottom of the page or give us a call at 9739279122.

U.S. Figure Skating (USFSA) is the national governing body for the sport of figure skating on ice in the United States. U.S. Figure Skating appreciates the cooperation and understanding of all members to help implement minimum requirements to ensure that the environment in all U.S. Figure Skating programs is as safe as possible for all participants. This will help give parents the highest degree of confidence that their children are receiving good care and proper instruction.

Both skaters and instructors are registered through Learn to Skate USA, a new branch of USFSA. When you register for our program at Aspen Ice Arena, we will register you in our LTSUSA Basic Skills Program! After we have registered you or your skater, you will receive:

  • An official U.S. Figure Skating Basic Skills membership card
  • A record book with stickers to track your progress through the lessons
  • A membership year patch
  • Sport Accident Insurance
  • General information about ice skating
  • Opportunity to participate in group lessons, approved competitions and performances associated with the registered program
  • Basic Skills Edition of SKATING magazine

You can visit their website at www.usfsa.org or https://www.learntoskateusa.com/

USA Hockey is recognized by the International Olympic Committee and the United States Olympic Committee as the governing body for organized amateur ice hockey in the United States and is a member of the International Ice Hockey Federation. USA Hockey provides certification programs for coaches and officials to ensure education standards are met that coincide with the level of play.

Members receive insurance coverage and access to participate in national championships and player development camps.

More information can be found at www.usahockey.com

U.S. Figure Skating is proud to recognize the Professional Skaters Association (PSA) as the official coaches education, certification and training program of U.S. Figure Skating. The PSA offers a variety of educational programs as well as rating and ranking systems to recognize coaching accomplishments. For more information on the PSA and all it has to offer, please visit www.skatepsa.com.

U.S. Figure Skating requires all coaches who are coaching at nonqualifying, qualifying or test track competitions and/or test sessions to fulfill a Continuing Education Requirement (CER). This is be done in the form of online or in-person courses, followed by an online test through the PSA online learning system.

Based on the level of competition, a coach will need to complete a different level of CER tests; CER-C is optional for basic skills, CER-B is needed for non-qualifying competitions, and CER-A is needed for qualifying competitions.

You can visit their website at www.skatepsa.com

Aspen Ice Arena uses the U.S. Figure Skating Basic Skills Test Program. As skaters progress through our learn to skate program, they will pass various tests of increasing difficulty. Tests are as follows and must be taken in this order:

  1. Snow Plow Sam 1-3 (only if skaters are ages 4 to 6)
  2. Basic 1-8
  3. Freestyle 1-6

Judged Tests: A much more formal test structure is designed for skaters who have advanced past the basics skills test program. These tests are judged by USFSA-appointed judges at formal “test sessions”. The results are forwarded to the USFSA which keeps official records of each skater’s test accomplishments. In each skating discipline (freestyle, moves in the field, ice dance, pairs, synchronized skating, ect), many levels of achievement are defined. See “USFSA Test Requirements” for more information on the specifics for each level. Note that a skater’s age does not figure into his or her skating level — only the demonstration of his/her proficiency through the passing of tests.

A summary of USFSA Test levels and Test disciplines is shown below:

Moves in the Field Singles FS Pairs Dance
Pre-Preliminary Pre-Preliminary Preliminary Preliminary
Preliminary Preliminary Juvenile Pre-Bronze
Pre-Juvenile Pre-Juvenile Intermediate Bronze
Juvenile Juvenile Novice Pre-Silver
Intermediate Intermediate Junior Silver
Novice Novice Senior Pre-Gold
Junior Junior Gold
Senior Senior Junior International
Senior International

Moves-in-the-field is a technical discipline designed to improve skater’s abilities in areas such as stroking, turns, edge work, etc. It is necessary for all skaters to take and pass the Moves-in-the-Field (MIF) test associated with a particular level before taking the Freestyle or Pairs test at that level. It is not possible for a skater to “opt out” of the Moves-in-the-Field tests. It is ok to have a higher MIF test level than you do FS level, if that is your choice.

Singles Free Skate: This is the discipline in Figure Skating that most spectators are familiar with. In Freeskating, or “Singles Freestyle” skating, a competitive skater performs a “program” that lasts anywhere from 1 to 4-1/2 minutes, is composed of elements such as jumps and spins, and is usually skated to music.

Pairs skating is similar in many respects to singles freeskating, except that 2 skaters perform together. This adds all sorts of opportunities for new moves, such as lifts, throws, and pair spins and jumps. Pairs skating has both “long” and “short” programs, just like singles freeskating, and a test structure which includes: Preliminary, Juvenile, Intermediate, Novice, Junior, and Senior.

Ice Dancing is the discipline within skating that most emphasizes the “beauty” of the sport. Dance emphasizes the techniques of edgework, flow, and motion of 2 skaters together in rhythmic interpretation of music. Ice Dancing has 2 main focus areas, the “Compulsory Dances”, and the “Free Dances”. In compulsory dances, skaters are given a very specific pattern to follow. In free dances, skaters get to make up their own “programs”, within specified guidelines. No jumps or spins are allowed, and dancers are required to stay close together throughout the course of the dance program.

Synchronized Team Skating is a “team” event, with teams of 8 to as many as 24 skaters skating complicated routines similar to those performed by marching bands or drum corps. Large teams may execute patterns of incredible complexity and beauty. The teamwork and timing required makes this a challenging sport.

Basic Skills Competitions are frequently held at clubs throughout the country. These competitions enjoy a relaxed rules structure. These competitions hold events at various levels, equivalent to those specified in the Basic Skills training curriculum.

Non-Qualifying Competitions: The local competition is the mainstay of amateur figure skating competitions. These events do not lead directly to any National or World competition, but do provide skaters the opportunity for experience in the competitive environment, the chance to earn medals and ribbons, and the opportunity to preview the work of skaters in other clubs. Local competitions are judged by USFSA appointed judges, using the same standards as they would for Qualifying competitions. Local competitions, however, have the opportunity to “make their own rules” when they see fit, and create unique new events, or variations of standard events.

Qualifying Competition is the broad label which refers to all those competitions which lead to US National and World competitions. These competitions start at the Regional level. Successful competitors from Regional competition advance to Sectional level competition, and then to US Nationals or Junior Olympic competition.

Our Instructors

Ashley Bain

Years Skating: 16
Years Coaching: 4 years
Primarily Teach: Figure Skating, Ice Dance, Moves in the Field, Basic Skills, Freestyle, Free Dance
Certifications: PSA and USFSA certified; CER Category B
Tests Passed: Senior/Gold Medalist in Moves in the Field, Gold Dances
Competitions: Competes Locally and Nationally. Placed 3rd at Solo Dance National Championships.
About Me: Ashley Started skating when she was 3 years old and has been taking lessons ever since! Outside of the rink, Ashley likes to spend time with her friends and family. Ashley is currently competing free dance on the east coast and is training to tour with Disney on Ice in the near future. She also enjoys going on ski trips in the winter with her friends!

Siliva D’Avola

Years Skating: 20+ years
Years Coaching: 10+ years
Primarily Teach: Figure Skating, Basic Skills, Freestyle, Moves in the Field, and Power Skating
Certifications: LTS USA, PSA, USFSA, Member of F.I.S.G. (Federazione Italiana Sport Ghiaccio), the Italian federation of ice sports. Member of F.I.H.P. (Federazione Italiana Hockey Pattinaggio), the Italian federation of roller-skating, Member of U.I.S.P. (Unione Italiana Sport per Tutti), the Italian League of sports for everyone.
Competitions: Silvia competed at Junior international level in competitions such as the International Cup of Nice, the Hellmut Seibt Memorial, and the European Criterium. She also participated in Novice and Junior Italian National Championships, achieving the Title of Novice National Champion of the 1998/1999 season.
About Me: I am an Italian figure skating coach, with over 11 years of experience training competitive and amateur skaters. I am an enthusiastic, committed, goal-oriented, hard-working and creative problem-solver. I am able to work under pressure, both as a part of team and independently. Throughout both my ice skating and coaching careers, I have developed very good people and organisational skills, becoming a flexible and effective long-term planner.

Lindsay Tilley

Years Skating : 15+ years
Coaching : 15+ years
Primarily teach: Freestyle, Moves in the Field, Dance, Choreography, Basic Skills, Adults, Hockey Power Skating, Off Ice Plyometrics and Stretching
Certifications: CER B, PSA Rated in Freestyle and MIF, ISI Gold Level Judge
Tests Passed: Senior Freestyle, Senior Moves in the Field, Gold Dance + International Dance, Junior Freedance, 4th Figure Test
Competitions: USFS Regional Competitor
About Me: I started skating at age 4 and have been involved with the sport ever since, either as a Skating Director or private/group instructor.  I’ve trained students at the Regional, Sectional, and National level of competition. I have a penchant for encouraging young skaters to excel and helping adults find joy and pleasure in their skating at both the recreational and competitive level.  In my spare time I enjoy spending time with my husband and two boys!

Christopher Wan

Years Skating: 16 years
Years Coaching: 6 years
Tests Passed: Senior Freestyle, Senior Moves in the Field, and CER A
Competitions: Currently an International Competitor, Gold & Bronze Medalist at North Atlantic Regionals, three-time Eastern Sectional Competitor, Southwest Pacific Regional Competitor, and Junior National Competitor.
Certifications: PSA and USFSA Certified
About Me: My goal is to build skaters to become mentally and physically strong. I started skating shortly after my sister started figure skating lessons. My mother gave us the choice between swimming and skating; my sister chose swimming and I chose skating, for I simply could not swim. Outside of the rink I enjoy fishing, spending time outdoors, and playing table tennis.

Emma Jang

Years Skating: 12 years
Years Teaching: 1 year
Primarily teach: Basic skills, Freestyle, Moves, Choreography, Dance
Tests Passed: Senior Freestyle Test, Senior Moves in the Field, Silver Solo Ice Dance
Certifications: PSA and USFSA certified
Competitions: 2 time National Figure Skating Champion of Taiwan, 2 time ISU Junior Grand Prix Competitor (2016 JGP Czech Skate and 2015 JGP Bratislava), 6th place at the 2016 Asian Open Figure Skating Trophy(Manila, Philippines),10th place at the 2015 Asian Open Figure Skating Trophy(Bangkok, Thailand), 5 time North Atlantic Regionals competitor
About Me: Emma is currently training for more upcoming international competitions. She has also performed in various ice show to fundraise and promote skating in both the USA and Taiwan. Emma enjoys helping young skaters to explore the fun as well as the technical aspects of figure skating. Outside of the rink Emma enjoys painting, drawing, and spending time with friends, family, and her dog, Molly.

Katie Hannemann

Years Skating: 12 years
Years Coaching: 5 years
Primarily Teach: Figure Skating, Basic Skills, Freestyle, Moves in the Field, Intro to Hockey and Power Skating
Tests Passed: Senior Moves in the Field, Intermediate Freestyle, Pre-Gold Ice Dance
Accomplishments/Certifications: PSA and USFSA registered, PSA insured, CER Level A and USA Hockey registered.
Competitions: USFS Regional Competitor
About Me: Katie started skating with her dad when she was 9 years old. Katie loves teaching children and adults to love the sport as much as she does. In addition to teaching at the rink, she have worked for Aspen Ice for 7 years. Outside of the rink she enjoys drawing, spending time outdoors and being with friends and family!

Kaitlyn Castelli

Years Skating: 15 Years
Years Coaching: 6 Years
Primarily Teach: Figure Skating, Hockey, Ice Dance, Moves in the Field, Basic Skills, Freestyle
Certifications: PSA and USFSA certified; CER Category A
Tests Passed: Senior Moves in the Field, Pre-Gold Ice Dance, Senior Freestyle
Competitions: Has competed in local competitions and regional competitions.

Holly Steckert

Years Skating:12 years
Years Coaching: 1 year
Primarily Teach: Basic Skills, Moves in the Field, Synchronized Skating Skills
Certifications: PSA, USFSA
Tests Passed: Senior Moves in the Field, Pre-Gold Ice Dance
Competitions: Holly has competed with her synchronized skating team at Easterns (three time champions) and Nationals (2nd place).

Olivia Zurek

Years Skating: 8 years
Years Coaching: 1 year
Primarily Teach: Basic Skills
Certifications: PSA and USFSA
Tests Passed: Juvenile Moves in the Field, Pre-Juvenile Freestyle
Competitions: Has competed in local competitions
About Me: Olivia goes to NJIT and enjoys learning about math and computer science. Olivia also enjoys photography, traveling and spending time with friends and family.

Colin Chelton

Years Skating: 20+ years
Years Coaching: 5 years
Tests Passed: Senior Freestyle and Senior Moves in the Field
Competitions: North Atlantic Champion Men’s Open Juvenile and Bronze Midwest Regional Junior Men’s
Accomplishments: PSA and USFSA Registered
About Me: I started skating on outdoor frozen lakes at the age of 9. Soon after I started taking lessons and competing. I have a Bachelors Degree in culinary arts and hotel hospitality from The Culinary Institute of America.

Matej Silecki

Years Skating: 20+ years
Years Coaching: 7 years
Primarily Teach: Figure Skating, Pairs Skating, Basic Skills, Freestyle, Moves in the Field, Beginner Hockey and Power Skating
Certifications: USFSA, LTS USA, Safe Sport
Tests Passed: Senior Freestyle, Senior Moves in the Field, Senior Pairs
Competitions: 2012 USFS Collegiate Junior Men’s Champion, 2016 US Nationals Competitor (Senior Pairs), 5 time Sectionals Competitor (Novice-Senior Men), 3 time Jr National Competitor (Juv & Inter Men’s), 10 time Regional Competitor & 2 time Champion.
About Me: In addition to coaching, Matej skates in shows throughout the nation.

Harmony Debowski

Years Skating:
Years Coaching:
Primarily Teach:
Certifications:
Tests Passed:
Competitions:

Traci Vassoler

Years Teaching: 1 year
Primarily Teaches: Snow Plow Sam 1 through Basic 1
Certifications: USFSA, LTS USA
About Me: Traci enjoys skating with her daughters, who have also been progressing through our basic skills program.

Chris Schultz

Years Coaching: 4 years
Primarily Teach: Hockey Skills; stickhandling, passing, shooting
Certifications: USA Hockey
Experience: Chris was a travel hockey player for 7 years playing for the NJ Freeze and the Bayonne Rangers.  He also played for the NJ Storm Junior Hockey team for 1 year.  Currently Chris is an employee at Middlebury Sports & Apparel in addition to working as an instructor.  Chris is excited to continue to work with players who share his passion for hockey, and more importantly, the long term development of all the players in his programs.

Mike Valvano

Certifications: Level 5 USA Hockey Coaching Certification and an extensive background when it comes to training youth hockey goalies.
Experience: Mike has been an instructor for many camps/clinics including the NJ Devils Youth Hockey Clinic, Garden State Training Camp, Montclair Blues Goalie Clinic, and “Give’em Nothing” Goaltending School. Has has also served as goalie director for Todd Drevitch’s Hockey Techniques.
Teams: Between 1999 and 2008 Mike had the position of Goalie Coach for the NJ Colonials, NJ Lightening, and NJ Blizzards. He is currently coaching for the NJ Freeze, Randolph High School, and Montville High School.
Teaches: Beginner Hockey through Advanced Hockey

Matt Richert

Years Skating/Coaching: 30+ years
Primarily Teach: Beginner Skating, Hockey, Power Skating
Certifications: MS in Instructional Leadership from Robert Morris University, USFSA, USA Hockey, Master’s Level (Level 5) Coaching Certificate from USA Hockey
Experience:
2001-2003: Pittsburgh Penguins; summer camps
2002-2009: International Hockey College; summer camps
2001-2003: Washington and Jefferson College (ACHA Div 1), Assistant Coach
2002-2003: Mt. Lebanon Amateur Hockey Association (Pee-Wee B), Head Coach
2004-2005: North Catholic High School (Varsity), Assistant Coach
2005-2009: Pine Richland High School (Varsity, JV and Freshman), both Head Coach and Assistant Coach
2005-2007: Robert Morris University (NCAA Div I), Student Assistant Coach
2006-2007: Pittsburgh Hornets (’96 birth year), Assistant Coach

Sean Lishwa

Years Skating: 14 years
Years Coaching: 1 year
Primarily Teach: Basic Skills, Hockey Skating & Skills
Certifications: USFSA, USA Hockey
About Me:
Sean is a high school senior at Morris Hills, where he plays for/is the captain of their hockey team. In addition to high school hockey, Sean also plays travel hockey. When he isn’t playing hockey, Sean is a CCD teacher as well as a Skate Guard at Aspen Ice.

Anthony Levite

Years Skating: 10 years
Years Coaching: 2 years
Primarily Teach: Hockey, Basic Skills
Certifications: USFSA, USA Hockey
About Me: Anthony played for Morristown High School from freshman year through Senior. In addition to high school hockey, Anthony played travel hockey with the NJ Freeze for 3 years.

Taylor Koze

Years Skating: 10 years
Years Coaching: 2 years
Primarily Teach: Hockey, Beginner Skating, Basic Skills
Certifications: USFSA, USA Hockey
Private/Group Instruction

Jon Manci

Years Coaching: 5 Years
Primarily Teach: Hockey Skills; stickhandling, passing, shooting
Certifications: USA Hockey
Experience: Jon grew up in NJ playing travel hockey for 10 years.  He did 1 year of junior hockey with the NJ Rockets and 3 years at the varsity level at Seton Hall Prep.  In additional to being a Private Coach, Jon is also an employee at Middlebury Sports & Apparel.  Bringing a wealth of hockey knowledge to the ice, Jon is looking forward to working with young players and sharing his passion and expertise of the game.

Jack Santos

Years Coaching: 5 Years
Primarily Teach: Hockey Skills; stickhandling, passing, shooting
Certifications: USA Hockey
Experience: Jack Santos is a seasoned hockey player and grew up playing travel hockey for 10 years on various teams such as NJ Lightening, NJ Blizzard and Bridgewater Bears.  He also played one year of junior hockey for the NJ Kings.  While attending Pope John XXIII, Jack spent 1 year on junior varsity and 3 years as a varsity player. He is currently a Middlebury Sports & Apparel employee as well as a Hockey Boss private instructor.  Jack’s competitive edge and passion for hockey will help fuel his players to work hard while also focusing on the fundamental skills of the game.

Chris Barling

Years Coaching: 5 Years
Primarily Teach: Hockey Skills; stickhandling, passing, shooting
Certifications: USA Hockey; USA Hockey Level 4 certified coach
Experience: Chris has served as head coach for various teams including the NJ Bandits and the Jersey Hitmen Empire and 2000’s.  As head coach for the Jersey Hitmen Empire (2007-2013) the team achieved 2 national championship appearances and reached the playoffs for 5 seasons. Chris also served as Associate Head Coach for the Ramsey High School Hockey Team for two years. Chris grew up playing travel hockey for 14 years.  He received an NCAA Division 1 scholarship to Fairfield University where he participated in 2 national championship tournaments.  He was also a 2-time captain for Team New Jersey in the Chicago Showcase.  Chris’ experience both as a player and coach has given him a strong work ethic that helps players develop their skill and knowledge of the game.

10 + 10 =