Shaker Heights Speed Skater Competes in Olympic Trials

Senior Ryan Shane trains in Utah

Ryan Shane, a Shaker Heights High School senior, made it to the Olympic trials for speed skating last year. He currently trains in Utah while attending online school.

Speed Skating is a form of ice skating in which the athletes race around a track for time on a set distance. Two different categories in speed skating are short track and long track speed skating.

Shane specializes in short track speed skating. “The track is 111 meters and there’s three individual events. 500 meters, 1000 meters and 1500 meters,” Shane said. In speed skating, athletes compete in all of the events in the specific category they race in.

Shane has a packed schedule consisting of two separate practice sessions every day. “I get to practice at 5:45 a.m. warm up and then skating from 6:45 until 9, and then usually about an hour off of ice after that, so the morning will finish at 10. And then the afternoon starts at 1:30, usually skating for about an hour and a half and then another hour of off ice stuff,” Shane said.

Even though Shane currently lives and trains in Utah, he attends online school through Shaker. “I have a special arrangement with my guidance counselor, so it’s mostly CCP classes for Shaker and Ohio State, and also there’s a Shaker online provider so I have some classes for that too,” Shane said. He balances his school responsibilities with skating by using his spare time and the one day off he gets each week to complete his schoolwork.

CCP (College Credit Plus) is Ohio’s enrollment program that gives students in grades 7-12 the opportunity to earn high school credits and college credits from Ohio universities, simultaneously.

Shane received considerable support from friends and family as he fought to qualify for the Olympics. “I had some friends that came out to support me at the Olympic trial,” Shane said. Other than that he said he receives lots of moral support through social media and text messages. Some students at Shaker also watched him compete online.

Shane misses seeing all of the people he would usually see on a school day. “Outside of training I really don’t see anyone, so I guess I miss seeing all of the different people at school,” Shane said. However, online schooling does have some benefits such as being more flexible than traditional school. Shane says that if he knows he has a busy day, he can prepare for that and complete the school work ahead of time.

In Dec. 2021, Shane tried out for the 2022 Winter Olympic games in Beijing. Although he didn’t make it, he has aspirations to compete in the 2026 Olympics in Italy. He said that though it wasn’t the outcome he had hoped for, it will push him to work even harder over the next four years. To prepare for the games, he hopes to compete more and become Junior Champion of the world.

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