GASTON, N.C. — It all started at Kate's Skating Center for Clay Mull, a former member of the 2006 U.S Olympic Speed Skating team.
"I was a young child growing up in a Kate’s Rink Tow or four times a week," Mull said. "That’s really where my passion started."
Mull said in the early to mid-2000s the sport saw a decline in interest, but the pandemic has put roller skating back on the map.
"We have a really rich tradition in the area for speed skating this goes back a long time," Mull said. "Our goal is to really grow the sport again."
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According to Google searches globally, the sport has more than doubled between March and May, and it shot back up again over the winter.
Kate’s Skating Rink said its overall sales have increased nearly 45% since 2018.
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"We already see a spike, I really see it coming back because the interest is definitely heightening," Mull said.
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Mull said they’re starting a team to expand the sport in the area. They're training new athletes and encouraging new roller skaters to lace up.
He said there couldn’t be a better time to try something new.
"This has been a part of my heart forever skating has always been in me, that's why I'm so happy to be a part of this program," Mull said.
Mull said he’s hopeful their program will interest a range of different people who are willing to let the good times roll.
If you’re trying skates for the first time or you're looking to compete all over the U.S, they’re encouraging you to get signed up at any Kate's Skating Center.
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