International Skating Union President Jan Dijkema has delivered a season's greetings message to the sport's family ©ISU

International Skating Union (ISU) President Jan Dijkema has used his season’s greetings message to the sport’s family to provide an insight into the progress on several priorities that the world governing body has set for the period from 2018 to 2022.

The priorities are aiming to further promote and develop all ISU disciplines worldwide together with the body’s members.

Among them is increasing the quality and quantity of skaters, coaches and officials, and the number of ISU members able to develop skaters who compete at events.

"In view of the ISU Development Programme, we continue to increase the number and quality of project applications from members," Dijkema said.

"Other initiatives, such as the ISU Visiting Coaches and support for former skaters to become a coach, official or administrator, continued to be effective as well.

"A highlight of this year was the launch of the e-learning platform.

"It provides professional online training and development modules for the skating community.

"The first modules are about skating techniques, sleep and recovery, anti-doping, iCoachKids, officiating and referee re-appointments.

"The content keeps being expanded.

"Furthermore, the ISU Centres of Excellence enters a two-year pilot phase with nine selected entities across the world.

"Another new initiative that will unfold next year concerns the worldwide coaching structure for the figure and speed skating branches.

"It provides a framework for members to help educate coaches at five levels (from a local club coach to an international coach)."

Another priority is increasing the ISU disciplines' global fan base and its engagement, and optimising the sport's marketing and communication structures.

"As of season 2019-2020, live streams and video highlights of the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating, ISU World Cup Speed Skating and Short Track Speed Skating and ISU Championships are available on the Skating ISU YouTube channel," Dijkema said.

"The goal is to increase accessibility and visibility of the ISU sports worldwide, particularly in markets where there is no broadcaster. 

"You can subscribe to the ISU newsletter to receive the latest information. 

"We have also launched #UpAgain, which is a multi-discipline, global and digital campaign to connect skating with new audiences. 

"It is based on an inspiring message that we must overcome life’s challenges to achieve our full potential. 

"Another focus this season is the new ISU Skating Awards and the development of an ISU app."

A third and final priority identified by Dijkema is ensuring good governance through integrity, transparency, inclusiveness and sustainable development with regards to the environment.

"We continue to work on protecting vital principles for ISU events and activities, such as safety, fairness, integrity and sustainability," he added.

"In light of the ISU governance and inclusiveness, I am pleased to say that we have a new and enthusiastic team that runs the ISU Athletes' Commission following the elections earlier this year.

"The aim is to strengthen the connection with the athletes to gather their ideas and collaborate on initiatives regarding, for example, the development, marketing and promotion and rules of our sports. 

"The Commission appointed a competing skater in every nation who represents the interests of his/her fellow citizens. 

"A special video and newsletter to reach out to all athletes will be available soon."