Skatism, also known as skating discrimination, is the application of the belief or attitude that there are characteristics implicit to one's skating background that directly affect one's abilities in unrelated areas.
It is a form of discrimination or devaluation based on a person's skating ability or level of training, with such attitudes being based on beliefs that what you knew or could do at the age of 17 is the most you can ever hope to achieve. The term skatism is most often used in relation with discrimination against adult-onset skaters, especially those who desire to teach, in the context of high school as peak experience, or against recreational and low-test youth skaters in the context of also having a life.
Skatism involves hatred of, or prejudice towards a class of skaters as a whole or the blind application of skating stereotypes. Skatism is often associated with coaching-supremacy arguments, and in peer-group dynamics.
In philosophy, a skatist attitude is one which suggests human beings can be understood or judged on the basis of the essential characteristics of the group to which an individual belongs—in this case, their skating group, as former competitors or high test skaters, as opposed to, um, everybody else. This assumes that all individuals fit into the category of skater or non skater, and that this is the only useful defining characteristic.
Occupational skatism refers to any discriminatory practices, statements, actions, etc. based on a person's skating background that are present or occur in a place of employment. This can manifest as wage discrimination, seniority assignment, access to choice class levels, exclusion from high-status groups, etc.
At many rinks, skating discrimination – i.e. the unequal treatment of equally productive individuals only because they belong to a specific group; or the favoring of non-productive individuals because they belong to the "right" group – is still a crucial factor inflating disparities in employment, participation in program activities, and the quality of job and skating opportunities. While employment and youth-sports rules generally require that individuals participating under the same job or program description be treated equally, in practice this is difficult to enforce.
Have you encountered skatism at your rink?