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The Greatest American Female Figure Skaters of All Time

Updated June 25, 2019 5.0k votes 787 voters 43.7k views33 items

List RulesVote up the best women figure skaters.

These are the greats of ladies’ single skating, the American women who have stolen hearts and entertained millions. This list includes the ultimate American figure skating females from the past and present, including those who left their legacies decades ago to those who are still writing their figure skating histories. What is it about figure skaters that make them so entertaining to watch? Perhaps it’s their athleticism. The greatest American ladies’ single skaters have the strength, flexibility, and coordination to complete difficult figure skating moves, from the triple axel to the Biellmann spin. Although both jumps were created by other figure skating legends (Axel Paulsen and Denise Biellmann, respectively), the greatest women in American figure skating have the skills necessary to pull them off with ease.

Or perhaps it is their artistry that makes the greats of American figure skating enjoyable to watch. As anyone who’s tried figure skating can attest to, learning to skate gracefully, let alone to perform jumps and spins, can be taxing and tiring. Yet the celebrated figure skaters on this list are not only able to skate, spin, and spring into the air but also to do so with grace, passion, and style. Their routines can be beautiful or humorous, heartbreaking or inspiring. This list includes the best female figure skaters in American figure skating history. They are all worth remembering, from the early greats (such as Tenley Albright) to the newer faces (such as Rachael Flatt), whether for athleticism, artistry, or a combination of both. These are the women in American figure skating new skaters and audiences will be inspired by for years to come.

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  • Video: YouTube
    Besides her many other figure skating accomplishments, Michelle Kwan won the gold at the World Figure Skating Championships five times (1996, 1998, 2000, 2001, and 2003).
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    • Video: YouTube
      Kristi Yamaguchi, who has several gold medals to her name, took the top spot in ladies’ single skating at the 1992 Winter Olympic Games (Albertville).
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      • Video: YouTube
        Peggy Fleming is not only an Olympic gold medalist but also a gold medalist at the World Figure Skating Championships (1966 to 1968).
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        • Video: YouTube
          Dorothy Hamill was on top in 1976 as the gold medalist at both the World Figure Skating Championships and the Winter Olympic Games (Innsbruck).
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