Dr. Richard Porter is given credit for forming the 'Hockettes' as the first synchronized skating team. He became known as the 'father of synchronized skating'. The 'Hockettes' skated out of Ann Arbor, Michigan and entertained spectators during the intermissions of the University of Michigan Men’s Hockey Team. In the early days, precision skating (as it was then called) resembled a drill team routine, or a precision dance company such as The Rockettes.
During the 1970’s, the interest in this new sport grew and resulted other areas to form their own teams. With the passage of each season, more teams began to develop more creative and innovative routines incorporating stronger skating skills, new maneuvers with sophisticated transitions performed with greater speed, style and agility.
Due to the enormous interest in the sport in North America, the first official international competition was held between Canadian and American teams in Michigan in March 1976. With the internationalization of the sport, it has evolved rapidly, with increasing emphasis on speed and skating skills, and "highlight" elements such as jumps, spins, and lifts that originally were not permitted in competition.
At the senior level, the best teams in the world as of the 2008 World Championships are Rockettes of Finland, Team Surprise of Sweden, Nexxice of Canada and Marigold Ice Unity of Finland. Other top teams include ,Miami University Synchronized Skating Team of the United States , Les Supremes of Canada and the United States' Haydenettes.
In the 2000s, although not currently an Olympic Sport, fans and participants of this fast growing discipline have begun to strive for recognition by the rest of the skating and athletic world. In 2007 synchronized skating took one step closer to Olympic contention when it was selected to be part of the Universiade or World University Games as a demonstration sport. Countries from around the world competed in Torino , Italy with Sweden, Finland, and Russia coming out on top. Synchronized Skating has already been reviewed for Olympic eligibility.
Synchronized skating has been covered by Skating magazine since the sport's inception and has helped its growing popularity. Miami University has been a trailblazer in collegiate synchronized skating, fielding the first completely funded varsity synchronized skating program in the United States, as well as their coach Vicki Korn working towards gaining "synchro" NCAA status in the United States. The increasing number of skaters with synchro experience attending colleges has resulted in more colleges and universities developing club level collegiate teams that lack varsity status, but that may be changing with the support from Title IX.