People have been ice skating for almost 4,000 years. It's great exercise and easier on the joints than running. Ice skating can also sharpen your balance and tune up muscles in your legs.
In many parts of the United States there are indoor and outdoor rinks and many local recreation centers have ice skating programs.
Beginners should have a competent skater accompany them. You will fall while learning how to skate. It's nice to have an accomplished skating partner that may be able to steady you or reduce the impact of a fall.
Once you're ready you can even compete in either figure skating competitions (visit the web site of the U.S. Figure Skating Association at http://usfsa.org) or an adult hockey league.
However, for most, ice skating is just a fun activity especially with friends and family.