The kiss and cry is the area in an ice rink where figure skaters wait for their marks to be announced after their performances during a figure skating competition. It is so named because the skaters and coaches often kiss to celebrate after a good performance, or cry after a poor one. The area is usually located in the corner or end of the rink and is furnished with a bench or chairs for the skaters and coaches and monitors to display the competition results. It is often elaborately decorated with flowers or some other backdrop for television shots and photos of the skaters as they react to their performance and scores.
The term was coined by Jane Erkko, a Finnish figure skating official who was on the organizing committee for the 1983 World Figure Skating Championships which were held in Helsinki. Erkko came up with the name when visiting television technicians who were mapping the arena prior to the event wanted to know what the area was called. The first formal off-ice waiting area at the Olympics appeared in Sarajevo 1984. The term "kiss and cry" was widely used by the early 1990s, and is now used officially in the International Skating Union Regulations, and showing the "kiss and cry" room likely has helped make figure skating very popular in Olympics on television. The American and other national federations train skaters on how to appear on camera while waiting.
A kiss and cry area is also featured at some gymnastics competitions.