Ice Skating - buying your own skates?

Soldato
Joined
22 Sep 2008
Posts
9,832
Location
Burscough
Went skating again on Friday and again today.

Disappointed a little with Friday as I spent two hours skating and didn't really achieve much other than make forward crossovers a bit more fluent and they now feel a lot more natural and beneficial to my skating which I'm pleased with (backwards crossovers still mortify me but I think they are a while off yet!). However, I came home thinking that I really should structure my skating sessions a little more with a set few things to practise and improve.

What I have noticed however is that now I am becoming a better skater, my flaws are starting to become a bit more apparent. My weaker side, in particular, is starting to feel more and more stark. Basically, anything that involves turning CW is a lot clunkier and awkward than ACW. CW crossovers the foot doesn't feel as natural but its improving and those two footed "power turns" feel just completely alien and weird when I try them CW (albeit very slow "power turns"). When trying them I was actually quite surprised at just how easy and natural it feels to do slowly ACW and how insanely weird and awkward it is to do them CW! Its a proper weakness to my balance/muscle memory and it felt properly exposed on Friday. Its like something so simple but the wiring in my brain is all wrong and it feels incredibly unnatural - and a little infuriating given how easily I can do it and "feel the ice" the other way around.

As such, today I went out to the rink with one thought in my head: OK - do everything slowing and properly before trying to do things with more speed.

So today I've been practising held or delayed crossovers - crossing over the foot but holding the feet in that position whilst doing the turn just to get a better feel for my balance, and where possible trying it in both directions. I think that helped a lot actually and all my crossovers are now feeling smoother and more accomplished. Perhaps 2 weeks ago they were feeling very stompy and unbalanced - always on the precipice of falling over! Now its controlled, smooth and powerful when done properly.

It sounds weird and maybe I'm over exaggerating it a bit but I was really shocked at how poor my weaker side was in some aspects compared to my stronger side.

Going to book myself in to my next set of lessons for the end of May - hopefully entering in at level 4. I think I need some more lessons and exercises and drills to practise to take me forward. I watch some people drift effortlessly on their outside edge on one foot in a turn and it just looks super easy only for me to try it and realise its totally super NOT easy!
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Associate
Joined
21 Jul 2016
Posts
972
Location
Texas
I actually find it quite a Zen experience when the rink is quiet and you can just practise in your own little world. Its quite relaxing.

I completely agree. There's something special about skating in an (almost) empty rink. Very peaceful.

Sounds like you're making excellent progress. Once you're comfortable stopping at high speeds it will be time to learn how to shoot up a rooster tail of shaved ice. It will really **** off your friends! :D
 
Associate
Joined
14 Nov 2004
Posts
601
Location
Canadia
The trick with crossovers, as a beginner, is to point where you want to go. Left arm for turning left, right for right.

Your arm will turn your shoulders, which in turn will turn your hips, making the whole thing a lot easier.

If it's still daunting, try some straight line single foot glides, it helps a lot for balance and will get you used to the feeling of the start of the crossover.

As with learning to ride a bike, speed helps. Find a comfortable speed as doing it slower is more difficult.

Good luck.
 
Soldato
Joined
22 Sep 2008
Posts
9,832
Location
Burscough
Made lots of steady progress recently. Got much better at crossovers but they aren't my main concern to be honest. Trying to work on my outside edges. Its pretty hard but I am slowly coming to the realisation that a bit of speed will help a lot more. Outside edge one footed glides are nails but its slowly coming with a bit of practise. Stuff I found really challenging maybe a month ago now feels much more comfortable. I'm building up my speed going backwards too, much calmer, balanced, controlled. I no longer feel the need to look at my feet when going backwards but instead can look around me and see clearer where I'm going.

Booked in for the Skate Excellence Level 3 course at the end of the month which I'm looking forward to. Should build upon more skills.
 
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