So now my free legs are fully extended and my quads are fully engaged! I am getting a solid push that sends me flying onto a new edge, which feels pretty awesome. It feels awesome, that is, until I release the extension to bring the free foot in. Then waaahh, all hell breaks lose.
Laurie pointed out that I was allowing the now-fully-extended free leg to come in with such force that it knocked me off my edge. She told me that I should think of the free leg “dissolving” into the skating leg. Wow, that made an incredible difference. I now feel like both legs are working together, and it’s way easier to maintain a good lean and keep the weight on the right part of my skating blade.
The new timing on my swing rolls and three turns is way different, and I don’t feel like parts of my body are getting whipped around at lightning speed. As a result, I don’t really feel like I’m actually doing all that much other than just making sure I am engaging those happy ankles. I no longer have to work so hard to keep everything together.
But in an odd way, I sorta miss that wild free leg. I realized that swinging my free leg around gave me the illusion of power and force. Now my leg comes in so quietly that I can’t even tell how fast I’m going. And even though things have improved, I don’t have to work as hard. It feels strange!
One of the adjustments I’m just going to have to make is to persuade myself that I can accomplish way more with real technique than sheer force of will. I am so done with throwing my weight around!
The brute force method only takes you so far, but it’s a hard habit to break for someone like me. I will just have to learn to swing something else other than my free side.
I can’t believe that I have never included this trippy video for Elton John’s “I’m Still Standing” on this blog. But it’s good timing for it, since it’s been a really rainy week and we can all use a little sunshine.
- inside mohawk 3 step pattern: hips into the circle, use your lean.
- back cross, change edge: think about direction you are heading, force into the ice for that change of edge.
- inside mohawk, back outside 3: work on getting both pushes solid.
- creepers (forward outside): don’t touch down
- cross front, tuck behind, change edge, outside three: don’t get caught with weight outside circle
- progressives: “dissolving” free leg
- forward inside swing rolls: think about the turnout of the free foot on the end, and on the new edge
- back inside swing rolls: adjust lower body, not upper body
- feet together, shift weight, don’t compensate through upper body