jo skates

Skating in the key of life

My missing step (b)

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So I had another lesson on outside-outside mohawks this past week, and Laurie pointed out that the turn is much easier if you:

(a) establish a good outside edge first,
(b) bend your ankle and use the foot to press into the edge without deepening the curve, and then
(c) just do the turn.

Where mine went awry was step (b). I would either slide my old foot out instead of pressing into the edge, or hook the edge inwards in a frantic attempt to maintain the outside edge. Either way, this was a tortured mess.

Once I figured out step (b), I realized how much easier this whole skating deal could be. Laurie  used the metaphor of the loaded gun, which will go off instantly with when you touch the trigger. Once you take the safety off and the edge is “loaded” properly, the turn just happens.

A violent metaphor, but here’s my realization of the week: either I skate like a human pretzel, or I do things the easy way.

The easy way is if I make sure that I’m doing step (b), not just on mohawks, but on oh-so-many things. Before three-turns, brackets, rockers, choctaws, and heck, yeah, on cross rolls and stroking and pushes. . . oh my.

I’m sure that at some point I’ll overdo this latest find, but for now, it’s really made a difference in achieving my better body position.

That’s the exciting news. The less-happy news is that I seem to have injured my left foot again. Same area (mid foot, towards inner arch). Last week I was running across the street after a yummy dinner with friends at our regular Chinese restaurant (such is the bittersweet nature of these unfortunate events) and felt a sharp pain. After a few days of rest it was much better but then I had to walk my bike home after a flat tire, which seemed to re-aggravate it.

Am doing light stretching and trying to take it easy. Luckily skating doesn’t seem to bother it too much, so hopefully this too will pass.

In the meantime, I’ll press on (haha!) It’s trigger-happy Jo!

How about a little tap dancing by Paula Abdul?

Lesson notes:

  • perimeter stroking, forwards and backward: make sure your inside edges are “real” and cover a quarter circle; check posture; make sure you push (especially on the underpass).
  • Alternating double threes (starting with back outside), back crossover: think about where your axis is, push onto a good edge (don’t rotate three too early–step b will help here)
  • Alternating double threes (starting with back inside), back crossover: better back inside edge position is crucial here.
  • back inside edge basics: get on an edge with good lean immediately (not “over” your skate). Let it go!
  • forward inside edge basics: head and upper body position so that weight is in the circle
  • outside-outside mohawks and bracket: think of how to press the edge (without changing the circle) so that you “load” the turn.

 

Author: Joskates

Don't see me on the ice? I may be in the classroom or at the theater, or hanging out with my family and friends.

2 thoughts on “My missing step (b)

  1. Oh no, Jo! I’m so sad to hear you injured your foot again. Hopefully it’s nothing major and just a temporary pain. Your double three turn exercises gave me flashbacks of the Gold MITF patterns. And the outside Mohawks remind me of that evil 8 step Mohawk pattern from the Silver MITF. Ahhhhhhhh!

    Like

  2. Thanks, Eva! Fingers (and toes) crossed that it improves quickly and I sail through those turns~

    Like

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