Well, in the past few weeks I have felt much better about skating. It’s not that I have added any new tricks to my repertoire, but I am finally feeling like my posture is better and my positions more secure.
I have been working really hard on keeping my core engaged and the front of my hips “flat.” This makes me do more of the work with my glutes. I am also trying to make sure my feet and ankles are fully engaged. And that my knees are bending enough so that they move in front of my skate, not just on top.
The trick is that I have to do this all the time. It’s like that old song about “always”: not for just an hour, not for just a day, not for just a year. It makes me tired just thinking about it.
Of course, when I’ve done it enough times (snort!) I won’t have to think about it. I’ll just do it and it will look like magic. And everyone will think, wow, how does she do that? It must be the leopard skin! (Okay, it does move attention away from the perfect alignment and deep knee/ankle bend.)
Most of the time I think I’m the luckiest person in the world to be able to devote time and energy to this. And sometimes I think, oh no, not again! Today I felt really, really tired–one of those days when I had to pat myself on the back for making it through an entire session.
Still, progress is happening!
My son wanted me to share this song through this blog. It happens to be a perfect reminder that I need to (1) use my glutes, (2) bend my ankles, and (3) engage my feet–here, there, and everywhere. I got this!
- Left outside three turn: less twist through hips, more through upper body
- Inside forward three: think about where your “tail” is pointed after the three (don’t immediately go to open-hipped position)
- Back outside three: allow hips to rotate into more natural position on inside edge (don’t allow arms to rotate instead)
- Back power pulls: no tipping into circle, work on knee bend and not staying up too long, don’t force a dramatic “rip”
- Outside-outside mohawks: “J” edge, don’t let free leg drift into circle (it will make you flatten)
- Back power pulls: don’t use arms, keep free leg behind skating leg
- Left back inside edge, counterclockwise toe-toe-toe turn to back outside right, cross in front, cross in front, repeat on other side (don’t forget to turn your head in the direction of travel)
- Chassé, swing, change edge, mohawk, repeat (really bend your knee)
- Back outside-outside (like a choctaw, only to an outside edge)
- Forward three, push back to back outside three, toe through to repeat on other side
- Inside to inside mohawk (like a blues choctaw, only it’s a mohawk) don’t bring in free leg with hamstring-use glutes instead
- Really bend your knee and ankle (engage foot)