Monday, November 23, 2015

(UPDATED) The Yoga Mat as a Figure Skating Tool

I'm talking about a cheap, thin yoga mat. The kind you get at Five and Below.

This thing is an amazing source of cuttable easy to manipulate waterproof sturdy padding.

Tired of paying 10-20 dollars for a gel lace pad? Want something a custom length or width or thickness? Cut up yoga mat is your answer. Bite pad too thin? Double layer it.

Want a nice pad for the bottom of your skate bag?  Custom cut it from a mat.

Want a layer between your skates in your skating suitcase, and every thing piled on top? Yoga mat.

Want something on which lay out your gear in a dirty dressing room?  Yoga mat!

Washable and easily replaced. Best $5 a skater can spend.

(UPDATE) and if you have Tuff Terry soakers (the ones with the ribbon on the bottom) you can put a strip of mat inside temporarily to give you a little more defense against a hard floor. (Take it out for storage)

(UPDATE) If someone walks off with your guards... You can also cut a strip of yoga mat about 3 inches wide and a foot long, fold it lengthwise put it around the blades and hold it on with rubber bands. It may do enough as a blade guard until you can get some new ones.

And you could also use it as a yoga mat!

Friday, November 20, 2015

A Step Backwards--And Behind

I went back to Basic Skills 8 because, Dang-nab-it, Freeskate was too crowded and I was terrified someone would crash into me. (Yes this almost happened a couple of times. Same person, twice. Let's not go there.) There's 10 people in Freeskate. In the Basic Skills class there's 5 total for all levels, and they have twice as much space! So, I took a step back to Basic Skills just so I could feel comfortable again.

Dance Coach is teaching the 5 adult skaters in Basic skills. When he finally gets around to me he looks down at his checklist and says: "Outside Three turns."

Left one Right one. Slam bam thank you ma'am. I look up and he's staring down at his list.

"Very nice." He checks off with his pen "Mohawks."

Both ways. And I swear to God they were the best ones I've ever done.

"Very nice." He's still looking down and checks the list.

"Inside threes."  he says.

"If I could do inside 3's I'd been in Freeskate practicing my axel entry."

I gotta give him credit. Not a blink or a smile at my snark. "Okeey. 8 step mohawk."

I stare up at the rafters in thought. "Is that the one with the step behind going backwards?"

"Yes, do at boards." He demonstrates and leaves to go help the two women in Basic 2. I think what he's showed me is the combination move to graduate from Basic 8, hard to tell. I can't remember everything.

Left alone I don't have any choice. I do it a couple of times at the boards. I work out the step behind. I try it away from the boards.

Mohawk. Glide backwards. Bring free leg alongside the skating leg. Keep the thighs together, keep the free  hip forward, cross behind, step down... FREE BLADE LANDS ON MY MY ACTIVE BLADE! IT SKITTERS BACKWARDS ONTO THE ICE! FLAIL! FLAIL! FLAIL! MADLY TO KEEP FROM FALLING BACKWARDS, recover...calm down...turn forward, and of course Dance Coach is staring at me. At least the mohawk was nice.

"Hey, I stayed upright!" I say. After a couple of tries I can do it a little better, but no one is there to see. I'm satisfied that I'm doing something I've never done before, so the day wasn't wasted.

So I took a step backwards to Basic 8, and a step behind to get ahead.

Now all that's left is FI3 and one foot spin and I'm done with Basic Skills--I'll move forward to Freeskate.... Again. Never to return.

Maybe it'll be less crowded this summer when the 'beach and sailing people' go to the beach and Freeskate will be just the year round regulars. A girl can only hope.