Coach Cruella's approach to skating is much like every other coach I've ever had, get down in the knees. But she enforces it.
Her first lesson to us was stand in front of the boards and look in the glass. Then we had to mark where our noses were in the reflection. Then we bent our knees until the top of our head was at the line where our nose had been. That, she declared, was how deep our knees should be. And when we skate, she makes us stay there until we whimper.
This is what her class is like:
|Down in the knees or a puppy dies|
It's a solid half hour of deep knees, using the hips as headlights, and resting 'the girls' on the table. Then this week she added pinching your shoulders back until it hurts. I may look beautiful on ice, but right now I feel like a soldier in a corset. I ache when I get off the ice.
In the last lesson we learned how to get our back edges. Her approach was to re-teach us how to do backwards pumps. I apparently pump to the back of my foot. I'm supposed to pump so that the outside foot comes to the font part of the inside foot (does not cross ahead of it). And it works! I'm on a well-balanced outside edge! It's not a miracle, but it's one advance over my awkward back edge issues.
Now if she can help me channel my inner Maia Usova, I'll be happy.
|I'm the one on the left, going "Huh?"|