Monday, November 5, 2012

Turn Your Head

Sometimes, it's the little things.

A couple of weeks ago Coach Cruella fussed at me about my two foot turns. I can do them forwards and back, and in either direction, but only if I'm at a moderate speed. And when I turn from forwards to back, I tend to slow to a halt rather than glide gracefully backwards.

"Lead with your head, " she said. "Turn your head in the direction of turn, before you do the turn."

Head turn leads the body turn

It was a little thing. But like most little things, it worked.  I practiced the two foot turns a few times, making sure to lead the turn with a turn of the head. It took me a few tries to get over my hesitation of doing them at speed, but I'm now able to do them without difficulty and I have a nice glide backwards.

Why the sudden focus on two foot turns? What's all this leading up to?

The depths of beginning skater hell....back threes.

Yeah, those'll cause some posts where it will be hard to keep the Demon Negatron at bay. Wish me luck!

12 comments:

  1. Great tip! I'm also just starting back 3's and can use all the help I can get (also an adult skater - I found your blog a few weeks ago and have found it very interesting). Keep up the good work!

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  2. Always look in the direction you're skating..so when you finish a forward 3, you should be looking backward.

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    1. My problem has been I'm probably not 'looking' early enough in the turn.

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  3. Go git y'all some padding! I am learning Silver Moves and the back threes by far are my least favorite skill. You'll either fall on your tailbone (whereby there is a good chance for a hit to the back of the head as well) or fall forward and perhaps land on your knee, or face-plant. All three are equally painful; I know from experience.

    So, forget the vanity and wear some head protection, knee protection, and hip and tailbone protection. I like the Ice Halo for the head (so far I've only had to take it for a "test drive" once, and by Jove, she works!), and the d30 ProTech line by Seku skate wear for knee and hip padding. The d30 stuff is expensive but worth it--at 7mm, it's so thin you barely know you have it on and yes, it works, all without making you look like you've strapped the sofa cushions to your butt.

    The back threes in the Silver pattern are so dependent on the precision of your exit from the forward three and the push right after them. Practice holding the glide out of the forward three completely around the circle as if you were skating the complete figure so you can figure out what needs to happen in your body in terms of the alignment going into the back three. Sooo much easier said than done. Demon Negatron, you may win this one. Good Luck, one and all!

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    1. Good tips, especially about remembering skating protection. I have a friend who head-crashed twice learning back 3s.

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  4. Great tip! Good luck with the back threes, knowing you, you'll get 'em in no time!

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    1. Thanks, Mer. I've got my fingers crossed.

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  5. I also was having trouble with my 2-foot turns, and one of the many LTS coaches I've had finally gave me this same tip! It worked like magic, and I've been able to do them ever since! I was wondering why no one had told me until then! :)

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  6. By the way, I've been reading your blog for a while now, I love it! Finally took the steps to be able to post on it. Thank you for such an entertaining blog.

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  7. I just started learning back turns when I injured my tendon so this is very good to keep in mind when I finally get back on the ice (cast comes off tomorrow!).

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  8. Thanks for the tip. I was working on cleaning up my three turns today (coach gave me a bunch of pointers and exercises in my last lesson) and after a while I remember your tip about head. It definitely helped in getting them smoother. I know I've read the tip before, but it was good timing to get a reminder. So many body parts to get just right!

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