Monday, March 5, 2012

Monday Practice and Lesson

Have I mentioned I hate Mondays?  

So today my coach asked me to show her what I was planning on wearing on test day.
I decided to wear the most likely choice - a leotard with a ballet skirt.  (For the Moves In the Field I will put a sweater over the top and wear white gloves.)  I may even keep the sweater on for the Free Skate as it has BLING.  The zipper itself big diamond-like rhinestones.  

I thought I would be freezing as our rink is really cold, but I went out and skated 2 laps to warm up, then took my coat off and skated my MITF sequence and then my Free Skate elements.  I wasn't cold, but I was really nervous... just practicing as though I was taking the test.  So much so that when I started my back crossovers for my first easy Waltz Jump .. I tripped and fell.  Sure hope that doesn't happen on test day.

(Notice how my dog is disgusted with me)

My lesson today was held on the Rink #2.   The Spokane Chiefs Hockey Team was using Rink #1 for practice today following  my public session and my coach was running a little late so we happily moved over to the other rink.

Rink #2 is just a tad bit smaller than Rink #1.   The ice felt different.  One is on concrete and the other is on sand.  Not sure which is which.  This one felt warmer and softer.  Also, the ceiling was a bit lower.  Strange how little things affect your confidence.  Makes me wonder how it must be competing here and there, always being on different ice.  

We were in a hurry so I didn't take any pictures.  I really wish I had.  When we got on the ice there were two dogs out there, a Black Lab and an Irish Setter and they were running around on the ice playing with hockey pucks on a clean ice.  They belong to the guy that works there.  I see the dogs from time to time, but I had no idea they enjoyed chasing hockey pucks on the ice.  Next time I will take a picture or video.

Getting back to practice today.  We worked on JUMPS of all things.  I thought we would go over my test, but she felt I didn't need any more practice (in front of her) on those elements.

I did a few Waltz Jumps for her and she reminded me to keep my ZIPPER (meaning the axis of my body) over my landing leg.  

Next we tried Salchows.  We stopped to examine the take off tracings on the clean ice.  Slightly cheated due to the position of my arms. Try again.  Better.  Try again.  Failed launch.  Try again.  Much better.  More tips: Stronger Check before toe pick.

Next we tried Toe Loops.  I was trying them earlier and not feeling confident.  I did one or two and I am having the same problem there today. Check, Check, Check, Check.  

Next, she wanted to move on to something new today so I said how about a Flip Jump?  I did not want to attempt a Loop Jump (R foot take off and R foot landing) My knee was aching a bit. She had never seen my Flip Jump and was clapping and thoroughly excited for me.  I was over rotating on the three turn prior to reach back.  My arms were getting ahead of me. She also said my free leg needs to cross over my jumping leg.  I was too "open". On the bright side my take off and landing tracings were really good.  She want me to start measuring the distance of my jumps.  My Flip Jump was 4 blade lengths.  I think in the old days (when I was young) this was my strongest jump.

She asked if I had attempted a Lutz Jump yet.  Of course, my answer was NO WAY !!
She reminded me that it's just a Flip Jump, but off the BO (back outside) edge instead of the BI (back inside) edge.  This is true, but next to an Axel, this is the scariest jump of all for most skaters.  Lutz Jumps are ALWAYS done in the corners of a rink.  If you skate CCW (counter clock wise) it's the right corners.  If you skate CW (clock wise) it's the left corners.  You have to skate backwards for quite a ways and obviously establish and hold the outside edge before you reach back and toe pick in to propel yourself up and around.  Speed helps and the entrance to the jump is basically blind and this is why they are done in the corners. So to start thinking about practicing the Lutz Jump, my coach suggested I do my flips in the corners and get used to it.  It will aid in knowing how close to the boards I will need to take off in order to land with room to spare.  Easier said than done.

By now we have more than used up my 15 minute lesson.  She ended the day by telling me, once we get those we can start working on AXEL, DOUBLE SALCHOW, DOUBLE TOE LOOP.   Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.  Never I said.  She reminded me that we have harnesses now and there is no reason not to try once these are strong.  

It's nearly 10 hours after my lesson today.  I am still laughing at the D word.  


  1. Um- I've seen your flip... You "first attempt" flip. I think that a double toe or a double sal (especially in the harness) is absolutely realistic for you.

    That said- if it isn't something you want to do, don't :)

    The story about the dogs cracked me up. We've had some odd stuff at our rink (a recent freestyle session was invaded by a baseball mascot who was at the mall for some walk-a-thon) but I've never heard of dogs on ice...

    When are your pre-bronze tests?

    1. PS Your sewing blog is amazing. You are so talented. Do you make your skating dresses or just put on the bling?

  2. First attempt since my return to skating 32 years later... Thanks for the vote of confidence. I test on March 27, 2012.
    Only problem is there is no ice available on the cruise ship I will be on for the 10 days preceding it! Just a gym. My coach says it will be held on the club ice in the afternoon so I should get to at least skate the public session prior, but I will be jet lagged, no doubt.

  3. Love reading this blog..You are my inspiration that I can be a good skater even at 38 and just look great in the outfit! Have fun on vacation, and of course let us know how the test went..



 I didn’t skate at all since last Thursday so I guess I get what I deserve in the lack of progress department.  I am just so frustrated over...