Wednesday, April 20, 2011

March 17, 2006

Private Lesson ReCap
The first lesson was wonderful! Within the first 5-10 minutes she told me I should not be in Basic 1-2, by the end of the lesson she told me I would start in Basic 4, with a note to the instructor that I had not mastered a two-footed turn yet. I wish I had more money for privates, it was great!

Here is an email I sent to my husband overviewing the lesson. I didn't want to type it up all again, but if you're interested you can read it.
I started the session with a half hour warm up. Just skating in cirlces, doing swizzles, backward wiggles, turns and stops. There were about 6 people there (maybe 14 by the end) and 2 of them were high level freestyle, the rest low-mid level freestyle. Even though it is an open adult session it is treated as a freestyle, so you have to yield to people doing programs- jumps etc. It would be a tough session for someone who is not adept at getting out of the way. What's nice is while I was on my lesson, people had to yield to me. Even though we mostly stayed on a hockey circle.

The private lesson was definitely worth the money. Being in the basic 1-2 class would have been SO far below what I can do. She said some of the basic 1-2s can skate in an open session, but many are still trying to get a feel for standing on the ice. She evaluated me on the skills for that level and within the first 10 minutes she told me I would need to be in the 3-4 class. We started by skating a few laps around the rink. She told me I was stroking well (I'm not sure what that means) but I use my shoulders to propel me too much and I don't bend my knees enough. Then we did forward swizzles, backward wiggles, and a snowplow stop. I am doing the stop correctly, but have a tough time doing it on my left skate. I need to be equally good on both sides. Then we did front glides on one foot. My right foot is very strong and they were great. My left foot was good to the front but I held my shoulders wrong and it caused me to vear to the side a bit. We also did backward swizzles and a in place two foot turn.

That was the first 10 minutes. After that we moved onto Basic 3. She said my forward stroking was good, and then we worked on backwards glides on one foot. Those were fine on my right side, but really hard on my left side. I would just stop moving and my ankle would shake. Then we moved to 1/2 swizzles on a circle. I was cutting the ice and scuffing it, which she said meant that I was using more effort than I needed to. I was able to correct this really easily on my right side and make a smooth tracings. The left side also went well. On these I was not using my shoulders enough. And I also don't remember which arm goes where and when. I'll have to look it up and write it down. We skated slalom patterns around the rink. This is like _ swizzles to skate in a straight line, but much bigger, and the foot kind of crosses over. It was really fun and really fast! Then we did two-foot spins. I have a hard time using my toepick on these. I don't really understand how it works. I also am going to have to learn to turn CCW. Right now I turn Clockwise much stronger- but she told me if I wanted to be a clockwise turner I would eventually have to land jumps on my left foot. Based on the number of times I've said in this my right foot was stronger, that's not going to happen- I'd much rather deal with learning the turns now and get to land on my stronger foot. But she also said I still have to learn to turn both ways, I just really need to concentrate on CCW. After that she told me I could start group lessons at a level four, but she would note to my instructor that I hadn't reached mastery on the two footed turns. She didn't tell me anything else that needed signifigant work on that level. I think the backwards glides on my left foot do, but I guess they were better than I thought.

Then we moved to the Basic 4 stuff. I can't believe we did this all in a half hour. We did something on the hockey circle called edges. This involved picking up one of your feet and shifting your weight to the hip facing the inside of the cirlce. Depending on which foot you lift, you would either be on your inside or outside edge. I do remember the arms for this one- you put the arm on the same side of the foot you lift up to the front. Both inside and outside edges on the right came easily and I stayed on the circle well. The outside edge was easier to hold than the inside edge for the left leg. But I could do them fine too. Next we worked on backward 1/2 swizzle pumps on the circle. This is the basic step to learn how to do the skating that you always see professionals do before they jump. I'm sure it will come to no surprise to you when I say it was exteremely easy to pick up on the right side, but difficult to the left. After that we did forward crossovers on the circle. I had a little more difficulty with this, mostly because I wasn't shifting my weight right. I am now fairly confident with my right side, but can barely do it on my left side. On my right side I got REALLY fast- and it was really hard to do slower. She said the best way to slow down was to not push hard, but I didn't really feel like I was pushing hard. I guess moving fast isn't a terrible thing.

But even still in the half hour lesson we reviewed all of Basic 1, Basic 2, I learned all of Basic 3, and learned 4 of 7 things from Basic 4. If I practice I imagine I'll be able to continue to do all the things I learned, because really only the crossovers were completely new to me- the rest was stuff I had kind of been doing, and was just told exactly how to do them. The spins are the thing that need the most work.

I can't wait until group lessons. I think I will try to make the adult session every 2 weeks, because the lack of crowds make it great to practice, and then the in between week maybe we can go skating? I'm very excited. I hope I can pick things up as quickly as I was able to review them. The crossovers and edges give me hope that that will happen- the spin makes me wonder.

After the lesson I skated for another 45 minutes. My left ankle really hurts. I practiced a lot of things on my left side because it is obviously the weaker side. It's more of a sore hurt than a damaged hurt. Hopefully it will get stronger. I will need new skates soon- mine aren't much better than rentals except I can keep them sharpened.

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