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  1. #1

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    How to stop being anxious

    I really love skating but I am also sort of a craven in skating. So many moves scare me to the point that I don't progress as fast as I want to just because I don't really try them.

    I don't really know why I am so scared as I have never hurt myself on the ice even though I have fallen quite a bit already.

    And even weirder is that I am not really scared while jumping but mostly with edge moves.
    I think with jumps it was that I was so eager to try them that I forgot to be scared.
    But they are very tiny and now I am scared again when I try to jump higher. Sigh.

    Do you have any ideas how to stop being so scared? I sometimes try to talk me into just trying and not caring about whether or not I fall and I even wish I would fall more often just so that I lose the fear of doing it but it does not seem to work to well.

    I already use wrist protection because I thought it might me feel braver but I don't really see the difference.

    Do you have any ideas?

  2. #2

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    Did you try Bach remedy? I know some skaters use it for skating tests when they are scared.

  3. #3

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    I have no advice, just sympathy! This time last year I wasn't nervous about anything. Fast forward a year and something in my brain keeps reminding me I may hurt myself. It started off with just axels but now I've noticed it on lots of things. I recorded some of my single jumps (in the hope that when I watched it back they would be better than I thought- didnt happen!) and the main thing I noticed was a huge build up. I no longer can do flying spins- they terrify me! So if you find something that works, please tell me!

  4. #4

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    Technique. I have found as my technique has improved, the security I feel over my skates has gotten better. Thus the level of fear has reduced over time. My coach is quite true when he says it is in my head.

    But everyone is different. So what works for one may not work for another.
    When you are up to your arse in alligators it is difficult to remember you were only meant to be draining the swamp.

  5. #5

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    What works for me is working on the jump/spin preparation. I managed to wipe out on a flying camel a few weeks ago and now I can never start working on them just out of crossovers. I have to do a few walk throughs, then pratice a few of them on the line from a stand still and only then move onto the actual flying spin.

    Moves or edges are a little harder to break down, but sometimes going slow can be a bad idea -weird as that might sounds. My brackets got much better once I started *moving* into them, instead of skating super slowly. Same thing with double 3 turns. Twizzles are a different story for me since I'm still not turning on the right part of the blade and half the time I just do quick double 3s.

    And, if it makes you feel any better, everyone has moves that make them feel uncomfortable or scared. They do eventually start getting better, but some things just take longer than others before you really 'get' the move. In my case, being a perfectionist does not exactly speed up the process, but once I actually learn a skill, it stays around for a while. Hopefully, same thing holds true in your case

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    I'm a huge chicken!

    Listening to the right music has helped me considerably with certain moves. By "right," I mean right for you. For me, if I can find the right rhythm to practice a move to, it takes away a lot of the tension. I was working on F power pulls for years but my fear of slipping off the back of the blade was keeping my weight too far forward. I noticed that when certain music came on in the public session, I just loosened up and started to feel the move. Now I have fun doing power pulls to whatever rhythm is playing, speeding up or slowing down the edge pulls to match the music. It took a long time to get to this point, but I don't think it would have happened without the music.

    Something else that has helped me a lot is getting a spot from my coach. Sometimes it's nothing more than being able to touch her hand during a three turn. I feel it's worth doing because my body is learning to do the move and with enough repetition, my mind will relax and let my body take over. I've experienced that with a few moves. The big problem with using spots is that they aren't available enough!

    Another technique I've used to get over fear/anxiety/tension is to model the move off ice, in front of a mirror. Sometimes it's just arms/shoulders that are out of control or in the wrong config. By looking in the mirror, I can see when they are correct and note what that feels like so I can bring it to the ice. Some moves this works well with, in my experience, are three turns, power pulls (fixing break at waist and keeping weight back for F pulls,) and F & B XO's. If you have trouble with the under push on XO's, you can work that off ice with the mirror, where cross and bend the crossing knee deeply, focusing on keeping the under toe up and the shoulders turned into the circle.

  7. #7

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    This may sound really silly but I make my skaters jog on the ice to make them more nimble (I so love that word). Just on the spot really, but I find getting the balance to adjust quickly, (which is what the exercise does) makes them more confident. They do it standing at the wall for security at first.
    I guess the hard thing for a lot of people to accept is why God would allow me to go running through their yards, yelling and spinning around.


  8. #8

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    Ok I'm probably being daft but what is an F power pull?

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    F(orward) power pulls are the move where you change from an inside edge to an outside on the same foot.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ZNN1zG_kEs

    They start at the 5:00 in this video.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by ioana View Post
    F(orward) power pulls are the move where you change from an inside edge to an outside on the same foot.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ZNN1zG_kEs

    They start at the 5:00 in this video.
    In the UK we call them one foor forward slaloms.

  11. #11

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    AH! F= forward! how obvious was that! sorry, that really was stupid. I thought it was some shape you had to do them in or some position.

  12. #12

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    (dbny, fwd power pulls terrify me as well. Back ones are feeling great and deep and comfortable a lot of the time, but since I have both gone SPLAT over my toepicks and SPLAT to bang the back of my head on fwd power pulls. . . well, the terror remains. What song did you use?)

    Hedwig, I echo what ioana said. Taking a step back from just plunging into whatever move it is and working on the 'prep.' Coach always eases into things, so if I feel shaky or like I'm really not getting something or just don't have the guts to do it, I might do 10 preps of whatever it is (say, back 3s on two feet) before I try the real thing.

  13. #13

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    My trick for forward power pulls is to think about your heel (the one on the skating leg). When you think about it, the brain automatically adjust your body possition that you are at the right part of the blade. Don't try to correct it yourself, just think about the heel and it will correct itself.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by C_T_T_ View Post
    AH! F= forward! how obvious was that! sorry, that really was stupid. I thought it was some shape you had to do them in or some position.
    Not stupid at all. If you've never had the opportunity to see a skating diagram or haven't hung around a tech forum long enough, there's no reason you should know that.

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by LilJen View Post
    fwd power pulls terrify me as well. Back ones are feeling great and deep and comfortable a lot of the time
    I agree that backwards is so much easier! It must be because you don't feel like you're going to fall over your toepick all the time. When going backwards the feeling of "being on the heel" is a lot stronger and therefore you feel safer.
    My biggest problem is that I do everything a zillion times better on my right foot than on my left. It's embarrassing really. As an example of power pulls, I feel like my RB ones are good, RF and LB are about the same level, which is decent... and LF are crap crap crap.

    And I just realized that this was slightly off topic AGAIN. I'm really good at thread shifting. As for Hedwig's original question, I really don't know what to say. I have the same problem with some moves, e.g. my flip. I've been trying to get my flip for about 3 years now - without success. I just don't have the courage to land it on one foot - I always 2foot it. Then again I hardly ever get any advice and train mostly on my own... But it's hard. I thought the toeloop and salchow were quite easy to learn, and the loop didn't take ages either... but the flip, sigh. Maybe I should just quit on it completely.

    Ooops, thread shift again... Now I need to stop.
    Rockin' Finnish commentator: "And that was supposed to be a flip but it turned out to be a flop."

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by dbny View Post
    Not stupid at all. If you've never had the opportunity to see a skating diagram or haven't hung around a tech forum long enough, there's no reason you should know that.
    Thank you but it was just a stupid moment. I've been around forums for 5 years and skated for about 15 so I've seen a few diagrams!

    Interesting that some people like doing loads of prep- I hate that! Makes it feel like a huge build up and just makes me more nervous! Diffferent strokes for different folks!

  17. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hanna View Post
    I agree that backwards is so much easier! It must be because you don't feel like you're going to fall over your toepick all the time. When going backwards the feeling of "being on the heel" is a lot stronger and therefore you feel safer.
    My biggest problem is that I do everything a zillion times better on my right foot than on my left. It's embarrassing really. As an example of power pulls, I feel like my RB ones are good, RF and LB are about the same level, which is decent... and LF are crap crap crap.

    And I just realized that this was slightly off topic AGAIN. I'm really good at thread shifting. As for Hedwig's original question, I really don't know what to say. I have the same problem with some moves, e.g. my flip. I've been trying to get my flip for about 3 years now - without success. I just don't have the courage to land it on one foot - I always 2foot it. Then again I hardly ever get any advice and train mostly on my own... But it's hard. I thought the toeloop and salchow were quite easy to learn, and the loop didn't take ages either... but the flip, sigh. Maybe I should just quit on it completely.

    Ooops, thread shift again... Now I need to stop.

    I don't think it is off topic at all! (And I wouldn't mind if it were ) It is interesting to read that we are all afraid of different elements.

    I just went skating today and tried the loop and the flip and for me it is the other way round. I am more afraid of the loop and managed maybe two (out of forty attempts) one could call a loop with good will. The flip is not there either but it feels much closer.

    I was surprised again that jumping comes so much more natural to me than moves in the field. My jumps are totally tiny and ugly but they don't scare me the way outside edges do.
    And - go figure - after a jump landing I am pretty comfortable on a backward outside edge! Probably the only time ever in skating!!

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by hanca View Post
    Did you try Bach remedy? I know some skaters use it for skating tests when they are scared.
    What is this?

  19. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hedwig View Post
    I don't think it is off topic at all! (And I wouldn't mind if it were ) It is interesting to read that we are all afraid of different elements.

    I just went skating today and tried the loop and the flip and for me it is the other way round. I am more afraid of the loop and managed maybe two (out of forty attempts) one could call a loop with good will. The flip is not there either but it feels much closer.
    That's funny. Loop is my 'comfort' jump. The jump that always happens, no matter what. Sometimes I freak out when I am 1-2 metres from barrier and I am worried to jump that I don't have enough space (when I leave it too long and suddenly run out of space) but with loop I don't really care how far I am from the barrier because I am not facing the barrier so my brain is happy!

    My scary jumps is actually toe loop! There is no other jump (including Lutz) I am as uncomfortable with as with toe loop. It may be because I used to have a very bad techniqe. When I changed coaches, the new coach fixed my techniqe and now I have clean toe loop, but it never felt comfortable any more. I think I used my old wrong technique for too long. I can do it most of times, but I have periods when I suddenly can't and I freak out (I just chicken out in the last second - step forward insted of digging the foot in).

  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bev Johnston View Post
    What is this?
    Bach remedy is some herbal homeopatic drops that are supposed to calm you down. It doesn't contain any drugs or medications

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