Practice Thread

misskarne

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Feeling like I'm spamming the thread right now :lol:

Lesson today. Because I only competed on Saturday, my coach always likes that first post-comp lesson to be non-impact (no jumps). So today we did a lot of edge work and back to the Elementary three turn patterns. We did a lot of foundation work for back inside threes. We're trying to break me of some bad, bad habits in that department and rebuild them correctly.

I think I'll be aiming to test these in December, now. I had hoped to test them in July and move up a level, but Saturday night gave me a brutal reality check that I'm not really even that competitive as a Bronze, let alone moving up to Silver. So perhaps it would be a smarter idea to put off the test to December, run a full competition season at Bronze, and try for Silver next year.
 

GarrAargHrumph

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A lot of skaters at all ages do that - if competition is your priority, you hold off on testing to the next level until you reach or even exceed competitive quality at your current level, because as you know, these two things are not necessarily the same.
 

antmanb

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Plus as an adult skater who learnt as an adult, getting your field moves and general skating up to a higher level than your freeskating is generally a better investment of time (and ice time/lesson money) for the points available for PCS. You could spend an eternity breaking your body to land an axel and for the measly points it translates to, it's probably not worth it.
 

LilJen

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Feeling like I'm spamming the thread right now :lol:

Lesson today. Because I only competed on Saturday, my coach always likes that first post-comp lesson to be non-impact (no jumps). So today we did a lot of edge work and back to the Elementary three turn patterns. We did a lot of foundation work for back inside threes. We're trying to break me of some bad, bad habits in that department and rebuild them correctly.

I think I'll be aiming to test these in December, now. I had hoped to test them in July and move up a level, but Saturday night gave me a brutal reality check that I'm not really even that competitive as a Bronze, let alone moving up to Silver. So perhaps it would be a smarter idea to put off the test to December, run a full competition season at Bronze, and try for Silver next year.
So in Australia, do they peg field moves tests to your freestyle competitive level? I am forever grateful that USFS does not. I've passed Gold moves but haven't yet even passed Bronze freestyle (levels for moves and freestyle for adults are pre-bronze, bronze, silver, gold). You can take any number of moves or dance tests and stick with whatever freestyle level you are regardless. With my various injuries and 50 around the corner, I may never pass bronze FS! (which is a shame because my sit spin and back spin have gotten quite good, and all other elements but ONE are just fine. I just CAN'T get a flip or loop jump to save my life!)
 
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SmallFairy

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@misskarne I'm glad you're satisfied with your performance and also had a good practice afterwards. And good luck to all you who are testing! I'm not sure how the tests work in Norway, I know there are basic test like test 1, test 2, test 3 etc, but I don't know what happens laters, and if there's different tests for MITF and freestyle??? There's no talks of tests in our adult groups, we just practice... But adult skating is also a relatively new thing here.
 

SmallFairy

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I also have to tell about this weekends adult camp. It was my first camp, and it was great! We had three lessons on ice each day (Saturday and Sunday) and off ice and dance. Our coaches organizes this by themselves, the federation is not involved, so we are all really grateful. We focused on all kinds of different skills, first, we had a lesson with Viktoria Helgesson and she was so lovely. She has such good edges, and we worked mostly on that with her - steps and posture. Very inspiring. Later, we worked on the waltz jumps, the toe-loop and the salchow and also started on the flip. We did the take off and a half rotation, and then tried to get full, but our part of the group couldn't yet :lol: I got about 3/4 around, but it still felt awesome. (though I look like a cow trying lol)

The other break through was spinning, as I have until now been very concerned (I've been skating since January, but retired hockey player) because spinning is scary and I can't get any speed and I can't find the balance. We haven't worked a lot on spins either. But our coach is so awesome. With her help I cracked the code. I still just spin a few rotations, but I managed to put the weight on the standing foot, find the centre and even spin a little on one foot, it's the first time. And then we did sit spins, and we're all so stiff, but somehow got down, and I even did 1,5 rotation, before I came to a complete stop. Wow, that feeling is awsome. After sitting on your butt on several tries, then suddenly it's working! And then of course, on the butt again:D

I have to say that our adult group is such a nice group to be in. It's not all places in life were everybody is so supportive, even though they hardly know you, where everybody is cheering for each other, clapping when someone is succeeding, rushing to hear if you are ok if you fall, and is just in general really friendly and relaxed. Adult skating truly is fab, and I experience the same in this thread too.

(To end the camp story, I had one more camp planned, in Sweden in late June, but then it turns out there's even another camp in the rink we were this weekend, in August. It's taking place not far from Oslo, so after dealing a bit with my boss (it's in August...) I signed up for that one too. :lol: I'm hooked)
 

misskarne

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So in Australia, do they peg field moves tests to your freestyle competitive level?
Each Adult competition level corresponds to the standard-track ISA test that you've passed (but only the patterns/field moves part of each test). So:

Copper = no test
Bronze = Preliminary test (this is an edges-only test for everyone)
Silver = Elementary patterns
Gold = Pre-Primary patterns
Masters = Primary patterns (I think)

The test I am working on is the Elementary patterns, which is broken down into three pattern "sets" - first, the three turn pattern down both sides of the rink, then the stroking patterns (my coach calls the first part "Russian stroking"), then the crossrolls (forward up one side, backwards down the other side). I've been on and off working on this test for probably a year and a half now. When I do pass it, though, I do intend on coming back and passing the free skate part of the Elementary test (mostly because I want the pin, and you only get the pin when you pass the whole test).
 

clairecloutier

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I'm getting back into practice after 2 weeks off, so today I spent the majority of time practicing my Pre-Juvenile Moves. Really loving some of these Moves! They're quite fun to practice! There's one called the 5-step mohawk sequence, which involves doing 5 steps on one side, then you switch and do it on the other foot. It's the first time I've really done a series of steps on the ice, and it's quite fun, although I can't do them very well yet. Then there's another move that involves a forward crossover, then you glide on one foot, then another forward crossover, then glide--again, fun! It's not hard and you can get quite a bit of speed going on it (whoosh). Also I'm starting to get the hang of the backward circle figure, it's pretty fun too.

Back 3-turns and power pulls are proceeding slowly, however.
 

treesprite

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Had a lesson today, which was actually spent working on jumping. So I guess that means I'm officially back to working on jumps again. It was just waltz -toe combination, and loop jump using the barrier for support. It isn't much, but I'm happy to be working on stuff again.

The jumping and spinning is causing my bad ankle (where I used to have a metal plate) to bother me. I hope it's just a matter of me needing to strengthen it, and not a sign that I shouldn't be jumping. It was hurting when I was skating, but was fine after I rested it 10 minutes and skated more. It was ok when I left the rink. But a few hours later, for a few minutes there was suddenly a weird rumbling sort of feeling over the inner ankle bone, like something was crawling under the flesh, and it was kind of throbbing briefly and hurt. Then it was fine again, but I have never before had an experience like that episode. Fortunately, it isn't my landing leg, so I don't have to worry about crash-landing from it giving out on a jump.
 

misskarne

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((treesprite)) I hope it's not because of the jumps and spins, treesprite!
 

treesprite

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Thanks :)
It's definitely the skating causing it. Skating gives me a dull ache after a while, especially if I've been doing spins, but that weird episode later in the day was something I have never experienced, and there was nothing I did to affect my ankle that way besides jumping. I hope I don't end up having to ask the orthopedist about it (I found out a few weeks ago that the newest doctor in that ortho practice is a USFS team doctor!).
 

misskarne

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Spent last night's lesson also on the pattern test. This time the focus was back outside threes. My coach and I were both rather frustrated by the end of the lesson, but I did manage a couple of good ones.

These are first introduced in Aussie Skate Free Skate 2. If I had my time again, I'd go back and smack myself around the head and never stop practicing these.
 

antmanb

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My practice last Thursday was a bit of a dud. I just couldn't get my body over my skates properly so everything seemed off. It didn't help that the clueless rink management hadn't anticipated the hot weather and the ice was more like a swimming pool and really soft (which didn't help with me having super sharp skates either).

My jumps were a mess, spins were so-so and my moves were ok.

I'd like to think this week's practice will be better but my back is aching so I suspect I won't be jumping and spinning if I do make it to the rink.
 

antmanb

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SO practice last night wasn't as bad as I expected. My back was still sore but loosened off as I warmed up. I found that I had very mild pain radiating through my right buttock and hip so I wondered if it was perhaps a sciatic nerve issue. Despite that, and because i'm incredibly stubborn, I carried on but focussed on moves. Most of my last few lessons have focussed on jumps and spins so it was nice to get some instruction on moves from my coach.

There's an exercise that we do (that I think is on one of the level tests here) where you do three turns on a small serpentine pattern so you start by pushing on to LFO edge, do the three turn hold the LBI till to get back to the axis and then push onto a RBI edge, do the three turn, hold the RFO edge til you're back at the axis and repeat. Then you stop Face the other way and do RFO three turn, LBI three turn and repeat. Then swap to the other side of the rink and do the LFI three turn, RBO three turn and repeat, then the RFI three turn, LBO three turn and repeat.

And it is HARD! My forward outside threes are fine, and my LBI threes can be ok some of the time, but my right back inside three is not good. I stick my bum out, lean forward, forget which way to point the toe (for some inexplicable reason I want to let with my heel and toe turned out which totally messed everything up), and I don't keep my weight far back enough so often can't do the turn because I'm on my toe-pick.

Thankfully by the end of the lesson I could scrape my way through the pattern only messing up a couple of BI turns, and having an uncontrolled exit edge on the RBO three turn.

It's the right foot that is the problem!

I did finish the session with some small controlled waltz, salchow and toe-loop jumps, but didn't bother trying loop or flip. And I did some forward upright spins, and a few attempts at upright backspins too.

As a bonus - the skating has loosened by back up and today I feel better than I have all week :cheer2:
 

LilJen

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^ sounds like sciatica to me!

Your 3-turn pattern is on one of the MITF tests in USFS, too. Skaters have to go through all forward & backward 3-turns, inside and outside edges. They all have to go along an axis, and each turn has to be at the right point in each half circle. Took me 2 years to get there, as my back 3s took a LONG time to feel comfortable.
FO-BI 3 turn pattern
FI-BO 3-turn pattern
 

clairecloutier

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^ sounds like sciatica to me!

Your 3-turn pattern is on one of the MITF tests in USFS, too. Skaters have to go through all forward & backward 3-turns, inside and outside edges. They all have to go along an axis, and each turn has to be at the right point in each half circle. Took me 2 years to get there, as my back 3s took a LONG time to feel comfortable.
FO-BI 3 turn pattern
FI-BO 3-turn pattern

This is one of the Moves that I'm working on right now! Actually, I haven't gotten to the point of doing the Move itself. I am still just practicing back three-turns. Hope it doesn't take me 2 years to get to a testable point, but who knows .... :lol: The back 3-turns are coming along well enough on my left leg. But the right leg is a problem.

My coach and I went over power pulls on Wednesday. Man, do I have a loooooongg way to go on those. My coach says my knee action needs to increase by at least 50% if not more .... :biggrinbo
 

antmanb

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^ sounds like sciatica to me!

Your 3-turn pattern is on one of the MITF tests in USFS, too. Skaters have to go through all forward & backward 3-turns, inside and outside edges. They all have to go along an axis, and each turn has to be at the right point in each half circle. Took me 2 years to get there, as my back 3s took a LONG time to feel comfortable.
FO-BI 3 turn pattern
FI-BO 3-turn pattern
That looks like the same exercise! The only difference is that I don't think we do a full side of the same pattern - the first axis is the outside to inside pattern but you swap halfway through to get them all in and the second axis is the inside to outside pattern on both feet. So slightly shorter all round.
 

SmallFairy

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@antmanb glad you're back's feeling better!

I have access to ice only every Sunday now, coming June, but on the 25th I leave for one week camp in Sweden.
Last Sunday I went to the rink, haven't been there before (the destiny of figure skaters, traveling round the city searching for ice:lol:). When I arrived there were boys with their fathers playing hockey all over, the ice was crowded. Then one of my training mates from this winter and the camp last weekend showed up. We didn't plan to meet, so it was such a pleasant surprise. We realized there was absolutely no room for us on the ice and decided to take action. Since the rink is not private but run by the city of Oslo, they are obliged to make sure there is a part of the ice that is reserved for those not playing hockey with sticks and pucks - like us ladies trying to figure skate, little kids etc. No one seemed to care though. We went ahead and spoke to the guy in charge/zamboni guy/care taker guy, and he was totally laid back: "Yeah, right, he hadn't thought of that, but he would fix it". And out he went, speaking to some fathers and suddenly we had 1/3 ice to ourselves. Except from the last father and his two sons, who apparently didn't find it strange at all that everybody left and they were the only one playing:lol: We made the leeeeeeave mu-ha-ha! Stand by your rights!

I worked mostly on my edges, especially backwards, as they are lousy, especially my left foot. I don't trust my outside left edge, the right is fine, I just have to work on finding the balance point I guess and really dare to press the heel and lean a little more. After a while I could actually do backward power pulls on my right foot, that could gain speed and felt really good, better than the forward ones. I was so excited, as earlier in the spring I had no chance at all. Still no chance on the left foot though:lol: I mean, seriously none. Then a little girl came with her mum, and she was of course tons better than us, doing beautiful waltz jumps and spins. Even the mum was better than us. Former skater, must have been:lol:
 

GarrAargHrumph

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I took the day off work today after two stressful weeks, and a trip to Chicago, and went to a one day adult camp with JoJo Starbuck. It was fun. For those interested, she's doing one in Budapest this summer. Those interested can go to her website and email her for the details.
 

misskarne

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^ sounds like sciatica to me!

Your 3-turn pattern is on one of the MITF tests in USFS, too. Skaters have to go through all forward & backward 3-turns, inside and outside edges. They all have to go along an axis, and each turn has to be at the right point in each half circle. Took me 2 years to get there, as my back 3s took a LONG time to feel comfortable.
FO-BI 3 turn pattern
FI-BO 3-turn pattern
Oh, this is very similar to the Elementary pattern turns that I am working on, except it goes FO-BI-FO-BI-FO-BI-step-FI-BO-FI-BO-FI-BO and then you repeat down the other side of the rink, starting on the other foot.

ISA Elementary pattern
 

misskarne

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Spamming the thread again :lol: But it's Monday, which means it's lesson day!

It was a decent one. We started on spins, because it felt like a spinny sort of day. Got some good uprights, back and forward, done. Even did a couple of decent camels. But if anyone's seen a lost sit spin, can they please ask it very nicely to come home...?

After that, we went to jumps. My blades definitely need sharpening. I'll get them done in Sydney this weekend. Did a few good waltz jumps, had the weirdest, most poppy, ridiculous inability to Salchow for about five minutes, before finally getting them right. Did a few good toe loops (my coach knows how much I love toe loops and how easy I find them, so they're my "reward" for practicing the Salchow, which I hate), then managed to eke out a couple of teeny weeny loops. Landed a good flip and then we did some Lutz work, the first part of which was focusing on getting my superflutz down to ! (in my defence my blade skidded unexpectedly on the first one :lol: ), the second part of which involved working on my weight transfer.
 

clairecloutier

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Just found out yesterday that my rink's daytime hours, which always end in August, are going to be severely curtailed in July too. :( I am not sure what I'm going to do ... hope I can find another rink, not too far away, with more hours.
 

gkelly

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Dance coach: I won't be here next Monday, so no lesson next week.
Me: OK.

(Later)
Coach: Will you come next Monday morning to practice?
Me: Probably not. I'll be getting home late Sunday from a trip, so I'd rather not wake up early.
Coach: You can sleep in. I know I would.

Haha, coach encouraging me not to practice. :)
 

GarrAargHrumph

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Ice dance practice right now is AWESOME. We finished the stupid European Waltz (I told you all I'd passed the test last month), and are working on the elements for the next dances. Do you know how great it is to not work on the European Waltz? :lol:
 

gkelly

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I prefer to work on the European Waltz, but most of today's lesson was Foxtrot.

I probably haven't yet spent as much time working on it as you did, though.

However, coach did agree today that the European will probably be ready to test before the Foxtrot. Darn mohawks!
 

treesprite

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I haven't been getting enough practice lately. For some reason even when I get enough sleep, I'm having a hard time getting up. I think it's because of eating too much junk food at night, maybe making my blood sugar plummet in my sleep so I feel dragged out when I wake up. I only had a half hour earlier, so I'm going back to the rink and will try to skate in the public session (most days it's too crowded for me). Tonight I'm on rink guard duty, so maybe in that hour I can sneak in some little things that no one will notice.

At any rate, I managed a couple half decent scratch spins today in that half hour, amongst the bunch that were traveled due to dropping my back arm right before stepping into my spot. I don't know why I keep doing it in spite of the fact that I keep telling myself otherwise.
 

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