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Thread: Adult skaters: How important are jumps?

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    Adult skaters: How important are jumps?

    A question for the adults:

    First question: How important are the jumps to you in terms of how much you are able to achieve in jumping?

    Second question: Does an adult who can jump well make a good freeskater?

    To answer my own first question, I need to be realistic and take one step at a time. I would like to get the next couple of jumps so that I can actually move up a level. I have been stuck at a low level for years now. I think a big factor in practising jumps is that I have limited energy and my knee can only take so much pounding. I need to listen to my body.

    To answer my second question, I think an adult who can jump well is very impressive because there are not that many out there, especially more diffucult jumps. However, as I have grown older I have a deeper appreciation for beautiful flow and edges.
    Last edited by passion; 10-02-2007 at 05:10 PM.

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    I find that most adult skaters focus on skating skills rather than jumps because of the very real limitations of age and injury. I find that breaks occur frequently with adult skaters. Therefore adults focus on skills that give them satisfaction and a feeling of accomplishment. Jumps come and go with age. Even accomplished skaters like Peggy Fleming don't jump because of age.

    I'm not a great skater yet I am competent enough in stroking that I am better than most of the skaters on a public session. When I skated regularly, I received lots of compliments from regular skaters on public session and they made me feel very good about myself and was encouragement to work harder on perfecting my skating skills.
    Last edited by soogar; 10-02-2007 at 05:17 PM.

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    At the rink. Again. mskater93's Avatar
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    It depends on how you measure your success as a skater. I LOVE getting new jumps (and I would definitely qualify as an adult) and am actively persuing the "next" one or two in the repetoire with reasonable work (no more than 5-10 attempts per session) towards that goal. The next jump in difficulty is close, but not there yet. In addition, I am actively pursuing a level 4 change combination spin, a level 2 flying spin, level 3ish footwork, and seemless transitions for my competitive program. Finally, I am pursuing my Novice moves in the field with the goal of passing before they change next fall and Senior before 40,

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    In my 30s I was jumping almost as well as I was in my teens. At any rate, I had gotten back to landing all the single jumps including the axel and was really close on the double salchow, maybe there were a few that could have been considered landed albeit probably cheated. I also had a few lessons on double loop and double toe but they weren't close.

    But because of overall skating quality and stamina I competed at adult bronze level and still do, where axels and doubles are not allowed.

    In my 40s because of injuries, other priorities (e.g., getting MITF up to passing standards), my current coach wanting to take apart my poor takeoff technique on the toe jumps, etc., and just general aging I guess, I have often gone for many months at a time not doing any jumps at all and sometimes over a year between axel attempts; have hardly attempted doubles at all.

    So probably by the time I would be able to pass the silver moves and freestyle tests I'll have lost all hope of landing axels again, so I may never attempt much less land any in competition.

    Meanwhile my overall skating is slowly getting stronger and is certainly much better than when I was a teenager. Same with my spins.

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    At the rink. Again. mskater93's Avatar
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    I like your description of it. Spins and basics improve and those are the things that really matter as an adult, even under IJS as at the Gold and Masters levels, the TES mark is between 12 and 25 with the spins being the thing that pulls them higher along with f/w and/or spirals.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mskater93 View Post
    It depends on how you measure your success as a skater. I LOVE getting new jumps (and I would definitely qualify as an adult) and am actively persuing the "next" one or two in the repetoire with reasonable work (no more than 5-10 attempts per session) towards that goal. The next jump in difficulty is close, but not there yet. In addition, I am actively pursuing a level 4 change combination spin, a level 2 flying spin, level 3ish footwork, and seemless transitions for my competitive program. Finally, I am pursuing my Novice moves in the field with the goal of passing before they change next fall and Senior before 40,
    ...

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    Gliding Along dlkksk8fan's Avatar
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    Adult skaters: how important are jumps?
    Jumps are very important if you want to compete and pass freestyle tests. No reason not to jump because of your age. I'm 48 and still jumping. I keep thinking I should switch to ice dancing, but I love to jump (and spin), so I'm going to do it as long as I can!

    Go Adult Skaters!!!!

    I find that breaks occur frequently with adult skaters.
    Is that so?

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    Quote Originally Posted by dlkksk8fan View Post
    Jumps are very important if you want to compete and pass freestyle tests. No reason not to jump because of your age. I'm 48 and still jumping. I keep thinking I should switch to ice dancing, but I love to jump (and spin), so I'm going to do it as long as I can!

    Go Adult Skaters!!!!

    Is that so?
    Actually, after reading your post, I think so, too. I don't think you can be a freestyler without jumping, so I geuss it depends on whether you want to be a freeskater or an ice dancer, but there are also people in between.

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    I would say it depends on your body and what you want from skating whether you jump as an adult or not. I got to double loop as a teenager, but I wasn't a strong skater in many other ways. In my 20s, after a 10 year break, I could still do up to axel, but I had met my husband who was an ice dancer, so I concentrated on that discipline and became a much better skater as far as speed and skill in edges and turns.

    Im my mid 30s, hubby was working away a lot, so I decided to go back to free skating and enter some competitions. I won the first one with only a three jump and a salchow, ahead of people with harder jumps. This was due to a much higher presentation mark because I was able to skate better to my music and with so much more confidence generally than most of the people who were learning to free skate for the first time as adults. I put this down to having spent so much more time on basic skating than when I was learning to jump as a teenager.

    By the time I turned 40, I had pains in my knees from too much skating, and I had pulled a groin muscle doing a Ena Bauer spread. Both of these niggling injuries reoccur if I push things too far, so I don't do luzt or flip anymore, and since every fall seems to take longer to recover from than when I was young, I don't even think about trying to get an axel or any doubles back again.

    I get more of a buzz watching top skater do warm up edges and turns than doing big jumps, so I really don't think jumps are that important unless you need them to pass tests. Injuries don't heal as easily when you are older, so why risk the possibility of many years of skating pleasure for a few jumps that take up just seconds in a programme. Skating has become more popular lately in the UK, and you see plenty of adults joining the classes and then going on to free skating instead of dancing, because the instructors push them that way. I think most of them are going to reach their limit a lot earlier than if they did dance and moves in the field and just added a couple of simple jumps to do competitions, and I'd hate to think that they would be put off and give up.

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    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    Thanks for joining us, Morelli. Welcome!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Morelli View Post
    By the time I turned 40, I had pains in my knees from too much skating, and I had pulled a groin muscle doing a Ena Bauer spread. . . .

    Injuries don't heal as easily when you are older, so why risk the possibility of many years of skating pleasure for a few jumps that take up just seconds in a programme.
    I can't do Ina Bauers at all. I have given myself groin injuries trying to learn spread eagles and Y spirals. So now I don't try those any more either.

    And last year's and this year's injuries (which may have been caused by falling not-on-jumps and/or trying to skate for an extra half hour after I was already tired) have also affected my ability to attempt sitspins as well as certain jumps.

    It's not necessarily only jumps that can cause injuries or be limited by injuries. That's true for kids too. But the older we get, the harder it is to recover quickly or fully, so at a certain point many adults find that there are certain moves that we have to drop from our repertoires, often based on our specific history of injuries and other physical limitations that may have been caused by skating or by other events in our personal histories.

    The variety of skating backgrounds among all adult skaters ages 21-80+ and the variety of physical histories is much wider than that of the variety of abilities and limitations of the 4-20 age range. So there's no answer that would hold true for all or even most adults.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dlkksk8fan View Post
    Is that so?
    Yes. Just informally, I know quite a few adult skaters who have sustained breaks learning how to skate and jump. I have to differentiate between adults who started skating young verses those who started skating as adults. Adults who started young (or even in their late teens and 20's) retain that "looseness" when they fall. They can attempt moves and fall easily. Adults who start at an older age are stiffer when they fall and that's when the breaks/serious injuries occur.

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    ~ Figure Skating Is My Passion ~ Ladskater's Avatar
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    As a former figure skater who decided to return to the ice for fun and exercise, I can say I pretty much played it safe. As much as I wanted to "recapture" my youth and skate with the vitality I once did, I realized that I also have to think about injuring myself and missing work. One realizes with age the flexibility of youth is no longer there. Gone are the days of being able to fall, get up and bounce back.

    Most adults who skate later in life sometimes concentrate on ice dance. Although there is some risk with falling in ice dance it is not quite as bad as falling while doing a jump. Some of the basic jumps are fun to do - a waltz jump, a three jump or even a Cherry-flip are not too terribly risky. However, I would not attempt some of the higher level jumps without some coaching - just because it's been too many years and I would not want to take any chances.

    Why not work on spins? or footwork? You will notice that even some of the elite skaters downgrade their jumping once they turn pro and start touring with an ice show. It just makes sense.

    Hope this helps.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ladskater View Post
    Although there is some risk with falling in ice dance it is not quite as bad as falling while doing a jump.
    Really?!!! I think ice dancing with a partner would result in much harder falls than from a jump. One accidental pick on the ice or mistiming with your partner could be really nasty, so I thought.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Morelli View Post
    Im my mid 30s, hubby was working away a lot, so I decided to go back to free skating and enter some competitions. I won the first one with only a three jump and a salchow, ahead of people with harder jumps. This was due to a much higher presentation mark because I was able to skate better to my music and with so much more confidence generally than most of the people who were learning to free skate for the first time as adults. I put this down to having spent so much more time on basic skating than when I was learning to jump as a teenager.

    That is very comforting to know that you can actually be placed higher based solely on your skating skills. I am really glad judges look at the overall skating ability into account and don't just focus on the jumps. So does that mean jumps are like icing on the cake?

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