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Thread: Un-stressed jumping

  1. #1
    In love with the axel!
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    Un-stressed jumping

    A while ago, Cinderella asked me to keep her advised of my quest for doubles. Well, I haven't done a whole lot in the last year, due to injury and working on Intermediate MIF's. I did get my 2toe fully rotated this past summer, but wasn't close to actually landing it.

    Well, today in my lesson we started working on them again. We did the 2sal first. To back up, lately my axels have been doing very well, because I kind of zone going into them - the stress is gone and the jump has become smooth and relaxed. Well, my first two 2sal attempts were fully rotated and actually briefly landed on the correct foot (one step down with the other foot, and one fall). Both jumps were easy - not easy as in effortless, but easy as in relaxed. I just let my body do the jump instead of letting my mind take over. Then I started stressing a bit and they were popped. We left them (smart move). The 2toe, by contrast, felt stressed and difficult. It was close to rotated, but did not have that ease of feeling. The 2loop was the same (except it was not close to rotated).

    So, my question is -- do you get into a zone with your jumps? Is it a matter of "mind over matter", where you refuse to let your mind screw up the jump, or is it repetition that is what does the trick (ie were my 2sals today a fluke)? I'm leaning to just telling my brain to shut the heck up and just feeling the jumps.

  2. #2
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    It's just my opinion that any jump after single lutz is mostly in your head. I think about this a lot since I have delusions of having a couple more consistent double jumps before I'm 50. I think mostly doubles are a fight between your body telling you that you should pull in and your brain telling you that bones live in your skin and if you don't stop this RIGHT NOW, you're going to get hurt. At least that's how it seems when you're an older skater.
    I don't think your 2sals were a fluke at all, and that you do "get in the zone" with doubles on some days. The trick is to find the zone day after day and since a lot of adult skaters don't have the muscle memory that the kids acquire, some days it's akin to driving around without a road map......you'll get there eventually, but it takes longer.
    The best advice I got from someone in another sport, and I think it holds true for most sports, is to "meet it, don't beat it." In other words, don't overswing or get too tight while trying to get to the right place in your jumps. Maybe you didn't have this trouble, but I remember how much fighting I used to do with myself over the axel, making constant futile attempts to adjust in the air to no avail......the axels are only good when I just leave them alone and let them happen. Same thing with double sal and the rest of the doubles.

    Does that make any sense to you?

  3. #3
    Bless you, Fairy Godmother, I'm Having a BALL! Cinderella on Ice's Avatar
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    I agree wholeheartedly with what you've both said. While it is important to learn all the right positions and fundamentals of these jumps, the head game is the ultimate decider. My axel is just like you've described--if I zone out, it is the biggest, most beautiful deal. If I give it any much thought at all ... eeeps. Pop-outs, waxels, and worse.

    BUT, I think you've almost answered your own question, at least for me. I find that the only way to GET to that zoned out stage is to accumulate enough practice runs to allow my body to "absorb" what it's doing (probably the muscle memory megsk8s is talking about) and then it is comfortable to zone out. So it's a bit of a chicken and egg, because you almost have to convince yourself to zone out before you are really ready to zone out.

    To complicate matters further, I don't know about you guys, but even though I consider myself in very good shape fitness-wise, I was not prepared for the limitations set on me by my own (adult) body. I have a limited number of jumps (or anything) that I can do in one practice session, and I have to use them wisely. Even my coach will let me only warm up one of each single during lessons so that I can "save" my jumps for whatever it is we're going to work on. Because after awhile, my legs just turn to tree trunks and then that's that. Pathetic!

    My coach has been working on it with me. After 30 minutes of lessons, she'll have me go through my program (2 mins 40 secs), then skate for 3-4 more minutes at top speed, and THEN go out and do an axel. Besides helping to ramp up the endurance, you definitely have to force yourself into the zone because the only thing lifting you off the ice is your complete naivete that you couldn't otherwise achieve take-off!

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