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Thread: New Adult Skater: Advice on increasing flexibility?

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    On the Ice tietzd83's Avatar
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    New Adult Skater: Advice on increasing flexibility?

    I am wondering if anyone has suggestions to help a 45 year old newbie to increase his flexibility. I know the old muscles won't work the way the did a few decades ago but I hope there's some hope for improvement.

    Oh... any suggestions on how to do the backward swizzle. I am getting better at going forward but I can hardly get any movement when I attempt to go backwards. It's making the rocking horse seem out of reach at the moment. :(

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    Wicked Yankee Girl dorispulaski's Avatar
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    Welcome to Golden Skate tietzd83! Post long and often.

    I hope someone will advise you as to the best stretching exercises for figure skating.

    Here's what Skate Canada advises for skaters in general; you could adapt from this to your level.

    http://www.skating-wos.on.ca/sportsci/stretch.htm

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    On the Ice tietzd83's Avatar
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    Thanks much!! This is exactly what I was looking for!! (:

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    Sitting Here on Blue Jay Way silver.blades's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dorispulaski View Post
    Welcome to Golden Skate tietzd83! Post long and often.

    I hope someone will advise you as to the best stretching exercises for figure skating.

    Here's what Skate Canada advises for skaters in general; you could adapt from this to your level.

    http://www.skating-wos.on.ca/sportsci/stretch.htm
    That link is fantastic.
    Do you mean bwd twizzle?

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    On the Ice tietzd83's Avatar
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    I don't think so... isn't the twizzle a fairly advanced maneuver?

    I am trying to do a rocking horse but can't go backwards. I can go forwards, get my skates pointed at each other, and then I am stuck???

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    Sitting Here on Blue Jay Way silver.blades's Avatar
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    Do you mean bwd sculls or bubbles? I've never heard of a rocking horse.

  7. #7
    At the rink. Again. mskater93's Avatar
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    Swizzle - like your bubbles. Tietzd83 - you probably are breaking at the waist and not bending your knees.

    As for flexibility, a good basic yoga class will help (and help strengthen your core and help overall body awareness)

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    Trixie Schuba's biggest fan! blue dog's Avatar
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    Also, don't forget to make sure your muscles are sufficiently warm before stretching.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tietzd83 View Post
    I can go forwards, get my skates pointed at each other, and then I am stuck???
    Are you bending your knees before trying to push backwards?

  10. #10
    On the Ice tietzd83's Avatar
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    I am, but it sure does feel strange... I was trying again today with the help of some of my former sixth grade students but no luck. I don't know if it is just my age or lack of flexibility at this point, put I have a hard time twisting my ankles so that the skates are pointing towards each other. I can do it without skates on??? Then I just don't understand where you start the momentum (pressure) to get the backwards motion (I hope that makes sense). I have my second lesson tomorrow but was really hoping to have that down before I got there.

    Took my first big fall today. ): It was probably stupid to try a left foot glide at my ability level but it seemed like a good idea at the time. Important leson of the day... ice can hurt!

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    Quote Originally Posted by tietzd83 View Post
    I have a hard time twisting my ankles so that the skates are pointing towards each other. I can do it without skates on??? Then I just don't understand where you start the momentum (pressure) to get the backwards motion (I hope that makes sense).
    Off ice you have friction on your side... it's not a flexibility issue, the problem is that on the ice you pretty much have to rely on muscle alone to do hold the position, an at this stage you either haven't developed those muscles yet (not uncommon depending on your athletic background) or you don't have the body awareness required to use them independently yet... both of which are fixed with time and practice. As far as the push to start backwards, I think it's more of a gentle outwards pull.. you don't have to push super hard, just pull your feet apart (think about pulling your heels apart) while straightening your knees and it should move you backwards a little (try it at the wall if you're worried about falling or losing your balance). Usually pulling the feet back together at the end is the hard part for either forward or backwards swizzles since most beginning skaters don't have very developed adductors.

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    On the Ice tietzd83's Avatar
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    That makes a lot of sense, thank you... Are there any stretches/exercises that I can do off the ice that will help develop the needed muscles?

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    On the Ice tietzd83's Avatar
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    So, now I have a question about dips... How straight should your back be? It feels straight to me but then I look at the reflection in the wall to find out it is not. Can I just pass this off as an old person problem??

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    It shouldn't be too straight.. there is some bending over (and reaching forwards a little) that occurs with the dip, otherwise it's impossible to keep your balance.

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    Sitting Here on Blue Jay Way silver.blades's Avatar
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    On dips keep your back straight, but not necessarily perpendicular to the floor. You have to lean forward. Try leg lifts while lying on your side. That will work the inner and outer thighs.

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