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Thread: Okay kids, here we go...THE AXEL

  1. #1
    Fan of The Incomparable Sonja Henie Glacierskater's Avatar
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    Okay kids, here we go...THE AXEL

    I have arrived at a pivotal (is that spelling correct?) point my skating career. The wondermous axel! It is a milestone for me. I battled the flip and the loop for about a year and a half (that includes a one year hiatus from skating). I can do my loop/loop, flip/loop, waltz/loop, etc. To prepare for the axel I have been doing lots of waltz/loop jumps, and waltz backspins. I have been in and out of the harness, and flailed myself all over the ice. I must say that I have found new ways to Zam the ice with the human body.

    Does anyone have any advice? I need that THING (whatever it may be) to make it all click. My head understands the mechanics of it...my body does not.

  2. #2
    Hickie!
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    Along with the waltz jump/back spins, add a loop onto the end of one. It'll give you a feel for the jump, and will help also with getting the correct landing edge and position before pulling out into the landing position. This is what my coach had me doing when I was working on 2 loops, and it worked, so it should work for you as well! My other advice, don't give up! It took me a year and a half to get my axel, and I've fought with it for gosh, 6 years now. Keep at it, and it'll come and be fantastic!

  3. #3
    Tripping on the Podium
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    Have you tried working on the axel off-ice?

    I can do an axel on the ice, but practicing them off the ice helps me a lot! You don't have any momentum when you're standing on the ground, so you really have to use those legs to get up into the air. Also, I find that keeping straight in the air is a challenge and it's less painful to fix my lean working off-ice. I'm also working on double axels, and I don't quite have the rotation off-ice yet but it's coming! I find that if I spend 20-30 mintues doing axels off-ice before my session, all of my jumps are much better - especially the axel!

    Just make sure you have good shoes and soft ground. Try some two foot jumps to start.
    Jump-jump-land (no rotation). Then 1/2 rotation two foot jumps, then 1 rotation two foot jumps, then 1.5 rotation two foot jumps, then waltz jumps, then axel.

    Good luck! And keep us posted on your progress!

    ~Cassie

  4. #4
    Fan of The Incomparable Sonja Henie Glacierskater's Avatar
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    The off ice jumping is something that I need to work on. I have been nervous about doing that for fear of twisting something. I like the idea of the off ice jumping progression. I will post this week's progession with it. I hope to post one day that I have nailed it.

    Thanks for the input.

  5. #5
    Tripping on the Podium
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    Twisting something is always a risk when jumping off-ice. But you only need extra caution when landing on one foot. Two foot jumping should be no problem!

    I've found that jumping on a flat lawn minimizes the risk, but check carefully for a nice smooth spot! Grass is a little slippery - just enough so if you're still rotating when you land, the grass will allow your landing foot to rotate a little and you won't twist anything. Rubber mats and running shoes provide great cushioning but too much friction imo. I find my shoes will stick to the mat while my body keeps rotating and it doesn't feel very good on my knees and ankles.

    You also might consider taping your ankles for support. It might give you a bit more confidence to attack your off-ice jumps.

    See if your coach will supervise for a few minutes, just to check your technique. Have fun! You'll be an axel queen in no time!

  6. #6
    Fan of The Incomparable Sonja Henie Glacierskater's Avatar
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    I hope that the hard work will pay off. I intended to have doubles from the very beginning when I started skating. My people tell me that the doubles come fairly quickly once the axel arrives.

  7. #7
    Bless you, Fairy Godmother, I'm Having a BALL! Cinderella on Ice's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Glacierskater
    My people tell me that the doubles come fairly quickly once the axel arrives.
    Oh, please please please let this be true! :\

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