We asked Sergei Novitsky, the European figure skating champion, to tell us what to do in order to confidently skate and feel like a queen or queen on the rink.
Photo: Sergey Novitsky
If you want to confidently cut through the ice on skates and develop your skills, then it’s no longer possible to get by with rolling skates. You need to get your own, besides, the assortment in the stores allows you to choose the optimal model that will fully meet your goals (that is, hockey skates are not suitable for ordinary ice skating). The main thing in this matter, of course, is not to make a mistake with size. Always focus on the insole of the skate - it should be half a centimeter larger than the foot.
And be sure to completely lace up the skates before buying and go around them in the store. The most common mistake is that many people choose skates a size larger than what they actually need - during movement the leg bends and the foot pulls back a little. Lacing skates is necessary in the same way as shoes - with a cruciform overlap. Make sure that the ankle is fixed - the shoes should be an extension of the leg.
If the temperature on the closed rinks is quite high, then to skating in the fresh air you need to thoroughly prepare and dress according to the weather.
The ideal option is three layers of clothing. The first layer, which is the bottom layer, absorbs sweat and quickly evaporates moisture, saving you from hypothermia - cotton underwear is perfect for this. The second layer is just responsible for warming - choose soft sweaters and warm comfortable trousers (ski suits also). The upper, third layer protects from wind and snow - a light down jacket will not hurt. In any case, the main requirement for clothing is comfort; it should be tight enough, but at the same time not to hamper the movements.
Plus, there is a high probability of frostbite on an open skating rink, so do not forget about gloves, a scarf (it should not be long so as not to accidentally catch on something) and a hat. But you should not wear too thick socks, as the foot should feel a little, otherwise there may be problems with management.
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Since for skiing ice skating is not typical for a person’s movements, be sure to stretch all the muscles before going on ice. Such a warm-up is not much different from what you do in the morning or before training in the gym.
From top to bottom, starting from the head, develop the shoulders, arms, pelvis, knees and ankle. These five minutes will be enough to protect you from unnecessary injuries and sprains. Skating is, in principle, a complex coordination sport, which requires good sports skills, such as the ability to balance and coordinate your movements. To ride correctly and confidently, you must develop flexibility and endurance, know your body and listen to your own feelings. Plus, of course, you need muscle.
Very strong muscles.
The two most common mistakes while skating are straight legs and buttocks bulging back. So, instead of sliding, a person starts walking. The correct posture is the one in which you are used to feeling. Imagine you have two shoulders and two thigh bones, together they form a square, and your task is to not break such a square during skiing.
At the same time, constantly monitor your knees - they should always be bent. Hands should also not hang around idle - they help maintain balance, so it is better to take them aside. Do not put the socks parallel to each other, on the contrary, spread them a little outward, so that when you move, an angle of 45 degrees is maintained. Try to push off the inner edge of the ridge blade (and not the outer edge or prong) and alternately transfer the weight from one leg to the other, straightening and bending the knees. It can take years to form an ideal sliding step - you need to regularly practice, do special exercises simulating skating on the floor and learn to balance, in particular, transfer the center of gravity from one leg to another.
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Actually learn turning is not so difficult, for this you need to understand what kind of turn you want to make - back or forward. If you turn back and forth, try to turn the heel by pressing your foot closer to the front of the boot. And if we are talking about turning from move back to move forward, press closer to the heel, turning the clove of the skate, and not the entire blade. At the same time, try not to twist the case.
There are several braking options, the simplest is this is heel braking. To do this, place your legs parallel to each other and lift the toe of one leg toward you. There are, of course, more sophisticated methods of braking, for example, the letter "T" - forward one leg forward, and draw across the blade of the second ridge, the braking leg can be either behind or in front. It is important to keep the foot ankle and not to put the skate on either the outer or inner rib - otherwise you can fall.
When falling in the first it’s the turn to save the head: you need to group, press your chin to your chest and put one hand out - use only your brush and in no case your elbow. While riding, tilt the body a little forward, so you will reduce the risk of the most dangerous fall on your back. If you have not gone on ice for a long time, then the first time additional protection will not hurt you. In the United States and Europe, in principle, it is customary to ride helmets and knee pads, but this practice has not yet taken root in our country.
You can theoretically master the correct technique yourself , but in any case, you need to at least occasionally contact a specialist who can look at your movements from the side and, if necessary, make adjustments.
Still, learn the technique - does not mean to master it, and even more so correctly. If a person skates and does not fall, this does not mean that he is doing everything right. And if you want to not only develop your skills, but also improve them by mastering complex technical elements, then you just need a coach, as one incorrect movement can lead to serious injuries. At the same time, remember: skating twice a month in order to learn how to confidently skate and make progress is not enough, but 3-4 hours of training a week will be just right.
Since steel, of which the blade of the skates is made, it is subject to corrosion, after training it is necessary to wipe the skates dry and get them out of the bag at home. Naturally, in no case do not put them near the battery, otherwise they, like any leather shoes, will dry out and crack. Do not forget to sharpen blades in a timely manner. The frequency of sharpening depends on which ice you ride on - open or closed. On the open, the blade dulls faster than on the closed one, since the first is cleaned less often.
In principle, with frequent training, the blades need to be sharpened once every two months. And do not forget to wear special covers on them that will prevent the skates from becoming dull quickly and save you from accidental cuts.
Movement on the roller occurs counterclockwise. As such, there is naturally no registered and approved speed regime, but there are unspoken rules of behavior dictated by the elementary instinct of self-preservation. For example, one who is not very confident in skating gives way to a person moving at high speed.
The sides are mainly for beginners, the center of the rink is for more experienced skaters. Since there is a high risk of collisions at the rink, it is important to be extremely careful and careful.
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