The Wall

I am ready and rearing to get going with my lesson. Even though I know that I couldn't get to grips with edges in my last lesson and I have no clue about inside or outside edges, I am really keen to go over them with John and figure out how to make my feet work.


We have a quick lap round the rink skating forwards before going backwards (I use the word 'quick' loosely, there is nothing quick about my skating) before heading into the middle of the rink. I will readily admit that being in the middle of the ice freaks me out for a number of reasons, one being that I feel like everyone can see how uncoordinated I am! The second being that all the other skaters in the middle seem to be really really good!


We start by working on my forward edges, my left outside and inside edges are the strongest of all. By strongest, I mean that I can actually skate on my left leg in a (very small) curve for about 5 seconds. When I try the edges with my right foot, well let's just say they are not that good, in fact they are pretty poor. As soon as I lift my left leg up, I feel wobbly and it is too far out of my comfort zone for my liking.


John decides that today is the day that he is going to push me right out of my comfort zone and teaches me chasses. In my last blog entry I mentioned that I have zero coordination...well now add into the mix that I need to do different things with my feet and my brain has a meltdown. I need to push with my right foot, glide on my left, then bring my feet together before lifting my left leg off the ice. A few attempts with John coaching me on what to do with each foot and it isn't as hard as it first seemed. Once I have the basic understanding of what to do, John proceeds to teach me forward crossovers.


I would like to point out that this is my fifth lesson and I feel like crossovers are impossible! John reassures me that I will now hit a wall with my learning and crossovers will take some time to master. This fills me with dread. I am a naturally impatient person and have been used to being able to do the elements that John has thus far taught me by the end of my skating session. I might not do them perfectly (in fact far from perfectly) but at least I can do them...sort of.


Crossovers have me baffled. The concept is so simple, cross my right foot over my left foot then bring my feet together again. When you say it out loud (or write it in a blog) it is probably one of the easiest concepts but somewhere between my brain and my feet is a missing link that makes this one of the hardest things to comprehend. It feels unnatural to cross my legs, and it feels even worse to try and free my left leg to bring them back together. A small part of me hopes that I can practice these whilst holding onto the barrier, but when I voice this hope, John dashes it by telling me that crossovers can only be done on a curve. So no barriers for me then, I have no idea now I am going to practice this on my own. I do try to practice them, but my legs just won't cooperate and I get all tangled up. Oh well there's always next week!

Diary of a New Skater :: by Sara Bertie