This weeks lesson is on a Friday afternoon and when I arrive at the rink I am happy to see that compared to a Saturday session it is relatively quiet. This time I have half an hour practice before my lesson. I try to practice crossovers but whilst practicing I am knocked off balance by a girl who clearly cannot skate but thinks she can. After this encounter I decide to wait for my lesson before I take my life into my own hands with crossovers.

When it's time for my lesson I join John in the middle of the rink, I am a little smug that I skate straight into the middle without any fuss. The new found  smugness does not last. We visit crossovers and when I try to do them I am as graceful as a hippo on ice! My movements are clunky (sorry but there is no other way to describe them) and I simply can't get to grips with crossovers.

To add to my confusion, John asks me to try crossovers going clockwise. Well if I can't do them anti clockwise then I am certain I can't do them in a clockwise direction. John shows me what to do but despite watching his leg movements three times, my brain just doesn't compute how to do them. I am sure I am testing John's patience as I have a mini tantrum on the ice. The only thing missing from my "I can't do it" tantrum is the foot stamping. To snap me out of my tantrum, John moves me onto right leg chasses. I am beginning to think that my brain has shutdown on the account of it being Friday afternoon because I struggle to work out what to do with my feet. To push with my left leg feels really strange and I don't seem to have a nice strong push like I do when I push with my right leg. Clearly this is going to take some work to build up to being able to do a right leg chasse. However I do have a "beautiful left leg chasse" John's words not mine...

During the course of my lesson, a section of the rink has been occupied by a couple from Dancing on Ice (I only know this because of all the cameras and because John tells me). This knowledge leads me to abandon my chasses (any distraction is welcome at this point) so that I can figure out which is the celebrity and which is the professional skater. Sadly I have no idea who the celeb is (and given that John's views on Dancing on Ice are strong at best) I shall refrain from disclosing which pair it is but I will say that they are very good and the female pro looks like a Barbie doll. The welcome distractions also lead me to agree to planking a group photo being taken by the girl who knocked me off balance. I'd like to point out that it was John who dared me to plank their photo...I tried to resist and be mature but...if planking means I can give up on crossovers and chasses for the rest of the afternoon then I will do it. On the proviso that my face isn't in the picture.

I have to say this has been the most enjoyable lesson so far

Diary of a New Skater :: by Sara Bertie