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Thread: Are there off ice exercises to help improve standard one foot spins?

  1. #1

    Question Are there off ice exercises to help improve standard one foot spins?

    I'm teaching the standard one foot spin to someone and it just isn't happening, no matter what (she's dropping her weight to the inside and not shifting it over in order to keep on the sweet spot), and she asked me if there are any exercises that she can do off ice to help her improve her spin on ice. Are there?

    I never had trouble with learning the standard one foot spin so this has never been a problem for me.

    This is a skater whose parents only allow her to be on the ice during the duration of her lesson so she rarely has time to practice on her own (which I think would help her considerably).

    Any help, suggestions or advice is appreciated. Thank you.

  2. #2
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    If you were to say sit spin... I'd say I've got all kinds of work outs! Beyond tons of repetition on ice, I'm not sure what could help her.

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    Hey... I did think of a few off ice exercises I do that could be useful. My trainer has me lift hand weights (flys, curls, presses) while doing stationary and moving squats and lunges. These work out the arm & leg strength, as well as core stability and balance.

    We also use a high density 6"x12" half foam roller (flat on one side, curved on the other) and do the same type of arm exercises... first with the flat side on the ground, then with the curved side down. It really really helps enforce balance and core stability. First your skater will need to balance comfortably before adding the hand weights. Nothing beats having a personal trainer that works with figure skaters, but these few things should help out.

    This page on USFS has some good resources for off-ice conditioning: http://usfsa.org/Story.asp?id=40699 Check out the "foam roller exercise" pdf.

    This is the USFS Sports Sciences Medicine page, which has injury, nutritional and fitness info that is super useful: http://usfsa.org/Athletes.asp?id=226

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    No exercise has helped me more than getting on the ice more frequently. It is better to skate 45 minutes M-F than 3 hours once a week. The longer you are away from the ice, the longer it takes you to get re-accustomed to the ice, and no off-ice exercises will change that.

  5. #5
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    That's definitely true. I see a lot more progress when I'm able to skate all six 1.5 hour sessions available to me over the 4 days I can skate per week. I used to only skate 1.5 each on Tuesdays and Thursdays. With moves, freestyle and ice dance, I've found that I definitely need more ice time.

    With that said, I'm an adult, so having an off-ice strength training regime helps tremendously. I'm guilty of not working out every day, so I'm not where I need to be when comparing my on-ice activity to off-ice conditioning. WHEN I commit... I do bits of Yoga, Pilates and free weights. I focus on stretching out, leg toning & strength, core strength, arm & back toning. Ideally, I should be doing two one-hour intense sessions a week, and five 1/2 hour less intense sessions in addition to a 15-minute dynamic warm-up before I skate and 15-minute cool-down workout after I skate. I should also be running/jogging/walking a few times a week. I need to be doing ballet and my ice dance coach wants me to do ballroom. I'd love to be able to get a membership to the YMCA so I could attend step, interval and spin classes as well as swim a few days a week(ooh, and their yoga/pilates classes!), but I just can't afford it. I don't even think I have the time for it!! I can't even afford my personal trainer right now... and it's a miracle that I can squeeze in my skating lesson payments every week! With the exception of a few muscle strains and some boot problems, I've been able to avoid injuries the entire five years I've been skating.

    In an effort to control my weight to assist my skating(heh, and my health!), I've buckled down on my diet. I eat at specific times, I keep it small and always have dairy, fruit, grains and lean protein. I'm avoiding super fatty and salty stuff for the most part. Training myself to eat healthy has been challenging because it's too easy to get take-out, but I know I need to do it.

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