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Beginning Skaters Forum This is the place for beginning skaters to ask questions and share their stories. We would love to hear about your experiences learning to skate. No question is too dumb!

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Old August 9th, 2012, 01:54 PM   #1
rollin stone
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Default Repost from derby forum: Fresh meat beginner skater needs advice on turning skills

Hi, I just started my beginner roller derby boot camp this week. I've only really been roller skating since early June -- I didn't do it much as a kid and I had to teach myself all over again.

I'm definitely better now than I was, I can move around the rink (albeit slower than most) without falling and I can lean into the turns with minor success I am definitely getting a workout and learning to strengthen my inner thigh muscles (that have somehow been ignored after years of yoga).

In any case, we were lined up to do drills cross-rink at the boot camp, and I noticed how some of the skaters were pointing their skates to the side to turn 45 to 90 degrees to get set up for the drills -- basically changing direction without slowly inching your skates around (like I do). I tried doing this last night at the tennis court where I practice, and when I tried to turn my body in the direction of the turn and lift my skate to place it sideways, I did turn a bit, but I almost fell forward doing each time and felt unsteady.

Does anyone have any advice on how to do this? Also, any advice you have on practicing crossovers (i.e. building up the muscles and balance to do it) would be great.
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Old August 9th, 2012, 09:55 PM   #2
BlackLace
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The key thing with crossovers, is to think of them more as a push-under than a cross-over.

Your free foot stays more or less under your weight at all times. i.e. the foot on the floor *doesn't* - it gets pushed off to the side. You don't precariously balance on the skating foot whilst gingerly moving the free foot over the top. You under-push, and have your free foot waiting to catch you when you run out of extension on the push.

For a beginner, I'd suggest start by doing it at the wall i.e. doing both steps of the crossover in quick succession - since skating crossed up is scary to begin with. Then practice skating towards the wall, crossing over (again both steps) at the last moment. Repeat each time moving the point at which you cross over further away from the wall.

Then once you are able to do it without the wall: Using a marking on the floor (e.g. the red hockey squares), practice crossing over, such that that point goes between your crossed-up legs. The idea of using a point on the floor is it gives a "do-or-die" moment to force through the fear.

Start with just doing 1 cross over on turn entry and 1 on turn exit.

Good luck!
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Old August 10th, 2012, 08:05 PM   #3
rollin stone
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Great advice, thanks! I was planning on practicing the step on carpet or grass a little with skates just to get a feel for it. but it being underneath, not in front of you, makes sense as you are rolling.
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Old August 11th, 2012, 01:16 PM   #4
fierocious1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rollin stone View Post
Great advice, thanks! I was planning on practicing the step on carpet or grass a little with skates just to get a feel for it. but it being underneath, not in front of you, makes sense as you are rolling.
You can be doing crossovers by tomorrow afternoon....
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Old August 13th, 2012, 02:30 AM   #5
MANY_SkatingDave
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OK I am having a hard time picturing your situation.
Yet let me give you what I think is going on, knowing I might be wrong, wrong and wrong.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rollin stone View Post
Hi, I just started my beginner roller derby boot camp this week. I've only really been roller skating since early June -- I didn't do it much as a kid and I had to teach myself all over again.

I'm definitely better now than I was, I can move around the rink (albeit slower than most) without falling and I can lean into the turns with minor success I am definitely getting a workout and learning to strengthen my inner thigh muscles (that have somehow been ignored after years of yoga).

In any case, we were lined up to do drills cross-rink at the boot camp, and I noticed how some of the skaters were pointing their skates to the side to turn 45 to 90 degrees to get set up for the drills -- basically changing direction without slowly inching your skates around (like I do). I tried doing this last night at the tennis court where I practice, and when I tried to turn my body in the direction of the turn and lift my skate to place it sideways, I did turn a bit, but I almost fell forward doing each time and felt unsteady.

Does anyone have any advice on how to do this? Also, any advice you have on practicing crossovers (i.e. building up the muscles and balance to do it) would be great.
I think what you were watching was normal skaters getting ready to push off and skate hard. You on the other hand want to let it just happen (yoga). yet that does not work.

For Crossovers I would advise you to do a search of SLF. So much is here including my notes that it boggles me. My methods might not work for you yet you have tons of gals that have given great advise.

Yours in Skating, MA/NY Skating Dave
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Old August 25th, 2012, 07:50 PM   #6
SmileySk8s
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Are your trucks very tight? I find that I like a looser front truck (axle with the wheels) because I can actually more easily steer my skate based on the pressure and lean of the ball of my foot, and my body. Maybe play around with it. You want to have it tight enough to maintain control, but not so loose that you are wobbling and the skate steers itself.

Just a thought.
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