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Group Skates Discussions about night skates, organized skate tours, skating party weekends, and similar group social skating events.

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Old November 3rd, 2009, 01:38 AM   #1
Skater4ever
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Default Backwards-Good or Bad?

I have a question: When you want to go backwards, and there are A LOT of people what do you do?Do you either do it or not do it because I do do it but usually when not a lot of people are where I'm at. Also when you go backwards which way do you look?I look right because I stay near the wall when I go backwards and we go in a leftward direction.
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Old November 3rd, 2009, 07:42 AM   #2
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When you say leftward ,I presume you mean anticlockwise ?
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Old November 3rd, 2009, 10:58 AM   #3
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I generally wont do it when there are a lot of people around, especially little kids.

When I have the opportunity (usually when most of the little kids are eating party food or playing limbo in the middle of the rink) I generally look over my what will be the inside shoulder depending on where I want to go.

When Im going down the straights, I look over both shoulders (one for a few strides then the other), it provides a better field of vision and helps to keep me in a straight line.

Im not there to show off. If I have a big gap, Ill pivot and go backwards for a bit, then turn back around when I get to a group and pass them going forwards.

There are always a few who are just there to show off, skating backwards all the time, zig zagging the crowd and scaring beginners.

I think there is a fine line between practising and being a tosser. Im sure you will find it.

As for position, I find the edges of the rink have the greatest population of beginners (wall huggers). The middle/inner circle is where the faster people go, so its more appropriate, in my mind, to do the backwards thing amongst people who are more comfortable with it
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Old November 3rd, 2009, 12:41 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by scubask8tr View Post
When you say leftward ,I presume you mean anticlockwise ?
Yes, I do.
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Old November 3rd, 2009, 12:45 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Curious Cat View Post
I generally wont do it when there are a lot of people around, especially little kids.

When I have the opportunity (usually when most of the little kids are eating party food or playing limbo in the middle of the rink) I generally look over my what will be the inside shoulder depending on where I want to go.

When Im going down the straights, I look over both shoulders (one for a few strides then the other), it provides a better field of vision and helps to keep me in a straight line.

Im not there to show off. If I have a big gap, Ill pivot and go backwards for a bit, then turn back around when I get to a group and pass them going forwards.

There are always a few who are just there to show off, skating backwards all the time, zig zagging the crowd and scaring beginners.

I think there is a fine line between practising and being a tosser. Im sure you will find it.

As for position, I find the edges of the rink have the greatest population of beginners (wall huggers). The middle/inner circle is where the faster people go, so its more appropriate, in my mind, to do the backwards thing amongst people who are more comfortable with it
Yes, and my friend intentionally shows off to act cool, he dosen't go backwards as much as I do (I just like to do it for fun) but then tries to do things with his feet that anyone can do! He thinks he's great!
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Old November 20th, 2009, 10:46 PM   #6
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as you will find out....your friend will fall hard one day. might not be because he messed up, might just be a kid cuts him off, but it will happen. And then he will grow up a little, if he can get up.

I skate backwards a lot. I enjoy it, but I am wise when it comes to bunches of people.. I maintain a safe distance and often find myself on the inside of the rink away from the wall, as beginner traffic is usually at the wall.
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Old November 22nd, 2009, 05:53 AM   #7
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I'm assumming your question has to do with "all skates" during public sessions at a rink. Yes?

If so, coming from an era when backwards rexing was pretty much an art form I genuinaly group backwards skaters into 3 categories.

Group #1 are your old school "rexers" or younger advanced backwards skaters. These skaters are people who can cross over with either of their legs equally, weave/lean in either direction, and frequently look over both shoulders to check their blind spots. These skaters are easy to spot in a crowd because their moves are smooth and enjoyable to watch. If I'm sharing the floor with them I usually pay them little attention because I know they are skating within their abilities and can easily avoid most obstacles.

Group #2 are your imtermediate skaters both young and old. These are your skaters who are decent at crossing in one direction, but not so good crossing in the other. Skaters in this group usually limit their backwards skating to dedicated numbers (backwards skate) or the beginning or end of the session when crowds are light. They usually skate somewhat slower and give a wide berth to others when passing. Often these skaters are only good for a handful of laps during an all skate before they turn back around and go forwards again for a little while. If I'm sharing a floor with these skaters I usually tend to keep an eye open for them when I think they might be coming by because I understand they are trying to improve their skills and I'd genuinely feel bad if I accidentally ran then into a wall.

And then we have the next group....

Group #3 Which are your backwards skaters who think they are better than they really are, but can never be told differently. These tend to be your younger males who spend half the night weaving thru the crowd playing tag with their friends and the other half turning an all skate into their own private backwards skate. I dub these folk "one trick ponies" bacause they pretty much just do one foot move over and over. However, what they lack in skill they more than make up for in enthusiasm and they have no difficulty using that single foot move to create a completely new style of skating I call backwards speed skating. The less dangerous ones tend to stay along the wall, looking over their LEFT shoulder pretty much oblivious to what's going on around them. They almost always skate beyond their abilities and stand out in a crowd not for their skill, but bacause their footwork leaves you wonering what song they are listening to. The worst of the bunch will not hesitate to weave in and out of the crowd barely missing everyone they pass. And when they fall, which is often, they usually roll around on the floor laughing, for long periods of time to make sure EVERYONE sees them, including the opposite sex which usually stops and adds to the roadblock. Even worse, at least once a night they're good for blind siding some unsuspecting rental jammer who winds up leaving early with an icepack on their head. These are the the skaters I actually enjoy watching crash (or running into a wall) And the harder the better. And when sharing the floor with them I have no choice but to skate defensively because they're both irritating as well as a rolling hazard. I cut this group no slack whatsoever either on the floor or off.


So to answer you question... I'd ask what group do you think you are closest to being in? How crowded is your session? kids? No kids? The decision is ultimately yours, but then again, so is the responsibility to not ruin someone else's good time.
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Old December 1st, 2009, 07:48 PM   #8
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Amen to everything BackofthePack said!!!
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Old December 1st, 2009, 08:39 PM   #9
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Backwards - bad if there's someone right behind you. Good if there's not!
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Old January 8th, 2010, 05:08 AM   #10
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You mean....your rink allows you to go backwards whenever you want??

Serioulsy...I only WISH our rink would do that. We're only allowed to backwards skate when it *is* a backward skate.

Down side: It's 2 songs per session, even if the session is 6 hours.

Up Side: They do it in "groups"...12 and unders, then 13 and up...and for the 13 and up crowd, there MIGHT be 6 people out there, maybe 8 or 9 if the rink managers friends/kids are there, not including the guards (who usually stand by a wall to watch in case of falls - they usually tend to be more serious when you're going backwards).

As for looking over your shoulder...I typically look over my left in the turns/right in the straightaways...though that also depends on who's on the floor. Skaters new to backwards, I tend to watch out a little more - alternating which shoulder I look over more often. Though if most/all of us are the better backwards skaters, well...we know who's out there and where they normally skate (towards the middle, center or wall) so we can *almost* avoid each other with our eyes closed now....not that any of us ever would close our eyes, of course!!!! LOL

Oh, and my rink, general direction is counter-clockwise (or "anticlockwise" as pretty much everyone but us in the USA say). Though we have requested, and gotten, a few "Backwards in the Opposite Direction" skates now and then.
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Old January 8th, 2010, 05:33 AM   #11
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Alot of skaters go backwards at my rink all the time. All skate, blackout skate, jam skate, we even have some seriously fast inline speed skaters that do it backwards during the speed skate. I have only been to one rink that didn't allow backwards during an all skate. that was skate country in buford ga. The guard said " you can't skate backwards" ... I looked at me feet then looked back and him and siad "sure I can, I'm doing it right now!" and he didn't think it was funny LOL so anyway, 45 minutes into the session I left and have never been back. The best I have seen as far as a backwards skate is at A-Towns rink, Skateland in Anderson SC. They have a backwards then a backwards backwards and A-town and G-ville are some of the best at it. I'm gonna introduce the backwards backwards at my rink this friday since I am now the friday DJ. It should be fun
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Old January 8th, 2010, 05:47 AM   #12
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What is "backwards backwards" ?
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Old January 8th, 2010, 01:29 PM   #13
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They have a backwards then a backwards backwards...
"Backwards backwards"? That wouldn't be backwards in the opposite direction, would it??

We're still trying to make that an "every session" thing. Or at least...an "every Sat. morn. session thing" at least.

It was slowly catching on before we took a 6 month hiatus from the rink, hoping if I beg enough, they'll re-introduce it...and keep doing it.
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Old January 8th, 2010, 01:48 PM   #14
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which rink do you go to in ohio, for i would like to avoid it.

i skate backwards as well as i do fowards, hockey has a way of doing that pretty fast. at public sessions, i probably skate more backwards than fowards..i find it relaxing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 7Skaters View Post
You mean....your rink allows you to go backwards whenever you want??

Serioulsy...I only WISH our rink would do that. We're only allowed to backwards skate when it *is* a backward skate.

Down side: It's 2 songs per session, even if the session is 6 hours.

Up Side: They do it in "groups"...12 and unders, then 13 and up...and for the 13 and up crowd, there MIGHT be 6 people out there, maybe 8 or 9 if the rink managers friends/kids are there, not including the guards (who usually stand by a wall to watch in case of falls - they usually tend to be more serious when you're going backwards).

As for looking over your shoulder...I typically look over my left in the turns/right in the straightaways...though that also depends on who's on the floor. Skaters new to backwards, I tend to watch out a little more - alternating which shoulder I look over more often. Though if most/all of us are the better backwards skaters, well...we know who's out there and where they normally skate (towards the middle, center or wall) so we can *almost* avoid each other with our eyes closed now....not that any of us ever would close our eyes, of course!!!! LOL

Oh, and my rink, general direction is counter-clockwise (or "anticlockwise" as pretty much everyone but us in the USA say). Though we have requested, and gotten, a few "Backwards in the Opposite Direction" skates now and then.
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Old January 8th, 2010, 02:00 PM   #15
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which rink do you go to in ohio, for i would like to avoid it.
Ohio Skate...there's one in Maumee and one in Toledo.

The one in Maumee is where I grew up skating (and still go to now). The one in Toledo is MUCH closer (only 5 minutes) but it's gone to crap since the original owners are dealing with it less and less (those who manage it now want to buy it).

I've actually never been to a rink that DID allow backwards skating "whenever". Granted, in my life, I've only been to a total of around 4 or 5 rinks, so I'm used to it, it doesn't really bother me...though it would be nice to be able to.

The Maumee rink does have Adult Nights every now and then, though...and during the Adult Nights, you can pretty much do whatever the heck you want (guards are out, but people are more respectful, so the enforcement of rules isn't really needed much). They also have a Thursday 10 AM - Noon session that's adults only...not sure how that's run as I've never been able to get over there at that time, though. Hopefully one day soon I'll be able to, just to check it out.
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Old January 8th, 2010, 04:23 PM   #16
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Default Backwards in the Reverse Skating Direction / etc

Hi 73SkaterGirl,

Quote:
Originally Posted by skatergirl73 View Post
What is "backwards backwards" ?
I have seen backwards called out - - many ways.

Backwards Skate
Backwards in the Normal Skating Direction >CounterCWise (to the left)
(The most common call out to my experience)
Backwards in the Opposite Skating Direction >ClockWise
Backwards in the Reverse Skating Direction >ClockWise (to the right)
Backwards in the counter clockwise direction
etc, etc,

Normal to most of my experience backwards is done in the Normal Skating Direction. SO "Backwards Backwards would mean in The Opposite Skating Direction.

I have thus far only found one place that does things different:
(I am sure there are more)
When it calls for a backwards skate everyone goes in the opposite direction (CW) so for them "backwards backwards" would mean backwards in the normal skating direction. This is actually better for some newbies.

Since many young people now, no longer call tell time on the centuries old clock 'ClockWise' is sometimes difficult for some young people past about 1975 to understand. And then of course counter clockwise is even more confusing. Ah!! the Digitial USA Cultural Divide.

Yours in Skating, MA/NY Skating Dave
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Old January 8th, 2010, 04:33 PM   #17
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Hi 7,

Quote:
Originally Posted by 7Skaters View Post
You mean....your rink allows you to go backwards whenever you want??

Serioulsy...I only WISH our rink would do that. We're only allowed to backwards skate when it *is* a backward skate. o - o -
I have run into a few over the years that stop backwards skating on a normal ALL Skate. The last one I heard about, was from a 40's good skater that had to leave it after years when they changed the rule to no backwards, no spins, etc. The best he could figure is that someone hit their head and the rink Owner got paranoid. The Rink Owner is not a skater and is 3rd or maybe 2nd generation.

Normally with a rink owner or manager that knows skating they can train the skate guards to stop or redirect problem backwards skaters. Moving the beginners to the center circles area on crowded days does wonders.

Yours in Skating, MA/NY Skating Dave

Last edited by MANY_SkatingDave; January 8th, 2010 at 04:48 PM. Reason: Removing an extra ending Salutation
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Old January 8th, 2010, 06:06 PM   #18
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Quote:
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Hi 7,




Normally with a rink owner or manager that knows skating they can train the skate guards to stop or redirect problem backwards skaters. Moving the beginners to the center circles area on crowded days does wonders.
The backwards skaters are usually the better skaters...if the skate guards keep things flowing smoothly there shouldn't be a problem. If they lets kids skate recklessly, play tag, cut across the rink...then backwards (and forwards) skating is dangerous.
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Old January 8th, 2010, 06:27 PM   #19
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Quote:
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Since many young people now, no longer call tell time on the centuries old clock 'ClockWise' is sometimes difficult for some young people past about 1975 to understand. And then of course counter clockwise is even more confusing. Ah!! the Digitial USA Cultural Divide.
Kids do still understand "opposite", though. Heck, they learn that in Kindergarten. So an "Opposite Backwards Skate" (or even just "Opposite Skate" - normal direction) should be easy enough for all to understand.

If I'd heard "Backwards backwards" at a rink before this thread, it would have confused the heck outta me. LOL

Quote:
Originally Posted by MANY_SkatingDave View Post
Normally with a rink owner or manager that knows skating they can train the skate guards to stop or redirect problem backwards skaters. Moving the beginners to the center circles area on crowded days does wonders.
The rink I go to was built by skaters...competed, kids competed, now the grandkids are competing...but, sadly, they still don't enforce the rules much unless it's the same kid doing the same thing for over half the session.

I would SO love to manage that rink for a weekend, just to show them what COULD be done, thanks to all the suggestions and such I've seen on here. *sigh*
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Old February 23rd, 2010, 03:48 AM   #20
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My advice for backwards skating is to keep everything within your ability. I have no problem back skating through crowds and high speeds, but you might not. If you feel nervous or unsure when you come up on a crowd and you don't feel like you can avoid them, turn around.

Also, learn to stop backwards. In those emergency situations you might not have enough time to turn around and stop, so stopping while going backwards might be your only option.
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