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Slalom Cone Skating Forum Discussions about slalom cone skating, high-jump, and other freestyle trick skating. (Note that vert, street, and park skating discussions should be posted in our aggressive skating forum.)

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Old June 9th, 2014, 01:47 PM   #21
Shaw
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I haven't read the book myself, but I'd wager that it's worth buying.

Naomi was once one of the top slalomers in the world and she's spent years teaching it to skaters. She's also largely responsible for bringing a resurgence of slalom skating to the US, and it's unlikely that skatelog would even have a dedicated slalom forum if it weren't for her efforts. In short, she knows what she's talking about, although I don't know how much the book would help most seasoned slalomers because with most people the main thing preventing them from really improving is not a lack of knowledge or resources but rather a lack of dedication and practice.

Still, there's much to be said about first learning and understanding the physics and theory part of slalom skating which aren't always conveyed in videos (her website covers some of those, I assume her book goes more in-depth), so that you learn things correctly the first time and don't pick up difficult-to-unlearn bad habits along the way. Of course, reading the book might also help motivate people to practice more as well.
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Old June 9th, 2014, 08:27 PM   #22
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Ordered the book after reading first few pages online. It's already made me aware of some simple things (especially as a newer freestyle skater). Simple things that I've overlooked or never paid attention to. First few pages are basically the same as her website. And true, it may not substitute practicing, but if you live where there is no one to help or skate with it's great, sort of an invisible slalom friend.
Naomi teaches physics to kids? Who better to teach skating technique?
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Old June 18th, 2014, 05:08 PM   #23
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Yeah, I've been reading it too, and it's actually very good. Highly recommended.
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Old June 19th, 2014, 09:42 PM   #24
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Agggh. Oh man, after reading the beginning of that book it occurred to me that I can't even do some of the most basic things!!!! I've lost count of my Crazy's, but I'm probably around 500 now. Here's the problem, I still can't do one foot backward! So back to the basics...one foot backward and forward. Also have noticed some people in my area becoming interested in slalom so to encourage it I've put the cones in a highly visible area and set them at 120 again. That way it's not so intimidating. And I will try to start over, kill some of my bad habits. Any way you toss it, even if you're not great at cones, it really does improve your overall skating technique. My new favorite is freestyle dancing in Central Park on my weekends off, slalom too. SO MUCH FUN! Such incredible people. Recently I've been working on my grapevine, but on my toes instead of regular. It's always fun coming up with new stuff.
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Old July 4th, 2014, 02:48 AM   #25
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Glad you're enjoying it.

Yeah, backwards one-foot can be tricky. Of all the fundamental moves, this is the one that gives me the most trouble on my "bad/goofy" foot (though it is plenty easy on the good side with practice).

A while back, I posted a free-form primer on how backwards one foot works with some tips on how to do it well and stylishly. You can find the remnants of that on FB here:

https://www.facebook.com/notes/us-fr...51155779866371

If you read it, be sure to check out the comments section afterward, as there is more discussion on the move there.

Good luck!
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Old July 4th, 2014, 02:55 AM   #26
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Ooops. Turns out that was my primer for backwards criss-cross.

Still, I recommend you check it out, as having a correct backwards criss-cross will go a long way in helping you gain the backwards one foot. Since the proper body positioning is the same for the two tricks.

Once you are awesome at backwards criss-cross, and have your body correct and head pointing correctly OVER the shoulder, you are ready to tackle backwards one foot.

My suggested progression
===================
1) become adept at backward criss-cross, at least on one side
2) then practice and get good at backwards snake, using the same lead foot and head direction (over the same shoulder)
3) then learn the "reaching back snake" - similar to the snake, but your lead foot is lifted and reaches around alternating cones.

4) This reaching motion will give you the correct motions for backwards one foot. Only the lifted foot will never be placed back on the ground. Instead it will move back and forth, changing the direction of your planted foot, thus allowing you to weave around the cones.

Don't become frustrated. It'll come with time.
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Old July 4th, 2014, 02:57 AM   #27
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5) learn trick and lead-tricks on your "bad" side.

I don't think you have to know everything on both sides, but learning the fundamentals both sides will really help your slalom.
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Old July 5th, 2014, 08:42 PM   #28
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This is likely to sound somewhat unrelated, but I think there's a connection, so bear with me.

I'm an okay inline skater and skate mostly for fitness. I've tried some cone skating and I'd like to get better at it. To that end, and for other social reasons, I tried swing dance lessons to get better control of my feet. I wasn't very good at it but I do feel better connected to them.

The other day a friend asked me to go to some salsa lessons and dance afterward. The actual foot movements are almost identical to swing, but they are done in a completely different pattern and beat. Because I'd taken swing lessons, it was challenging for me to find the new beat and rhythm.

How does that apply to cones? I think it connects because you are using your entire body to set up a motion that involves more than just your feet. It's like a wave that you move through your muscular-skeletal system that plays out at your feet, but involves everything else.

Hope that makes sense!
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Old July 7th, 2014, 04:54 PM   #29
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Totally. Starting from trick #1, fish, you should learn to generate momentum from your hips instead of your feet. Slalom isn't just fancy footwork, you really need to know how to utilize the rest of your body as well.
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Old July 9th, 2014, 06:24 AM   #30
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Ok, I'm back a few posts, but just wanted to say thank you to GregT for the advice on one foot backward starting with the back reaching snake. It's working! Also, am now gaining confidence forward one foot! Finally! Again, Naomi's book has helped me to correct so many problems. Highly recommend it. Also, since I rockered my wheels I've been complaining that I can no longer side surf (eagle I think it's called). I got some advice and it works, I'll write it here incase it could help someone else new. Bend your knees so you are super low (it feels ridiculous) and more importantly rotate your leading foot. Once I started moving my leading foot right and left I began to get it and can do it through cones (120cm, but hey, I'm still learning).
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Old July 9th, 2014, 05:10 PM   #31
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Glad it's working out for you!
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Old July 24th, 2014, 02:26 AM   #32
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This thread starter was so great. It really speaks to the heart. When he said 1000 Crazy's, did he mean individually? I thought ONE Crazy would equal going through 20 cones (the first time through 20 cones would equal 1). You see? Also about Naomi's book. I could not recommend it highly enough! It seems that in the past few weeks I've made more progress than I ever could have imagined. And no, I'm not trying to sell you anything. Especially as a beginner it can give you the tools to start linking moves and become more fluid. I can't believe it, it's great, even though I thought, "who learns skating from a book?" Of course you'll want to supplement it with videos.

Another tip from Naomi and skaters here, was to learn it in slow motion, throw on some classical music to remind yourself to go slow. I did that today. I've been working on back reaching snake as a way to get started on backward one foot. It totally worked!!!! Thank you GregT!!!! Awesome!!!
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