Today's lesson was complicated by an overnight dusting of snow, and some black ice that made the drive to the rink "interesting". At Sonya's request, we moved the lesson up to 7:30. Due to the weather the session wasn't too crowded, and at 7:30 it cleared out to just 3 of us.
Since we already had a lesson this week, we agreed to skip the LFI3s today. Yea!
- Outside Mohawks -- I'd asked Sonya in my last lesson to teach me something new, since it seems I've been working the same old stuff for quite some time; so we decided on outside Mohawks. We worked them against the wall first, then on the hockey circle. They went a lot better than I expected (though of course they are very rough!). I need to have a better FO going into these, and I'm tending to bring the back foot too far forward. I think I can fix a lot of these by taking my time more.
- BXOs -- these have improved a lot since the last time we looked at them. Sonya's 3 corrections were 1) Still need to push more from the middle of the blade (I think of pushing from the heel) and curl the ankle on the understroke; 2) need to pull the front shoulder back more, along the circle, and 3) need to look where I'm going (over the hand). I'm pleased that these have improved, but I want them better! If I concentrate and don't rush the tempo I know I can do them well. I need to be more consistent.
- Power-3s/Back Russian stroking -- I mentioned to Sonya that I'd been looking at power-3s so we went and looked at them again, especially the back lobe. The step forward on the power-3s is a bit problematic. The back Russian stroking is a lot of fun and I'm starting to really get the hang of it. Sonya also showed me a drill that's just some BXOs and then turn circles with the weight on the outside foot (like the back lobe). Doing these I really felt my arms turned out of/along the circle. It was interesting.
After my lesson I asked Sonya what my biggest strength and weakness as a skater are right now, in hopes of getting better feedback on what I need to be addressing most. The answers surprised me somewhat. She said my strength is that I have good posture, and I usually go into things with the correct posture instead of having to make an adjustment. My biggest weakness, she said, is that my edges (especially my back edges) are still a bit weak, and this is holding me back. She's right, of course. My problems with LFI3, with FXOs, with Mohawks and step forward are all due to poor edges. I was surprised only because I expected an answer like "fear" or "timidity" or "lack of practice time". So... this is a good thing, since edges are something I can work on and fix. I have lots of edge drills I've been taught and there's no reason I can't spend more time on them.
We also talked a little about our lesson style; Sonya wanted to make sure I was happy with how we set our direction. We've developed a fairly collaborative style; sometimes I'll have a bunch (or some) specific things I'll want to work on, and other times Sonya will. I told her so long as we both make sure that I'm going in the right direction I think it's fine.
Sonya mentioned she'd like to go over the Dutch Waltz with me next week; she think it will help my edges and other stuff. It will be fun to revisit the DW and see how it goes now that I've made some progress.
Labels: Lessons, Sonya