Gordon's Sk8er Boi Blog

My adventures as an adult male figure skater in Tucson, Arizona Portland, Oregon Chandler, Arizona.

Tuesday, February 28, 2017


I skated the 5:30 p.m. FS at Chandler as usual.  About 13 skaters and 6 coaches.

Practiced the usual stuff -- edges, stroking, then power-3s, FXOs and some spins too.  Just okay.  I'm not sure if it's the time of day (after a day of work), the ice (not so great after 4 hours of FS), the (relatively) crowded session or just that I'm still trying to get back into things, but I feel aimless and unenthusiastic.  It doesn't help that I am so horribly out of shape right now. Yuck.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Yerba Buena!

I was in San Francisco this weekend and couldn't leave without trying out the famous Yerba Buena rink downtown.

I got there about noon, but they don't let you in the rink early (session was 12:30 - 2) so I had to wait until 12:15 to get in.  $12 for the session.  My friend Joanna R came about 12:45 and we skated and chatted for a while (we went to lunch after, yay!).  I had to get off around 1:15 as my ankle was really bothering me (I had walked several miles the day before, which was dumb of me).  I mostly worked on stroking and crossovers and a little bit of edges.  I realized I'd not skated a public session in literally years.

This is a beautiful rink!  The northern wall is all glass and there is lots of wonderful light.  Ice is fairly soft so it got torn up fairly quickly.  All in all it was a fun experience :-).

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

3s & Spins

I skated the Gilbert adult skate for my lesson with Holly, as usual.  I warmed up with stroking, edges, some crossovers and 3s.

Today's lesson:
  • stroking -- still trying to get my speed back. It's actually not THAT bad, just that I'm not willing to do it for very long.  Grr.
  • 3s -- much more time on these.  They are actually a lot better, even the RFO3.  We didn't try any FI3s.
  • spins -- we were going to try these in the harness, but the harness is only for kids sizes and won't fit me.  Grrr.  So I just did some from the windup.  Windup is not bad, actually.  Spins were not really happening, but I had low expectations.  I was mostly happy I made myself do them.
All in all not too bad.  No lesson w/Lynne tomorrow as I'm traveling.

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Tuesday, February 21, 2017


I skated the 5:30 p.m. FS at Chandler as usual.  Worked on stroking, crossovers, and a bit on power-3s and back edges.  I'm still very tentative and timid, it's really irking me.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Preliminary Test, Serpentines

My figures lesson with Lynne on the Chandler Ice Café.  Great to see all my friends at this session but it's a bit more crowded that it used to be!  8 skaters and 3 coaches.

I warmed up with edges and FO/FI8.

Today's lesson:

  • FI8 -- first one was a bit rough but after that, better.  Initial push is still a bit weak and I really need to fix it so I'm not rocking forward on the blade for the first part of my circle, esp. on the first one.
  • FO8 -- Meh.  The first set were pretty bad.  Second set much better.  It's mostly that things that I always remembered before (like sticking that left shoulder back) I don't remember automatically anymore.
  • waltz-8 --  I fell twice on the RFO3!  Lol.  So silly, that slow motion fall because I'm too far forward after the 3.  Some of the LFO3s were nice, at least.  Pretty much the same as last week, the step forward (that's always been a problem!) I lean outside the circle too much and/or it's too slow so I cut into the circle.  Grr.
  • serpentines -- just like 2 minutes on these.  The LFIO was not so great, very skiddy and I anticipated the change of edge too much.  RFIO was not bad, actually.  Pushes are weak.

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Tuesday, February 14, 2017


I skated the 5:30 p.m. FS at Chandler as usual.   I had an okay skate, I worked on stroking, crossovers, and a bit on power-3s.  Ugh.  Nothing exciting just some solid practice.


My lesson with Holly on the Gilbert adult skate.  As usual, nice ice and just 5-6 skaters.  I warmed up with stroking and edges.

Today's lesson:

  • stroking -- just trying to feel the speed.  Not too bad.
  • slaloms -- ugh. These get me tired really quickly.  Just one lap.
  • 3s -- we spent some time on RFO3 since I hadn't really done any.
  • power-3s -- we had talked about goals since I'm not going to compete until November (Autumn Antics) and so we agreed that going back to work on Bronze Moves is a good step.  So we worked on the power-3s.  Holly wants me to try to keep the lobes shallower, and don't start the BXO too soon.  For the first time in ages, they weren't too bad, actually.

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Thursday, February 09, 2017

Preliminary Test, BO Edges

My figures lesson with Lynne on the Chandler Ice Café.  Relatively crowded today, 7 skaters!

I warmed up with forward edges and BI edges and scribed some circles.

Today's lesson:

  • FI8 -- not too bad, though of course not as good as it was before my injury.
  • FO8 -- still kind of weak.  Push to the right foot is weak and I don't turn my foot out enough.  Some definite problems with upper body control and keeping it quiet.
  • waltz-8 -- Yuck.  Most of my 3s are not so great, and I'm not holding the exit well.  The BO edge is actually not bad -- I'm doing a good job of holding it around.  Step forward still weak as always, especially on the R side.  Still for where I'm at it's not so bad.
  • BO edges -- I had not worked on these since I came back.  Actually pretty good!  I was so pleased!  Initial push was decent and flow was good.  Lynne reminded me to keep my free foot in front.

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Wednesday, February 08, 2017


I skated the Gilbert adult skate today.  I was supposed to have a lesson, but Holly got pulled into a big meeting at the rink so it didn't happen.

I spent my time working on crossovers, 3s, edges and stroking.  I am getting a little better every time but it's slow and frustrating.

Tuesday, February 07, 2017


I skated the 5:30 p.m. FS at Chandler as usual.  And as usual the first 15 minutes were not too pleasant, but it did get better after that.  I had a hard time making myself do FXOs.  Yuck.  Also worked a little on 3s and just general stroking. Right now I'm trying to be patient with myself and just get myself back in the groove a bit.

Thursday, February 02, 2017

BI Edges, Waltz-8

My figures lesson with Lynne on the Chandler Ice Café.  I warmed up with FO and FI edges, then did some FO8 and FI8.  After that I got brave and worked on BI edges.

Today's lesson:

  • BI edges -- my push ain't what it used to be!  It's much weaker, and back to struggling to get that initial push to be perpendicular to the axis and on a BI edge to start.  After the first lobe, though, these weren't bad.  We worked to make sure I keep the upper body set and quiet and don't turn out of the circle.
  • FI8 --  a little rough to start, but better than last week.
  • FO8 -- actually, really good!  I had one bad push onto the LFO but other than that I was reallyh happy with these.
  • Waltz-8 -- eeep.  My 3s are not so great.  These were pretty ukky to start with, but they did improve after a bit.  A long way to go on these as I've lost a lot of control and my "list" of things I need to watch isn't really in my head anymore like it used to be.  Needs lots of work, but I was pleased to have gotten back to these.

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Wednesday, February 01, 2017


My lesson with Holly on the Gilbert adult skate.  I just had about 10 minutes to warm up.  4 skaters, nice ice as usual.

Today's lesson:

  • stroking -- just a lap.  I'm a bit faster.
  • F slalom -- just half a lap. Okay.
  • BXOs -- I told Holly we needed to get me working on skating backwards since I've been... reluctant to do so.  So we started with BXOs, working to de-scrape them.  I tend to lean out of the circle when I get going fast (a fear thing, I assume) which makes it harder.  Holly made me cross and hold, which did definitely help (and was kinda scary). I need to work this more.  There was some definite improvement though.
  • BI edges -- we did an exercise of just skating shallow alternating BI edges down the line.  This actually was not too bad.
  • B flat -- (always wanted an excuse to type that :-) ) Same setup as above but just holding a backward flat.  Ugh!  Left foot was okay but right foot, could not hold a straight line.  We worked it for a bit and it got better, but I'm still getting way up on my toe and couldn't make myself set back on it.  Urph.
  • LFO3 -- we had just a few minutes left so we worked on 3s, just the LFO3 as it turned out.  With Holly holding my hand I can do a really nice 3 with the free leg close... without, though, I revert to my usual problem with my free leg popping out after the turn, and not really coming "down" in the knee after the turn.  So at least I know it's possible for me to fix.
All in all a really good lesson and I feel I'm making good progress.

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