Okay, maybe the title is a little dramatic, since it’s not like I was away forever or that I had to start completely from scratch… I’ve been back to skating for two months now, although only once or twice a week and still taking it easy. I haven’t resumed lessons yet, although I plan to in the near future; I’d wanted to be back at lessons by now, but my coach was busy through the holidays and so was I.
In the meantime, I’ve been getting my feet back under me, and getting more comfortable being back on the ice. I was surprised at how quickly some skills came back, and how some just… didn’t. I started out tentatively with stroking and basic skills, then gradually added freestyle elements as I felt comfortable. After several sessions of feeling awkward and wobbly, I started feeling stronger with basic edges and stroking, which was a relief. I practiced from the pre-bronze moves in the field and then worked my way up through bronze and silver. Right now I feel like I’d be able to pass the bronze moves test again, but I’d fail the silver.
I held off on jumping for a while but resumed working on spins, and they were just awful — it was like I was back in Learn to Skate, trying to hang on to more than a revolution or two before wobbling out. I was surprised that the backspin was easier to get back than the forward scratch spin (which is still AWOL), although I suppose my backspins had been more reliable before the injury. Even at my best, I struggled with the forward entry, and now that I have no power or speed, it’s even more evident that the basic technique is lacking. For some reason I find the backspin entry much simpler and I trust that edge more going into the hook. I suppose the silver lining is that now I really do have to find the right technique and not just muscle through the forward spins.
I returned to jumping very very cautiously, which was a double-edged sword, since jumping with no speed or power is so hard. I’m sad to see that my loops are the worst off, because my right (landing) hip is the weak one and I’m afraid of twisting it or putting too much pressure on it, so I’ve started bailing on a lot of attempts. I want to figure out how to continue to practice them without getting into that pattern and learning bad muscle memory! Flips and lutzes… are a work in progress. For whatever reason they feel safer to attempt (for my bad hip) than loops, so I am practicing them, but they’re just not there yet.
Lots to work on.