Figure Skating Practice Part 1: Fundamentals of Figure Skating
By practicing and mastering the fundamentals of figure skating, you will advance to new skills quicker with more power and precision. Continually practicing figure skating fundamentals, will also help lower the chance of injury’s later in your skating career.
The importance of figure skating fundamentals.
Ask any professional figure skater about the importance of the fundamentals and you will more than likely get the same answer: practicing the fundamentals is a must. Fundamentals are the building blocks to be able to perform at the highest levels possible and to help prevent injury. Apply that to figure skating and your answer is simple. In order for a figure skater to do big jumps and amazing spins, you have to continually practice, and master, the fundamentals of figure skating.
Many skaters sometimes forget the importance of continual training and perfecting, figure skating fundamentals. The importance of practicing the fundamentals, its all about growing and developing as a skater to your full potential. By incorporating the fundamentals into every training session, your body will become stronger and develop proper muscle memory. With strong muscles needed to perform more difficult elements, consistent fundamental practice allows you to learn and master advanced moves with greater ease and proficiency.
Practicing the fundamentals, might not be the most fun part of practice, but doing so will allow you to have more fun because you will have the strength and skills to do the bigger elements. Your new skills will set you apart from the other skaters because you will be a strong skater, reaching higher levels, and placing higher at competitions.
What are figure skating fundamentals?
Figure skating fundamentals are the building blocks of every turn, edge, spin, and jump. They are the basic, smaller moves, you have learned along the way and continue to learn. For example, a 1/2 turn is learned and mastered before a full turn is learned. A single jump is learned and mastered before a double jump. Bunny hops and Mazurka’s are learned and mastered before moving on to more difficult jumps like Loops, Flips, Lutz’s and Axles.
Essentially, the fundamentals of figure skating are the foundation of every skating element. They are the smaler moves that when grouped together, make larger elements. By continually practicing the fundamentals, you will be on the way to more advance spins, turns, and jumps.
The importance of incorporating figure skating fundamentals into your training routine
Understanding the fundamentals of any sport is the key to being successful. You learn some of the fundamentals of figure skating when you first begin to learn figure skating, but there always higher levels of fundamentals to learn and you should never stop practicing them. As you advance to higher figure skating levels, you learn more advance skills. But the fundamentals do not get left behind, they grow with you as you advance to higher levels. By continuously practicing the fundamentals every time you hit the ice, you will build power, strength, precision and confidence in your skating.
You always hear the reference that practice makes perfect, but in figure skating practice makes precision and efficiency. For a academic explanation, your brain builds muscle memory of motions, the more proficient your fundamental skills are, the more muscle memory your brain will have of the movements. Consistent practice will convert short-term muscle memory into automatic muscle and nerve responses that are essential to efficiency of learning new skills. The muscle memory the brain has of the fundamentals of skating will allow your body and brain to tweak and adjust when learning new skills. The muscle memory allows you to learn new skills at a faster speed and to perform advanced moves with greater ease and proficiency.
Simple explanation, if you don’t practice the fundamentals, you will not grow and advance the way you would like because your body will not have developed the strength and muscle memory required to do the bigger, more advanced elements. By incorporating the fundamentals into your practice routines, mastering figure skating elements will come easier and quicker and allow you to reach your goals at a faster pace.
Figure skating fundamentals & injury prevention
The importance of mastering figure skating fundamentals, sets you up for success in your figure skating career in many ways. Mastering the figure skating fundamentals, will help prevent injury’s down the road by strengthening each of the muscles required to do each element. Another aspect of the fundamentals is core strength, proper posture and movements. All three will further help prevent injury.
Correct posture and movement during every skating element is a large part to remember and to practice while on the ice. You can even practice posture and core strength while you are not on the ice. While walking or sitting, remember to sit straight and not slouch. If you are using a mobile phone, be aware of how you are holding your body. Are you hanging your neck off of your shoulders or are you holding the phone high enough to be able to stand with healthy posture? So take care of your body and it will be healthy for a long time. Remember, continuing to practice the fundamental movements and correct posture, allows yourself to strengthen the body and prevent injury’s down in the future.
How injury can happen
Many athletes experience injury by performing tasks they are not ready for physically (strength, training, physical ability) or complete incorrectly due to poor posture. Some injuries you can prevent but some injuries you can’t. So. do everything in your power to try preventing yourself from getting hurt. Some of the injuries you can prevent are injuries to the tendons, ligaments or muscle tears. The main way of preventing these injuries while skating is through proper training from the beginning and consistency. It all leads back to mastering and continuing to practice the fundamentals of figure skating. High-level athletes continuously go back to the basic moments (fundamentals) and basic form to prevent injuries and continuing to advance their skills.
How to perfect figure skating fundamentals
Consistency in repetition is the key to perfecting the fundamentals. Perfecting the fundamentals might not to be the favorite part of your practice time, but it will help you develop the strength and skill you need, to be able to land big jumps and amazing spins. Becoming proficient in the fundamentals comes from discipline and self-motivation. Making sure you are going 100% all the time and focusing on the task at hand. A lot of time you are on the ice with out a coach, the Skate 2 Great Pocket Coach™ has complete training routines with easy-to-use checklists, to help you to hold your self accountable, making sure you execute each element before continuing on to the next.
Are you serious about figure skating? Do you want to skate to your full potential?
With the Skate 2 Great Pocket Coach you master skills and elements at each new level but you continue to work on the fundamentals and build off the new skills you have just learned. Paying attention to the details of fundamentals provides ease and grace in advancing your skills.
At Skate 2 Great we recognize the importance of mastering the fundamentals of figure skating to help prevent injury when learning and advancing to new skills. The fundamentals are the building blocks of your skating career, not becoming proficient at the fundamentals is like not tying your skates before you get on the ice.
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