Gothetarian

Gothetarian

Gothetarian

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My daughter graduated from high school today. I'm so very proud. I qas going to livestream the ceremony but couldn't figure out how to do that from phone so I just recorded for upload.

I have been struggling with trying to get my Two-foot to one-foot spin, the one element I need to pass Adult 6 and move into the Free Skate program. I recorded my efforts at today's public skate session and...it's been a challenge.

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My old skates were losing their support causing severe ankle pain after relatively short sessions. It was time to get new ones. Unfotunately, new skates take getting used to. Here's my first venture onto the ice with the new skates.

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One of the concerns as we get older is that our bodies don't "bounce" like they did when we were 18. We get hurt more easily, and injuries take longer to heal. Some simple precautions can minimize the time you're off the ice due to injuries.

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Just started working on continuous back outside and back inside edges along a line. Definitely need more work but overall it went surprisingly well.

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In this case "traveling", moving across the ice while spinning, is not a good thing. Oh well. More practice.

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In order to move forward in my skating, that is to move beyond the Adult Basics classes that I'm near completing, I have to learn to be comfortable going backward. So many of the techniques in figure skating start from moving backward on the ice that I have to just get more comfortable skating backward than I have been. And there's no way but practice to get comfortable, which means being willing to be uncomfortable doing it until one is so used to it that it's no longer uncomfortable.

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One of the most common complaints I hear from people, particularly older people, who are interested in skating but afraid of trying is "my ankles are too weak." I've had enough issues with my own ankles, that I fully understand that concern. Here, I show you the means of solving most "my ankles are too weak" problems. So if Ice skating is something you want to try but are afraid because of possible ankle problems, go on and give it a try.

Note, none of this applies if you have injuries or other medical problems that affect your ankle stability. Consult with your doctor before engaging in any strenuous sport such as Ice Skating.

Toe loop tutorial by the incomparable Coach Julia: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6a3URzAHPGQ

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This is the first time I've tried editing clips together along with commentary using the software I have. I use Bandicam with my webcam and Shotcut as my video editing software.

In any case, this is my progress of two and a half years of figure skating lessons.

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This was I tended as a continuation of my benchmarking before the next round of classes start. However, things didn't go as planned.

Started doing spirals. The idea was to do one leg going across, then the other leg coming back. Then I was going to do lunges, same way, but I didn't get that far.

Coming back on the spiral, just before I reentered the frame, I caught the toe picks of my right skate on the ice. I managed to recover and avoid face-planting, but over corrected and took the fall you see here stressing g my right ankle

I did a slow lap of the ice after picking myself up and the ankle was stable. Nevertheless, I called it a day just to be safe. There'll be other days. Better not to push too hard now and risk a real injury.

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The plan for the day was to take some video of some key techniques that I'm working on for the next round of classes, specifically the things I need to be ready to go into the Free Skate classes.

This set was two-foot to one-foot spins. To be honest, I've done better, but this gives me a baseline to compare progress as I continue to work on it.

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A couple of weeks ago, my instructor introduced us to the first two jumps learned in figure skating--side toe hops (also called side toe taps and thus the title of this video), and bunny hops. she just had us walk through them, not trying to jump yet. I've shown that in previous videos.

Well, today, I felt confident enough to actually try jumping the side toe hops. it wasn't much, and certainly not pretty, but I did get both skates off the ice at the same time. And I landed on my feet and stayed upright.

That makes today my first ever ice skating jumps, what will be the first of many.

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While I've mostly been doing well, this video from a few days ago shows I was just having a bad day with my two-foot spins. This is a technique I've actually passed for level and I'm working on one foot spins. However, this time it just wasn't happening.

Everybody has bad days from time to time. The thing to do is keep plugging, don't let them discourage you, and work through to the better days. If you keep at it eventually your "bad days" will be better than your best days used to be.

In many ways this is a metaphor for life, not that I usually get philosophical here.

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There are two beginning jumps that are part of the "basic" progression. They serve as a foundation for learning to jump in figure skating. They're not part of the adult progression but since I plan to continue with free skate, my Instructor started us on them in the last class. At this point we're not even trying to jump, just stepping through to get used to landing solidly on the toe picks. Because of the stiffness of the boot, that's actually harder than it appears until you get used to it. I was afraid, at first, that I might be "overbooted" (a boot too stiff for my current level). However, things went better in today's practice.

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Getting a bit less clumsy on these. Still need to work on flexibility, particularly for the spiral. Not getting the free leg high enough.

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In previous videos I spun clockwise. I thought that was my natural direction, but lately I think it was more a matter of my being better with the "pump" using my left foot. As my pumps, including those using my right foot, have been coming along, I find I spin more easily counterclockwise, typical of right-handed skaters.

The spins are much better than they were, 2 1/2 to three revolutions before coming to a halt. And that's with deliberately coming in slowly, working on form before trying for speed.

A couple of problems I've noticed. I'm dropping my right shoulder and instead of completing the pump with the right foot, I tend to drag my left back to meet it. Need to work on that.

As usual, I have sound turned off to avoid copyright claims on the background music of the venue.

My instructor just introduced spirals and lunges into class. Spirals aren't technically required for the adult progression but are necessary to go o. to free skate. I did lunges once before, well enough to pass them for level, but clearly that was an exceptionally good day. This shows where I am right now so we can compare how they improve with training.

Finally recovered from the concussion (auto accident in January) so I'm able to return fully to the ice, including spins.

Much improvement in my two-foot spins. Today at least, I was still having a bit of a problem breaking forward at the waist. I've done better but I'm averaging a lot better than I used to. Notice also that I've switched my spin direction. Earlier I thought I spun better clockwise like left-handed skaters usually do, but I think that was simply that I was better able to "pump" with my left foot than my right. As my general stroking and pumping improved I overcame that weakness and found that I spin marginally better counter-clockwise so that's what I've been doing.

One thing that was a big help was starting off-ice one foot spin training using a spinner as described by Coach Julia in her YouTube Channel. You can find her video here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OHe0rpyKPEE

I recently had to replace the clutch in my 2009 Kia Specta. No great issue, it was just old and worn out. Well, a few days ago the clutch failed. I thought maybe it was a failure in the slave or master cylinder but...no. It looks like the throwout bearing has come disengaged from the pressure plate.

In the Kia, the clutch is a "pull type". After installing clutch and pressure plate, you install the throwout bearing on the transmission input shaft, making sure the forks are engaged in the "ears" on the bearing. After you reconnect the transmission and clutch to the engine block you work the actuator backwards to engage the throwout bearing with the pressure plate. You have to do it that way because once the two are connected it's permanent. The throwout bearing locks into place and, well, I haven't figured out how to release it from the clutch I removed so it's pretty permanent. There is no way to install it "wrong" where it works at all. If it works at all, it was done right.

After the failure, I had the car towed home and dug into it a bit. I was able to disconnect the slave cylinder and force the actuator lever backward. I felt the throwout bearing engage with the pressure plate which was a surprise. And it seemed to hold against hand pressure anyway. However, on reconnecting the slave cylinder and pressing the clutch pedal I found once more that the clutch would not release.

The vendor of the clutch "suggested" that maybe the reason I lost the ability to shift as a result of a problem with the master cylinder or slave cylinder. However, as this video shows, the slave cylinder does move in response to depressing the clutch pedal. But note that it first makes a big move, then doesn't return to the original position. It's the "pull" of the pressure plate operating through the throwout bearing, fork, and lever that pushes the shaft of the slave cylinder back into place. It's not getting that force.

Clearly, the problem is with the pressure plat..

I was unable to practice for most of December because of being quarantined with COVID. So, in addition to learning a new technique I'm having to rebuild my stamina after the layoff.

I just started working on the inside three turn this past week. This is an early practice session. It's better than my early practice sessions with the outside three turn but still needs a lot of work. One of the things I noted here is that I'm back to the forward body lean. Got to work on that.

I'm making slow progress on beginning Two-Foot spins. A lot of videos on learning them start with stepping around (kind of like the "forward marching" in the very first classes, only pivoting in place rather than marching across the ice). The class I'm in doesn't donit.that way. Instead, they use a half circle pump "in place" to get going.

This set is better than my previous set. I managed to keep my body straighter, which helped.

There's a "sweet spot" at the front of the blade, just behind the toe picks, that you want to be on. When you're there, you spin more freely with less friction slowing you down. Keeping your contact point there while trying to control everything else involved can be a bit of a challenge. I suspect it will be like learning to ride a bike. You get it wrong, get it wrong, get it wrong, and then it's just there. At least I hope so.

This is one technique where I fall a lot more, not so much in this video, but with fair regularity. And at my age falls hurt a lot more than when I was 18.

This is a summary of my progress the weekend of 11/21/2020. I've been working on forward outside three turns, forward inside Mohawks, and Forward consecutive edges (both outside and inside). I've also been working on beginning two-foot spins but that will be a separate video since it was captured "portrait" rather than "landscape".

One of the big things I have been working on has been my posture while skating. I have a problem with too much (as in "any") forward lean in my upper body. This is something that is typical for me. I do it while walking and standing. It's just the habit I've fallen into since I was young. There are a lot of things in basic skating that, while not ideal, you can get away with that. However as I get into more involved stuff you can't. Spins are a big example of that. So I've been working on that. Glancing at my reflection in the glass as I pass, noting my posture and trying to fix it and working on that until (maybe, I hope) it finally feels natural. And it's important because I think a lot of my progress will be stalled until I can.

Normally I do my work on edges during the evening sessions. I those sessions the rink has the main lights off and "Disco Lighting" running. I'm not about to try things like three-times Mohawks, and spins (the other techniques I'm currently working on) with that flashing lighting confusing things.

I did one run here during the afternoon session to show improvement since last time. one of the main problems, as with the spins, is that forward body lean.

I think.i need to figure out some way of getting real time feedback on posture. I can't see it whole skating and I need some way to get it right so I can learn what "right" feels like

well, that could have gone better. What's odd is that I'm mostly right handed (it's complicated) but I spin best to the right, reversed from most right-handers. one clear error I'm making here is bending forward at the waist. Need to work on keeping my body straight. That's actually a perennial problem with my skating. if I try to straighten up more, I feel like I'm going.to overbalance backward.

My daughter was6able to get back on the ice since the last video I posted. Even so, it's starting to come back for her.

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Created 1 year, 9 months ago.

41 videos

Category Vlogging

The Gothetarian, Libertarian Goth. I'll be discussing matters related to gothic lifestyle and music, as well as politics, economics, history, and current events. A special feature will be "Goth on Ice" where I track my progress in learning ice skating, my exercise of choice of late. I intend to continue classes from basic skating to figure skating as far as my body will take me.