The first thing taught to figure skaters is falling down and getting back up. Next they are taught to move across the ice by marching, gliding, swizzling. Of course at the same time they are taught to stop. After learning these figure skating basics, it helps to understand the meaning of the skating vocabulary words below. When your coach uses these terms it helps if you already have a familiarity of their meaning.
Edges - The two sides of the skate blade on either side of the grooved center. There is an inside edge the edge on the inner side of the leg and an outside edge that on the outer side of the leg. There is a forward and backward for each edge, equaling a total of four different edges.
Glide - A glide in figure skating is a one or two footed movement across the ice, either forward or backward.
Lobes - A lobe is a pattern made on the ice by an edge or steps, forming an arc of a circle that starts and finishes on an axis. In other words it is pattern that is a half circle.
Stroking - Stroking in figure skating is a method of moving forward or backward. The skater alternates pushing off using the inside blade of the skate. Even advanced skaters begin their skating session with a few laps of stroking around the rink.
Crossovers - Figure skating crossovers are an important method of gaining speed and turning corners in which skaters cross one foot over the other. There are both forward and backward crossovers. If you watch a figure skating competition on TV you will notice that the skates perform forward and backward crossovers throughout their program. Most figure skating jumps and spins are preceded by backwards crossovers. This make back crossovers one of the most important basic skills to master early on.
Power is intended to mean obvious and rapid acceleration often form a standstill position, achieved by a forceful, gripping pressure exerted by the employed, or skating leg and skate against the surface of the ice. Power includes maintaining or increasing speed while executing various skating elements. “Power” is relative to the size of the skater, but can always be attained with proper stroking technique..
Quality - Quality as all about putting together the basics of power, edge control, extension, and speed.
Speed - I remember being at a freesty session at the rink one day. A girl we had never seen came on to the ice. My daughter and a few of her friends commented "Wow she's good". I watched, and all she was doing was stroking around the rink forwards and then backwards. I asked how they knew she was good and they replied "look how fast she is moving." It occurred to me that it was more than just the speed. In order to have good speed on the ice you need power, extension, and control. If you have all these chances are you are a good skater.


Basic Skills
Snowplow Sam
Snowplow Sam 1
  • Sit & stand up with skates on: off ice
  • Sit and stand up: on ice
  • March in place
  • March forward (8-10 steps)
  • March, then glide on 2 feet
  • Dip in place
Snowplow Sam 2
  • March followed by a long glide
  • Dip while moving
  • Backward wiggles (6 in a row)
  • Fwd 2-foot swizzles (2-3 in a row)
  • Rocking horse: one forward, one backward swizzle action
  • 2-foot hop in place
Snowplow Sam 3
  • Fwd skating (8-10 steps)
  • Forward one-foot glide (R&L)
  • Forward swizzles (4-6 in a row)
  • Backward swizzles (4-6 in a row)
  • Forward snowplow stop with skid
  • Curves



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