A-Frame Spin or Upright Forward Spin – Part 1 (Kate Charbonneau)

Coach Kate Charbonneau explains how she teaches the A-frame or upright forward spin. She begins by noting that she uses a wide variety of entrances, and the primary goal is to choose an entrance where the skater will hold the entry edge and be patient in order to generate rotational energy and center the spin. As a prerequisite for working on the A-frame spin, Kate recommends mastering an upright “skinny-V” position since the free leg angle is similar.

Kate likes to enter an A-frame from a sit spin. Notice that the desired sit spin here uses a completely straight free leg. It’s relatively easy to grab the free foot from this position. She also recommends learning a sit front or cannonball sit spin as a way to learn to spin while the head is down towards the ice.

The foot grab for the A-frame is not difficult and Kate explains and demonstrates how she does it in order to get “a really good grip.” She grabs both feet the same way. She also discusses other grab options and arm positions.

To help keep the free leg locked and straight, Kate recommends flexing the free foot. A slight or soft bend in the standing or skating leg is OK, especially to start the spin. It’s actually helpful when learning the spin to prevent serious balance issues. To finish this video, Kate notes that this spin requires some flexibility, particularly in the hamstrings and lower back.


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