Olympic Coach Tips – Alignment Needed For Combination Jumps (Audrey Weisiger)

Audrey Weisiger begins a series of videos on combination jumps.  This series will discuss both toe loop combinations and loop combinations.

To begin this series, Audrey explains that successful jump combinations require certain landing qualities of the first jump in the combination.  She explains these thoroughly and then offers an incredibly valuable drill for determining if the landing quality is acceptable for combinations.  Audrey’s “landing in alignment” or “alignment landing” has the skater on two feet with complete control of the rotation and with correct alignment over the axis side.  After hitting this position and “getting still” the skater then pushes back into the full landing position (as shown in Audrey’s jump landing video).  Audrey demonstrates this landing in the video below.

In toe loop jump combinations, Audrey suggests using the “alignment landing” after the first jump, then pushing back into the toe loop and using the “alignment landing” again on the toe loop landing.  In this way the skater is constantly focused on proper alignment and control of the rotation.

Audrey wants the “free foot” in front of the skating foot on the alignment landing and calls a wide foot placement “the cowboy landing.”  Although aligning the feet as Audrey desires is possible, it is extremely difficult so most skaters will land with the “free foot” forward but slightly outside the trace made by the axis skate.  This approximation is acceptable in most circumstances as long as the skater does not have their weight between their feet (but rather entirely on the axis side).

Notice that using Audrey’s alignment landing between the jumps “kills” all of the uncontrolled rotational energy that most skaters use to do combination jumps.  Therefore, most skaters will complain that they feel stuck and cannot do a toe loop.  But this suggests the skater’s toe loop technique needs improvement and mastery from all the various toe loop entries.  As a bonus Audrey mentions a few details of proper toe loop technique.

The simple fact is that most skaters working on double-double combinations are simply not yet ready to work on them.  Most cannot land the first jump in the alignment landing position.  And even if they can, most do not have enough mastery of the double toe loop itself to simply push back from alignment and do a double toe.  Thus, most skaters learn toe combinations by using uncontrolled rotation from the first jump to create the rotation for the second jump and end up with a combination that has no flow.

The information in this video is priceless.  If a skater can do the alignment landing correctly and then push back into a proper toe loop, they will certainly develop great toe loop combinations with amazing flow.

This is another great video from Audrey.  Please leave her a comment below.


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