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Layback Spin Technique Video: Part 1 (Bobbe Shire)

Bobbe Shire explains how she introduces the layback spin.  Notice that Bobbe starts her presentation with a discussion of potential back injuries and how to prevent them.  She demands that her skaters warm up thoroughly and stretch properly before attempting laybacks.

The order of movements is “eyes, head, body, fold, exhale, and hang.”  She wants the skater to come out of the position using their abdominal muscles to keep the stress away from the back.

Bobbe has two big tricks for layback.  The first is to have the skater stretch up and then try to look behind them with their eyes (roll their eyes up).  This starts the movement correctly.  The second trick is to exhale.  Bobbe likens the lungs to balloons that are easier to bend when they are deflated.  She also says “when you exhale, your body finds it’s natural center so much easier and the spin spins freer and easier.  And it’s easier on the body.”

Bobbe starts off by teaching an attitude spin.  She wants the skating shoulder to twist toward the free heel.  One purpose of the attitude position is to get used to the hips forward.  Bobbe suggests using Steve Urkel as a reference to get skaters to understand this position.  It’s a slouching position.  (Here’s a couple YouTube videos with Steve Urkel if you want to fully appreciate the reference.  Here he’s getting a driving lesson and here he’s learning how to walk cool – or not.)

Bobbe talks about the free leg position which she has the skater practice in the attitude spin.  She wants the knee out to the side, the free foot turned open and parallel to the ice.  She shares an exercise to help the skater get used to the proper position.  Bobbe does not want the skater to think of pointing their toes because it will tend to point the toes down instead of keeping the foot flat.

Bobbe says, “The skating shoulder is always going to want to be high on a layback.  So that’s why I have the skating side twisting to the free leg.”

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9 Responses to “Layback Spin Technique Video: Part 1 (Bobbe Shire)”
  1. September 8, 2011 at 5:08 pm

    Debbie Thank you for the great explanations of positions. You are the only one that has gone into detail & breaking it down by body positions. I have my skaters put their toe against the board & roll their hips forward to touch the board. It's similar to your 'Urkel'.

  2. September 8, 2011 at 5:09 pm

    Laura Nice tips there really helpful

  3. September 8, 2011 at 5:09 pm

    Sandra Love this video, I get nervous about teaching the layback but I like using the attitude spin as well, but I liked the way it was shown here. I loved the Urkel explanation and the order of movements

  4. September 8, 2011 at 5:09 pm

    Kerri Love the urkel, perfect explanation! Thank you

  5. September 8, 2011 at 5:10 pm

    Debi Love it Love it Love it! Thanks for the Urkel!

  6. September 8, 2011 at 5:10 pm

    Nancy Great explanation Bobbe! I am going to use the Urkel comment and see what happens! I know this video will help me so much, thank you!!!

  7. September 8, 2011 at 5:10 pm

    Karolina Thank you for some fantastic tips! Definitely will use Steve Urkel to get my skaters to push their hips forward :)

  8. September 8, 2011 at 5:12 pm

    Page Great clip!! Thanks for all the great analogies Bobbe. We are going to need an "Urkel Day" at the rink!

  9. September 23, 2013 at 8:37 am

    Peter Thank you. Some great tips!!

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