Case Study: Turtle Spin (Kim Ryan)

Figure skating spin specialist Kim Ryan gives a lesson on a sit spin that transitions from a regular forward sit spin (sit front) to what the skater calls a turtle spin (also called a clam), which is a forward sit spin in a sit back position with the free leg tucked behind and the body compressed forward over the spin.  Kim offers lots of tips in this video, addressing issues with the transition and foot hold positions as well as upper body positioning.

Kim notes that it is common for a skater’s weight to shift to the inside of the skating foot on this spin.  She recommends adding “pressure on your baby toe before you actually change position.”  Next Kim addresses the need to stay down throughout the spin and especially during the position change to improve GOE scores.  And then, she addresses the arms and hands and where and how to hang on to generate valuable forces for keeping the body down.  Another tip about trying to point the top of the head at the ice will be helpful for many skaters and coaches.


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