Exercises to Build Skating Skills – Part 1 (Denise Myers)

World and Olympic coach Denise Myers begins a multi-part series sharing a variety of exercises and drills intended to improve overall skating skills. These exercises would be excellent as part of an on-ice warm-up or at the end of a session or training day. The ultimate goal is to build skills that translate into improved transitions in programs. Denise says, “From little on I start these kids with these exercises.”

See all videos in this series:
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5

The first exercise is a series of forward crossover to outside to inside edge change down one side of the rink, followed by a series of forward crossover to inside to outside change of edge down the other side of the rink. The focus is on deep knee and ankle bends throughout and getting a good power pull on the edge change. Notice the “down up down” rhythm Denise wants.

For the next exercise, the skater does a forward inside three turn followed by a stretch and pull with a step forward into a forward crossover before stepping to the inside edge and repeating. Denise counts out the desired timing “one, two, three, turn” as a way to generate consistent rhythm throughout. The skater should collect the feet together after the pull in order to step forward with a deep re-bend and a powerful push.

The third exercise is backward outside to inside power pulls where the skater does a back outside power pull with a free leg swing followed by a back inside pull before stepping down onto a backward outside edge to start the outside pull on the other foot. This is repeated down the ice on both sides. When done correctly, the skater has a strong head and shoulder turn. Denise counts out the knee rhythm.

Denise calls the next exercise “The Backstroke” and it consists of a backward crossover to a stretch pull on the outside edge. It can be challenging to create a pull during a stretch but notice how deep the edge is during the stretch. It gets it’s name from the arm movement during the stretch.

The final exercise is similar, starting with a back crossover and pull into a back outside three-turn followed by a forward step into a forward mohawk and power push (crossover). A common error for this exercise is alignment during the three turn, and skaters should keep their hips tucked under. Another common error is excessive head movement.


Sorry, this content is for members only.

Click here to get access.


Already a member? Login below

Remember me (for 2 weeks)

Forgot Password

FavoriteLoadingAdd to "My Favorites" (Beta testing)
Member Login

Forgot Password