How to Practice Spinning (Kim Ryan)

Spin specialist Kim Ryan explains how to practice spinning, including how much to practice. Kim recommends training spins 15 minutes during every 45 minute to 1 hour on-ice practice. The 15 minutes should be focused and continuous, and not just a bunch of random spins throughout the practice that totals 15 minutes. For skaters that have two on-ice practices a day, Kim suggests starting the first practice with 15 minutes of spinning and ending the second practice with another 15 minutes of spinning. Spinning provides a great warm-up and cool down, and it improves flexibility naturally based on the stretching required.

Some skaters get bored practicing spins for 30 minutes a day. But as Kim explains, skaters can work on new spins and they can also work simply on getting more rotations in their base positions. She recommends shooting for 20 rotations (or “rounds”) in base position for upright, sit, and camel in both forward and backward versions, as well as 20 rotations for layback and flying camel and flying sit.

Kim says, “People that want to spin well, choose to spin well. People that want to spin fast, choose to spin fast.” In other words, it’s a choice to put in the time and effort to be good at spinning. One important tip is to count rotations while spinning. Without counting, skaters really have no idea if they are getting better or not. Kim also offers the tip (from the great John Nicks) of occasionally counting very fast and loud while spinning as a way to learn to spin faster or spin fast longer.


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