IJS Spin Gateways – Opposite Direction – Part 2 (Kim Ryan)

Spin specialist Kim Ryan continues her presentation on opposite direction spins. In Part 1 she explained the concept of spin gateways in IJS and worked with the class on basic spinning technique. In this video, Kim teaches an exercise that allows skaters to repeatedly perform opposite direction spins without stopping. This helps skaters get high repetitions of the skill, dramatically shortening the learning process and allowing skaters to transfer the feeling of the normal direction to the opposite direction. Kim says, “The beauty of this is that you are going to mimic what you do on the good side.” She recommends doing this drill once a day as part of a regular warm-up and the results will naturally happen over time.

The exercise is a slow forward upright spin in one direction with an exit on the back inside edge of the spinning foot. In other words, the skater enters the spin on a forward outside edge and exits on a back inside edge before turning forward and stepping onto a forward outside edge again on the other foot. Kim arranges this sequence of spins in a consecutive lobe pattern the full width of the rink on the hockey lines. [The exercise is reminiscent of certain twizzle and loop patterns in USFS moves in the field tests.]

Exiting a forward spin on a back inside edge, especially in a specific or desired direction can be initially challenging for skaters, and the skaters in the video clearly struggle with this. Kim offers the tip of pulling the free leg back from the front to help create the desired exit. She says, “Make sure your (free) foot is in front of you (in the spin) and after the three revolutions pass the free foot back and draw it back to the new circle.” Head and arm position are also help with this exit. Doing this exercise slowly and deliberately while trying to make the opposite direction spin “feel” like the normal direction will create results over time.


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