Tips For Axel Jump For Young Skater (Kori Ade)

Kori Ade gives an axel lesson. Even though Kori’s skater has an axel and is working on double jumps, Kori wants the skater to have a good axel kick through, as she believes this feeling translates to the double salchow and double toe loop. This is a traditional approach to these double jumps as taught in the United States.

[Editor’s note: The idea of comparing the feeling of an axel to double salchow or double toe loop can be incredibly effective for some skaters. Because of this fact, this way of describing the salchow and toe loop to skaters has become extremely popular, particularly in the US. However, to a very large percentage of skaters, a double salchow does not “feel” like an axel or a double toe loop; and a double toe loop also does not “feel” like an axel or double salchow to many skaters. Video analysis shows conclusively that each of these jumps has a dramatically different take off which should “feel” different to skaters with accurate awareness of their body movement. This does not negate the effectiveness of the teaching method for the double jumps, but it makes it clear it will not be effective for all skaters.]

Kori starts with a backspin drill and she explains what she likes about the skater’s movements. Kori wants the free foot and leg to check out before the arms. This concept helps skaters learn to rely more on the lower body to check out of jumps as many skaters will tend to use only their arms to check out. Kori explains how and why she teaches the free arm in front on landings, particularly for skaters at this level. She also discusses the focus on head position/movement for landings. The skater elects to do a loop jump and Kori again notes the exaggerated landing position she favors when initially learning the jumps.

Before seeing the skater’s axel, Kori notes that this skater was struggling to get the free foot through. Kori explained the solution she used for this problem and this is a lesson in motivation (and Kori is a master motivator!). Notice how Kori asks the skater about the jump in an effort to build self-awareness. This also allows Kori to fully understand if the skater is truly aware of her body and “feels” what is going on.

Note that Kori is trying to get the skater to get the foot through and not just the knee. This is a very common issue with new (and sometimes established) axels. You can see that the skater really doesn’t make the correction on the second attempt, but Kori lets it go and notes that they will keep working on it.


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