Layback Spin – Part 3 (Kim Ryan)

Spin specialist Kim Ryan continues a group class on layback spins. In Part 1 the focus was on proper upright spin entrance and spin centering. In Part 2 Kim started teaching the straight leg layback, and she continues with that in this video. She reviews the entire process, starting with “inviting the audience in” and ending with the exit. She also describes the position she prefers for the male skaters in the class (with skating side arm up and free side down).

A big part of this video has Kim focusing on how to get the skaters to flex the free foot so the toe points at the ceiling throughout the straight leg layback. Most of the skaters want to press the free leg behind instead of to the side, and this tends to make the toe point either down or sideways and not at the ceiling. She also reviews the concept of “stacking the hips” as a way to prevent the free side hip and shoulder from dropping, and she notes that skaters can hold the free side high even on the preparation “skinny V.” Another common error on layback during the development process is bending the skating leg. In this case, Kim wants both legs straight.

A side layback should be different than a base layback position and Kim explains why it’s important to have super solid positions so judges aren’t confused and they know which position you are doing. The straight leg layback the class is working on is for base position development (not side layback), and this is confusing for many of the skaters in the class who have only done side laybacks with a straight free leg.  Kim describes the straight leg layback as keeping the free hip lifted and the free leg to the side with the free foot flexed and the toe pointed upward. Additionally, the free hip should continue to press forward or “moving through.” Notice on the demonstration at 5:39 how level the shoulders are and how the free hip is slightly raised.

At the end Kim shares another tip that will be helpful to most skaters. From the rounded arm position of the base layback, skaters can straighten their arms straight up as a way to easily come up from the layback position while maintaining tension and stretch. Kim wants the skaters to return to the skinny-V position before pressing into the exit or landing position.


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