Loop Jump for Beginners (Audrey Weisiger)

In the figure skating video below, Olympic coach Audrey Weisiger explains how she teaches a loop jump to a beginner skater.  Audrey first discusses the importance of basic balance and she suggests a simple drill to help determine whether the skater is really ready to try a loop jump.  She also talks about the importance of the backspin as a foundational drill for the loop jump.  Because backspin is so important and some skaters don’t have one, Audrey demonstrates a simple back pivot drill that should be mastered as a minimum.

Although a loop jump takes off forward, Audrey cautions against telling young skaters that they will be doing a three turn prior to the jump because then they will have a tendency to turn on the back of the blade rather than near the toe pick just prior to take-off.  Audrey jokingly refers to the fall caused by being too far back on the blade on loop take-off where the skate simply flies out from under the skater as a “whoop.”  She does want the skater to pivot to forward and hop forward with little or no rotation.

Audrey also recommends having skaters do air turns on the ice.  She demonstrates a quarter turn version of the air turn (and a half turn version later in the video).  She has the skater do a lot of jumping on two feet and looking into the plexiglass.  Notice the focus on one-side alignment and a still head!  Next, Audrey discusses a related topic of whether a skater should always do the jump in the same place or not.  She recommends always using the same place when first learning any new skill but then moving it to different locations on the ice as the skater develops more skill.

Audrey offers a tip to encourage skaters to jump higher as many skaters don’t fully jump on the ice.  She also talks about the importance of developing rotational awareness and “vision” at this stage as it helps with multi-rotation jumps later.  Returning to the loop jump, Audrey discusses the forward inside three-turn method.  And she wants skaters to land on two feet in alignment.  (See Audrey’s two foot alignment drill in more detail here.)  She notes that landing on two feet is natural to most beginner skaters so we should take advantage of it to get the free leg into the position we want it.

Next Audrey suggests another drill to develop the feeling of rotation with the feeling of stopping the rotation.  She then combines this drill with the jump into alignment landing.  At this stage, Audrey is OK with the skater landing on the left foot first.  Great tip at the end about looking at the right elbow!


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