Split Jump: How to do a Split Jump – Part 2 (Audrey Weisiger)

World and Olympic coach Audrey Weisiger continues her discussion of the split jump.  In Part 1, she explained the fundamentals of the split and a basis for understanding the positions and mechanics as well as controlling the rotation.  In this video, she begins by emphasizing the required rhythm and timing.  Audrey says, “The left foot initiates the action up into the air, and then the right foot follows through and hits the split at the top.”  This is a critical understanding.  A split jump does NOT jump simultaneously off two feet.  The picking foot leaves the ice last, sometimes with the front foot well extended already.  Audrey also notes that it is not correct to land on both feet simultaneously either, as this is a very common error.

Next Audrey discusses the arms.  The arms should stretch strongly on the reach before the picking motion.  Notice the arms do not “go around” but rather  pass close to the skater’s body.  Audrey also recommends skaters should “check the head” by keeping it back to the right slightly to control rotation.

Audrey continues by doing dynamic leg swings at the boards to develop dynamic flexibility, strength, and quickness.  She notes that you can create a full split in the air using the momentum of the leg swing even if you can’t do the splits off the ice, but it is more difficult.  Using this drill, the skater should swing the leg into position and then try to hold it there.

Many may find Audrey’s ideas on the flexed trailing foot unconventional.  But as she notes, it is essentially impossible to see (and not really “less pretty” than a pointed toe) and it teaches a foundation skill that is important for mutli-rotation jumping (locked axis leg with a flexed axis foot).  It also helps the skater straighten the trailing leg quickly and powerfully.  She discusses a lunge drill to help with this concept.


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