Tips on Forward Stroking (Chris Conte)

National coach Chris Conte begins a lesson with a skater that is focused on skating skills. In this video, Chris is helping a skater develop long and powerful forward strokes or pushes. He describes what he wants as a “push and glide.” To help the skater take more time with the pushes, Chris adds arm movements. Starting in a T-position, he has the skater do 2 pushes with the hands down at the sides, while maintaining good posture. The next 2 pushes, the skater raises the arms slowly to the sides. On the next 2 pushes the arms go in (front) and then slowly up over the head on the next 2 pushes. The skater then opens the arms for forward crossovers at the end of the rink and repeats the sequence again. He describes it as 8 strokes and 3 crossovers.

Next Chris gives a detailed explanation of how to create a full push. The skater needs to extend to a straight leg while pushing with the stable middle of the blade, then point the foot at the very end to get the final power of acceleration. Chris likens this to a punch, that accelerates “through” the strike object. He describes the ideal push as one that pushes with the blade and then rocks to a final push through the lowest toe pick. Notice how dramatic the improvement is for this skater after this short lesson.


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