Toe Loop Basics (Robert Tebby)

World and Olympic coach Robert Tebby explains how he teaches a toe loop jump.  He begins by acknowledging there are lots of ways to set up the jump, but once backward and reaching, the position should be the same regardless of the entry used.  He also mentions that he teaches the arms exactly the same as on the other backward entry jumps (salchow, loop, flip, lutz).  He uses an “L position” with the arms, pointing the skating or axis arm into the circle at shoulder height and pointing the free or non-axis arm straight forward and down.  He likes the body “straight but slightly tilted forward.”  Next, while keeping the upper body in the position he already described, he pushes backward onto a bent axis leg and lifts the free leg behind, using muscles in in lower back and butt.

From the static position described above, Robert wants a coordinated movement of the arms, legs, and core.  The skating leg straightens, the free leg begins the picking movement by drawing in “behind the butt” (with the pick still in the air), the core begins to rotate in the direction of the jump, elbows bend, and head stays anchored.  When the toe pick enter the ice he wants the arms/hands together making contact.  Robert notes that a common error is what he calls the “curtsy” or a downward motion on the jump entrance.  He wants skaters to avoid this by picking on a straight leg as part of the exercise.  He says, “We’re going to end up with both legs straight.  We’re going to rotate around our toe pick and step (down) backward.”


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