Last night's clinic was harder than the first night's, I think. Maybe it was just because my legs were a little sore, but I felt far less explosive and more "when's the next water break?".
All of the blood in my entire body is currently trying to fix my hip flexor muscles, leaving no blood whatsoever in my brain. Thus this entry might be a little disjointed, but I'll try to remember all the drills we did.
After a few warm-up laps, in which I tried to remember everything from Monday night, we assembled once more on the goal line. The idea this time was to do the same forward-skating we'd been doing, this time with a puck.
1) Keep the stick out to your backhand side (my right side) with the heel of the blade down and the tip sort of rolled over so the puck can't squirt under it.
2) When your stick hand is extended, the palm is up.
3) When you pull your stick hand back, keep the stick in the same position by rotating your wrist and keeping a really loose grip on the top of the stick (basically, rotate your hand around the grip of the stick and leave the stick position alone).
4) Keep your elbows close to the body as though on rails, so the stick stays in the same plane.
The first few times I did all that with the puck on the backhand side of the stick, it went all over god's green earth. By the third or fourth time, though, I was starting to get the hang of it. I think that with a night of working on this at a stick and shoot, I'll have it mostly down.
Here is a small child demonstrating what I have trouble doing. 😉 Though we were taught to keep the stick out to the side more:
We did a fun little conditioning/muscle memory drill where the belts and leashes came back out. Wendy went first this time — we lined up on the goal line, me standing behind Wendy, holding the leash attached to the D ring on her belt.
I went down on one knee to increase resistance and she skated down to the far goal line, towing me. Whee! She did the same thing on the return trip, then we swapped places. It was fun and I was glad that my trainer spends so much time on strengthening my quads/glutes. ;)
It looked like this, only with the rear person on one knee instead of sitting down:
After that, we spent quite a while on stopping.
1) If you're stopping to change direction, stop with a wide stance and your feet off-center (the far foot should be farther forward than the rear foot) to make the crossover easier
2) Head should be at least over the front knee, if not farther out.
3) Stay low!
Arguably, in this photo, Jeff Friesen's head should be farther over his left knee, creating a straight line from his helmet down his back and right leg. But, y'know, he played for the Sharks and I don't.
We worked on lateral movement then, skating from goal line to goal line and doing single crossovers down the ice. Apparently we all sucked as Robby gathered us all together and said, "so…we've got some edge issues, don't we."
We took a couple of minutes to practice edge work while standing in place — it's really just like slow speed turns in motorcycling.
When you roll the ankles over to get on the lefthand edges, say, your bodyweight has to shift to the right to counterbalance (assuming you're not turning). I can't quite do this while skating fast yet, but the concept is really intuitive to me after years of motorcycling.
Boyle's doing a good job of illustrating this here:
After a few goes, I really felt it work once during one crossover. I was on my edge and got some power and was counterbalanced right! Woo! Another thing to add to the stick and shoot agenda and I think this'll come pretty easily for me.
Finally, the bungee!!
The bungee work is for overskating; basically, to make you go faster than you ever have before so you can feel what it's like. So cool!
I did the bungee once with Peter but my belt wasn't attached right and I got messed up. So I redid it with Nora and that was a bunch of fun.
So that was last night. Tonight's class will focus on turning (i.e. crossovers).