Welcome back to the Skate to Ski series by Rollerblade! In the previous article, we covered the basics of inline skating and how it can translate to skiing. Now, we will dive into phase 2, where we will focus on improving technique. In this article, we will cover five essential techniques to master to help you become a better inline skier.
Make sure you've taken the time to read the previous parts before you dive in! Trust me, you won't want to miss a single word. It's crucial that you have all the context and information you need to fully understand what's going on. So please, don't skip ahead without doing your due diligence.
🤸♂️ Balance & Agility: Terrain (Balance & Agility)
To start, it is essential to develop a solid sense of balance and coordination on your skates. Inline skates have a shorter platform on which to balance than skis, so having a stable platform is crucial to progress in skating. Begin on a smooth, flat, non-rolling surface such as grass or carpet and progress to a smooth, flat, paved surface with no slope. Start with basic balance exercises, such as lateral hops and standing on one foot, to hone your sense of balance and coordination. As you become more confident, try out other motions to challenge yourself, like a rolling lunge or pumping both legs as you glide forward.
🌀 Angulation Turns: Terrain (Angulation Turns)
The basic parallel turn is the foundation of inline skating turns. To evolve the parallel turn into a more dynamic and energized turn, practice angulation turns. Find a low to moderate pitch that allows you to maintain momentum while making consistent, medium-radius turns. Deep flexion, dynamic energy, and direction control on a slope define successful angulation turns. Remember to lean into the slope with your shoulders level and upper body oriented down the slope. Experiment with speed control through turn shape and drop your hips into the turn to make a deeper carve.
👟 Line Jumps: Terrain (Line Jumps)
Jumps are a crucial skill to master for inline skiers as it helps you avoid obstacles on the road. Start by jumping consecutive lines while maintaining balance during takeoff and landing. Find a flat, empty parking lot with parking space lines, or place cones at an even distance apart. Make sure to lift both feet off the ground simultaneously, maintain balance while jumping, and land on both feet simultaneously. Keep your feet hip-width apart and parallel at all times.
⛔ T-stopping: Terrain (T-stopping)
T-stopping is an alternate method of speed control and slowing to a stop on inline skates. Begin on a smooth, flat, paved surface, and progress to slightly sloped surfaces as you become more proficient. To perform a T-stop correctly, start with 100% of your weight on the front foot, with ankles and knees deeply flexed, and the front knee over the front toe. Drag the back foot with even weight and pressure applied to all wheels evenly, making sure it is perpendicular to the front foot. The rolling front foot should be perpendicular to the ground or even slightly balanced on the outside edge of the wheels, and the heel of the dragging foot should be 12”-18” directly behind the heel of the rolling foot.
🏔️ Uphill Skating
Finally, mastering uphill skating is an important skill for inline skiers as it helps build strength and endurance. Keep your knees and ankles flexed and your body upright while skating uphill. Shorten your stride and increase your cadence to maintain momentum, and use your arms to help propel yourself forward. Remember to take it easy and gradually increase the slope as you become stronger.
Skating uphill may seem daunting at first, but with practice, it can become a smooth and efficient part of your skating repertoire. Keep your weight balanced over both feet, with a slight lean forward, and use smooth and controlled leg movements to maintain momentum. As with any skating technique, practice is key. Start with a moderate incline and work your way up to steeper slopes as you gain confidence and skill.
Skate to Ski by Rollerblade - PHASE 2 is all about building on the foundational skills you learned in PHASE 1. This phase is focused on developing balance, agility, and control on your skates, as well as introducing more advanced techniques like angulation turns, line jumps, and T-stopping.
By mastering these techniques, you'll be well on your way to becoming a skilled inline skater and a better skier. However, it's important to remember that progressing too quickly or attempting techniques beyond your skill level can result in injury. Always respect your limits and practice in a safe and controlled environment.
So get out there and start practicing! Whether you're on a flat surface or a moderate slope, there's always something new to learn and improve upon. With time, patience, and perseverance, you'll be amazed at what you can accomplish on your skates. Happy skating! 🛹❄️
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