There was no lesson this week because of the holiday weekend. I think the real reason, though is they were using that rink for some hockey event, which was probably because of the holiday weekend. The other rink (they have two at the facility) for “public skating” was open. Went there. My daughter, Athena, had her skates and I used skate rental.
This, BTW is at “Fuel Tank Indy” in Fishers.
I’ve improved. I managed to get around the rink twice. This was slow for a couple of reasons. One was that I’m still just that shaky on the ice and thus tend to creep along. The other is that I was deliberately practicing one of the techniques they covered in my first lesson, the “snowplow stop.” So I’d get going, then I’d stop. Then get going and stop again. When I skated way back in the early days, I never actually learned to do this technique right. I always caught too much edge and ended up flat on my face. The stops I used back then were either a T-stop (skating on one foot and turn the other crosswise behind it so the edge rakes across the ice) or simply dragging the toe picks (the little spiky projections at the front of figure skates) in the ice.
I’m still not exactly stable and fell several times, however no really bad spills like the last time I did a public skate (at the other rink). The trick is to recognize that narrow window where you know you’re going down, but still have some control over how you go down. So falls were to knees or hip, not flat on my back. And most of the falls were from catching the toe picks–foot stops; body doesn’t.
I’m still having issues with my feet. I really need to get my own skates so I can wear my custom orthotic insoles in them. Still, it wasn’t as bad as before and, indeed, it wasn’t pain in my arches that brought my session to a halt. I’ll get to what did in a moment.
It took about 20-25 minutes to do those two laps and at the end of that second lap I was done. I was tired but mostly my ankles hurt. This is, I think, to be expected. Balancing on and controlling those blades uses small supporting muscles that don’t get that much heavy use normally. I need to come up with some exercises to strengthen those muscles when I can’t get out to the ice.
As with most things, I suspect the more practice the better so I looked into their public skating schedule. While my daughter Athena and I are taking lessons, the public skate times is also included at no extra charge. Most of the weekday sessions are in the middle of the day, so they’re out of the question. However, they have an evening time on Friday, afternoon and evening on Saturday, and afternoon on Sunday that we can attend. Well, they also have a Sunday evening but with both of us having to get up on Monday (her for school and me for work) that’s not really viable). So that’s four times a week that we can go and get some practice in for just the cost of gas to get there.