Goth on Ice: Stand Tall

I have long had a particular posture issue, in particular a certain forward lean when walking. As I have discussed before, I have speculations as to why but I don’t really know. I just do. Back in Air Force basic training this caused issues. Guy behind me when we were marching in formation noted that my shoulders were in perfect line with those on either side of me but my feet were back far enough to cause him trouble.

I’ve been working on that, particularly since it’s a definite fault when it comes to ice skating. Even so, you can get away with it for a while in some of the basics. But as you advance in learning techniques you soon reach a point where it just doesn’t work. And by the time you start learning spins, even beginning two-foot spins, that postural flaw makes them undoable as we see here in one of my early efforts:

So, I’ve been working expressly on posture. When doing just general skating around the rink, I’d glance over at my reflection in the glass and see how straight I’m standing, try to adjust, and then continue. The main problem I’ve found is that when I tell myself to “straighten up” my body interprets that as “lean back”. This gets my weight too far back on the skates and I fall over backward–which is a particularly painful direction to fall on the ice.

What I’ve found working better is to think not of “shoulders back” but “head up” and not just looking up (although that’s important too) but stretching my head up toward the ceiling. The body follows along and I get a much more upright posture. You can see that I’ve made progress in this collection from this past weekend’s work:

And going back to two-foot spins, you can see here when I stay straight, I do better. When I bend at the waist, I lose it:

So, Stand tall…and don’t fall.

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