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skating - when you don't know what to do... — LiveJournal
do the next thing
Well, I haven't been able to get in touch with the rink in Bradford, but I found the Riedell website (they make some of the best skate boots around).

A new pair of boots, up to my standards (which sounds snobby, but I know what I expect of my equipment in this arena, and therefore have rather strict standards) will cost me $200.  Minimum.  The ones I used to drool over back in the day would be $400.

These are the boots on my ice skates right now.  They used to be my roller skates for figures and dance, but I took the plates off them in college and put on blades.  (I had an ice rink literally in my backyard, and no roller rink for miles.)  These are the boots on my freestyle (singles) roller skates (though in a 20+ year old incarnation).  I'll probably replace my 220's with 300's, when I go to do it.  There's no doubt that I will get new boots and be able to skate again, it just doesn't look like it'll be that soon.  (Don't be put off by the blades in the pictures; you can put ice boots on roller skate plates.)

Christmas is coming though, and stranger things have happened.

I miss that feeling of freedom that I got from skating.  It was the only time in my youth that I felt pretty and athletic.  Most of the rest of the time, I was an ugly duckling, and I sucked at gym.  But I could skate, and I could skate better than anyone else in my school.  (That also sounds arrogant, but I'm fairly confident that it was true.)

My balance is all screwed up though.  I weigh almost twice what I did when I skated before, and those little muscles in the bottom of my foot that I used to rely on for balance shifts?  Woefully weak.  It's not weak ankles that'll keep a person from being able to skate, particularly roller skating.  It's weak feet.

But the thought of being out there, going fast because I can, with so little effort... organ music (I wonder if they still play the "Star Wars" Tango?)... people who will understand when you put wheels from two different sets on the same skate... who will understand when you say a floor is "tight" or "loose"... who will know why and how you tune skates with a torque wrench.  I have had dreams about skating, where I jump and do effortless, floating doubles, with shock-free landings, where my spins are centered and fast and I don't get dizzy, I don't get winded, and I don't get hurt.  (I only got really hurt once, and it was a bit of a dilly -- broken arm, dislocated elbow, resulting in issues that I still deal with every day.  But in over 7 years of skating, if that was my only injury, after all the chances I took, I think I did well.)

Now I'm torn.  Skating, my first athletic love?  Or martial arts, my second?  Martial arts would be a little cheaper, and would require little initial outlay of funds.  Plus, I can share it with Wolfie, and I doubt he'd want to do the Chase Waltz with me.  But it's skating...  Oh, this is hard.

i feel: nostalgic nostalgic

3 trips or shoot the rapids
wengeue From: wengeue Date: July 31st, 2004 01:39 pm (UTC) (base camp)
Heh. I just stumbled on this by reading your journal because of an SCA post... I didn't know you were a roller skater too. I was a skater as well, though I wasn't able to get seriously into it until I was an adult. I stopped competing a couple of years ago when I injured my knees and started grad school (that's a double whammy for you) but I'm thinking of starting up again this fall (no more freestyle though, probably. Darn it). I also ice skated, which is great fun as well. I can spin so much better on ice skates, and spinning is just a wonderful sensation.

Anyway, I'm always surprised when I stumble on other artistic roller skaters. :)
tashabear From: tashabear Date: July 31st, 2004 01:57 pm (UTC) (base camp)
Heh.. funny... I like spinning on roller skates better because you don't have to balance on one tiny part of the skate to make the spin work. With ice skates if you go too far forward or back on the blade you fall down.

No freestyle for me, either... not for a long time. I now have the temperament for figures, though, particularly loops.
wengeue From: wengeue Date: August 3rd, 2004 01:25 pm (UTC) (base camp)
That's funny because I totally think of it the other way. On quads it feels like there is less room for error. On ice skates... the sweet spot makes the spin the best but you can still do a tolerable spin if you're off it a bit. Then again, my blades are especially good "spin blades" (they're John Wilson Four Aces which are rare in the US but lovely freeskating blades. I was told when I got them that they are good for Janet Lynn-style skaters) so maybe they are an advantage.

When you hit that sweet spot and the body is positioned just right, it feels as if you can spin forever... no friction at all. Just wonderful.

I've always loved figures; they're just so Zen when you get into them. I do hate the emphasis on body position in roller figures, though -- I can't turn my head as far to the right as I can to the left because of earlier injuries, and judges would mark me down for that, as well as for my swayback which I've had since I was a child. Those are things I can't help and it drives me nuts that a perfect tracing doesn't count as much as a perfect upper body position that one has to be born with, to some extent. (I work on the posture issues that I *can* fix.)

(In ice skating, or so I was told by my coach, it's not like that. The tracing is what matters. I never competed figures on ice, though I did test them a bit. It is fun to actually be able to make the figure and then follow your own tracing. But it is harder to get around the circles on ice, for me at least.)

I really think I might go back to skating this fall. I don't know if I will compete yet -- that might have to wait till the thesis is done, but I guess I will see. I need the exercise anyway.

Of course, competitive skating was not very compatible with the SCA... during the summer, with Regionals and Nationals and practices, my weekends were completely booked.
3 trips or shoot the rapids