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03-01-2012, 01:53 PM
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I had a good chat with a local but well respected powerskating instructor who said both schools have merit.

This is second hand, and I'm a pretty poor skater, so take it with a grain of salt, but what I was told made a ton of sense:

The vast majority of your power in your stride comes from past shoulder-width.

The way it was explained to me, if you use the wide stance, you generate slightly less forward momentum with each stride but you make up for it with more strides. It is more tiring but you are more stable. Put another way, each stride generates say, 10% less momentum, but you are in a position to take those strides 10% faster.

With the "Stamm" narrow method, you take fewer strides in the same distance. It only generates 10% more momentum per stride because so little of your power comes from the space between your centre-line and just outside shoulder width.

The wide stance is more stable but more fatiguing.
The Stamm method is less stable but less fatiguing.
Both are equally as fast if done properly.

The best advice is to combine them - long, narrow strides to conserve energy when you are not in need of the stability, and changing to the wider stance when the extra energy required for increased stability is worth it (ie: incoming defencemen, etc.)

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