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03-05-2012, 08:00 AM
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tarheelhockey's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: The Triangle
Country: United States
Posts: 51,534
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I just found this old thread, and thought it might be helpful to give an update for anybody who is having trouble with pivots.

So, I am JUST now getting comfortable with pivoting front-to-back. The biggest factor -- I spent a year going to pickup and stick-and-puck where I sometimes tried to pivot but failed. Then I spent a month in an adult learn-to-play class and BOOM! Pivoting in no time.

Lesson #1 -- Go ahead and sign up for lessons. It works, and it ultimately keeps you from wasting ice time like I did for a year.

What finally got me moving in the right direction was I got comfortable skating backward. See beth's post #13 above. It was much easier to focus on the footwork when the goal was to get into a position I already found comfortable. Also, I kept working on hockey stops and especially one-footed stops. That made me more comfortable with turning my edges.

Lesson #2 -- Learn to skate backward and hockey stop comfortably, especially in terms of getting your balance and footwork down to a habit. If you're still working on those skills, it's tough to work pivoting into the equation.

Finally, and this kind of goes back to the first point, a huge part of it was just building up the confidence and getting rid of hesitation. Being involved in a group lesson put me in a position where I just had to stop thinking and DO it. The first few lessons I tended to hockey-stop completely and then begin skating backwards very slowly. Pushing myself to do it quickly was key, because I didn't want to fall behind the group. The more I pushed myself to make a smooth transition, the more confidently I would turn my skates front-to-back... until one day, BOOM, that hockey stop turned into a little swivel.

Lesson #3 -- It's not gonna happen unless you push beyond your comfort zone.

I hope that helps someone who's having trouble with this skill. It's worth the hard work.

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