Thread: Beginner Skater
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11-21-2006, 05:25 PM
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Originally Posted by SuomiOlli View Post
I have skated in open sessions every once in a while, but I am still a beginner. I was wondering how long you guys think it would take to improve my skating to the point that I could hold my own in a league. Do you think if i skated every week this winter, I might be decent enough to join a league next winter? I know its a subjective question, but I am fairly athletic and usually pick things up quickly.
I started playing hockey in my 30's. Up to that time I could skate around a rink but didn't know how to stop. IMO the most important thing to learn IS how to stop and how to change directions. Another thing is learning how to turn right -- if all your experience is from skating counterclockwise around the local rink you'll need to learn how to turn in the other direction.

Take skating lessons if available and read as much as you can about power skating technique. I highly recommend this book. If you're obsessed with improving your skating and hockey skills like me, find out how to improve with dry land exercises. Do squats and crunches to improve your balance -- the better you can center your weight the more agile you'll be on skates. Practice stickhandling and shooting with a streethockey ball and stick. When you're ready to start playing, read up on each position and what's expected of a defenseman, wing and center.

I've played pickup games over the last 3 years and now I'm on my first adult league team (D-level). A few players have their hands full staying on their feet, some are strong skaters who don't know how to stop. I'm a pretty confident skater but need to practice stick handling and shooting. You don't need to know it all when you start, but skating should be the foundation and everything else builds off of that. Good luck.

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