Author Topic: Skate Alignment  (Read 237 times)

Stellafish

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Skate Alignment
« on: November 12, 2019, 08:24:07 PM »
Hi all,
Looking for some advice. Iím 38 and taking skating lessons, currently is Skate UK Stage 5. I seem to have hit a brick wall because it seems my right leg is a bit ďwonkyĒ and itís not allowing me to skate on my right foot outside edge properly. This is particularly obvious when doing clockwise crossovers and any anti-clockwise backwards outside edge work such as chasses. The skates have been thoroughly checked and have been okíd but I think that the only way forward would be to have my skates/blades properly aligned. This seems to be a common thing in the US but I canít seem to find anywhere in the UK that can offer the service and adjust the skate to counteract my ďwonkyĒ leg.
Is anyone aware of anywhere that offers this service? I donít mind travelling but without this being an option, it seems that I may as well give up on skating lessons as I physically canít progress any further.
Many thanks in advance.

Leif

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Re: Skate Alignment
« Reply #1 on: November 13, 2019, 07:22:36 AM »
Just a quick question, how do you know your right leg is a bit wonky? And in what way is it wonky? I too have similar skating issues and in my case itís due to incorrect body posture and technique.

Stellafish

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Re: Skate Alignment
« Reply #2 on: November 13, 2019, 09:03:08 AM »
Hi Leif,

Thanks for replying.
When skating on my right foot outside edge, my knee bends inward slightly more than the left which seems to cause the skate to twist and pull rather that tracking in a straight line. My coach has also pointed out that she can see this. Iíve researched online quite a bit and have seen mention of putting a wedge in the skate but Iím not sure that this will cut the problem as my foot seems to be twisting, hence why I was looking into alignment.  I did spot a post from a while ago about MLX skates which had adjustable blades but they no longer seem exist and I canít seem to find any other similar skates (hockey or figure) with this option.

Leif

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Re: Skate Alignment
« Reply #3 on: November 14, 2019, 07:17:47 AM »
My first thought is that your problem might be due to incorrect technique. I have a problem with my right foot sliding when doing CW crossovers, which I though was a foot/leg issue but itís actually due to poor technique, which I am working on. However, this is just a suggestion. I wonder if there are any good skaters on your rink you can ask, so they can watch you skate, so you can get more opinions?

FWIW shims are often talked about on American hockey forums. Seems to be a big thing over there.

spinZZ

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Re: Skate Alignment
« Reply #4 on: November 15, 2019, 06:40:35 PM »
I'm in the US.  I'm surprised you have such difficulty in finding a skate tech to perform blade alignment.  It's an essential service.  Have you asked coaches and competitive skaters at your rink who they go to?

You didn't mention what boots and blades you have; in particular, did you purchase your skates as a kit, with the blades pre-mounted?  As you advance, you will purchase the boots and the blades separately.  The blades have two types of mounting holes:  elongated slots (two on each toe plate and two on each heel plate) and circular holes.  When the blades are first mounted, screws are typically installed in only the elongated slots to form a so-called temporary mount.  The slots allow you to move the blades in-or-out slightly to find the right position for your foot.  In some cases, the slots do not allow enough adjustment.  The tech then needs to plug the old holes, and drill new ones.  Once the proper position has been found, additional screws are installed in the circular holes to form a so-called permanent mount.

In general, here are other considerations:

*  If the blade has been ground with sufficiently uneven edges, you may have problems getting onto an outside edge.  Good skate techs (and maybe some coaches) have special gauges to check the evenness of the edges.

*  If the boot itself (sole or heel or both) is not level, the blade can be tilted.  Good skate techs (and maybe some coaches) can inspect the boot to check.  This can be corrected with shims. 

*  If the boot and blade are both OK, then your foot probably pronates.

(1)  You can add an arch support or a heel wedge or both inside your boot to correct it.

(2)  You can move the blade to the inside.

(3)  You can shim the blade to raise the outside edge.

Try the corrections in the order listed:  just (1) first; then (1) and (2) if needed; then (1), (2), and (3) if needed.  Depends on how strongly your foot pronates.  I need all three corrections on my skates (both feet).  In certain cases, you also need to play around with the toe-to-heel alignment (which I needed to do on my left foot).

There's a lot of garbage on the web.  But here's an informative article written by a sports podiatrist who specializes in problems with ice skating:  http://www.aapsm.org/pdf/humble-skatinga.pdf





« Last Edit: November 15, 2019, 09:50:48 PM by spinZZ »