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Speed Skating Forum Most of the discussions in this forum will be about inline speed skating but discussions about ice speed skating and quad roller speed skating are also welcome.

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Old February 8th, 2017, 02:32 PM   #1
Abadjiev
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Default Heather Bergsma/Richardson

I am not an expert in any way, but I have a question on her form:

I have been watching her races on Youtube and while I can't argue with her results, I notice the following:

1. It seems like she doesn't get a deep knee bend. She seems to bend more at the waist than get into a deep squat

2. Her upper body seems to flail a lot.

3. It appears that she never really aligns her bodyweight directly above her load-bearing leg.

Am I incorrect in my assessment?
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Old February 8th, 2017, 02:40 PM   #2
spdkls
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Nobody liked Chad Hedrick's form on ice either but....

If it ain't broken...
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Old February 8th, 2017, 11:37 PM   #3
kufman
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Chad had a ton of natural strength but he didnt train that hard and he admits that he wouldnt hang with todays level of inline competition.

Heather has made big improvements in her ice form but she still has potential to be better. In her first couple seasons she couldn't glide on her right foot and it hurt her performance. She has mostly fixed that but she has other areas that could be improved.

Last edited by kufman; February 9th, 2017 at 03:46 AM. Reason: spelling
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Old February 9th, 2017, 09:40 PM   #4
SkateMO
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I know a couple local skaters that have moved to Salt Lake to train full time. And, when I happen to see them around, I always ask about Joey. I haven't talked to them recently, but probably six or seven months ago, they felt that Joey still hadn't perfected his ice form. They said, "he still skates like an inliner." But, yet, he's probably top 3 or 5 in the world in the 1000 and 1500 at the moment. So, it just goes to show you that inline skaters don't necessarily ever mimic ice skaters exactly. I don't have a visual of how Heather skates, but from the little I know of her, she seems like an exceptional athlete. I'm sure that compensates some for deficiencies in her technique.

Ice is much tougher than it looks. Justin Stelly is easily one of the best inline skaters we have in the USA. But, looking at some of his TTs on ice this year, I've seen races where a guy twice his age had a faster time. If you took that same guy and put him on inline skates, it wouldn't even be close. Justin would win hands down (by miles and miles or laps and laps). So, I got a little off track, but it is interesting why technique seems to be so important for some skaters on ice but for others it doesn't seem to matter quite as much.
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Old February 10th, 2017, 01:27 PM   #5
Abadjiev
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I am not a golfer, but this is why I liken skating to golf: one can spend hours, months, years working on form and still "fall short", for lack of a better word. I can have ten 'bad' days skating, and be completely frustrated with my lack of progress, then suddenly have a 'breakthrough' day, followed by another 10 or so days of utter crapola.

I just think that some people have 'it' in terms of being able to put power to ice. Obviously, Heather has 'it'. I watch Japanese skaters with gorgeous form, yet they can't place.

And while there are clear similarities, there are quite a few significant differences between inline and ice.
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Old February 17th, 2017, 07:40 PM   #6
SkateMO
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I watched the World Speed Skating Championships this past weekend, and I have to admit, I was pretty surprised by Heather's technique. No disrespect at all because her results say it all...she did amazing...but, her technique does appear to be drastically different than everyone else's. Her arm swing comes across her body...it doesn't look fluid like other skaters. And, her right foot on the straights looks like it doesn't land underneath her body...and even when it's on the ice, it almost looks like it slips a little...like she's not on her edge or something. Again, this is nothing against Heather. I think she became the first person (or maybe first woman) to win the 500, 1000, and 1500, so she's doing something right. But, I have to wonder what she could do if her form was better. She looked a lot like Chad on ice, especially with the arm swing. But, I was even more surprised by her form on the straights...the quality of the video below is not great, but it's interesting to watch her right foot...she has to be losing some power there. She must be incredibly strong...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MdMhGIBRbhs
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