Fun! I love the push and pull and turns of the Willow Waltz. It has more partnering than the other ice dances I’ve learned and I’m taking some baby steps on partnering skills. The video is of a test of it I took recently with my dance coach Ty– I passed.
I learned a lot working on this dance. On the end pattern along the short end of the rink there’s a backward step where I was leaning toward the boards, making us drift toward them right when Ty had to get around me on the outside. While he’s well able to correct our path and avoid the boards, I just wanted to take away that issue completely.
Coach Ty tried to tell me that I was leaning the wrong way multiple times, but in my mind I was already leaning in the correct direction. Only about a week before the test could I feel what I was doing wrong and start to fix it. And that awareness will help me in all of my skating.
I’ve also been working hard on a footwork test, the adult gold moves, which I’ll be taking on June 5th. They are a much bigger, harder project for me than the Willow Waltz. I passed the adult silver moves 2 1/2 years ago and six months later started working on the gold ones. I worked hard on just the gold moves for a few months and after that have interspersed working on them with other skating projects. Even on the day we tested the Willow Ty took a few minutes after warming up the dance to give me a little instruction on the gold moves. They’ve been a long learning curve but not an unexpected one. There’s a big leap in skill between the levels of these two tests and two years is a reasonable amount of time for it to take.
That said, I’m really feeling ready to start working on some different moves even though there’s still plenty more I could do on these. Most of the footwork skills on this test are not things that I will pass and be done with. They are everyday skills like three turns that are part of the bread and butter of skating. If I don’t pass the test, it would not hurt me to keep working for more speed and control on these. But I hope I can pass the test and work on the skills in a new and different way.
I’ve had a lot of skating projects simmering: Willow Waltz, gold moves, and a new program that I’m choreographing with my freestyle coach. It’s been almost all gold moves lately, though, and that’s going to continue until the test. It takes me a long time, about two hours, to go through everything on the test that I want to work on. I’ve been trying to get rid of wobbles on the tricky bracket turns and get enough power from the awkward pushes into the figure eight to get me around the circles. There’s no end to the details that could be improved. Wish me luck!