About This Blog

The Story So Far
I'm one of those people who skated for a few years as a kid but never really enjoyed it. I got as far as learning a couple of jumps, one of which yielded the botched landing and sprained ankle that gratefully ended that whole farce in 2001.

And then, despite the lukewarm feelings that characterized my time as a skater, I spent the next decade-plus casually yet consistently thinking about taking lessons again—but I am equally as good at procrastinating as I am at self-sabotaging, so I just as reliably talked myself out of it every time the thought cropped up.

That all changed when one of my most-loved friends started taking skating lessons herself, and the opportunity to spend more time with her while also following through on something for once was the perfect storm that pushed me in the right direction (plus, the co-workers in closest proximity to my inevitable professional meltdown were no longer just politely asking if I'd considered getting a hobby).

In early January 2017, after 16 years off the ice, I submitted myself to the weirdly wonderful world of being an adult ice skater at the age of 32. And what started out as a New Year's resolution didn't take very long to blossom into a genuine passion.

Since then, I've skated at four different rinks since getting back on the ice, which means my reacquisition of skills has been quite the scattershot one: There are things on Free Skate 1 that I still can't do; there are things on Free Skate 6 that I can.

I passed my USFS Pre-Preliminary Moves in the Field (MITF) test in April 2018 but am going back to the Adult Track for future tests. I passed ISI's Open Bronze Freestyle in June 2018 and Open Silver Freestyle in April 2019. I'm aiming to take my Pre-Bronze FS and Bronze MITF tests before the 2019 Lake Placid Adult Skating Weekend in June.

The rest of my 2019 skating goals include: mastering the trio of spins there's finally some hope for (sit, camel, and back); getting all of my single jumps in order; hitting the ice every day for a week at least once; and focusing more on footwork. I had designs on competing in sectionals this year, but I think that's more of a 2020 goal; the 2019 Hershey Open, however, is looking pretty good right now. I do wanna get some competition experience under my belt but I have GOT to work on my lagging confidence and abundant nerves first.

But, really, as long as I avoid any major injuries and my body keeps believing I belong on the ice, I will be ecstatic.

The 'Why' Behind the Blog
I started this blog for a few reasons, but partly because I'm a professional writer and want to fall in love with writing again, or at least enjoy it like I used to. I get bored easily, and writing for a living is not exciting when it becomes just a paycheck. Skating, conversely, presents a new challenge with every lesson, and I do think it's the always-moving finish line that keeps me both coming back and fully invested in my own progress (besides, few things feel as good as the dopamine rush of finally conquering a move I've been struggling with). Combining a new love with a stagnating one felt like the natural next step.

(That being said: I know myself well enough to know that I'll abandon this endeavor in no time if I hold myself to a defined schedule. I can't promise that updates will be either regular or frequent, but I will keep them coming for as long as I keep skating.)

It is infinitely rewarding to be an adult skater, but it's not without its own unique challenges. Part of why it took me so long to come back to the ice is the paralyzing combination of fear and intimidation. Injuries are a lot scarier when you consider how they interfere with your adult responsibilities and obligations, to say nothing of the prolonged recovery time. And the debilitating insurance costs and hospital bills.

There are a lot of complicated feelings that accompany skating, especially as an adult. I remember the relief of realizing I wasn't alone in harboring them, and their evergreen nature is turning out to be a theme here. The intimidation of being an adult skater is one of my biggest, most stubborn hurdles so it gets the most airtime. Peeling down that onion is awfully cathartic right now; it's also something that comes up when I talk to other adult skaters, so I feel it merits if not a conversation then at least an attempt at exploration and acknowledgment. This sport is just as mentally and emotionally demanding as it is physically so, and there's a lot to be examined there.

In April 2018, I started Ask an Adult Skater in the hopes of answering those questions other adults are too afraid to ask (it's, uh, a slow-starting process, and I hope to be more diligent about it in 2019). I'm hoping it'll be a regular installment I can offer my skating peers, life and attention span allowing. Additionally, at the suggestion of an IRL friend (oh hai, Fernando!), I'll be adding glossary links to explain the more technical skating stuff and make it more accessible. You know, eventually.

It might have taken me 13 months to finally start a skating blog, but I've been painstakingly plotting my progress on Instagram since the beginning; There, a number of friends have expressed their own interest in taking to the ice as adults, and I've "met" a number of adult skaters whose own stories have inspired and comforted me in equal measures. There is encouragement in a hugely supportive community, and I wanted to add my voice to that choir of confidence. If I can help even one person go for something they always wanted to do but fear they're too old for, I've done what I set out to.

Because, honestly and truly, if I can do it, anyone can.

Thanks lots for visiting my suuuuper nichey corner of the blogosphere, and I hope you enjoy your time here. <3 p="">

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