Still bruised from last week’s roller skating class, I laced back up last night for another lesson. And y’all? I wasn’t half bad!
As I mentioned in last week’s post, this week’s lesson was to involve skating backward, as well as something called “crossing corners.” Since I could barely make it around the rink without busting my ass, it was a dubious prospect, to say the least.
After reviewing last week’s lessons (the proper way to fall down, balancing on one foot and moving forward), our coach had us line up facing the wall. It felt almost as scary as lining up before a firing squad.
Then we had to point our toes inward and press our knees together, while taking teeny little backward steps with our skates. The other wobbly adult students and I shared terrified looks, and then gingerly made our way off the wall. And to our utter surprise, we did it! We skated (albeit very slowly) backward across the rink. If you’d told me a few weeks ago that I’d skate backward without hitting the floor, I’d have laughed at you. But I did it.
Next, we were to learn to cross or cut corners. This is when you cross one foot in front of the other in order to zoom around corners. To me, it looked like a good way to break an ankle before hitting the ground.
We practiced while holding onto the wall, lifting our right foot tightly across our left, and then pulling the left foot back out so that our feet were parallel again. Once we’d all practiced a bit along the wall, the coach called for guinea pigs to try it on the rink with her. This prompted a side discussion among some of my younger classmates about guinea pigs, while the tiny hands of other students shot up in the air to go first. I marveled at these kids’ enthusiasm to go first, as I don’t remember ever being the kid who wanted to be the first to try something new. Maybe I could learn something from these guys.
Once all the kids had gone, only the three adults remained. We all nervously laughed with the coach about that, and then took our turns. When it was my time, I managed to do the crossing, although it wasn’t pretty or very technically accurate. But I did it without falling or injuring the coach, who was holding my arm as I turned my circles. Small victories, people.
Lessons learned, I spent the rest of my time skating around the rink, practicing. I teetered and wobbled a few times, but managed to maintain my balance enough to keep from falling. Lap after lap, I grew more and more confident, actually managing to maintain a rhythm at times, feeling like I was finally getting the hang of it. One of my class friends, who’s probably about 7, told me I was doing much better, and she could definitely see some improvement. And you know what? She was right.
Next week: We’re supposed to learn to “slalom,” which is basically skating around cones, like a ski slalom. We’re also supposed to learn to do drops, which will help us to clear the limbo bar. I have a feeling I’ll be dropping, but it won’t be the way my coach intends.