I Passed Adult Bronze!!! Woohoo

21 Jan

Yep, I passed the Adult Bronze Moves in the Field test and the Freestyle this past thursday.
I am so relieved I passed because now I can go to sectionals and compete at the Bronze level. So… mission accomplished!!

That morning I woke up at 5:30am and drove to the rink. It turned out to be an hour and 45 minute drive which wasnt really that bad.

My coach told me not to eat before the test- or at least not to eat anything heavy. But I did. I cant help myself! I stopped at a gas station a block away from where I live. (hehehe- I didnt even last a block!) They had this great sandwich – a French toast and sausage sandwich. I really love eating and I knew that if I ate something now, at least 2 hours before my test then it would probably be ok when I tested. So I gulped that down. Well 3/4 of it! No coffee though. I was good on that point. I already had passing jitters so I knew that would not help!

The rink had two sheets of ice. They were using one for practice and one for tests. So I had enough time to get on the practice ice for like 20 minutes. I was dressed in my sausage blue velvet dress for a pre-teen. Ha ha.. thats what I like to call it. Never Ever order a dress from a catalog without reading a description of the materials. It didn’t look like Velvet in the pic!! So, I am doomed to wear that thing at least a few more times cause it was so friggin expensive that even I (miss spendthrift) cannot just toss the boob squashing velvet out the door! Another note for adult skaters that are well-endowed: Do not buy from GK Elite. I don’t think their designers realize some people even have boobs!

Ok, so I got off topic there.
I was able to practice for maybe 3 minutes before my coach showed up. I ran though the first two moves which she made me do twice. By the time I was tired. Mornings= no stamina. I needed to conserve. I jumped a little, waltz, waltz/toe (very tight). Sit spin was fine but the ice in this rink was very different than at home and it was very hard. You could hear every thing! Plus you needed to really dig in your edges. Not good for me on jumps. I was tentative. I could tell. The ice made me go faster than usual since I felt like I was skimming the surface. I knew I should have sharpened my skates two weeks ago for this! I just wasn’t pressing into the ice at all either.

I was somewhat nervous at this point but nothing like I was for Prebronze. I was oddly somewhat calm with just a bit of apprehension. The woman running the test ran over and told me the first two little girls weren’t coming so I was first. And if I passed my MIF then I would be up again 15 min. later.
One warmup for both MIF and Free since both of my tests were during the same session.

I breathed. So that was fine, I would just get it all over with. I tried to tell myself, just go slow and then maybe I could control my edges because I was definitely tightening up. Coach tried to make me do my backspin. I refused. Absolutely refused to try on practice. If I fell I knew I would only think about the backspin. So I didn’t. As it turns out, I guess if you are that nervous to try an element before a test then you probably shouldnt test it cause you do know that the element really isnt yours yet. W

I went on warm up after practice. It was fine. I just did stroking and such. Actually I cant really remember what I did cause I was starting to get freaked.

They called my name, I went up to the judges, they asked me if I knew the order of the Moves test. I said Yes.. I think so… (in my head: ha haaa, I was laughing because I knew I just might forget!.) They said- if you need help just ask.

I skated to my spot and began….. and was ok. It was not the best I ever skated. It was not my absolute worst. I was not fast but it wasnt completely shaky. It did feel very long. In my eyes I did ok. Not great but ok. I have enough trouble realizing which edge I am on in a particular part anyway let alone trying to understand if I was on one in the actual test. I did add one extra set on my backward outside edges. Which freaked me and my five step which I normally enjoy was like a race to the finish. I just wanted the heck off that ice. I was starting to shake a little. My coach was mouthing things like Extend… and Hold… and I was just trying to complete the edge or turn.

I breathed a sigh of relief when it was over. I waited to hear if I passed for my freestyle test. I went out to the ice when the judges signaled that I passed and I skated to the center.

I was happy with one pass…. I wanted the freestyle pass badly but quite frankly I was nervous that I wouldn’t be able to hit my waltz/toe or backspin under testing stress. When I stood there waiting for my music I thought.. I just want to enjoy skating. I’ll just try my best and perform. Knowing it was going to be difficult.

Right off the bat, backspin…. nope.. didnt happen, darn! Went on with a slight sigh and a grimace. Waltz toe, barely hit it, done… went into crossovers and outside spiral- best part. I hit it and tried to smile and use my arms to go with the music (which happens to be from ice castles!)
Then mohawk and speed with one crossover and I set up for my loop. Completed! Small but completely rotated, then three turn into a sit with my variation, hands behind my back into the scratch. Then into the step sequence. Sometimes I am very disoriented at this point and I have to really push to start the steps. This time on the second step I stumbled. This has never happened in practice or competition. Wierd. I recovered shakily and went on. Crossovers into sal. My best jump of course, and into side hop, three turn, one foot spin, with arabesque(wasnt in the program.. go figure- I dont have time to do the full scratch so I do a variation usually a foot to the side with a hand to the heart and the other arm out but I just pulled my leg to the back.)

After that.. 3 strokes into toe loop…. the dinkiest little toe loop ever. Crap, total crap. It is a hard set up out of the spin but still.. it was so tiny! Then I attempted my last back spin. Nope. So bad, worse than the first. I totally don’t know how I stood up. Then the end.

Darn that backspin!! lol

So, they asked for a reskate of the backspin. I calmly tried to skate slowly to the middle of the ice and breathe all the while mouthing “backspin reskate” to my coach.
It thought, “I can do this right? I came all the way here, worked hard, and practiced and spent the money so I was going to do this!”
So I stood facing the judges and from a pivot I barely held onto three rev’s and pushed out of the backspin.

PASSED!!

Most of the judges comments were pretty negative, like strikes on the wrong edge, and only did 2 xo’s around the end. Which in my insanity I probably did. In MIF 2 judges passed me and one circled retry (well.. nice way to say fail!) Well 2 over one wins but woh.. I cant believe I did that badly! Although one judge complemented me on my posture and back outside edges.. woohoo!

Freestyle comments were way harsh. Well.. it was without a doubt the worst showing of that program I ever did!
One judge wrote “The program was barely passable you need to work!” My thoughts on this.. hmmm something like, I spend way over my budget skating my butt offand I already work every single moment of spare freestyle ice into my work schedule. And no I am not Tara Lipinski nor will I ever be! But Hey… you know I guess I could work one more 6 am session in! Wow.. I mean I am not perfect by any means. But truly, I am an adult, with limited time and I do work really hard. Meanie. 😛

On the flip side one judge wrote….”Very musical, very graceful and good use of arms” Ok… that mollified me. Must have been the spiral section.. ha ha, I smiled just for that judge…

So, that was my Bronze test experience. Fascinating I know, but thank goodness I dont have to do that again for awhile!!
I am just not a test taker. Even in college.. it was very difficult and all I had to control was my brain and hand. Eeek… controlling your whole body in many ways is so much harder!

So from here. I will now continue to work on my backspin and try to get that lutz. Hopefully beef up my program so it is somewhat competitive and look forward to sectionals!! So much fun! I really see this test as a milestone for competing as well as a push to be able to focus on more difficult elements as well as perfecting some of the easier ones.

I just got my skates sharpened by an experienced pro after I tested. So for the first time I will have perfectly sharpened skates (not just by anyone like I usually do)
and I can’t wait to go try them out. He did say they were pretty bad and asked me what test I took because he couldn’t believe I could hold an edge the way they were! He was awesome. He asked me if my scratch spins had been traveling. I said yes.. absolutely they have been a bit off and I have been struggling to get them back to the way they were. He said my sweet spot was gone. Great..nice I said. So hopefully I will notice a big difference. He also said one blade was crooked. What the heck?
And he said I probably compensated my left inside edge somehow. Great. Well, thats fixed as well.

So maybe I’ll skate like Michelle Kwan now! lol… yeah in my dreams..

Till next week…onto backspin and lutz

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