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I Got a List of Demands

Cat Brother's picture

"I got another plan, one that requires me to stand. On the stage or in the street, don't need no microphone or beat. And when you hear this song, if you ain't dead then sing along. Bang and strum to these here drums til you get where you belong..."

That's a great workout song. I plan on listening to it alot before the next A2A.

So, obviously I need to improve my speed technique. What are y'all's thoughts on this here series of tutorials?


I (may) have a race in March that I just want to crank at. Personal reasons, long story. Any recommendations for reasonably priced speed camps?



skatey-mark's picture

Double push is overrated

I feel like I know the double push well, and have been doing it for years. That said, I think many people jump right into trying to learn the double push, thinking it's this magic technique that's going to shave an hour off their A2A time. Most of those people would benefit more from working on their classic technique and making that more efficient before moving on to the double push. The best thing you can do is attend a workshop that focuses on classic technique. Eddy's "Skate Farm" workshops spend a lot of time on classic technique and also cover the double push. I try to attend one of his workshops every year. In addition to learning a lot, it's a seriously fun weekend. If I had to pick one drill for someone to work on, it would simply be gliding on one skate, with the supporting leg bent as much as possible. (90 degrees is a good goal to work towards.) Everything in classic technique and double-push builds off that position. So if you don't have good balance in that position, your technique is going to suffer. I looked over the drills you linked to, and I'm not all that impressed. I don't think someone would be able to teach themselves double-push by following those. (Step 6 isn't bad, but the stuff leading up to that is very useful in my opinion.) If you want to get faster, work on classic technique. It'll be time well spent. Eddy hasn't posted his workshop schedule for next year yet. Last year, he started off with a workshop in February in Ft. Lauderdale. The skaters down there are pretty cool, and you can't beat Florida in February, so that might be a good one to attend. We'll be trying to get Eddy back to NC, but that probably won't be until March or April. Not in time for your race, I suspect. I'll also be teaching a workshop in Raleigh sometime in March. I usually try to time it to be a few weeks before Eddy's. I teach many of the same drills as Eddy, so it gives people a taste of what to expect from Eddy's workshop. (And hopefully they'll get more out of it that way.) - SM -
Cat Brother's picture

Thanks Mark, yeah, I

Thanks Mark, yeah, I remember Blake saying on race day how he wasn't much on the double push, and he had no trouble passing me by. I have a video on increasing skate speed for hockey, are there any that illustrate what you call the classic technique? When holding the 1-leg bent position, you go for time, 1-30 seconds, or what? (about) how much do your workshops run, so I can start budgeting?
skatey-mark's picture

workshops... priceless

Eddy's workshop was $260 this year. That may seem high, but keep in mind you're getting 2 full days of great instruction from someone who has won A2A more than anyone else. (I think.) There are usually some freebies (like bearings) included in the workshop. Details on Eddy's workshop can be found at: http://www.skatecentral.com/ My workshop is just one day. I do it as a fundraiser for Tour to Tanglewood, which benefits MS Society. So the cost to participate is an $80 donation to MS Society. I also give discounts if you sign up for TTT or recruit someone new to do TTT. Details on my workshop can be found at: http://www.skatestrong.com/ If you can only do one, I'd pick Eddy's over mine. It really is *that* good. But I also think that if you're able to do both, that you'll get more out of Eddy's workshop if you do mine first. For the one-legged gliding, just keep trying to increase the amount of time you're able to hold the position. And also work on increasing the amount of leg bend. Eventually, you should be able to glide for 30+ second with your chest practically on your thigh. Hockey skating drills may help. In my experience, hockey skaters tend to "toe push" a lot, which is one habit you'll definitely want to rid yourself of. But another thing to keep in mind is that hockey skaters don't have to worry about skating for 6, 7, 8 hours... They're more interested in raw sprinting speed and maneuverability. So they might sacrifice efficiency for a little extra speed. That's fine if you're skating a 2 minute shift. But it's not necessarily what you want for an 87 mile skate... - SM -
MikeB's picture

Amen to that - - hockey stride vs. inline stride

You nailed it SkateyMark. The hockey stride isn't interested in any gliding or working an outside edge or double pushing. It's all churn and burn; stopping/starting; digging in hard throwing pronation to the wind -- and if it's a hard nonstop shift -- 60 secs max. The inline stride is so much more about efficiency and personal comfort zone technique, over a much more varied skate environment. Seems technique gets better over time with practice and good input from proven skaters (like yourself). It is nice to inline skate long distances with a good pack. Everyone is so helpful and friendly. You can observe others' technique and get good feedback on your own. Nice change of pace compared to hockey skating where it gets rather chippy and everyone seems to have something to say about each others mother.
timv's picture

"My better is better than your better"

...was the slogan of the Nike ad using that song. It ran a couple of years ago and might have been the rudest sounding spot to have graced the public airwaves. And I mean that in a good way. I love the ear-splitting gymnasium PA feedback that kicks in at the first line you quoted, the way all the heads in the room watching the Dallas Cowboys would jerk over at the TV as if to ask, "What in the hell is that?"


Here's another good one going back to 1996:


(Iggy & the Stooges, "Search and Destroy". "Look out honey 'cause I'm using technology. Ain't got time to make no apology.")

Great advice from skatey-mark on training, drills, and workshops btw. Listen to the man. He knows whereof he speaks.

Cat Brother's picture

Yep, that makes sense re

Yep, that makes sense re hockey vs. long distance inline. I liked the 'search and destroy' commercial, though I question the spot of someone heaving their Cheerios. $260 ain't too bad, especially if I'm not paying for a hotel. I'd like to do both'a your camps. Eddy has some longish tutorials on youtube, are there actual instructional dvd's for what he shows, as picture quality is a little low?
skatey-mark's picture

eddy dvd

One of the goodies you'll get at eddy's workshop is a video of the workshop. So you'l get to see yourself (and others) doing all the drills, as well as skating for the video analysis that eddy does at the end of the first day. You also get another dvd with a bunch of videos on it. I suspect many of them are the same ones that are shown on youtube. If you can't wait for the workshop, you can order the dvd here: http://skatecentral.com/custom/paypal/collection/videos.html Where do you live? I've been wanting to have a "skating video" get-together for quite a while. If you're not far from raleigh, you could come by for that. (I have no idea when it will be -- maybe sometime in november.) - SM -
roadskater's picture

I Got a List o'Rest Stops Hidden in My Palm Slider Man

I found my list of rest stops at some point when readying for Carolina Century. I had scrawled out the distances between rest stops and put them between the gel and hard plastic of the Salomon palm sliders. Now, as for the video, on youtube I accidentally type "Mike List of Demands" and got a pol vid with Mr. Gravel. Ha! Not so much worth linking but good idea to do that. Those pols are into social media (and diseases...not a comment on MG...just a joke). In any case, here's a link to one of the commercials with this song in it... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rHHMaiNyztk http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=09jUmUrycuU&feature=related
roadskater's picture

I Got a List of Key Steps, See Ya Later Escalator

Random item from today's email...
Cat Brother's picture

I live in Charleston SC, and

I live in Charleston SC, and am willing to drive 4 hours or so for good instruction, so if anyone plans on doing a tutorial, I will be sure to be there. (Haven't checked this board for a few weeks, hope I haven't missed one.) Mark, here's hoping you have a class, I'd like some good technique to practice with this winter!
skatey-mark's picture

SkateStrong workshop

I'll definitely post details here on RSN once I know what they are. The date will most likely be in early March. I haven't decided the date yet because I want to make sure it doesn't conflict with Eddy Matzger's workshop in Greensboro. (Assuming we get him back in the spring.) - SM -
Cat Brother's picture

I have a 1-mile skate race,

I have a 1-mile skate race, flat surface, around here about April 10 that I really really want to win - I figure getting the speedometer and accurately measuring my speed/heartrate will be one of the first steps to this winter's training.
skart's picture

Cat Brother, what type of

Cat Brother, what type of race is it? Is it a pack race or a time trial? The type of your race may affect your training approach. Given how short your race is, I would think that ANY kind of training would make a positive difference. However, some specificity may give you a bit of an edge on your competition.
roadskater's picture

CatBrother If You Want to Win

Yo Hermano del Gato, thanks for the post. If I wanted to win a one mile race on April 10 in Charleston I'd tell everyone there was a 10K race April 10 in Savannah, or maybe a one mile race in Charleston April 11. Or I'd keep it vewy vewy qwyuht. But that's me. I admire your desire to win AND to tell everyone when and where! I say some sprint workouts are in order, and it's hard to beat some indoor practice for some of that...or some kids on bikes on the road doing sprints in the neighborhood against skaterman.
eebee's picture

Oval or Straight?

Will you have to do crossovers or can you pelt it out in a straight line? Sounds interesting!
skatey-mark's picture

expected winning time

Without having any idea who would show up at the race, or what the course is like, I'd guess that the winning time will be under 3 minutes. (> 20mph average speed). I'd agree with roadskater that intervals are probably your best training tool. Those short sprint races are killers. Especially if it's a solo time-trial setup. 3 minutes doesn't sound like a long time, but it'll feel like 10 minutes when you're pushing yourself at 100% the entire way. - SM -

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