If you are big into inline skating, you know that one of the biggest hazards that you have to face on a daily basis is falling. It goes with the territory and depending on where you skate, you have a lot more control or less control over the possibility of falling. You really have to skate strategically to maximize your level of control. While a lot of this has to do with your choice of surfaces and location, you can also deal more proactively with the possibility of falling by doing drills.
Drills to the Rescue
Inline skating drills enable you to position your body in such a way that you avoid falling. Now, keep in mind that depending on the impact on your skates as well as your terrain, falling is probably almost impossible to avoid.
It just happens. But even if faced with such possibilities, you still do have a big role to play. It isn’t a foregone conclusion. You can’t just take all of this lying down. There are things that you can do before, during, and after the fall.
Inline skating drills help prevent falling but they can also help you deal with a fall more proactively so as to minimize whatever damage it could have otherwise produced.
Things to Do Before Skating
Before you skate, it’s a good idea to adopt some sort of a ritual. Maybe you should warm up. Maybe you should stretch a little bit. Your pre-skating ritual can go a long way in helping you so your muscles can be in a proper position or shape to handle falls. You want to make sure that your muscles are in the right shape so that when you do fall or you start going into the process of falling, you can find the muscle strength that you need to find your center of gravity and right yourself.
Keep in mind that when it comes to falling, whether we’re talking about during, before, and after, it all boils down to your center of gravity. That’s how you fall. You have weight on your center of gravity and if the center is too high, any impact from your foot would disturb your center of gravity and it may produce a small change as far as your body orientation is concerned.
Even the smallest change in the way your body is aligned can lead to you tipping over because you have to remember that when you are skating, you are going at a high rate of speed and this speed actually exaggerates or amplifies the angles involved. Pair this with the weight of your body, and it’s very easy for you to tip over one side or the other.
Inline skating drills can help you deal with what happens before you fall. If anything, when you keep drilling, you would know how your knees are set up so you can crouch in such a way to lower your center of gravity. When it comes to falling, center of gravity is actually pretty predictable. The higher the center of gravity is, the easier it would be for you to tip over.
If you are moving at a high rate of speed or even at a moderate rate of speed, depending on the obstruction on the road or the road impediment or imperfection, you can easily get tipped over. This is why it’s really important to lower your center of gravity. While this alone would not make falls impossible, they make them less probable. There is a big difference.
When your center of gravity is lower, it takes a bigger shock to your lower body for you to tip over. Also, when you do get hit with a shock, you have more opportunities to right yourself. It’s not such a bad shock that you just take such a massive hit that you can’t help but tip over and spill. You’re still left with a tremendous amount of leeway to position your body in such a way that you can stabilize your movement.
You’ve seen this happen with other rollerbladers. You see how people in inline skating would hit something or would hit somebody else and they would wobble for some time, and it turns out that the faster they’re going, if they have practiced the right drills, the higher speed actually enables them to right themselves much faster.
That’s sounds almost counter intuitive, but that’s how it actually plays out in reality. The worst situation is actually to find yourself in a slow rolling disaster. In other words, you’re not really going at that high rate of speed but your body is positioned in such a way that whatever weight you have works against you. This makes it all that much harder for you to position your body so as to get right back up and minimize the impact of the shock.
Think of your body as an electrical wire and when electricity passes through the wire, it goes from point A to point B. Your job is to quickly and safely transmit the shock from the entry point to the top of your body or to the side of your body so the energy dissipates quickly. This is not always possible.
In fact, in many cases, it’s impossible so it’s really important for you to do some inline skating drills so you can lower your center of gravity. This really all involves some sort of crouching.
Stuff You Can Do During Impact
When your foot hit something or there’s impact on your skates, don’t lose hope. Don’t think that it’s a foregone conclusion that you are going to hit the pavement and that you’re going to get scratched up. You have to be more positive. Just go into automatic drill mode.
The moment you start to feel something that might throw you off, start crouching. This puts you into a better position to spread your center of gravity more evenly. Also, start separating your legs while lowering your center of gravity. This makes it so much harder for you to tip.
Of course, the key here is to do this all quickly. In other words, you detect the signal which is the bump or the impact and then you take action quickly. It has to almost be instinctive. If you’re able to do this, you would be able to survive many shocks. In fact, it doesn’t have to be a foregone conclusion for you to tip over and hurt yourself.
After You Fall
How can drills help you after you fall? Well, this is all about strategizing. When you take a spill and you get shaken up a little bit, this is a good time to quickly focus on what you did wrong, and if there are any areas for improvement. I know it may seem like a day late and a buck short. It may seem that this is too little too late. Absolutely wrong.
You know firsthand the impact of bad decisions. You know firsthand the impact of bad preparation. This is precisely the time that you need to do some sort of post mortem so you can clearly map out a better course of action the next time you get back up and start skating again. Inline skating drills can go a long way in helping you do what you need to do the right way the first time around, whether we’re talking about things that you do before, during, and after you fall.