This week's column:
How To Corner Like the Pros
June 1, 2011
Hi, Bill: I'm 10 years old and have been inline skating for four years. I want to know what I can do to increase my speed while cornering? Could you explain the proper cornering technique for speed? Thanks. - Rush in Taiwan.
Hi, Rush: It’s good to hear from a 10 year old who is interested in technical matters!
The key to cornering is to cross and push. This means to lift your foot over the support leg. Then push through with the other foot.
Avoid sweeping your foot at near ground level. This puts your foot too far forward, which leads to toe-pushing and makes it impossible to get a full 4-wheel push.
The way my daughter, Nicole, avoids this sweeping motion is to focus on lifting the knee as she crosses over.
Two other things to remember are to keep your weight over your inside leg and to “steer” the corners with your shoulders. When you steer like this, your outside shoulder (the one facing on the opposite side of the turn) should be slightly ahead of your other shoulder.
Think of the way your dad steers his car. When he turns a corner, his body moves into the turn. The shoulder on the side of the corner moves back and down. The shoulder on the outside of the corner moves forward and up.
That’s what your shoulders should do when you skate a corner. In fact, it’s a good idea to imagine that you are holding a steering wheel as you go into a corner.
You live in a country with some highly skilled cornerers. Among the best are the X-Tech stars Luo Weilin, aka “Silk,” and Huang Yuting, both world champions.
If you get a chance, watch them skate or at least watch their videos. Then, copy what they do. You'll be whipping around thsoe corners in no time.