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A Young Pair Skating Team Performs the Unweighting Process During a Pair Skating Lift

A Young Pair Skating Team Performs the Unweighting Process During a Pair Skating Lift

Photo Copyright © JO ANN Schneider Farris
Definition: Unweighting is the footwork the male skater uses while rotating on the ice during a pair skating lift. During the unweighting process, the male skater moves the of weight from one foot to the other.

If the pair's lifts turn counter-clockwise, a lift that begins while skating backward will start initially from right foot to left foot. When he starts a lift skating forward, the footwork will start initially from left foot to right foot. Then a Mohawk turn will follow. The steps and turns are then repeated as the pair moves down the ice.

Examples:
In the past, it was considered okay for the male skater to perform two-foot turns during pair skating lifts. That technique is considered dangerous and is seldom used. Today, unweighting is considered the safer method.

Pair skating lifts should first be practiced off the ice on mats before a pair team tries lifts on the ice. The unweighting technique should be done off the ice while standing still on the mats. Once the male skater is able to successfully unweight, the next step is to walk through the turns on the floor.

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