Backward Crossovers

When this skill was first suggested, I was a bit skeptical. Once I give you a little background info, you’ll see why:

I’ve always wanted to learn to play ice hockey, and when I graduated from college and got my first real job, I decided to spend my first grown-up paycheck on gear and lessons.

I started class and then proceeded to tear both my MCLs. I recovered, re-joined the class for the next season, and cracked a rib. I recovered again and decided the class was not doing wonders for my health, so I figured I would just join a team and start playing. And then I dislocated my shoulder. So, as you can see, as much as I love hockey, mine is a painful, unrequited love.

As you can imagine, I missed out on learning a few key skating maneuvers thanks to my many injuries. Backward crossovers was one of them.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with skating lingo, a backward crossover is a way to gain speed while you’re skating backwards.

It comes in really handy for figure skating and ice dancing. A little bit less handy for hockey. Waaaay less handy for the kind of hockey I was playing (also known as “throwing yourself at the puck and hoping the guy is too weirded out by your flailing to continue skating”). But I had someone who swore she could teach me, so off we went! Outdoor rink, ho!

My friends put forth a valiant effort. However, as hard as they tried, yelling “SWIZZLE! SWIZZLE! SWIZZLE!” at me was not as productive as you might think. BUT, toward the end of the session, there I was…almost killing a little kid in an orange jacket. (There is video of me almost killing the kid in the orange jacket, but sadly it will not be posted here. Instead, enjoy a picture of me not doing backward crossovers! It was sent to me with the caption “Badass!” so I feel it must be included.)

Backward crossovers

I actually did end up doing what some near-sighted people might consider one solitary backward crossover. I never managed to get a good round going, but I could pick up speed while going backwards in a circle—which was something I definitely couldn’t do before. So while it may not be a true “backward crossover” in the legitimate technical sense, I learned a new skill! It doesn’t have a name yet. Maybe I’ll call it an “Allie-oop” or something equally horrifying.

See you next time!


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