Heel to Heel – Broken Down

Last week we got lots of great comments on the Heel to Heel transition video.  Several people wrote in asking if we could do a slow motion / still frame breakdown of the technique.  In this post, I’ve taken several still shots and included a slow motion video of a heel to heel transition – as well as included key points for various stages of the transition.

Slow motion video:

[vimeo id=”17035381″ w=”640″ h=”512″]

The below snap shot shows the beginning of the heel to heel transition.  This starts from a basic backwards c-cut stance. Players should NOT crossover before entering the position shown below.

Key Points:

  • Knees Bent
  • Heels come together
  • Hips open up the direction you’re transitioning to
  • Hands move the direction you’re transitioning to (this will bring the stick there next)
  • Weight loaded onto the pushing leg (my left leg in the photo above)
  • Weight should be toward the ball of your foot to avoid catching your heel into the ice while transitioning

The next freeze-frame shows the extension of the pushing leg (left leg in the photo).

Key Points:

  • Direct your energy laterally, and don’t stand up (wasting your energy upwards)
  • Hips and shoulders are now fully opened toward the new direction
  • Complete extension of pushing leg (finishing with the toe of your skate leaving the ice)
  • Hands moving in direction of the transition

The snap shot below shows all the weight loaded onto the pushing leg (right leg in this photo).

Key Points:

  • Head leading the transition (looking to where you’re going)
  • Weight fully loaded on pushing leg

The final set of snap shots show a complete 180 degree transition using the heel to heel technique.  Again, this starts from a basic c-cut stance (photo 1), weight is loaded to the pushing leg (photo 2), and finally the pushing leg extends completely into the transition (photo 3).

2 Replies to “Heel to Heel – Broken Down”

  1. Love these breakdowns – so when we can actually practice them, we can concentrate on the core key points and fully understand what we’re doing.

    The earlier video, I had to watch over and over again to try and gain some understanding. This breakdown saves me time!

    Thank you

  2. This is what non-experiment coaches needed.
    They have to see how a technical skill looks like. After what, they will know what they are talking about when they will bring corrections with their players. The player will realize AND the parents too will see that…

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