Skating Fridays

Axel versus Double Salchow Video Analysis

My coach gifted me with another very insightful video analysis. He did a one-on-one comparison between my (successful) Axel and my underrotated double salchow.

If you don’t have the time to watch the whole thing, this is what I learned:

  • Both jumps have about the same air time (Axel is 0.35 seconds, while double sal is about 0.39, but the 0.04 difference is insignificant)
  • Theoretically, the flight time for the double salchow is enough to get all the way around
  • When I hit the height of the Axel at 0.16 seconds, I am almost 1 full rotation in the air; therefore, this gives me 0.19 seconds to rotate only half a turn
  • When we compare this to the double salchow attempt, at 0.16 seconds, I have only rotated 1/2 turn in the air. That means I only have 0.23 seconds to do a full rotation. This is most likely not physically possible.
  • Conclusion: My rate of rotation is too slow on the double salchow. Even if I tighten my air position on my current setup, I likely will not land this clean.

I found this analysis fascinating and very helpful. It’s proving that although my jump mechanics might be OK, my rate of rotation is what’s holding me back. So staying tighter is not the answer.

We’re going to try a few things to increase my rotation rate and see if that helps. But it was eye-opening to see how much slower I was rotating on the double salchow attempt.

Hope you enjoyed this analysis as much as I did!


  1. November 23, 2018 / 9:08 pm

    Eva, this is fascinating. I’d love to hear how you can achieve that additional rotation on the way up–whether it’s about getting into that tight position sooner, or more forcefully, or if it has to do with the takeoff edge? This really is illuminating–what they can do with video these days!

    • evabakes
      November 24, 2018 / 12:37 pm

      We are working on my takeoff technique to see if I can rotate more on the takeoff so it’s similar to the axel. That way I am more rotated before taking off and have plenty of time in the air before I need to land. My body isn’t quick enough to achieve a fast rotation rate while airborne.

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