Once you learn a certain skill, does it really help you to transfer that skill to another? It does, doesn’t it, but no skill transfer is 100%. You still have to learn that other thing, otherwise, you end up knowing a little and using it probably in the wrong way. While this is not really a problem, it can be if you plan on continuing that other skill, using the foundations from the previous one.
Take ice skating, for example, a lovely sport which has lots of movement that needs to be learned if you want to be stable on your two feet, and then even more if you want to perform any moves from figure skating.
Let’s say you reach an above average level of ice skating, bordering on amateur competition level. Would those skills be transferable to another winter sport, such as skiing? They might and they might not be.
Similarities Between Ice Skating and Skiing
When you look at it, there aren’t that many similarities between the two, or are there? Actually, there are, you always ski using the edges, moving from one edge to another. It’s the same way you snowboard, too, when you go downhill, that is. That way you’re cutting the snow and you always have control.
Ice skating is similar, unless you are moving strictly forward, you are always cutting into the ice with the sharp edges of the skates. The sharper the skates are, the better your movement will be. The duller the blades are, the more likely you are to fall.
Since some of the motions are similar, being good at one thing is definitely going to be helpful in the other, though skis are much larger than skates and are more difficult to control given that you can reach fast speeds.
What Kind of Skiing?
Are we talking about Nordic skiing, alpine skiing and which type? Ice skating won’t do anything for half-pipe skiing and it definitely won’t help you with the slalom. You might be able to transfer some of the motions to the basics, but you won’t be a master and that’s basically a given.
You need to practice skiing if you want to be good at skiing. Ice skating can give you some of the moves, but some of them might even hinder you, for example, riding on one leg. Your leg is also fixed in your ski and unless you are bailing, it is not going to come off, while you can freely rotate your leg with your ice skate.
Don’t Rely on Previous Skills
Whenever you are learning something new, you should always dedicate your full attention to learning this thing. This means being ready to learn whatever the instructor tells you. Your already practiced motor skills will come in handy, because a good skater will have decent balance and will have little to no trouble learning how to ski properly, once they actually learn the basics.
In short, ice skating may help you ski better, but skiing will definitely do that.