San Diego Figure Skating Communications

An Information Resource for
Basic Skating Skills and Figure Skating

Salchow Jump
  The takeoff of a Salchow is from a back inside edge takeoff with the free leg thrust helping to launch the skater into the air. The landing is on the back outside edge of the free leg. 
Transition/Connecting Steps

Many skaters commonly use a left forward outside 3-Turn to setup the entry edge. After the 3-Turn the free leg extends backwards to establish the LBI takeoff edge.

The jump can also be entered from a individual RFI mohawk turn or performed out of a more complicated footwork series of steps and turns.

  The actual takeoff edge is a shallow back left inside edge.  The right free leg extends backward to allow the skater time the push against the ice from the left root while using a thrusting motion from the free leg to achieve maximum height into the air. 
  The majority of skaters rotate in the Counter-Clockwise (CCW) direction. They extend their right leg directly behind the skating foot and land backward on their right foot.

Clockwise (CW) direction skaters extend the left foot directly behind the skater and the skater lands backward on their left foot.

Rotation in the Air

The skater performs one full rotation in the air. The rotation occurs around the free leg after it achieves the top of its arc.


The skater should land on a backward curve that is a continuation of the takeoff curve. The landing force is cushioned by bending landing knee while extending the free leg. An erect core body (head up, level shoulders, and straight back) facilitates a skater being able tocontrol the landing.

Exit Edge/Curve

The landing should continue the flow (speed) of the entry into the jump with no noticeable loss of flow on the landing.

Entry curve of the jump's takeoff should continue through the arc of the landing/exiting edge.

The free leg should fully extend after landing. The landing should be held long enough to establish the skater has complete control of the landing!

Common Errors
  • Pre rotation of the shoulders and hips prior to the takeoff.
  • Many skaters hold their free leg unusually low (in some cases scraping the ice as they commence the jump).
  • Not jumping high enough to accomplish the full rotation in the air.
  • A major loss of control occurs in the air when the knee of the free leg is bent and wraps around the landing leg. 
  • Not checking the landing. If the core body (arms, shoulders, head) does not check the rotation in the air as preparation for landing, the skater's body will continue to rotate after landing resulting in a whipping action producing an uncontrolled edge lacking a smooth gliding exit curve.
  • Landing heavily on toe pick causing an immediate loss of flow out of the jump.
  • The free leg never fully extends after landing. Usually accompanied by the skater quickly stepping forward, changing edge, and/or bending at waist in an attempt to maintain their balance without putting their hand(s) or free leg down to avoid a fall.