I skate probably 5 - 8 hours/week, on average, and I've been at this long enough to realize that I'm learning pretty slowly. I recently started thinking about my ice time and the quality v.s. quantity of my practice sessions. There are sessions where I really focus, I take videos, analyze what I'm doing wrong, and work on fixing it. Or I think through what I'm doing wrong and try to correct it. I work on a combination of skills and quality turns, edge work etc.
I would say those sessions are rare, maybe 1 out of every 10 sessions are really quality like that. Those sessions usually are followed by a breakthrough, even if the breakthrough doesn't occur on the session itself - by the following lesson or practice time, I'll realize I've improved.
The tricky thing is - It's hard to force quality. There are a few factors - like how busy the ice is, what the skill level is of the skaters on that session (if they're too high, I spend most of my time trying to find space where I won't get killed, if they're too low level, same issue, but in a different way). It also is hit or miss if I actually can figure out what I'm doing wrong, and if I can figure out how to correct it. The only consistent way for me to improve, I've found, is with a video - but I'm never sure if video'ing is frowned on, and if the rink is full, I can't really plant my phone on the boards and assume it's ok there.
I'm starting to wonder if throwing tons of non-quality ice time really does anything to help me progress...Or if I'd be better off skating less and trying to force that quality aspect into my practice time...