Are former single skaters judged seriously as pairs?
Often when a single skater makes the switch to pairs for whatever reason, it seems to take the judges a little time to adjust seeing the skater or team adjust to the new discipline.
Is it because they think, oh, they couldn't make it as a single and have used what triple jumps they have to advantage. I'm not pointing the finger at anyone in particular, by the way.
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Gadfly and Bon Vivant
Haven't almost all pairs skaters begun as singles skaters?
Okay, I assume you're referring to skaters who get some level of notice as singles and then move to pairs. but I honestly can't think of any reason why that should matter to judges if the skaters in question can develop pairs skills.
One reason for judges to not fall all over new pairs skaters is that pairs is not diluted singles (except for side by side jumps and spins) but a lot of distinct skills that take time to develop (if they do).
The answer to your question is yes. For example, Naomi Nari Nam.
The most important thing is that a skater goes into pairs because they really want to do pairs and like doing pairs. What they did before doesn't matter.
If they do it for another reason it will show in their skating eventually.
Apart from her being Naomi Nari Nam... what makes her head over heals above the rest in the pairs? I wasn't blown away by their skating last year, or this... so maybe I just *don't get it* but I think they have a ways to go.
Originally Posted by gsrossano
Tamara Moskvina. She was Russia's National Champion in singles (best Internatinoal finish was 14th at Euros), then went on to win World silver.
The trouble with singles skaters is that they get used to doing things on their own, they can try to muscle a jump however they like, they can skate in their own style and not worry about anyone else. At teh lower levels if you watch single skaters, while their programs are choreographed a particular way i've noted some of the girls with the higher end doubles never do the same thing in the same place twice. sometimes the shape of the program gets distorted, spins are placed slightly differently to the last time they did it, jumps aren't quite where they are choregraphed etc etc.
Pairs i think is far more precision - if the skaters are skating apart and one is blind to the other, they must stick to pattern and rhythm in order to make sure they will be in unison and close together. Pairs sakter must look the same doing jumps, spins, footwork...everything!
That's what i think elite level singles skaters who haven't spent long doing pairs always like two singles skaters and not a pair, in order to truly skate beautifully as a pair its omsetihg that takes years with one partner to learn before you can transfer the skills to another partner.
There is also a love of skating involved here.
I think Baldwin just wasn't going to make it in singles but his love for skating made the Pairs seem more desirable than retirement.
In Nan's case, it was too long a wait to heal without singles. The love of skating brought her to Pairs.
Given the chance these two got, isn't it better they stay in skating? I don't think the judges worry about that. Some may be happy that they found Pairs.
A hearty welcome to the forum, GSRossano, especially if you are the real GSRossano! Post often, post long!
I agree with Antman's post. I just don't see how it is possible for someone to take up pairs skating "late in life" (like after 18, LOL). But Yuka Sato did it as a professional, and did it beautifully.
Nam and Lefteris are a delight to watch. Excellent singles skills and a Joey D. Viver that really engages the audience, especially that part of the audience that never fell out of love with Naomi after 1999.
Whether they can advance up the ranks in terms of pairs skills remains to be seen. I hope so.
MY TVC 1 5
John B in 1999 at 27. I really thought this was common place due to needing to get your "skating legs" and then see where they best fit for comp if that is your said goal in FS.
Last edited by SeaniBu; 11-13-2006 at 01:44 PM.
Reason: Answered my question
Maxim Marinin often said that it was his loss to Plushenko (who was significantly younger than Maxim) that made him realize his future in singles was not so bright and that loss pushed him into pairs. Not a bad move, Maxim
I still go back to my argument. It is the love of skating that keeps the skaters going on and on. In the case of switching it is the opportunity that is offered at a given time when one discipline is not working well for whatever reasons
John Baldwin, for me, got a gift in getting Rena Innoue, who I think as a very strong figure skater and who could switch to singles and do well.
"[Rena] Inoue is a two-time Olympian for Japan, having competed at the 1992 Albertville Games (as a 15-year-old) in singles and pairs and at the 1994 Lillehammer Games in singles."
Inoue "previously competed in pairs with Tomoaki Koyama from 1987-1992," according to Inoue/Baldwin's USFS bio.
Tiffany Scott, Jenni Meno, and Katie Orscher are some of the "late-starting" pair skaters who made it to Worlds in pairs.
The original question was, do the judges take a former singles skater seriously as a pair skater. The answer is yes. NNN was taken seriously. So also John Baldwin who came to pairs as an "old" man.
Originally Posted by Tonichelle
Judges don't care about the past history of the skater. Only how they look as a pair skater. As part of a team.
IMO, it is not a bad thing at all for skaters to start out as single skaters. You can't do pairs if you're not a very good single skater anyway. Yes, you do less jumping, but pairs elements take just as much work as singles (if not more), and if there is a case where a single skater succeeds in pairs it shouldn't be seen as the "failed single skater," because to do well in pairs takes just as much talent, except a different kind.