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Thread: Point Your Toes, Please

  1. #1
    SkateFan4Life
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    Point Your Toes, Please

    Why is that some skaters perform their competitive routines with great technique - including pointed toes - while others never seem to "get with the program", as far as pointing their toes are concerned?

    Some coaches absolutely insist that their students develop the habit of pointing their toes, and, this really adds to the artistic side of their skating, in my opinion. When a skater lands a jump with a perfectly pointed toe on the extended, free leg - wow.
    When a skater performs a camel spin or a layback spin with a well-positioned free leg/pointed toe - wow. Great technique!!

    On the other hand, some skaters achieve greatness without pointing their toes. Dorothy Hamill once stated that she never considered herself to be an artistic skater, because, among other things, she never pointed her toes. :D Oh well, that little flaw did not prevent her from winning the Olympic gold medal in 1976!

  2. #2
    Fan for Life
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    To me, the toe pointing adds polish.

  3. #3
    Procrastinating b/c of Worlds
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    I'm not sure if this was really much of an issue before. I like the pointed toes, but I don't think it's pivitol.

    Maybe that's why many skaters take pilates now, since it emphasizes pointed toes.

    TV

  4. #4
    SkateFan4Life
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    I'm not saying that pointing your toes is an essential aspect of figure skating, but it does add an artistic polish to one's performance.

  5. #5
    Thank God for Stephane Lambiel and Matt Savoie! shine's Avatar
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    It's nice that the coaches and the skaters pay attention to pointed toes. But it's also very annoying when the pointed toe has become the end all be all for some people (*cough Dick Button cough*).

  6. #6
    Learning to Fly
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    Argh, un-pointed toes is one of my pet peeves, probably because I have some (a little) experience with dance and was always admonished for not pointing enough.

  7. #7
    In the void
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    Well - might it be that it depends on the style you're doing? My credo is that it's boring after a while if a skater (or team) does only one style. And yes, for a balletic style pointed toes are ok. But could you imagine Candeloro's Braveheart with pointed toes??? And hey, I would be glad to see more different styles in amateur skating, too. I'm glad that some ladies last year e.g. did tangos instead of classical ballads (which are nice, but I don't need 30 in a row in one competition). Tangos with pointed toes???

    So I'm voting for the differences. For good choreography which includes the little things like pointed toes or not, head position and so on.... all depending on the routine a skater is doing. Variety rules! :D

  8. #8
    ~ Figure Skating Is My Passion ~ Ladskater's Avatar
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    Point Your Toes, Please

    SkateFan4Life:

    When I skated, pointing ones toe was pretty much in the skating "Bible" rule book. Our coaches beat it into us. This was why figures were so important - part of the discipline of doing figures is pointing the toe. Unfortunately, with the demise of figures some of the important details are lost. Ice dancers of course, are expected to do this. I too love to see a skater pay attention to this minute detail. It adds so much to the skaters carriage.

    Could you imagine watching a prima ballerina perform Swan Lake or Sleeping Beauty and forget that one important detail - pointing the toe!

    Good point! (No pun intended)

    Last edited by Ladskater; 08-11-2003 at 09:50 PM.

  9. #9
    Gliding Along dlkksk8fan's Avatar
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    Nothing worse then seeing a skating foot that just hangs there and is not pointed.

    Lad-how did figures teach you to point your toes? Ballet class taught me that.

  10. #10
    ~ Figure Skating Is My Passion ~ Ladskater's Avatar
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    Point Your Toes, Please

    dlkksk8fan:

    While tracing the circles of the figure eight on one edge the opposite foot is held off the ice - toe had to be held and pointed until one skated to the center of the figure. It just looks better.

  11. #11
    SkateFan4Life
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    Ladskater - I agree with you.....I've seen numerous photos of skaters tracing the compulsory school figures, and the free leg was typically pointed out to achieve better balance. It looked very refined.

    As for free skating - a pointed toe is just the icing on the cake, artistically speaking. John Curry was a master at pointing his toes, achieving a classic line and carriage, etc.

  12. #12
    Gliding Along dlkksk8fan's Avatar
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    Lad you are right It's been such a long time, but I do remember having to have that free foot pointed when it was facing forward.

  13. #13
    SkateFan4Life
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    Look at photos of Tenley Albright, Peggy Fleming, Barbara Ann Scott, Timothy Wood, and John Curry tracing their school figures.
    They all have one thing in common - POINTED TOES!!

  14. #14
    Custom Title Joesitz's Avatar
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    Can you picture a diver who did not point his/her toes?

    The esthetics are essential as they should be in figure skating. A spiral without pointed foot looks like a club foot to me.

    Check out Maria Butryskaya's camels. Absolutely beautifully executed. Not only is the boot pointed, the entire leg is turned out at the knee, as it should be. For me it is much more effective than grabbing a foot to do a cirque du soleil trick spin to show flexibility. A beautiful camel and a well executed split jump already show flexibility, if that is so important. Why push it?

    Joe

  15. #15
    SkateFan4Life
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    Kathryn Healey had beautifully pointed toes. Her extensive ballet training was so evident! Her split jumps and spirals were a thing of elegance and beauty.

    :D

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