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Thread: Adult Free Skate

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    Gliding Along dlkksk8fan's Avatar
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    Adult Free Skate

    I went to a local competition yesterday to watch the adults skate. I wanted to see what it was like just in case I want to compete. I noticed that there wasn't that much difference between the bronze, silver & gold skaters as far as skating skills are concerned. There was one gold skater that could do an axel, but her other skills were not that good. Another lady in the gold skate could hardly do an axel or any other jump. It got me wondering how in the heck she could of passed her gold free skate test? Half of the silver ladies seemed like they should be skating pre-bronze or bronze. Why is there not more difference in skating skills among the levels? Is this the way it is at adult nationals?

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    adult free skate

    It really depends on what competition you go to. Adult nationals has a big draw and you see alot of decent skaters. I just got back from Adult Easterns and there were alot of nice skaters. Alot of people just do it for fun. You find alot of Adult Ice Dancers with some nice skating skills.

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    At the rink. Again. mskater93's Avatar
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    There is a huge disparity when you look at the qualifying groups at each respective Sectional from top to bottom and from the top of a group to the bottom at Adult Nationals. Seeing as how we're only a week from leaving for ANs for those of us going, the skaters you may have seen may not be going to ANs.

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    Medalist penguin girl's Avatar
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    I was wondering about that myself. I haven't been to adult competitions, but I watch some on youtube and there are some bronze level adults who are doing very simple routines, and others who are doing all the single jumps besides theaxel, and some nice spins and footwork. I'm going to be competing for the first time soon, as an adult, and I have no idea what I'll be up against.

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    At the rink. Again. mskater93's Avatar
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    It's pretty much a mixed bag in Bronze from people who are Bronze test level-ish to people who are near Silver level. The distribution gets tighter at Silver and tighter again at Gold.

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    Adult competitions

    I'm a bronze level skater and have been for the past two years (though I've been skating for a couple of years, I've only started to be more serious in the past 3-4) and there is definitely a variety of skill levels within certain levels and definitely if there is a good number of competitors. As mkskater mentioned, there are some "pre-bronze" bronze skaters and bronze skaters who will be moving up. Personally, I plan on moving up next year so I can get an axel in my program and challenge myself (and fix my layback).

    Most of the competitions I've participated in (on the east coast), the top finishers have all the single jumps pretty securely landed and ok spins, but I think it's definitely more important to have good basic skating skills and present well than to have choppy cross overs and pushes and then all the jumps. I won my Eastern's sectional event even though I didn't complete my first jumping pass, so they look above the basic freestyle elements.

    I've noticed a difference in the judges scoring of my program based off of an improvement in my basic skating skills, which is nice (of course, completing all the planned elements is important too).

    I'm going to Nationals and am curious to see the other levels of my fellow Bronze II competitiors, but I know regardless of the skill level, fluid, strong edges and secure skating are what the judges like.
    Last edited by jnskateva; 03-31-2008 at 09:05 PM.

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    Medalist penguin girl's Avatar
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    Thanks jnskateva--that's very helpful. I'm glad to hear that the judges are focused on basic skating skills--I think that's more important, especially for adults, than the jumps.

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    At the rink. Again. mskater93's Avatar
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    I've seen a marked improvement in my own placements as well as I've moved into my new program this year (it's broken in now since we finished it in early June, so I guess not so new) compared to last year's. It's more relaxed and easier to present (for me) and so I tend to complete everything in the program from a technical standpoint and after I hit my first difficult element, I calm down and skate more relaxed. I competed it very sick earlier this year (I couldn't even spin properly the week before without being nauseous/throwing up from the head cold I had), but I had a judge tell me that they LOVED the layout, transitions, and my "belief" in the program that they had never seen from me before which made it much more enjoyable to watch. Unfortunately, that day all my spins abandoned me!

    JNV - please PM me, I have a friend in your group at ANs and would be happy to throw a tossie on the ice for you if I knew who you were.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dlkksk8fan View Post
    I went to a local competition yesterday to watch the adults skate. I wanted to see what it was like just in case I want to compete. I noticed that there wasn't that much difference between the bronze, silver & gold skaters as far as skating skills are concerned. There was one gold skater that could do an axel, but her other skills were not that good. Another lady in the gold skate could hardly do an axel or any other jump. It got me wondering how in the heck she could of passed her gold free skate test? Half of the silver ladies seemed like they should be skating pre-bronze or bronze. Why is there not more difference in skating skills among the levels? Is this the way it is at adult nationals?
    Well, nerves have a lot to do with it, and I think you will discover just how much nerves come into play when you start competing. I know because I am the Gold lady you saw who landed an axel but skated like crap for most of the program on Saturday, LOL! For some reason, I was particularly nervous that day, and so were the other gold ladies I spoke with. Maybe because it's the week before Nationals and we're all uptight about it, but none of us skated as well as we normally do.
    Another thing to keep in mind is that, unlike kid skaters, many adult skaters have health issues, limited practice time and/or passed their tests many years ago. For example, one of those Silver skaters just got back on the ice last month after two years off due to heart problems (even though she looks quite young). One of the Gold skaters on Saturday is in her mid/late 60's and she was one of the two Gold skaters who passed their Gold FS tests a number of years ago. But most Gold skaters continue to struggle with consistency on the axel and double sal even after "getting" them, particularly in competition.
    Last edited by vlaurend; 04-01-2008 at 03:57 PM.

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    Gliding Along dlkksk8fan's Avatar
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    Vlaurend. I hope I didn't sound to bad in my comments. I didn't mean to offend anyone. I know how hard it is to skate with health issues (I have a thyroid condition and adrenal issues). So I do admire all of you ladies (and guys) that get out there and compete. I was going to do this competition, but I didn't have enough energy to practice for my bronze test and do Skate La Grande.
    I give youfor doing the axel.

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    Rinkside
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    Quote Originally Posted by dlkksk8fan View Post
    I went to a local competition yesterday to watch the adults skate. I wanted to see what it was like just in case I want to compete. I noticed that there wasn't that much difference between the bronze, silver & gold skaters as far as skating skills are concerned. There was one gold skater that could do an axel, but her other skills were not that good. Another lady in the gold skate could hardly do an axel or any other jump. It got me wondering how in the heck she could of passed her gold free skate test? Half of the silver ladies seemed like they should be skating pre-bronze or bronze. Why is there not more difference in skating skills among the levels? Is this the way it is at adult nationals?
    Once you compete, you will see a totally different side of adult skating.

    It's one thing to just play around with elements on a practice session, but a whole different thing to put it all together in a program & skate it all out with nerves, audiences clapping, and judges peering across a high table at you.

    I encourage you to get to know the adult skaters and learn their stories. We have a wide range of people who have gone thru the typical life situations such as:
    1.) Pregnancy (ever take 9 months off from skating & then try to come back?)
    2.) Cancer
    3.) Knee/hip/joint replacements
    4.) Lost almost 200 lbs through gastric by-pass & skating
    5.) Divorces
    6.) Lost jobs
    7.) Debilitating car accidents
    8.) Moving due to job changes
    etc.

    Not making excuses here. Just trying to point out that there is a lot more to what goes into an adult skater than meets the eye. We do this for fun/enjoyment, not to go to the Olympics. Some of my favorite skaters are some pre-bronzes I know. Their enthusiasm for the sport is infectious!!!!

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    Rinkside
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    Quote Originally Posted by vlaurend View Post
    But most Gold skaters continue to struggle with consistency on the axel and double sal even after "getting" them, particularly in competition.
    ITA!

    I like to tell people that there is NOTHING that we ever do in our daily lives as adults that even comes CLOSE to the level of agility/strength of landing a single axel. The up-n-over thing is very hard for adults to learn, and even the adults who were doing axels as a kid still can have difficulty re-learning this jump depending on how tall or how much weight they were carrying as a kid vs. having an adult body.

    Axels feel WAY different when you are carrying an extra 50-80 lbs & 6-12 inches of height.

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    Gliding Along dlkksk8fan's Avatar
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    Not making excuses here. Just trying to point out that there is a lot more to what goes into an adult skater than meets the eye. We do this for fun/enjoyment, not to go to the Olympics. Some of my favorite skaters are some pre-bronzes I know. Their enthusiasm for the sport is infectious!!!!
    I agree, I agree, I agree. I understand I'm an adult skater. I was thinking a gold skater would be way above my bronze level. I know how hard it is to pass the required test. I admire everyone one of those skaters that were on the ice. And every adult skater that gets up, puts on their skates, and skates!
    Last edited by dlkksk8fan; 04-02-2008 at 11:40 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dlkksk8fan View Post
    Vlaurend. I hope I didn't sound to bad in my comments. I didn't mean to offend anyone. I know how hard it is to skate with health issues (I have a thyroid condition and adrenal issues). So I do admire all of you ladies (and guys) that get out there and compete. I was going to do this competition, but I didn't have enough energy to practice for my bronze test and do Skate La Grande.
    I give youfor doing the axel.
    LOL! Don't worry about it! If I hadn't seen us all skate before, I would have thought our Gold Ladies group looked pretty weak myself! BTW, as you work on your MIF tests, you will become more aware of the difference in speed and edge quality between Bronze, Silver and Gold skaters. With each level, the skaters skate more on their edges and get more distance per stroke, due to the techniques they had to develop to pass the MIF test for that level. Adding 30 seconds to the program length at each level adds an extra stamina challenge as well.
    Anyway, good luck on your tests and I hope you can join us out there next year! :D
    Last edited by vlaurend; 04-02-2008 at 01:54 PM.

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    Gliding Along dlkksk8fan's Avatar
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    I know how much harder each moves test gets. I'm working on my silver moves and I find that I am getting stronger and my edging has improved a lot since I first started four years ago.

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