In the Jenny Kirk thread, antmanb wrote:
It is worthwhile at the end of a combination spin because it will increase the GOE (assuming it really is well centered) after the levels have already been gained.What i'd like is for some change that means it is worth the points for a skater to execute a blindingly fast, well centred scratch spin in their programme again,
As a solo spin? I'm not sure how to reward a simple forward scratch spin with level features. If performed blindingly fast with good centering, it should earn +2 or +3 GOE. If we can make +3 GOE on a level 1 spin worth more than 0 GOE on level 3, that would be an incentive for skaters to master it.
I've seen some pre-preliminary skaters who can do +1 and +2-worthy scratch spins, and all of them can do at least recognizable versions, so just doing the spin at all is not difficult. Sustaining it and keeping it centered are the hard parts, and those qualities are reflected in GOE.
Some of the features that apply to other spin positions don't apply to scratch spins. By its nature the spin is going to accelerate, so that wouldn't be a feature in this position. If the spin is at all competent the basic upright position will be held for more than 8 revolutions, but not the exact same position; the arm and free leg positions are constantly evolving as the spin pulls in. Possibly holding the the final, fully-pulled-in position for 8+ revs could qualify as a feature, but at that point if it's truly being performed with blinding speed it would require slo-mo replay to count the revolutions.
Some features that apply to other spin positions do or could apply to scratch spins, but in most cases it's not immediately apparent to skaters or tech panels that they would qualify, so these examples would need to be explicitly spelled out or reiterated to let skaters know they will be rewarded if they achieve them.
*Backward entry is obvious, for back scratch spins or change-foot spin starting with the back spin. But that's only one feature.
*Change of direction is another feature that can be used in a change-foot spin, but it's not likely to involve blinding speed.
*Cross-foot position spinning with the other foot on the ice at the end of the spin is mentioned as a difficult variation of an upright spin. But it's not specifically a scratch spin.
*Headless position is rewarded at the discretion of the caller. Right now it seems to depend on the speed of the spin in that position. Maybe write the guidelines to be clearer about how far back the head needs to be and for how long to achieve the feature regardless of speed, and let the judges reward speed with the GOEs.
*How about difficult arm variation? Just raising both arms overhead is common and not difficult enough to warrant a level feature. I like to raise one arm and lower the other and then switch them in my back scratch spin -- adds interest and some difficulty, but probably not enough difficulty for a level. But clasping the arms behind the waist or over the shoulder, which requires shoulder flexibility and challenges the balance more, should probably qualify.
*How about holding the free leg in the a la seconde or attitude position for 8 revs
at the beginning of the spin before crossing the free foot over the spinning leg, or even holding the free foot crossed at the knee for 8 revs before lowering it?
*How about 3 changes in speed, not just acceleration or deceleration, but accel-decel-accel as a feature?
I've seen so many laybacks that start out great and look like they will deserve +1 or +2, maybe even +3 in some cases, but then the final attempt at a Biellmann or (much less common in laybacks) change of edge causes the spin to wobble/travel and slow down. Well, there goes a + or two, although the final GOE might still end up at +1. And often the skater doesn't even get credit for that last feature, although the spectators still have to watch it.or a gorgeous long fast layback that doesn't end with a skater's blade over her head in some way. Maybe some automatic penalty if a skater slows down considerably getting into a difficult variation or edge change on a spin. BUt i don't really know how it would work in practice.
So if we can make it clearer to the skaters that they'll get a higher score for the spin if they only include as many features as they can do well and they'd be better off leaving off that last attempt, we'd see fewer bad Biellmanns.