Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 24

Thread: Has pairs regressed?

  1. #1
    Custom Title
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    2,781

    Has pairs regressed?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=62iI8SbLm-I

    Kristi and Rudi at the 1989 Nationals.

    The SBS triple flip, triple toe, double axel.
    The death spiral.

    Now, even the top pairs can't land SBS triple toe/salchow cleanly. What do pairs need to do to move the sport forward?

  2. #2
    pour atteindre l'inaccessible étoile! 1795's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    wonderland
    Posts
    794
    Quote Originally Posted by FlattFan View Post
    What do pairs need to do to move the sport forward?
    train with bin yao

  3. #3
    On the Ice
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    38
    Now, even the top pairs can't land SBS triple toe/salchow cleanly. What do pairs need to do to move the sport forward?
    Well, to be fair, most pairs aren't made up of an eventual Olympic and World champion and a World bronze medalist.

    And for perspective, Jill Trenary won the World Ladies singles title not long afterwards with two triple toes, a sal and a flip. And Gordeeva and Grinkov won the 1994 Olympic gold medal without even an attempt at a triple jump. Yamaguchi and Galindo were a quantum leap above all the other pairs as far as singles skating skills were concerned, then and now.

    On the other hand, Yamaguchi and Galindo did not have the pairs skills that other pairs had. They had a major size disadvantage in Galindo who was not nearly as big and strong as guys like Sergei Grinkov, they were not nearly as fast as most of the other top pairs, and the "mirror" skating held them back as well. They were hitting a plateau at 5th in the World when Yamaguchi retired from pairs, and who knows if they would have broken through if they'd kept at it.

    I also think part of the reason most pairs aren't able to do the more difficult SBS jumps, though, is because of the size issues. There's a definite advantage to have a size difference in pairs from a pure physics perspective to get those eye-popping pairs elements usually with a (relatively) big, strong guy and a tiny woman, but at the same time the bigger a guy gets and the more muscle weight he packs on the harder and harder it's going to be for him to reliably knock out a triple jump. I distinctly remember Galindo talking about having to lose a bunch of muscle weight when he went back to singles.

    Pairs evolves, but it can be slow at time. It's hard to imagine any pair competing year in and year out with just a double axle as Meno and Sands did for many years now. At the same time, just a handful of couples have ever successfully a split quad twist, and that was first performed in (gulp!) the 1970s.

  4. #4
    Custom Title
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    198
    Quote Originally Posted by FlattFan View Post
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=62iI8SbLm-I

    Kristi and Rudi at the 1989 Nationals.

    The SBS triple flip, triple toe, double axel.
    The death spiral.

    Now, even the top pairs can't land SBS triple toe/salchow cleanly. What do pairs need to do to move the sport forward?
    Are you talking just about the American pairs? Because there are plenty of good pairs teams around the world., and this forum isn't restricted to the US.

  5. #5
    On the Ice
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    27
    I've noticed what seems like fewer pairs doing a triple twist, lots of doubles instead. Didn't all the top teams do a triple twist "back in the day", even the 80s and 90s? I'm thinking as far back as Underhill/Martini, the Carruthers.....

  6. #6
    Wicked Yankee Girl dorispulaski's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Staring at the ocean and smiling.
    Posts
    17,093
    For a while, it wasn't particularly favorable for pairs to do triple twists. You could get the same points for a double twist with Level4 as a Level1 triple. Last year they changed the rules back to make a triple more favorable, plus allowed a triple in the SP. One rationale for the original change (to effectively limit triple twists) is that so many pairs did them badly with chest crashes, plus the number of black eyes and broken noses (and damaged elbows) from training triple twists tends to be large, particularly for a skill that is more about gymnastics than skating.

    Now the triple twists are back again.

    As to Kristi and Rudy, Rudy deliberately bulked up and his triple flip got iffy in the following year. It's absolutely true that the bulkier the guy is, the easier it is to do throws, lifts and twists, but the harder it is to do SBS jumps.

    Plus those were non COP days so they didn't get particular credit for 3F, 3T and 2A.
    Last edited by dorispulaski; 01-17-2010 at 07:18 AM.

  7. #7
    Custom Title
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Posts
    9,490
    What a treat to see Yamaguchi and Galindo again! I think Sidwich made some good points about the relationship of the size of the guy to the jumping ability. I started thinking about two of the other best American teams of the past, JoJo Starbuck/Ken Shelley and Babilonia/Gardner. In both pairs, the lady was almost the same height as the man. Also, as with Kristi and Rudy, in both pairs, the skaters competed simultaneously as singles and pairs skaters, so their sbs skills were particularly strong. (In fact, I recall one year where Ken Shelley was both the U.S. men singles champion and the pairs champion--1971 or 1972, I think.)

    For my personal taste, generally I prefer it when the guy isn't as exaggeratedly big compared to the girl (what they used to call the gorilla-flea combination). Pairs skating has a romantic element to it, after all, so a bit of eye-to-eye contact is nice. Actually, Grinkov wasn't that big for a male pairs skater, so the contrast with Gordeyeva (especially in their pro years, when I rather preferred them) was not so extreme. And of the Chinese pairs, Shen/Zhao have less of a size contrast than, say, Zhang and Zhang. I'd happily give up a few of the scarier lifts to watch more side-by-side stuff, jumps and footwork, and death spirals that really float and glide.

    And, in terms of size, there's an exception to every rule. Mine (maybe yours) is Underhill/Martini. Barb is so petite next to Paul, and their chemistry could melt an entire Olympic-sized rink.
    Last edited by Olympia; 01-17-2010 at 08:51 AM.

  8. #8
    Custom Title Joesitz's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    New York City
    Posts
    20,185
    I assume you are talking about US Pairs.

    My answer would be an emphatic NO. I think just the opposite. It is beginning to come up to international standards. The US has never had a stable of Pairs Teams. Only one or maybe two that stood out.

    This recent competition showed a marked improvement of a number of Pairs. Several teams were giving it their all, either in the SP or the LP. It was all very competitive as a sport should be. I enjoyed it in toto

    The winning team has only been together for two years. I doubt Rudi and Kristi would even be near their standard.

    The rest of the podium had a 'never say die' team, and an over 30 in age Team. With the fighting spirit of the others, I would say the US will be a part of the Socci podium.

    The roots are planted, and we will see blooms in the next few years. I'm anxious to see Amanda/Joseph again and many other teams.

  9. #9
    Banned janetfan's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Philadelphia, PA
    Posts
    6,889
    Quote Originally Posted by Joesitz View Post
    I assume you are talking about US Pairs.

    My answer would be an emphatic NO. I think just the opposite. It is beginning to come up to international standards. The US has never had a stable of Pairs Teams. Only one or maybe two that stood out.

    This recent competition showed a marked improvement of a number of Pairs. Several teams were giving it their all, either in the SP or the LP. It was all very competitive as a sport should be. I enjoyed it in toto

    The winning team has only been together for two years. I doubt Rudi and Kristi would even be near their standard.

    The rest of the podium had a 'never say die' team, and an over 30 in age Team. With the fighting spirit of the others, I would say the US will be a part of the Socci podium.

    The roots are planted, and we will see blooms in the next few years. I'm anxious to see Amanda/Joseph again and many other teams.
    I agree Joe. Yesterday afternoon I watched on NBC and thought I would be seeing the Pairs LP and a tape of the Men's SP.

    I haven't watched much Pairs this season and I enjoyed the competition alot. I had already seen some of the Men's SP's and was glad NBC gave the Pairs decent coverage for a change.

  10. #10
    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Detroit, Michigan
    Posts
    28,825
    My problem is that I first started watching pairs in the days of the Protopopovs, Rodnina and Zaitsev, and Tai and Randy. Seeing those teams perform, I just took it for granted that all pairs teams could skate in absolute perfect unison -- two people truly skating as one.

    That is the part that I don't see any more. I don't care so much about the difficulty of the triple jumps. I would rather see an easier jump, but closer together and well matched.

  11. #11
    Go marry the quad if you love it so much DesertRoad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    646
    Lifts are the real point getters in pairs. Would Galindo and Yamaguchi have been able to pull off all the requirements for high level lifts under the COP? Not bloody likely. Pairs just stresses a different set of skills than what G/Y were good at.

  12. #12
    Banned janetfan's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Philadelphia, PA
    Posts
    6,889
    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    My problem is that I first started watching pairs in the days of the Protopopovs, Rodnina and Zaitsev, and Tai and Randy. Seeing those teams perform, I just took it for granted that all pairs teams could skate in absolute perfect unison -- two people truly skating as one.

    That is the part that I don't see any more. I don't care so much about the difficulty of the triple jumps. I would rather see an easier jump, but closer together and well matched.
    I did enjoy it yesterday but did not see a team with Randy &Tai's beautiful lines or anything close to the great mirror skills of Russian teams from the past.

    The programs look different - with less emphasis on originality of style. The pacing seems so different but that is a bi-product of skating for points.
    Last edited by janetfan; 01-17-2010 at 10:57 AM.

  13. #13
    Go marry the quad if you love it so much DesertRoad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    646
    Complexity is a surefire way to get points in the COP. Unison, not so much. Thus teams work on the former and less on the latter.

  14. #14
    Banned janetfan's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Philadelphia, PA
    Posts
    6,889
    Quote Originally Posted by DesertRoad View Post
    Complexity is a surefire way to get points in the COP. Unison, not so much. Thus teams work on the former and less on the latter.
    Thanks for your comments. I really used to love Pairs but they rarely show it on TV in the USA these days.

    Yesterday was a treat and I liked it even if it looked alot different from earlier eras.

  15. #15
    Go marry the quad if you love it so much DesertRoad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    646
    I can't remember the last time I saw a SBS pair spin in total unison. It's the gilded unicorn of pairs skating. Perhaps they should make complete unison a level feature in SBS spins, I'll take that over seeing a bad catch-foot position.

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •