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Thread: It's Time to Change the Short Program

  1. #61
    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joesitz View Post
    And for Senior Singles their Technical is not that important, There is no expectation that there will be, e.g., Moves-in-Field or triple jumps.
    Of course the short program is all about the technical elements, Joe. The current requirements for ladies are

    1. A double Axel.
    2. A solo triple jump out of connecting footwork.
    3. A triple-triple or triple-double jump combination
    4. A combination spin with at least two changes of position, each held for at least two revolutions.
    5. A layback spin of at least eight revolutions.
    6. A spiral sequence with at least three positions and one change of foot.
    7. A footwork sequence incorporating a full complement of skating steps and turns.

    These seven required technical elements comprise the heart of the short program.

    Skaters who are more technically skilled than others can gain more points by, for instance, doing a triple-triple instead of a triple-double, or by doing a triple Lutz instead of a triple loop. Skaters can also gain more points in Skating Skills and Transitions by doing extra moves-in-the-field like Ina Bauers and split jumps.

    I think it is a better test of technical skill to require the skaters to demonstrate all of these elements one after the other in a short program, rather than just do each element in isolation.

    (Just my opinion.)
    Last edited by Mathman; 04-04-2010 at 04:03 PM.

  2. #62
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    8 elements -- you left out the flying spin.

  3. #63
    she takes the audience on her journey of emotions Layfan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joesitz View Post
    It seems the music lovers want their skating artistry and not have the technical get in the way of all those beautiful spirals to the music. The seriousness of figure skating championships is just, as you say should only be about fun.

    Sad, there was a time when it was a serious SPORT and not a showcase for teenagers to show off their flexibility. Nowadays, one can just sit back and watch the fun on TV, and not take it seriously, except for their favorite. BTW, the decline in interest in figure skating, imo, is because it's lost any semblance of serious sport.

    BTW, what do you think of gmyers post which will retain the SP as is, but only the Tech would be be scored? You can still have your flexibilities but the PC wont be scored.

    For the record, I've been to many sporting events without music and enjoyed them for the sport. Why else would I go?

    and an aplology to you and others if you were offfended by my remark about my assuming you never have been to an artistic showing.
    It's not that I don't appreciate the athletic component of figure skating. It's just that I think that whole point of figure skating is that's it's a blend. The most breathtaking skaters are the ones who have both, like Kim Yuna and Michelle Kwan.
    Also, I think trying to separate where the art and athleticism begins in figure skating is tricky.
    You mention flexibility. That is an athletic ability. Mirai Nagasu is more flexible than Rachael Flatt and in that area, she is a better athlete than Flatt.
    True, flexibility is a tool that helps skaters and dancers be more artistic, or pleasing to the eye, but in and of itself, flexibility should be appreciated as an athletic gift, just like the ability to pull off a quad.
    In some sports, like gymnastics and increasingly figure skating, flexibility is a key component.
    It's true women skaters weren't as flexible in the past. But they couldn't do 3-3 either. I see it as part of the improvement in the sport. Definitely having a flexible back and a good turnout makes for a better layback spin.

    Also, doesn't COP reward flexibility in the TES when you think about it? spins and spirals are part of the TES not the PC scores...

  4. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by Layfan View Post
    ...Also, doesn't COP reward flexibility in the TES when you think about it? spins and spirals are part of the TES not the PC scores...
    Plus, the PCs of Skating Skills and Transitions are where skaters get points for technical demonstrations of speed across the ice, power stroking, effortless acceleration, ice coverage, steps, turns and edge work connecting elements, and moves in the field like Ina Bauers, Charlottes, and spread eagles. And also for doing non-listed technical elements like falling leafs (leaves?), Russian split jumps, stag jumps, single Wallys, one-foot Axels, and the like.

    Maybe we could drop P/E, INT, and CHOR, and double the values of SS and TR in the short program to encourage more of these sots of all-but-forgotten technical elements.

    There is more to "technical" than just jumps and spins, IMHO.
    Last edited by Mathman; 04-04-2010 at 06:18 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Layfan View Post
    It's not that I don't appreciate the athletic component of figure skating. It's just that I think that whole point of figure skating is that's it's a blend. The most breathtaking skaters are the ones who have both, like Kim Yuna and Michelle Kwan.
    Also, I think trying to separate where the art and athleticism begins in figure skating is tricky.
    You mention flexibility. That is an athletic ability. Mirai Nagasu is more flexible than Rachael Flatt and in that area, she is a better athlete than Flatt.
    True, flexibility is a tool that helps skaters and dancers be more artistic, or pleasing to the eye, but in and of itself, flexibility should be appreciated as an athletic gift, just like the ability to pull off a quad.
    In some sports, like gymnastics and increasingly figure skating, flexibility is a key component.
    It's true women skaters weren't as flexible in the past. But they couldn't do 3-3 either. I see it as part of the improvement in the sport. Definitely having a flexible back and a good turnout makes for a better layback spin.

    Also, doesn't COP reward flexibility in the TES when you think about it? spins and spirals are part of the TES not the PC scores...
    ITA. Figure skating is the marriage of artistry AND athletisicm. You can't have one w/out the other to excel in this sport. Yes, I do have a love for arts, and that is what drew me to figure skating over say, hockey BUT I also love the athletic part, the jumps, the spins, spirals, etc. While CoP could use work, the concept of it is pretty good; skaters are rewarded in TES for technical merits and in PC's for artistry :3

    Frankly, if say we just had element after element... wouldn't figure skating essentially be regressing, regressing from accomplishments of artistic pioneers such as Janet Lyn and Michelle Kwan? Yes, there are some that argue that figure skating as regressed technically, but let's looks at figure skating AS A WHOLE. As both the technical and artistic side :3

    On a side note, it's an interesting idea, to have all the skaters skate to the same music. I personally disagree with it, but the merits are quite convincing. It does seem a bit extreme though; my primary concern is what that does to individuality. Yes, there will skaters who can interpret the music in interesting and unique ways, but what about the rest of the field lols? We want exciting competitions w/everyone bringing it, not just competitions w/only a few really shining. Furthermore, to have a set-in-stone layout seems... different skaters have different strengths. You have jumpers like Yu-na and Mao and spinners like Mirai and Caroline Zhang. The programs should highlight their strengths and I feel like having a certain layout would push say a spinner, but not much of a jumper to overtrain in an attempt to fulfill the requirements.

  6. #66
    she takes the audience on her journey of emotions Layfan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    Plus, the PCs of Skating Skills and Transitions are where skaters get points for technical demonstrations of speed across the ice, power stroking, effortless acceleration, ice coverage, steps, turns and edge work connecting elements, and moves in the field like Ina Bauers, Charlottes, and spread eagles. And also for doing non-listed technical elements like falling leafs (leaves?), Russian split jumps, stag jumps, single Wallys, one-foot Axels, and the like.

    Maybe we could drop P/E, INT, and CHOR, and double the values of SS and TR in the short program to encourage more of these sots of all-but-forgotten technical elements.

    There is more to "technical" than just jumps and spins, IMHO.
    ah okay, so some things that show off flexibility are rewarded under PC....

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    Flexibility per se isn't rewarded in Performance/Execution, but extension is. If a skater has both good flexibility and good extension that contribute to beautiful positions, in spins and spirals and throughout the program, that's going to help that component.

    Also, the ability to get into a variety of positions that most people can't achieve can be used to good choreographic effect and help the Choreography component, but only if the program is well planned to take advantage of the skater's flexibility in that way.

  8. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lilith11 View Post
    On a side note, it's an interesting idea, to have all the skaters skate to the same music. I personally disagree with it, but the merits are quite convincing. It does seem a bit extreme though; my primary concern is what that does to individuality. Yes, there will skaters who can interpret the music in interesting and unique ways, but what about the rest of the field lols? We want exciting competitions w/everyone bringing it, not just competitions w/only a few really shining. Furthermore, to have a set-in-stone layout seems... different skaters have different strengths. You have jumpers like Yu-na and Mao and spinners like Mirai and Caroline Zhang. The programs should highlight their strengths and I feel like having a certain layout would push say a spinner, but not much of a jumper to overtrain in an attempt to fulfill the requirements.
    That's the problem with the idea of trying to make everyone do the same program. It is an interesting idea and would make it more like a regular sport, like racing where the athletes have to do the same thing. But the problem is skaters have different skills. Those who can do 3-3 should be able to. But you can't make it a requirement in the ladies yet because the competition would be awfully small.

    COP sort of does this already to an extent. The ladies HAVE to do three different spiral positions. They HAVE to do change of edge and positions in their spins and turn so many times. If anything, the LP has become just a long version of the SP under COP. Maybe it's LP that needs to be changed. Not that I'm too fussed about myself but I think it IS a valid point that there is little difference between the two.

  9. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by gkelly View Post
    Flexibility per se isn't rewarded in Performance/Execution, but extension is. If a skater has both good flexibility and good extension that contribute to beautiful positions, in spins and spirals and throughout the program, that's going to help that component.

    Also, the ability to get into a variety of positions that most people can't achieve can be used to good choreographic effect and help the Choreography component, but only if the program is well planned to take advantage of the skater's flexibility in that way.
    Yeah, that's sort what I meant. There's no flexibility points per se but you can see where it comes in handy. Sometimes its in the TES with spirals and spins. And, as you note, when it helps with the choreography and presentation.

  10. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    Of course the short program is all about the technical elements, Joe. The current requirements for ladies are

    1. A double Axel.
    2. A solo triple jump out of connecting footwork.
    3. A triple-triple or triple-double jump combination
    4. A combination spin with at least two changes of position, each held for at least two revolutions.
    5. A layback spin of at least eight revolutions.
    6. A spiral sequence with at least three positions and one change of foot.
    7. A footwork sequence incorporating a full complement of skating steps and turns.

    These seven required technical elements comprise the heart of the short program.
    I do not think anyone interested figure skating, MM, is not aware of your listing,although imo, some of the listed are not so technical and will readily be repeated in the LP.

    It's the PCscores that are added to this that bother me. What is their purpose in this test? if we truly believe that the SP was originated for Technical. Each one of the technical elements you listed can have GoEs be placed as part of the technical scoring. I see no reason to have the Five Program Components Scores added to the final score. Do you really think that is necessary after grading all those individual elements on their own? How many skaters got higher scores because of the PCs rather than for the original purpose of the SP? There is time for that in the LP, after all it's for a championship


    I think it is a better test of technical skill to require the skaters to demonstrate all of these elements one after the other in a short program, rather than just do each element in isolation.(Just my opinion.)
    Imo, I don't think it is a test but a phase in a championship, so we will continue to agree to disagree. I stand by the orginal intent of the SP that the Element phase should be for judging elements - not testing them, and not get cluttered with costumes, music etc. The phase should allow the skater to select 5 jump passes and 3 spins. It's the skater's competition not the economists figuring out which wil bring in more money.

    Quote Originally Posted by gkelly View Post
    8 elements -- you left out the flying spin.
    Shame on you MM. Gkelly caught you although I couldnt have cared less.

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    The idea of having everyone skate to the same music would drive away most of the sports fans. The SP would become a complete bore if this were to happen. Even the CD's in dance do not require the exact same piece of music anymore becasue no one including the judges wanted to sit through them all. If anyone has ever sat through a test day at an arena or a solo dance competition they would understand this.

    The same basic argument applies to the concept of an element only competition. Watching skaters do individual element competitions or testing their individual elements can be exceedingly boring for the spectators. This would be a disservice to the sport to implement this sort of competition as most fans would not bother to watch it. This is why figures were removed from competition.

    I would not be adverse however to seeing the requirements for the SP tightened up again. It used to be that the SP dictated what jump was to be done with the jump changing from one year to the next for the solo jump. The spins could also be more specific in what positions are required with a yearly roatation of types as well. It used to be that a particular type of spin was required. This would go a long way to making the SP more of a technical program again.

  12. #72
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    [Originally Posted by Layfan 495661]It's not that I don't appreciate the athletic component of figure skating. It's just that I think that whole point of figure skating is that's it's a blend. The most breathtaking skaters are the ones who have both, like Kim Yuna and Michelle Kwan.
    Also, I think trying to separate where the art and athleticism begins in figure skating is tricky.
    You mention flexibility. That is an athletic ability. Mirai Nagasu is more flexible than Rachael Flatt and in that area, she is a better athlete than Flatt.
    True, flexibility is a tool that helps skaters and dancers be more artistic, or pleasing to the eye, but in and of itself, flexibility should be appreciated as an athletic gift, just like the ability to pull off a quad.
    In some sports, like gymnastics and increasingly figure skating, flexibility is a key component.
    It's true women skaters weren't as flexible in the past. But they couldn't do 3-3 either. I see it as part of the improvement in the sport. Definitely having a flexible back and a good turnout makes for a better layback spin.

    Also, doesn't COP reward flexibility in the TES when you think about it? spins and spirals are part of the TES not the PC scores...[/QUOTE]


    I agree totally with what you say that Figure Skating is a blend of athleticism and performed to music. But Figure Skating did not start out that way. With the advent of Sonia Henie, skating could make money. Eventually they got rid of the School Figures (absolutely no money at the box office and no TV time, so the powers that be discarded the scool figures in favor of a more money making substition which we know as the SP. It was doctored up to give the semblance of an Element phase but the judging was the same as the LP. So with two phases of the championships we see two moneymakers. As it stands now, there is no such thing as a specific Element phase of the championships. It sits just where the LP does, and imo, it is indeed a Money Making Mini LP. One can't help but call it a Mini-LP. What they could do to at least to better it, is let the skater decide on what to use but then it would be a full grown LP. How many girls (ladies) do you think can not do a Double Axel? and if they can't why would they bother to enter this phase?

    As to your points about Flexibility, afaik, it is not scored per se in competitions but I do believe Line (knee turn out and toe pointed) would affect the GoEs. Michelle Kwan was not a ballerina but she could handle her own when it came to ballet-like positions.
    Last edited by Joesitz; 04-05-2010 at 09:18 AM.

  13. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joesitz
    Quote Originally Posted by gkelly
    8 elements -- you left out the flying spin.
    Shame on you MM. Gkelly caught you although I couldnt have cared less.
    That doggone short program, they just keep making it more and more technical. In the original conception there were only 6 judged elements. Then they increase it to 7. And now they slipped in yet another technical requirement when I wasn't looking!

    If this trend continues, first thing we know you will have your wish -- a jumping and spinning contest.

    By the way, I just learned that the short program actually was introduced in 1964, for pairs (because pairs didn't do figures.) It was called the "Connecting Program" I suppose that meant that the skaters were judged on how well they could connect a series of technical elements together in a program?

    In Kristi's day the short program was called the "Original Program." Evidently back then the idea was that each skater should try to create an original program out of a series of required elements.

    (OK, everybody but me already knew that. Oh well.)
    Last edited by Mathman; 04-06-2010 at 09:00 AM.

  14. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    That doggone short program, they just keep making it more and more technical. In the original conception there were only 6 judged elements. Then they increase it to 7. And now they slipped in yet another technical requirement when I wasn't looking!

    If this trend continues, first thing we know you will have your wish -- a jumping and spinning contest.

    By the way, I just learned that the short program actually was introduced in 1964, for pairs (because pairs didn't do figures.) It was called the "Connecting Program" I suppose that meant that the skaters were judged on how well they could connect a series of technical elements together in a program?

    In Kristi's day the short program was called the "Original Program." Evidently back then the idea was that each skater should try to create an original program out of a series of required elements.

    (OK, everybody but me already knew that. Oh well.)
    Kristi's time was a more competitive time. That said, I think changing the name was to garner more money, and with the added touch that it would be known as the Element Phase so as not to make people think it just another pagaent, but shorter.
    I watched the Ladies SPs in the past worlds, and all the women had no problems with the list of reqired elements, and so it was not difficult. Kristi at least did Wally's in her day, but you seem to think Wally's are nothing more than loop jumps but oh, you never skated have you.

    Mathman, in all this discussion, I would not say you have to worry about your little girls in this pagaent-like sport. It will go on and on as long as TV rights are sold. It's as you say, entertainment. Just stay entertained.

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