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Thread: A question for Wallylutz (Yu-na Kim's influence and legacy)

  1. #16
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    1. Bringing a new country to the forefront. I think that alone is something that "changes the course of figure skating." Especially when you pair it with the rise of Asia as a money-pot (for lack of a better word). Compare it to the first group of African men who started succeeding in long distance running at the Olympics. Of course, this is simply theoretical. There's no way of knowing if it's a Lu Chen (relative blip despite China's success in pairs) or something deeper.

    2. Being THE model for COP singles skating. There are several singles skaters who seem to work COP extremely well: Chan, Buttle, Lysacek, Rochette (to a lesser extent, Takahashi, Flatt...), but Kim will be the standard. People quibble about the scores, but not the results (compare that to Lysacek vs Plushenko at the Olympics). In fact, it's noteworthy to consider that her success (Kim's) isn't much more considerable than Lysacek's (one silver medal at worlds difference), but the totality of her victories makes her the COP icon. Kim is who future skaters will follow. Her programs (thank you Brian Orser and David Wilson) are gonna be the ones studied by future generations to see how to earn the points to win competitions. Who else is there?

  2. #17
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    And while artistry is subjective, just the fact that she had been regarded as the "artistic one" with jumping prowess will influence the following generation of skaters to be all around skater.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Phoenix347 View Post
    In what way do you think she has changed the course of the sport? Thanks.
    Figure skating is a sport where the World Champion or the default #1 skater sets the tone. Just as Ito's arrival in the late 80's accelerated the demise of figures and pushed the ladies figure skating towards a triple jump competition today, the same can be said about Browning and Stojko, whose reign also brought about profound change in men's skating through Quad as well. If we look at the history of this sport over the course of the last 20 years or so, ladies today seem to lag behind technically compared to what they were once capable of in the early 1990's. Aside from the Triple Axel, ladies back then were doing Triple Lutz + Triple Toe almost as a prerequisite to be competitive. The changes brought by Ito and Yamaguchi seemed to take a different direction after Baiul's upset over Kerrigan in the 1994 Olympics, followed by two consecutive years of World Championship where the ladies title was won by women who were deemed 2nd best technically but won due to the artistic impression. From that point on, the ladies and men skating took a somewhat divergent path where the men pushed the envelope technically while the ladies trended towards the precision and more interpretive aspect of figure skating. Triple-Triple for ladies became a seldom occurrence, notwithstanding, Tara Lipinski's brief surge on the scene for about 1 year and half. Aside from the jumps, you can see the men doing so much more than ladies in virtually every aspect of their skating, such as difficult transitions into difficult jumps, fancy footwork, variation on jump's in air positions and etc. Seldom do you see ladies doing any of those.

    In the early part of this century, both Olympic Champions in ladies skating, Hughes and Arakawa, were considered surprise winners and neither of them stuck around and thus, failed to provide any leadership in this sport. Arakawa for instance won in Torino with only 5 Triple jumps. Any chance of that happening in men? It is more likely that pigs will grow wings and fly before this happens. Kim's rise to the top of the Olympic podium in 2010 was widely anticipated with her growth alongside Japan's Mao Asada for several years prior to the Vancouver Olympic. Kim wouldn't be as influential as she is today without Asada being a formidable and long-run competitor that she is. Both ladies, in many ways, worked towards pushing the envelope once again for ladies skating.

    After posting some 150+ scores in the Vancouver Olympics LP, Kim's record will serve to inspire the ladies to once again push the envelope technically as opposed to continuously drifting away from the men, who dominate virtually every technical aspect of this sport, which wasn't the case in the 1990's. Back then, many elite male skaters expressed apprehension to compete in the ladies' event knowing that there were women who can actually outjump and outskate them. Adam Rippon of USA recently joked that he finally beats Yu-Na Kim's SP scores at the most recent World Championship. It was a joke but it was also quite telling that elite male skaters once again found admiration for what their female counterparts can do whereas a few years back, men were fighting each over how many quads to land while ladies were struggling to hang on to a Triple Lutz + Double toe combo. The difference can't be more glaring.

    When people asked me if I agree with Kim's 150+ scores in Vancouver and what do I think about my time there during the Vancouver Olympic, I tend to think of this question in a philosophical way because I know the significance of this score is not merely some petty arguments between certain fans over whether this is too high or justified or otherwise. The little girls working very hard in their way up in this sport today will look at this and aspire to be the next Yu-Na Kim. To this end, Kim's accomplishment likely have pushed these young kids whom you and I are probably not aware yet to challenge themselves and move the ladies figure skating forward again. I refuse to believe Kristi Yamaguchi and Midori Ito are once a 100 year occurence, just as I refused to believe Elvis Stojko was the only man who could land Quad+Triple even though it was difficult to envision any otherwise back in 1997 when Stojko first landed that combo and shocked the world. Kim's ability to push the envelope technically through her Triple Lutz + Triple Toe combos and as well as her unique ability to inspire and draw people to look at her while she is on ice will definitely inspire the young girls to change and to be like that. This doesn't mean Kim is a perfect skater, such perfection doesn't exist, every skater has their strengths and weaknesses. But changes in this sport takes leadership, not some non-existent perfection. 10 years from now, people are going to remember Kim won the Vancouver Olympics by posting 150+ in her LP but not the fact she didn't do a Triple Loop, which would be at best, a mere footnote in the book of history. It is that 150+ accomplishment that will inspire youngsters to challenge themselves and ultimately push the direction of ladies figure skating towards a new horizon.
    Last edited by wallylutz; 04-06-2010 at 09:46 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marrymeyunakim View Post
    If anything, Kim's ability to blend technical ability with sublime artistic nuances to her performances is what sets her apart. Maybe that's how she's progressed the sport; not only do you need to have a potent 3-3/jumping repertoire to keep up, you also have to have great artistry. In other words, you can't just be an artist nor can you just be a jumper. You have to be both. Kim may not be the best in either, but the fact that she's in the upper tiers in both categories is a great achievement in itself.
    ITA. She needed the huge/very good 3-3 for the GOE and PCS part in the first place. It was possible that her artistry was somewhat ignored by judges if her 3-3 had not been so consistent with good quality.

    If Yuna continue to skate, what I expect most is that she can/will even develop the musicality/artistry in her skating.
    Genereally Yuna's jumps have height with good speed and quality but also more important is that her jumps as part of the whole flow, not as seperated elements, are excuted with great timing in music and with (usually) other beautiful, exquisite elements holding the whole program.

    Quote Originally Posted by hurrah View Post
    Ain't that the truth. And she can get +2 even when executes an iffy jump. How do you win against that?
    I want this thread to be more specific about judgement. How about providing example(s) which support your argument and reasoning? What iffy jump(s) which got +2 in what particular competition(s)? I am not saying it only to you. Let's see... we can show the most problematic scores that Yuna have gotten in both cases of unfairly high scores and unfairly low ones. OK?

    Wallylutz, thank you for your detailed explanation to my question on the other thread. It took time for me to absorb what you said. There are still a few things that I want to point out but there will be time. I just want you to apply the creteria to all the skaters fairly without personal prefernces.

  5. #20
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    If I may, can we please try to keep this thread specific to the original intent of the question being asked as opposed to making this yet another generic Yuna fight Mao thread or my favorite skater is better than yours, your fav is so overmarked / underscored? More to the point, if all you want is another battleground between Yu-Na Kim and Mao Asada, could you please take your fights elsewhere? Thank you.

  6. #21
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    Good points, Wallylutz. Thanks for sharing!

    I think for me, one thing I will remember about Yu-na is her music selections and costumes. It's like the dresses matched the music and the program. Like that really gorgeous black dress from her Dance Macabre program. Or this year's LP blue dress.

    One of my non-hard core figure skating friends commented that the blue dress seem plain to her, but then when she her program at the Olympics, the dress needed to be simple and graceful, just like her program. And those nuances during her later programs (the flirty look, the nudge on the sholder) makes her memorable too.

    I think all that is part of the package that makes her programs stand out.

    I also agree with Wallylutz that Yu-na had help set some technical standards. Just look at Mirai, for instance. She's definitely got the message that if she wants to be the best, she's got to do that 3-3. And not just not the easier one.

    I think the other significant thing is that Yu-na's technical ability to do those jumps at an "older age." I was watching Elene G's breakout program from the 2006 Olympics on YouTube the other day. She did a 3F-3T there. But now four years later, at 20, she can barely do a 3T-3T.

    Yu-na, on the other hand, is that she built up her jump content over time. She STARTED with a 3T-3T, went to a 3F-3T and now does the 3Z-3T.

    I hope she stays because I think she could develop even more. But I'd imagine that doing such hard programs would wear you out...

  7. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mrs. P View Post
    And those nuances during her later programs (the flirty look, the nudge on the sholder) makes her memorable too.
    It's not just in the Olympics, Yu-Na Kim has long developed this attention to such little details, which may be little nuances but it makes a whole a lot of difference to anyone who is paying attention however. Very few female skaters actually do that, as simple as this may seem. I think most of them are so freaked out with the pressure of the competition and their own nerves to forget how to perform. Yu-Na's nuances are normally quite captivating throughout her program. What I remembered the most from the 08-09 season re: Yu-Na was her flirty eye contacts with the audience while she was doing her Spiral Sequence. She looked at you then glanced at her own spiral, then look right back at you as though she is saying: "So you are looking at me or my spiral?" Such confidence and attention to details is rarely seen. There is no shortage of ladies capable of hitting great flexibility on their spiral, you name it Cohen, Kwan and etc. But very few of them sell it as well as Kim does. Kim's execution, which blends athlethism and performance, is by far her biggest weapon even though she doesn't necessarily have the biggest jumps or all the jumps.

  8. #23
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    I totally agree with you wallylutz, thanx for your post.

  9. #24
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    Thank you, wally, for your posts. I hope Yu Na stays as a competitive skater at least another season or two. Not only she's "a heck of a competitor" but also perfectionist. It was Yu Na who decided to do 3L-3T. I think it was right after the Olympics, in an interview she said that she didn't have any plan to change her jump lay out (meaning keeping all her jumps minus the 3Loop perhaps). I see that her stretch is not as good as Sasha or Mao in her spirals, but her speed and the length of spirals seem to make up those issues more than enough.
    We'll see what she'll do, though. Only Yu Na knows what Yu Na will do.

  10. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by yunaddiction View Post
    Without Yuna, Figure skating under the new scoring system should become just a jumping test.
    Change? I don't know.
    At least She 'protected' figure skating from all the blah blah about triple Axel, quad Salchow something.
    Well said. To the point.

  11. #26
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    Well, all the lady skaters in the field should start benchmarking Yuna for their future. Mirai team knows exactly where they are heading to. Hoping for some skaters not to fail again in their strategies.

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    Quote Originally Posted by youtubo View Post
    Well, all the lady skaters in the field should start benchmarking Yuna for their future. Mirai team knows exactly where they are heading to. Hoping for some skaters not to fail again in their strategies.
    I noticed that Mirai does two jump combos that Yuna does. Triple Lutz Tripe Toe and double Axel and Triple toe combo with a spread eagle going in. She tried/succeeded them in the Olympics and the Worlds I believe. Mirai knows they are score getters for Yuna. I don't know of any other ladies who are trying that at this time. May be someone can name anyone else whose doing those.

  13. #28
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    *ahem* First of all, I'm really proud of my fellow YuNa-fans here in having not bitten the bait thrown by hurrah. What I suspect he/she was referring to is the incident earlier this season when a clean 3Lz-3T was downgraded by the tech caller, and almost all the judges proceeded to give her her characteristic +2 GoE because it was an extremely close (if not faulty) call.

    Quote Originally Posted by wallylutz View Post
    Arakawa for instance won in Torino with only 5 Triple jumps. Any chance of that happening in men? It is more likely that pigs will grow wings and fly before this happens. Kim's rise to the top of the Olympic podium in 2010 was widely anticipated with her growth alongside Japan's Mao Asada for several years prior to the Vancouver Olympic. Kim wouldn't be as influential as she is today without Asada being a formidable and long-run competitor that she is. Both ladies, in many ways, worked towards pushing the envelope once again for ladies skating.
    I must admit that while I found the 2006 Ladies' FS underwhelming, that's a bit of an unfair comment because it is also extremely unlikely that a man would win without a 3A in the LP. The saddest thing about the situation is that Arakawa was very technically capable e.g. she pulled off a 3-3-3 in practice, but I guess she and Morosov felt pretty confident she didn't need any 3-3's in the actual showdown. Regardless, I agree with the general gist of the paragraph in saying that women's skating was at a technical trough for a few years and is witnessing a bit of a comeback thanks to YuNa and Mao.

    I also agree with ImaginaryPogue in that YuNa is the model for how to compete under CoP (in its present form.) It will probably help, in addition, that her Olympic performances were spotless despite the enormous pressure on her, and she was riding in as the favourite due to the overall success of her season.

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    Quote Originally Posted by prettykeys View Post
    I must admit that while I found the 2006 Ladies' FS underwhelming, that's a bit of an unfair comment because it is also extremely unlikely that a man would win without a 3A in the LP. The saddest thing about the situation is that Arakawa was very technically capable e.g. she pulled off a 3-3-3 in practice, but I guess she and Morosov felt pretty confident she didn't need any 3-3's in the actual showdown. Regardless, I agree with the general gist of the paragraph in saying that women's skating was at a technical trough for a few years and is witnessing a bit of a comeback thanks to YuNa and Mao.
    Then I guess you have never seen Stephane Lambiel. This guy can do Quads but not Triple Axel. So no, it is entirely possible for a man to win the Olympic without the Triple Axel, that is if you can put two Quads in there to replace the 3A like Lambiel did. Regardless of what strategic decision that went into Team Arakawa's calculation, the fact is she won with 5 Triples, no if and but. Comparing that to other winners in the past, you'll have to go all the way back to 1994 to find a duplicate and that was a rather controversial decision as well as many felt Kerrigan outskated Baiul. BTW, practice means nothing. Even Joannie can do Quads in practice. 3-3-3 is not all that particularly difficult, as visually spectacular as it may seem.

  15. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by prettykeys View Post
    *ahem* First of all, I'm really proud of my fellow YuNa-fans here in having not bitten the bait thrown by hurrah.
    I didn't mean it as a bait. Just forget it.

    Incidentally, Yuna did not get those high scores for her 'artistry'. It was the jumps, particularly the toe jumps that garnered those huge GoEs.

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