I hope this will be fun.
Pretend you're a coach. You can be a coach-choreographer if you like.
I'm going to describe a few imaginary skaters. They're all girls in their mid to late teens with one year of senior competition experience. None is a world medal contender or likely to become so, and they're realistic about their abilities. They have average to above-average senior skills in general, with different strengths and weaknesses. Expect Skating Skills scores in the 5s and 6s; other PCS will depend in part on how well their programs showcase their strengths and meet the criteria, and how well they perform each time. If they all competed against each other in the same competition, we couldn't predict in advance how they would place -- it would depend on who had a good day and who had a bad one, and what qualities that panel of judges tended to prefer..
Their goals for the upcoming couple of seasons are to place in the top 10 at US or Japanese Nationals, to make the world team of countries with less deep fields, to make top 10 at Europeans or Four Continents or top 24 at Worlds, to medal at a senior B competition, to get at least one assignment to a Grand Prix competition. These are reasonable goals for these skaters, IF they skate well and IF their programs maximize their skills.
Choose one or more of these girls to coach. How would you design a long program for the upcoming season under 2011 well-balanced program rules (scroll down for senior ladies)? How would you design it differently under Blades of Passion rules?
Or GKelly rules?
Maximum total elements: 13
Jumps elements: minimum 5, maximum 8, can include Small-Jump Sequence with levels (keep current rules about required axel-type jump, repeats, number of combinations/sequences)
Spin elements: minimum 2, maximum 5, must have different codes and include a combo spin, a spin in one position, and a flying entry (can double up)
Step sequence: minimum 1, maximum 2, must have different shapes/codes
Spiral sequence: min 0, max 1
Field moves sequence: min 0, max 1
School figures variation: min 0, max 1
You can provide a list of elements only, with or without explanations. Or get creative and choreograph the programs in more detail, choosing the music and describing the transitions/in-betweens and specific variations in the elements. Have fun with it.
Here are the skaters:
Lila is short and muscular, and not very flexible. She jumps high and can do all the triple jumps up to lutz (although she usually gets an edge call on her flip) and is reasonably consistent with the individual jumps, but she doesn't get a lot of speed on the landings so the only combinations she can do are with double toes. She skates fast with solid edges but not much softness, and too much complexity, especially turns in her bad direction, slows her down and screws up her jump consistency. She can spin fast with fairly strong basic spin positions and impressive air positions on the flying spins, but she's not very flexible and is better off not attempting most difficult position variations. She's better at quick steps and turns than at deep curving edgework, with staccato or powerful movements than with lyricism. Her spirals can meet the minimum requirements but are not especially attractive. Her best highlight moves are a rink-length straight-line Ina Bauer, a back outside shoot-the-duck in a big circle, and a split-flip jump.
Michaela is a medium-sized, well-proportioned young woman with a naturally curvy figure. Her skating skills are quite solid with deep soft edges and pretty good speed. She's capable of complex, precise edge work, and also quick turns and steps, but not going into her harder jumps. Her double axel, triple toe, and triple salchow get good height and distance and are fairly consistent for her, although the salchow gets a < call about half the time. She can also attempt triple loop, but it's much less consistent and never fully rotated, usually < but sometimes <<. Double lutz and double flip are solid, and she can perform double loop at the end of a combination following another 2-revolution jump. Her spins are medium speed with pleasant but not spectacular positions; she has a variety of difficult variations that she can do but nothing extreme (no Biellmanns). Her basic layback position is especially attractive. Her spirals are remarkable for the deep and secure edges, especially on the right foot, with generally pleasant positions. She also has a strong outside-edge spread eagle and a decent inside-edge one, and a very nice split falling leaf and delayed single axel.
Noelle is tall and thin and very flexible with great stretch and toe point. Her skating is soft and fluid, medium speed . She can do triple toe, salchow, flip, and lutz but not as consistently as she would like and is incapable of rotating a triple loop or putting a double loop on the end of a combination. On a very good day she can do triple toe on the back of any triple toe jump; on a bad day she will pop or underrotate (and sometimes two-foot or fall on) the solo triples. Her spins (fast and centered), spirals, split jumps, and spread eagles are spectacular and make effective use of her long limbs. She's good at smooth, legato moves, not so good at quickness.
Olivia is a former ice dancer who got too big for her junior partner and couldn't find another one. She had been training singles along with ice dance all along and is capable of doing all the triples up to lutz but she is inconsistent and doesn't really enjoy jumping -- she gets stiff and nervous anticipating the jumps, which detracts from her otherwise lovely skating. Her basic skating skills are very strong by freestyle standards -- she loves doing creative edge work or working with her toepicks, heels, etc., and experimenting with unusual body positions on long edges. She loves to fly across the ice with quick steps or long glides. She also loves to play with different kinds of musical expression. Her spins are pretty good, with some variety, but she has trouble getting into a low enough sitspin position or achieving adequate air position on flying spins.
Pam is a small, fast skater with a light touch over the ice and small, quick jumps that often flirt with underrotation. She especially prefers edge jumps and can attempt triple loop or half loop-triple salchow at the end of combinations and can sometimes land but is still very inconsistent at one-foot axel-triple salchow combination and quad salchow. These most difficult elements are likely to get < calls, or occasionally << or to end in falls. Her double axel, triple toe, and triple flip are small but reliable. She has a wicked flutz -- reliable, but always gets an edge call and averages -2 GOE no matter how much speed she carries in and out or how many enhancements she adds to the approach, air position, or landing. Spins are fast with adequate positions and variety. Spirals are also adequate -- good speed, OK edges, can achieve various catchfoot positions with ease but no special beauty. Good at quick steps and quick ice coverage; good flow; OK edge quality. Good at low, skimming single jump variants like walley, inside axel, back inside edge landings. Can do all single jumps up to flutz in both directions and forward basic upright, sit, and camel spins in both directions as well.
Choose at least one of the above to coach. Or make up your own. How would you design a program to showcase her strengths and help her meet her goals?