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Thread: Are Spins Underscored and Undervalued in Figure Skating?

  1. #16
    More or less: more is more sequinsgalore's Avatar
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    I do not feel either that they are overscored.

    Judges are just being way to generous on labourous and slow spins, giving them 0 and +1 in GOE when they should get -1 and -2. If they did that, spins like Lipnitskaias would have a relative bigger value.

  2. #17
    Best comeback EVOR! zamboni step's Avatar
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    Julia's CCoSp is actually a level 6, it has:

    * 4 Difficult Variations- Layover camel, Cannonball, Broken leg, I

    * 8 rotations in I position

    * Visible acceleration within the I spin without a change of position

    I think the level of difficulty in a spin having such a limit is harmful. Only two thirds of the features this spin has are being counted towards its base value and that's unfair, this is coming from someone who isn't really a fan of Julia.

  3. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sam-Skwantch View Post
    You can score in your TES with good footwork and have it reflected also in your SS. Where do they factor in spin quality in the PCS? Otherwise wouldn't Yulia and Gracie and Adelina have some more generous PCS scores.
    Mao's stsq and Yulia's spins would probably be rewarded in the choreography and execution components, for creativity, style, dynamic use of space, clarity of movement, contrast etc. The thing is, there's more to those components that they may not be as strong on. Adelina is a good example of good spin positions that should get points in choreo like Yulia, but her lp lacks the same unity and coherent vision of Yulia's, so she should score relatively lower in that component. Adelina's footwork also had dynamic use of space, but not with the same crispness or clarity of movement as Mao, so that would show up in the execution component. However, some might feel that Adelina had better projection than Mao, so that would balance out w/Mao's superior clarity, such that they'd score about the same in that component. It just depends, but generally, it seems that the more "complete" your skating it, the better you will score in the components.

    As for scoring spins vs. jumps, I don't know. Jumps are easy to rank in terms of base value because they each have a fixed entrance, and are pretty much the same in the air. But with spins, there is a myriad of entrances and positions, so it would be much harder to codify it (I know for the most part they're all named, but to assign base values to them for scoring purposes seems like a really complicated task, not to mention calling them in real time - it's just more work for the tech panel). It would be like if each type of step and turn in a step sequence also had a point value - that would be nuts! LoL (but of course, it would be easier for spins because it's not happening so fast that you can't tell exactly what moves are being done).

    My gut feeling tho, is that the more you codify things, the more fair it will be, so maybe it would be a good idea to this for spins instead of having levels?

  4. #19
    quietly lurking jenm's Avatar
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    I'm not an expert but I think that the quality and beauty of spins are being rewarded enough in GOEs (as we can see in Yulia's high GOEs on hers). In my personal opinion, jumps are harder and deserve higher base value than spins. Yulia's spins are affected by her small physique and hyperflexibility which will change as she grows (Physics). She's just 15 and it's too early to tell whether she can maintain that like how Yuna maintained and improved her jumps after puberty. I would be more awed if she can do what she does right now with a body like Sotnikova's which has more muscles. But there is no denying that she's currently the best spinner in this generation. That full-split I-spin just killed me.

  5. #20
    Kisdom Title TMC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CanadianSkaterGuy View Post
    Right now, a perfectly executed layback is worth the same as a triple salchow, which is about right.
    Whaaaaaaaatttt I hadn't even realised this?

    Thanks CSG! What would you say makes a perfectly executed layback spin? I mean the kind that would accumulate the points of a 3s for both ladies and men?

    I think spins aren't exactly undervalued, but the differences are not big enough.

    Really slow/traveling/barely balanced spins (like Keegan & Max's often, whom I love but sometimes the spins are more nerve-racking to watch than other skater's iffy jumps) and centered/fast w. increases of speed during/unusual spins (Yulia, Czisny, Rippon, Brown, for doing stuff that most other ladies/men don't and for the quality) is not reflected in the scoring enough. The judges sem too stingy with their positive and negative GOEs in these cases... What do you guys think?

    Julia's spins are the best, and Tutberidze has a valid point that the discrepancy of her spins is minuscule in the grand scheme of things.... but then it could work the other way around for Lipnitskaia -- Kim's or Gold's 3Z+3T should be getting a +4 or +5 if Julia's is getting a +2 or +3.
    Yeah, maybe the scale of goes should be -5 to +5. I can imagine if I were a judge (and I'm a perfectionist with ADD dg. ) I'd find this easier.
    As it is, if I saw an otherwise perfect jump with some scratching/tiny flowing edge/whatever, I would really want to give 3 but I wouldn't be able to bring myself to it. So it'd be 1/2. With 5-5 I'd be happy to give a 3, even 4

  6. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by TMC View Post
    Whaaaaaaaatttt I hadn't even realised this?

    Thanks CSG! What would you say makes a perfectly executed layback spin? I mean the kind that would accumulate the points of a 3s for both ladies and men?
    I was referring to a level 4 layback with +3 from every judge earns 4.2 points, which is the base value of a 3S. Perfectly executed obviously referring to nice positions, excellent centering/speed, more than the required rotation, and all the other +GOE bullet points.

    I agree that the solution is actually dinging skaters - even the most popular, elite skaters - for poor spins or spins with errors, with -1 and -2's and then saving the +3's for spins that are ACTUALLY perfectly executed. I highly disagree with increasing the scale from -5 to +5 as it makes it even more subjective and prone to judging bias. -3 to +3 is a range of 7, which to me is perfectly adequate as long as it is being utilized correctly.

    With many elements, not just spins, the judges are giving GOE like candy to the top skaters and actually marking down lower-tier skaters, instead of applying the same critical eye to everyone.

  7. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by pangtongfan View Post
    If anything they are overvalued. If there is even a single semi legitimate skating related win for Sotnikova's farcial Putinized win it would be that her spins were probably better than Kim and Kostner. If we suspend reality for a moment and pretend it was an even somewhat skating based win, that would mean having superior spins (to two skaters who also had very good spins, and Sotnikova is no Ruh, Cohen, Hamill, Lipnitskaya, Manley, Kreig, in spinning ability either) overcame having inferior jumps, inferior footwork (in reality despite the scores), inferior skating skills, inferior choreography, sloppy and ugly positions and lines, inferior interpretation. So based on that spins in fact have too much value, atleast for women.
    Except Sotnikova didn't "win" on the strength of her spins. She actually "won" thanks to her incredible +3 GOE jumps including a Lutz off the correct edge and no underrotations! And of course her 74 PCS, the 2nd-highest of all time!

  8. #23
    Size 7 Knife Boots Sam-Skwantch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CanadianSkaterGuy View Post
    I was referring to a level 4 layback with +3 from every judge earns 4.2 points, which is the base value of a 3S. Perfectly executed obviously referring to nice positions, excellent centering/speed, more than the required rotation, and all the other +GOE bullet points.

    I agree that the solution is actually dinging skaters - even the most popular, elite skaters - for poor spins or spins with errors, with -1 and -2's and then saving the +3's for spins that are ACTUALLY perfectly executed. I highly disagree with increasing the scale from -5 to +5 as it makes it even more subjective and prone to judging bias. -3 to +3 is a range of 7, which to me is perfectly adequate as long as it is being utilized correctly.

    With many elements, not just spins, the judges are giving GOE like candy to the top skaters and actually marking down lower-tier skaters, instead of applying the same critical eye to everyone.
    After posting this thread I wasn't sure what reaction I would see but I think this is the most rational. It seems bad spins are not only overlooked but quite regularly actually rewarded.

    I also like the idea of added levels for spins. That's fine if you want to ding Yulia and other youngsters for their deficiencies in skating skills and artistic flow. Should we not give credit where credit is due and award them points on the areas they excel and push the sport?

  9. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by pangtongfan View Post
    For men maybe they didnt have enough once up a time. Someone like Lambiel who is a light years better spinner than Sotnikova never get any credit or help in results for his spins. It was if they didnt exist. So for women far too much, for men maybe too little.
    I'd actually disagree with "light years"... Sotnikova has greater variety/difficulty in her spin positions (albeit typical of female skaters compared to men), and holds her positions for many more rotations than Lambiel does. Lambiel's actual centering and speed is usually superior, but not enough to make him "light years" of a better spinner. Compared to the other MEN, Lambiel had excellent variety of positions, but I wish he'd have actually held his various positions a bit longer (which he's certainly capable of) -- case in point: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F893u_lTNVw Note how many of his spin positions wouldn't have been counted as they aren't held for 2 rotations (the final position isn't held long enough to be counted in any of his first 3 spins).

    At least the CoP is forcing skaters to actually SHOW their spin positions.... in the past, a camel spin would be held for like a rotation before the skater went into the sit.

  10. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sam-Skwantch View Post
    I also like the idea of added levels for spins. That's fine if you want to ding Yulia and other youngsters for their deficiencies in skating skills and artistic flow. Should we not give credit where credit is due and award them points on the areas the excel and push the sport?
    Yeah, but then wouldn't you get skaters doing 9 spin positions for getting higher and higher levels? I think extra spin variations are wonderful and should be incorporated into the GOE, but there's an extent to which you can credit skaters.

    The good thing about spin scores is that at lower levels where skaters aren't doing triples, they become much more significant which does push younger skaters to learn spins properly and start doing difficult spins and variations from a young age. As a teen, I didn't practice spins very often because I saw jumps as much more valuable and I'm sure I would have put more effort if they were actually scored and had worth, which they are now. Now that I get points for it and good spins can really boost my score since my program is mostly just doubles, I devote much more time in my session to attempting creative features and getting more rotations in my basic positions.

  11. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by CanadianSkaterGuy View Post
    Yeah, but then wouldn't you get skaters doing 9 spin positions for getting higher and higher levels? I think extra spin variations are wonderful and should be incorporated into the GOE, but there's an extent to which you can credit skaters.

    The good thing about spin scores is that at lower levels where skaters aren't doing triples, they become much more significant which does push younger skaters to learn spins properly and start doing difficult spins and variations from a young age. As a teen, I didn't practice spins very often because I saw jumps as much more valuable and I'm sure I would have put more effort if they were actually scored and had worth, which they are now. Now that I get points for it and good spins can really boost my score since my program is mostly just doubles, I devote much more time in my session to attempting creative features and getting more rotations in my basic positions.
    Looking at Julia's spins though most of them qualify for higher levels even though they don't have an endless amount of variations. Her CCoSp is a level 6 really, her layback is sometimes a level 5 and her flying camel actually is just a level 4. I think it's unfair she has so much more difficulty in her spins which clearly costs her some quality centering wise. But saying her spins are worth less than say, Sotnikova's (Other than FCSp) because Julia travels is like saying a huge 3A with a step out should be worth less than a nice 3L. Note I said "Nice", not great.

  12. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by pangtongfan View Post
    The spins was a big part of her controversial win (and one of the few things that could justify some of her higher scores). She did gain many more points on spins than Kostner and Kim.
    Deservedly so, her spins are far superior and more original. The judging on the other elements was far more questionable than the judging of the spins.

  13. #28
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    I don't think anyone denies that Julia's spins are worth as much, if not more than Sotnikova's spins, and arguably more than the rest of the field.

    Good for Julia for ensuring that all her positions are "difficult variations" but that's to ensure it achieves a maximum level. If she wants to omit the broken foot, that is totally her prerogative. She's not the only skater who's exceeding the requirements of level 4 spins.

    The "problem" with spins is that there's several extra ways to gain levels. This is to ensure a fair playing field because not every skater can do a Biellmann or a crossfoot properly.

    Should a skater get a level 10 for doing:
    - back camel (1) in a sideways position (2)
    - donut spin (3)
    - back I-spin 8 rotations (4, 5)
    - to forwards leaning camel (6)
    - to a change of edge camel (7)
    - to a flying sit on the same foot (8)
    - to an upright crossfoot (9)
    - ...and then a camel spin in the reverse direction just for good measure. (10)

  14. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by CanadianSkaterGuy View Post
    I don't think anyone denies that Julia's spins are worth as much, if not more than Sotnikova's spins, and arguably more than the rest of the field.

    Good for Julia for ensuring that all her positions are "difficult variations" but that's to ensure it achieves a maximum level. If she wants to omit the broken foot, that is totally her prerogative. She's not the only skater who's exceeding the requirements of level 4 spins.

    The "problem" with spins is that there's several extra ways to gain levels. This is to ensure a fair playing field because not every skater can do a Biellmann or a crossfoot properly.

    Should a skater get a level 10 for doing:
    - back camel (1) in a sideways position (2)
    - donut spin (3)
    - back I-spin 8 rotations (4, 5)
    - to forwards leaning camel (6)
    - to a change of edge camel (7)
    - to a flying sit on the same foot (8)
    - to an upright crossfoot (9)
    - ...and then a camel spin in the reverse direction just for good measure. (10)
    If someone could do all that without it deserving -3s across the board, then they're the greatest spinner of all time. But they could have gotten a level 11 with a clear acceleration without changing position or foot. I only question the two changes of foot in this spin, I'm sure that's not allowed. But if someone could do all the other features then yes, they should be fully rewarded with a huge base value. Jumps don't have a cap to their increase in base value as they get more difficult, why should spins?

  15. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by pangtongfan View Post
    The spins was a big part of her controversial win (and one of the few things that could justify some of her higher scores). She did gain many more points on spins than Kostner and Kim.
    I don't know if the spins were a big part of it though. Adelina's spins had very little travel and seemed to be faster to me, so I think their points are justifiably higher (without having looked into the details of how they should be scored), as an average TV-watching layman. Hence not the controversial part of her skate. I don't think they're what made the difference in the judging, certainly not the big difference in terms of what many viewers saw/felt versus the scores given out.

    My understanding is, aren't good spins supposed to help get good jumping technique? Then it would be better to put more emphasis on spins while the skater is still learning and before the techniques become ingrained, before the skater starts doing the more difficult jumps -- to incentivize making sure the fundamentals are solid.

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