# Thread: CoP kills the sport - No freedom for the skater

1. Here is the very template for a 6.0 program. Note that for the first minute or so the skater does not earn a single CoP point, doing little but gliding gracefully (the "slow part" comes at the beginning in this program). The extended edge on her double Axel wastes precious time in which she could be doing some CoP transitions.. The last combination spin has 30+ revolutions not because the rules give her a tenth of a bullet point per revolution, but because the concept and the choreography calls for it.

Do you like modern programs better, crammed as they are with busy-work? Well, to each his own, I guess.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1imuQWeIi4Q

2. Originally Posted by Mathman
Here is the very template for a 6.0 program. Note that for the first minute or so the skater does not earn a single CoP point, doing little but gliding gracefully (the "slow part" comes at the beginning in this program). The extended edge on her double Axel wastes precious time in which she could be doing some CoP transitions.. The last combination spin has 30+ revolutions not because the rules give her a tenth of a bullet point per revolution, but because the concept and the choreography calls for it.

Do you like modern programs better, crammed as they are with busy-work? Well, to each his own, I guess.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1imuQWeIi4Q
Well, technically she would be getting points for the spiral sequence. Although it's lovely to see her open with that, instead of motoring into her first jumping pass as so many skaters do.

Also, this is the SP, so the revolutions on her spins were meeting requirements... I've noticed in her free skates, often Kwan (and other 6.0 skaters) don't hold their positions long enough. Not saying it needs to be a sit for 8 revolutions, but again, to see a camel held for 3 rotations or more is not a priority for a lot of skaters.

The thing about this program is only Kwan can do this level of nuance and subtlety... with expression, she's able to be interesting without having to do busy-work. I bet if a junior skater attempted that program, with that exact choreography, their delivery would make it seem rather basic. Just goes to show that sometimes it's the skater that transcends the choreography.

3. Originally Posted by Mathman
Here is the very template for a 6.0 program. Note that for the first minute or so the skater does not earn a single CoP point, doing little but gliding gracefully (the "slow part" comes at the beginning in this program). The extended edge on her double Axel wastes precious time in which she could be doing some CoP transitions.. The last combination spin has 30+ revolutions not because the rules give her a tenth of a bullet point per revolution, but because the concept and the choreography calls for it.

Do you like modern programs better, crammed as they are with busy-work? Well, to each his own, I guess.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1imuQWeIi4Q
I find it such a shame that newer skating fans often dismiss Kwan based on the emptiness of her later programs from 2002 and onwards

From 1996-2001, man she had some interesting, unique programs. I was just watching Taj Mahal and noticed she did an Ina Bauer into a double axel. She never did transitions like that later on.

4. Originally Posted by SkateFiguring
Were there internet discussion forums back in the 6.0 days? Even if internet was around, the online participation could not compare at all.
Starting in the mid-1990s. Some lesser participation in the earlier 90s. No Internet in Sonja Henie's day.

Discussions with the COP system are often emotional and subjective, but imagine how much more heated and irrational they would be If today's competitions were still judged under the 6.0 system!
They were indeed quite heated and often irrational 10-20 years ago.

Originally Posted by CanadianSkaterGuy
Well, technically she would be getting points for the spiral sequence.
If spiral sequence were still a required SP element, which it was for the first 5 or 6 years of IJS.

By today's rules, they would count as transitions. As would the Ina Bauer preceding.

Although it's lovely to see her open with that, instead of motoring into her first jumping pass as so many skaters do.
Yes, and that was an unusual way to structure a program even at that time. Not the template for a standard 1990s short program.

With today's rules, though, it would have the advantage of putting two of the three jump passes after the halfway mark to earn bonuses.

The extended landing on the double axel should increase its GOE.

Also, this is the SP, so the revolutions on her spins were meeting requirements... I've noticed in her free skates, often Kwan (and other 6.0 skaters) don't hold their positions long enough. Not saying it needs to be a sit for 8 revolutions, but again, to see a camel held for 3 rotations or more is not a priority for a lot of skaters.
Very true.

Just goes to show that sometimes it's the skater that transcends the choreography.
Yes, and I'm sure that Kwan in her prime would have adapted just fine to IJS demands and helped set the standard for what it rewards and transcended/stood out from what the majority of her competitors were doing, under this system as well as under 6.0.

5. Originally Posted by SkateFiguring
Were there internet discussion forums back in the 6.0 days? Even if internet was around, the online participation could not compare at all!
The Michelle Kwan forum at its peak used to have 16,000 members before all the crashes
Now it's only at 3k

Whenever there was a big event there'd be a risk of a crash

6. Originally Posted by pointyourtoe
The Michelle Kwan forum at its peak used to have 16,000 members before all the crashes
Now it's only at 3k
I take it that the forum was pretty much a fan club. She was extremely popular with the majority of the English forum participants who were mostly Americans, which is still often the case with English forums today.

3K members so many years after her retirement is still impressive.

Re. MK's iconic program, taking the best of the 6.0 system to be its standard is not a valid argument against COP. Having once had a female Prime Minister does not make Pakistan a haven or a great nation for women. The systems have to be looked at and evaluated holistically.

Anyway, contrary to the thread title, figure skating is not dead. It's thriving elsewhere outside the US. National factors are more likely responsible for its decline in the US.

Whenever there was a big event there'd be a risk of a crash.
How many participants to crash the GS forum these days?

I bet today's GS is a lot more diverse demographically than 10-20 years ago.

7. Originally Posted by SkateFiguring
How many participants to crash the GS forum these days?
About 200 to 300 with the old server before the Sochi Olympics. Should be higher now.

I bet today's GS is a lot more diverse demographically than 10-20 years ago.
Very much so. The figures vary from month to month, but the total non-North America participation seems to have overtaken US and Canada by a slight margin.

By the numbers, the most popular skater ever on Golden Skate is Yuzuru Hanyu. His fan fest thread has over 6000 posts and almost a million views. I believe this is more than all other skaters combined. (Poor Michelle. I keep trying, but her fan fest thread is constantly in danger of slipping onto the second page. )

8. Aww, that has nothing to do with Michelle's popularity. The problem is she isn't competing--or even skating--anymore. Whereas Yuzu is the new "hot thing."

That being said, I wish there was more discussion about past programs, beautiful moments, ect. in Fan Fests. I wouldn't mind discussing and comparing Michelle's programs in her Fan Fest thread. I seem to have very different preferences than Pointyourtoe, for instance.

9. Long step sequences can be sheer torture when the skater cannot make it look fast and effortless--and even many top skaters cannot. While I think that some interesting transitions are great, when set meaningfully to the music, but I would also like to see clean, well executed jumps and the skater's ability to hold a solid, long landing edge be rewarded more. As it is, the programs are so jam-packed with elelements that landings are often scratchy and most landings transition directly into some other element. Generally speaking, I prefer skating that looks effortless and that emphasizes the skater's musicality and capacity for interpret the music.

10. Skaters tweak details of their programs to adjust to rule changes, or changes in their own skills and strengths, all the time, especially if they reuse the program for more than one season.

I had to make a long drive this morning, so I amused myself by considering the question of how Yagudin's Winter could be tweaked to fit 2014 rules.

Hypothesis 1:
21-year-old Yagudin with his 2002 skills (and a better hip) is magically transported to an alternate reality in which 6.0 judging is still the norm but 2014 short program rules apply. The big differences for the senior men's short program:
*Maximum time limit is 2:50 instead of 2:40
*Only 7 required elements/only 1 step sequence
*Spinning position in the change-foot spin must be a different basic position than the one in the flying spin
*It is allowed to do two different quads are allowed in the combination and in the jump out of steps

Let's also imagine that guidelines to those 6.0 judges have spelled out that they should reward
*difficult positions, edge changes, etc., in spins
*variety of steps and turns in both directions, one-foot skating, and full body movement in step sequences
*variety, difficulty, intricacy, and quality of skating moves between elements and leading in and out of elements

With those changes, the only thing the transported Yagudin would need to change in his 2002 SP would be the position of either the change-foot or the flying spin. His best bet would probably be flying camel, which he had used in other years.

That memorable second toe-picky step sequence could serve as in-between choreography/transitions rather than counting as an element. (In 2010, it would have been an element)

Whether that would be enough for him to win would depend on who he was competing against, what kind of technical content and presentation the other guys have to offer. If this were a 2014 in which IJS never existed, guys doing two quads might be the biggest obstacle.

If the standards for non-jump technical content had risen in this alternate reality similarly to how they did under IJS, he might need to beef up his content in those areas, as discussed below.

Hypothesis 2:
21-year-old Yagudin with his 2002 skills (and a better hip) is magically time-traveled to 2014 to compete under IJS against the current field, with a year of lead time to develop skills while putting together his IJS version of the Winter SP.

In addition to changing the one basic spin position, he would probably want to add difficulty to the spins, steps, and transitions. With his 2002 skills plus a year to prepare, I expect he could average level 3 on the spins without significantly changing the choreography before and after and without making them look too busy. He might need to train to spin faster, as well as with more difficult positions, transitions, and edge change, to transform his average-2002 spins into average-2014 spins.

For the steps, my suggestion would be recut the music with the extra 10 seconds allowed and extend the time of the circular step sequence to include more IJS content in that sequence and including a few of the more memorable original steps, aiming for level 3.

Then adapt the original, more iconic straight-line steps as transitions. Maybe exactly as is, maybe leading into the lutz for more intricacy and GOE points. Keep the snow-throwing moves, but beef up the two-footed transitional skating with a sustained edge or spiral or hydroblade here, a bracket or double three or choctaw there, stars into one of the spins. Maybe add a walley somewhere, which unlike in 2002 is now allowed in the short program as long as it's not in the official step sequence.

If his stamina can handle it, move the axel after the circular steps to earn the bonus.

But keep the moves, both easy and difficult, in time with the rhythm of the music, slow and sustained where the music is slow and sustained, quick and aggressive where the music is quick. Keep the mood of the program the same, and keep the thematic moves of snow-throwing and quick toe steps

I think we would consider this a more-demanding version of the same program, not a completely different program.

But even under 6.0 judging as in the previous scenario, if the other guys were doing two quads and/or upping the ante with more difficult steps and spins because that's how the sport developed in the decade+ since 2002, more content would be necessary to keep up with the rest of the pack. We wouldn't expect a 2002 program to be competitive with a 2014 program even with the same judging system, any more than we'd expect the 1988 or '92 or '94 winning SPs to be competitive in 2002.

Hypothesis 3:

A 2014 skater decides to skate an IJS-friendly version of Winter as a tribute to Yagudin, with blessings and choreographic input from Yagudin and Morozov. If it's an elite senior man, he probably already has the skills to execute harder spins and steps and transitions -- if he also has two quads, he might want to rearrange the jump content to include them both.

Be sure to include the snow-throwing and toe-picking that were the most memorable moves from the original program.

Where the young 2014 skater would probably need more work is on performing with the confidence and commitment that Yagudin showed in 2002.

But a skater like Daisuke Takahashi at his peak could probably offer the best of both worlds, a technically beefed-up version of the original with comparable presentation.

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