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Thread: Hou would YOU distribute USFSA funding?

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    Forum translator Ptichka's Avatar
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    Hou would YOU distribute USFSA funding?

    We've had quite a lot of opinions on this forum when envelope assignments were posted. So, here is my question: how would you distribute the funds? Would you favor a 1st place novice, a 3d place junior, or a 6th place senior? In other words, would you favor someone who shows potential, but could be another NNN, or someone who has already proven they can be a decent skater, but will never be the next MK. What do you think and why?

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    Tough choice. Actually I would like to see the USFSA giving more money to help get kids involved in skating. Skating is a very expenisive sport-and so kids from less economically developed neighborhoods are not going to have as much as an opprotunity to even begin skating. I think by making skatng less expensive for everyone-and helping promisng youngsters along the way-the US team would be even better.

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    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    You put the question in an interesting way, Ptichka. First, I wonder where the USFSA gets it's money from. Do sating clubs and individuals pay dues to belong to the organization? If a substantial amount of money comes from this source, as contrasted with television money and corporate sponsorships, then it would seem kind of funny to turn around and give money to local rinks to sponsor their programs at "learn-to-skate" levels. (Sort of like taxation, LOL. You gve your money to the government, then they give a little back.)

    The official motto of the USFSA is "creating champions." Is that really their goal, rather than to provide recreational programs and build a grass roots interest in the sport? If so, I guess the best thing would be to put their money on the #1 novice who just might turn out to be the next MK.

    Actually, if I were doing the voting I would say to develop pairs and dance teams. This requires more co-ordination at a lower level, instead of just relying on failed singles skaters to get together somehow.

    I don't know. Hard question.

    Mathman

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    and... World Peace! Tonichelle's Avatar
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    Michelle Kwan and some of the other big name skaters who still get funding, IMO, really don't need it as much as the ones who maybe aren't as well known but just as good... I mean they're not going the big sponsers, but they're not getting the extra cash either... a lot of them also go to school because hey skating's getting expensive and it's not paying right away so they need to fall back on something, again taking more money out of their pockets than in.

    Personally I wouldn't give the most $$ out to the skaters with a big bank account due to their skating... if they're winning the gold medals they're winning the grand cash prize too... plus Chevy and some of the other big name sponsers give away free stuff so do they need an extra 5 grand?

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    I read that Michelle and other similarly situated skaters do give back their envelope money to the USFSA-because they really don't need the extra help

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    Skating Soprano
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    Its hard , because many of the current and past champions didnt do well at the lower levels and many who did well at the lower levels did do well on the senior level for various reasons.

    I think it would almost be in our better interest to use the $ to promote education at all level. I dont mean the in-school kind. I mean classes for skaters, parents and coaches on injury prevention, artistic focus at an earlier level (I swear its frighting the poor artistry you see at senior nationals), mental preparedness, equiptment, etc. I would give us a greater level of skating overall and would reduce injury at all levels...just a thought...

    Another idea would be to give money to skaters based on merit. all levels juv and higher would be elegible and it would be based on various things, not just placement and level. They could determine potential based on jumps, spins, footwork, etc as well as artistry. It would be more similar to the Japanese system, although with a greater focus on artistry, because thats whats really going to decide who is liked or not on the pro arena and well because thats what Pixie wants...
    Last edited by skatepixie; 05-17-2004 at 09:07 PM.

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    bugs are smarter than we are bronxgirl's Avatar
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    Originally posted by skatepixie
    Its hard , because many of the current and past champions didnt do well at the lower levels and many who did well at the lower levels did do well on the senior level for various reasons.

    I think it would almost be in our better interest to use the $ to promote education at all level. I dont mean the in-school kind. I mean classes for skaters, parents and coaches on injury prevention, artistic focus at an earlier level (I swear its frighting the poor artistry you see at senior nationals), mental preparedness, equiptment, etc. I would give us a greater level of skating overall and would reduce injury at all levels...just a thought...

    Another idea would be to give money to skaters based on merit. all levels juv and higher would be elegible and it would be based on various things, not just placement and level. They could determine potential based on jumps, spins, footwork, etc as well as artistry. It would be more similar to the Japanese system, although with a greater focus on artistry, because thats whats really going to decide who is liked or not on the pro arena and well because thats what Pixie wants...
    How does anyone define artistry? As the old cliche goes - beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I do agree with the idea of ijury prevention, mental preparedness and equipment to improve all levels of those who do receive funding.

    How are you going to deermine merit? What factors would you use (specifically)?

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    Custom Title Joesitz's Avatar
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    I think a "Reach Out" Program could be instituted where schools could arrange a morning of skating at the local rink in their area. The expenses of the local rink could be met by some of the funds of the USFSA. The local rink could could give out flyers or pamphlets on how to join the local club to learn how to skate. The interest of the child plus the interest of the parents could get things moving..

    Funds should also be released to skaters in need based on a petition of the coaches where the funds are used for subsidies for equpment and rental of ice. No monies should go directly to the coach.

    Just some thoughts.

    Joe

  9. #9
    Tripping on the Podium
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    I personally think that usfsa funding isnt that great because I need skating money like a scholarship and im a usfsa member, and have i received any money yet? no...

  10. #10
    Skating Soprano
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    Originally posted by bronxgirl
    How does anyone define artistry? As the old cliche goes - beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I do agree with the idea of ijury prevention, mental preparedness and equipment to improve all levels of those who do receive funding.

    How are you going to deermine merit? What factors would you use (specifically)?
    I would look at:
    ~Age
    ~Jump Level
    ~Test Level
    ~Results
    ~Speed
    ~Flow
    ~Ability to skate with the music (includes feeling)
    ~Body type (sorry...but theres no real point if the girl is going to be like 6')

    I realize you cant teach artistry, but what Im talking about is a way to encourage it at the lower levels. It seems like so many skaters move up from Junior (MK in her early days comes to mind) to get the shock of their lives when the judges reward more than just jumping. Classes would include choosing music, choreo basics, music theory, etc

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    english heretic Kateri's Avatar
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    Mathman hinted at this, but what I was thinking was why don't they offer more money to skaters going into pairs and dance?
    Then less well off skaters get a chance to compete, if they can't afford singles, and the US can improve its chances in these disciplines.

    k.

  12. #12
    Skating Soprano
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    I dont think funding will help that much with pairs and dance. One of the huge problems is the amount of opinions involved. You have 2 skaters, a coach, 4 parents, and perhaps a choreographer. Thats 7 or 8 opinions. That creates tension. Tension creates break ups. When there are brake ups, then you have to start over with someone new. This is why communist countries tend to have better pairs/dance programs. Personally, I dont think its worth trading the freedom of choosing ones own partner or coach.

  13. #13
    bugs are smarter than we are bronxgirl's Avatar
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    So, how do you explain Torvill and Dean, A/P (both great dance teams) who are clearly not from totalitarian countries?

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    and... World Peace! Tonichelle's Avatar
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    I think the US has problems with teams because they want instant results... and when that doesn't happen you drop your partner and go looking for another... instead of regrouping and working things out... that's just not always the "fast and easy" way

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    The Russians have done lots of partner switching, too--it isn't just the US skaters. Ilya Averbuch and Sergei Sakhonovsky both skated with Marina Anissina before she moved to France to skate with Gwendal.

    Tatiana Navka and Roman Kostomarov have both had lots of other partners, too. Ditto Julia Obertas.

    It isn't a North American thing.

    It has to be hard to work with a partner day in and day out and still remain on good terms. When you have clashing personalities and/or different styles, perhaps it is better to split than deal with ongoing conflict.

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