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Thread: 2018-19 Russian Ladies' figure skating

  1. #14901
    Medalist Alexz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BillNeal View Post
    The Russian novices/juniors are talented but many of them have a long way to go in the skating skills department. Some people are just too enamoured and start to point fingers whenever they are met with opposing viewpoints but it’s best to keep an open mind to valid criticism in a discussion forum.
    Perhaps. But I dont really see anyone in the world right now who are on par with Russian ladies. Only the Japanese girls are kinda catching up to them recently.

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    Shepherdess of the Teal Deer Metis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fluture View Post
    I don‘t see why that‘s such a bad thing to point out if it‘s.. well, true. I love many of the Eteri skaters, they are among my favorites and I enjoy many of their programs too. That doesn‘t mean that I can‘t see their weaknesses and especially the skating skills and posture are a part that would need more adressing. I think this can be pointed as long as it’s done in a respectful manner.
    This thread often has a cult-like vibe, in my opinion. Noting an issue in a non-inflammatory way shouldn’t be incitement to scream “Says who? You?” As if posture training bands don’t exist.

    Eteri and the Sambo-70 team are very, very good at showcasing the best of their skaters. While I don’t think they’ve developed any skater’s basic skating skills to a truly remarkable level, they do do an excellent job at hiding weaknesses, at least as much as they can. Which is where my deteriorating remark comes in: compare Medvedeva’s WC16 step sequence in the free skate to her WC17 free skate step sequence. Notice how her upper body is being used to complete the turns and her arms are extended in the direction of travel, as if she’s pulling on an invisible rope? It looks far more laboured an effort than just a year prior. Compare Zagitova at the Olympics to Zagitova now. Her posture during crossovers has always been a weaknesses, but that flaw has become much more apparent after her growth spurt, her skating appears much slower and more forced, and she’s using her upper body in the same way Medvedeva did in her last two years as a senior.

    I’m not saying that these are irredeemable flaws or that they can’t be corrected. They are, to me, a visible deterioration in skill — and not especially aesthetically pleasing flaws, in that the use of the upper body to complete turns distracts from the performance for me. (Medvedeva and Zagitova also have stiffer knees than in their first senior years.)

    As for Sasha, yes, she’s fine. Her edges during steps are clear and she’s quite fast. I’m not sure how well she’ll manage a change in height, which is when — in my opinion — there seems to be a visible regression in skill. I am not hoping for that outcome. It is something that concerns me because it seems to be something of a pattern. It is not an iron-clad law. I would be quite pleased to be wrong, but only time will tell. Especially since it’s clear that Sambo-70 is more focused on challenging new technical elements and landing clean run-throughs than edge classes. Which is fine. It’s a coaching choice. There aren’t, frankly, as many points in skating skills as there are in a clean quad jump. It’s not my preference, as I feel artistry is built on good technique in all aspects and that good technique enables artistry, but I don’t recall implying anyone had to hold my opinions.

    (Also, I love Zagitova. The way she flicks her hand when landing a jump as if tossing it off to the audience is eminently rewatchable, especially in her DQ free.)

    I‘m with you on Kanysheva. The two Alena K’s are my favorites juniors and Kanysheva has lots of endearing qualities about her that you already mentioned. She sometimes URs, though.
    Almost everyone URs, to be fair, at least occasionally and especially toward the end of programmes. But if it becomes a chronic issue, I’ll be concerned. We have the same juniors, however. Kostornaia has simply phenomenal skating skills and an innate sense of music, a refinement on the ice, and I can’t wait to see her senior programmes. (I would love if she was able to revisit Adios Nonino. Tangos are tricky but Kostornaia has an excellent feel for tango.) And Kanysheva is just charming. Tarakanova, also — she has a certain “it” factour.

    I have no crystal ball as far as Beijing is concerned. May the best lady win.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Metis View Post
    As for Sasha, yes, she’s fine. Her edges during steps are clear and she’s quite fast. I’m not sure how well she’ll manage a change in height, which is when — in my opinion — there seems to be a visible regression in skill. I am not hoping for that outcome. It is something that concerns me because it seems to be something of a pattern. It is not an iron-clad law.
    To be fair, Sasha has already grown a lot in this season alone (to the extent that she has gone through multiple costumes), and she seems to be improving in all aspects, at least in my eyes. I wouldn’t be surprised if she proved an exception to the general pattern and kept her jumps.

    Alena K (both of them) and Nastya T are my favorite juniors, too.

  4. #14904
    Medalist Alexz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Metis View Post
    Eteri and the Sambo-70 team are very, very good at showcasing the best of their skaters. While I don’t think they’ve developed any skater’s basic skating skills to a truly remarkable level, they do do an excellent job at hiding weaknesses, at least as much as they can.
    Alyona is humbly coughing now.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alexz View Post
    Alyona is humbly coughing now.
    She had them before going rob Eteri.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Metis View Post
    whole post.
    well if you put it this way, it sounds pretty reasonable, and i'd even agree to some extent. i just find that a lot of the times when SS and posture is brought up in relation to certain skaters, the purpose isn't to have an actual discussion but to question the validity of their achievements.

    with regards to alina's posture, that actually is one of the things i hope will get better over time. it wasn't distracting for me but i definitely noticed it at the start of the season, i think her tutu's last season did a good job of covering it up. personally i feel like her posture and speed has gotten better over this season especially when i watch her practices but idk if it actually has or if i'm just imagining it. either way i'm sure it's something they're aware of and working on. i don't think any coach has the intention of teaching their students bad skating skills/posture

  7. #14907
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ziotic View Post
    She had them before going rob Eteri.
    Alyona is SAMBO-70. Hello? Alyona was raised under Tchaikovskaya's figure-skating developmental program in Sambo-70 school. Under Eteri and Daniil Alyona only got better. Polished. Her jumps become more consistent. She started getting better and edgy programs since the move last year. Eteri is an elite group of Sambo-70. They pick most talented ones from their system (and sometimes from provinces, like Lipnitskaya and Trusova) and start polishing them. Lipnitskaya got better under Eteri. Trusova is getting there. Bottom line is the vast majority Eteri's skaters are Eteri's students from the very young ages or Sambo-70 products anyways. We discussed that many times here already.

    Like I said currently in the world there is no better figure-skating program than Sambo-70 (courtesy of the great Tchaikovskaya). Few other Moscow and St Petersburg groups are being close seconds. Japanese coaches and their young skaters are rapidly closing the gap though. Our North American coaches are not even in the conversation. Facts.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Casual View Post
    *Face palm*

    This is sad. At her level, she deserves help from a nutritionist. Even non-athletes get it; it's really surprising to see top athletes do without.
    It's not sad it's good that she's healthy and not well under weight like many are..

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    https://youtu.be/WhzYNaF8Vqs

    Cute Alena 2 years ago (I think shortly before she switched to Team Eteri)

  10. #14910
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    Quote Originally Posted by malya View Post
    Can people that only come here to bash anyone that likes "that lady coach that doesn't teach their kids anything"s skaters open their own thread?
    "Discussion about Eteri Tutberize and her teaching methods"

    (btw whoever claims Trusova and Kostornaia's SS got worse, I'm 100% sure you don't follow or like russian ladies)

    Fun fact: I actually wanted to complain about Team Panova getting underscored (especially compared to Team Tut) because she still seems to have no reputation with the judges. But I'm sure this gives more reason to complain about Eteri Tutberize and Daniil's choreo...
    I will avoid drama around Eteri and just skip to the agreement that Panova seems to me beeing overlooked among other coaches. However, it could change now with Alena Kanysheva and Kseniia Sinitsyna. it is always better when there are more teams producing high quality skaters.

  11. #14911
    Shepherdess of the Teal Deer Metis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sx98423 View Post
    well if you put it this way, it sounds pretty reasonable, and i'd even agree to some extent. i just find that a lot of the times when SS and posture is brought up in relation to certain skaters, the purpose isn't to have an actual discussion but to question the validity of their achievements.
    Ah, I see. I have no interest in beginning more drama. All of my favourite skaters are imperfect — and noticing that doesn’t lessen my love for them or my hope that they stay in the sport so they continue to grow. I’m not a huge fan on the lack of attention to edgework in Eteri’s group, but I don’t think there’s any dispute that she’s the single most methodical coach out there in terms of finding every point available under the rules. The fact of the matter is that skating skills are, ultimately, worth only ten points of the total skating score, assuming a skater earned enough 10s in that component. A quad with +2-3 GOE is worth more than ten points. I think most of Eteri’s students have solid, but not exceptional, basic skating skills, that skating skills are not a main focus of training (they seem to be treated as a means to an end in terms of being able to perform complex transitions), and that there’s a real risk of regression in that area as the body changes.

    Of course, no two skaters are going to be equally talented in the same aspects. Trusova has a natural “bounce” that makes her jumps so explosive. Kostornaia is able to sink into the ice and give the sense that she’s simply walking down the street while gliding. Et cetera. And developing skating skills takes time and dedicated effort. There’s only so many hours in the day. That being said... I don’t generally feel optimistic about Eteri students with weaker basics ever achieving true mastery of the blade, as it just doesn’t seem to be a priority. It doesn’t mean they’re bad, just not outstanding. And I value speed, glide, correct posture, etc., highly, which not everyone does.

    with regards to alina's posture, that actually is one of the things i hope will get better over time. it wasn't distracting for me but i definitely noticed it at the start of the season, i think her tutu's last season did a good job of covering it up. personally i feel like her posture and speed has gotten better over this season especially when i watch her practices but idk if it actually has or if i'm just imagining it. either way i'm sure it's something they're aware of and working on. i don't think any coach has the intention of teaching their students bad skating skills/posture
    I don’t think she’s teaching bad technique, I agree. I think it’s more a lack of attention, or at least relative attention, as my understanding is that Eteri is quite focused on having her skaters deliver clean run-throughs (and that the skaters are scored as if in competition), raising the technical bar, etc. Which only leaves so much time. And if you’re breaking down someone’s skating to the basics and reworking that technique, that’s going to have an effect on jump consistency. Eteri is gifted at ensuring that no opportunity to score points is wasted and maximizing every single opportunity, which is a valid coaching strategy. I don’t think it always leads to the best skating skills.

    As for Zagitova: she seemed quite fast in the Rostelecom practise, I think it was? She also just needs time to adjust to her new height. (The year my centre of gravity dropped, I tripped over nothing multiple times.) She has great twizzles and an innate ability to make even small gestures into high-impact moments — for example, the way she moves her hand to toss-off a jump to the audience upon landing. She also has the most beautiful Rippons I’ve ever seen in ladies. And you’re right about her costumes last season — the tutus definitely drew attention from her relatively stiff knees, since the point at which the body line was broken by the costume was much higher on the leg, which naturally draws attention away from the knee.

    Quote Originally Posted by rachno2 View Post
    To be fair, Sasha has already grown a lot over the course of this season alone (to the extent that she has gone through multiple costumes), and she seems to be improving in all aspects, at least in my eyes. I wouldn’t be surprised if she proved an exception to the general pattern and kept her jumps.

    Alena K (both of them) and Nastya T are my favorite juniors, too.
    We should start a fanclub for those three. 2As ‘n an N?

    Fair point about Sasha. I don’t think she has bad skating skills, to be clear — part of why I like her short programme so much is the relatively uncluttered choreo (not that it lacks choreo, but that she has more chances to hold a position). Sasha is just generally likable. She has that “YOUR ATTENTION, PLEASE” performer/diva quality, but in a good way.

    As far as jumps go... I refuse to make predictions. Ice is slippery. Injury, unfortunately, can occur at any time. I just want everyone to stay healthy and to be happy with how they skate. But I’m sappy like that. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

  12. #14912
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott512 View Post
    It's very true Alex they all get better under Eteri and they get worse when they leave her. Undeniable.
    I also want to point out people here are not usually claiming that it is all Eteri and solemnly her achievement. It is the whole figure-skating developmental program in Russia. And they have few of those actually, within different schools, clubs and coaches clans. Besides Eteri always (Ted Barton's interview for instance) points out that Sergei and Daniil are giving the same amount of input and doing the same amount of job as her. So all achievements of Eteri are achievements of her team and the whole Russian figure skating program. They especially have remarkable success in Ladies now. Russian program was falling behind a bit in the 2000's, but they did some soul-searching and came back strong starting 2012-2013. If people are picking on little things and flaws of Russian skaters, fine, but failing to notice the overall success of their developmental program and not thinking to pick up some methods and approaches developed by RusFed and their developmental programs, that's just silly. Fortunately, Japanese coaches are more eager to learn and to improve, otherwise we would have undisputed Russian ladies domination. And that would be a bot too boring.

  13. #14913
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    Quote Originally Posted by flanker View Post
    .. and just skip to the agreement that Panova seems to me beeing overlooked among other coaches. However, it could change now with Alena Kanysheva and Kseniia Sinitsyna. it is always better when there are more teams producing high quality skaters.
    oh, trust me, Panova's program is not overlooked. We see her success and breakthrough quite clear.

  14. #14914
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alexz View Post
    Perhaps. But I dont really see anyone in the world right now who are on par with Russian ladies. Only the Japanese girls are kinda catching up to them recently.
    I think the poster was referring specifically to SS, not the overall content. The Russians are good but other than Alyona Kostornaia, most of them really only have mediocre SS. They don’t have the sort of smooth glide, edges and turns and posture like Alyona or the Japanese girls. It’s not today that the approach is wrong but SS is obviously an area they can afford to work on.

  15. #14915
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alexz View Post
    Eteri on her IG : "my fav program this year" https://www.instagram.com/p/BsiyTxjAA6A
    "My favorite"

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alexz View Post
    Alyona is SAMBO-70. Hello? Alyona was raised under Tchaikovskaya's figure-skating developmental program in Sambo-70 school. Under Eteri and Daniil Alyona only got better. Polished. Her jumps become more consistent. SHe start getting better and edgy programs since the move last year. Eteri is an elite group of Sambo-70. They pick most talented ones from their system (and sometimes from provinces, like Lipnitskaya and Trusova) and start polishing them. Lipnitskaya got better under Eteri. Trusova is getting there. Bottom line is the vast majority Eteri's skaters are Eteri's students from the very young ages or Sambo-70 products anyways. We discussed that many times here already.

    Like I said currently in the world there is no better figure-skating program than Sambo-70 (courtesy of the great Tchaikovskaya). Few other Moscow and St Petersburg groups are being close seconds. Japanese coaches and their young skaters are rapidly closing the gap though. Our North American coaches are not even in the conversation. Facts.
    As you said, Alyona got her basic posture and SS under Tchaikovskaya’s group, specifically under Elena Zhgun who was an ice dancer. That’s why she got the strong basics which Eteri was able to build on so well. The original poster meant that someone else in Sambo 70 trained Alyona in her basics. It wasn’t Eteri, although Eteri did package and customize her to a greater version.

  17. #14917
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    has anyone in this thread recently said that Russian skaters have terrible skating skills? Did I completely miss that? let's not make a mountain out of a molehill in this situation. Let's remember the differences between constructive criticism and bashing

  18. #14918
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott512 View Post
    It's very true Alex they all get better under Eteri and they get worse when they leave her. Undeniable.

    I think the context needs to be presented. Eteri is a genius at maximizing scores and customization of programmes to her skaters. With her tough work ethics, her students have to shape up or ship out. So those that made it of course got better. But her methods have specific focus on content and scores and basic techniques are not as much emphasized. Skaters like Zhenya who left her were already starting to lose their technique as they grew as they never had them solidly in the first place. In Zhenya’s case, she was deteriorating and struck out elsewhere in an attempt to remain competitive. So to say that she got worse after leaving Eteri is not quite true as she was already showing signs of losing competitiveness.

    That said, with skaters like Alyona who started with solid technique and the most critical blade work and basic SS (IMO), I believe these skaters will have better longevity. I am sure Eteri is also learning and refining her coaching which is why every subsequent crop of skaters are getting more and more solid as she figures out what needs to be propped.

  19. #14919
    Shepherdess of the Teal Deer Metis's Avatar
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    2018-19 Russian Ladies' figure skating

    Quote Originally Posted by Alexz View Post
    Nah, original poster specifically said Sambo-70 program can't develop basic skating skills. I proved that wrong. Basic skating skills is not only posture on specific elements, btw. If that the only thing to pick on, oh well. And humbly disagree calling their SS mediocre. A lot of smooth and fluid SS comes from the weight, therefore younger girls who usually has weaker leg muscles are yet to develop soother skating style.
    In which case I apologise for the error, as Kostornaia clearly owes her superior skating skills to her first coach, not Eteri. You can either read my other posts clarifying my remarks or admit to just inventing what I said for your own purposes, but kindly pick. Personally? Stop putting words in my mouth.

    You’re welcome to disprove the regression in skating skills shown by Zagitova and Medvedeva. We can start with the loop turn in their free skates and the way they whip around the upper body to force their way through the turns of their step sequences.

  20. #14920
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    Skating skills and who your current coach is are not linked very closely. Perhaps it is slightly more linked to the coach you first learned your basics under, but even that isn't perfectly correlated. Any teacher will have good students and bad students and students with different strengths. If you notice, most coaches have students with varying levels of skating skills.

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