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Thread: The Tutberidze Effect

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    Driving Quads, Jumping Quads, Trusova = Quadster! Edwin's Avatar
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    Question The Tutberidze Effect

    Not as a scientific phenomenon that can be quantified, although perhaps medals tally is a decent objectivation?
    Accurate research needs a population and sample period and frequency.

    The recent addition of Adeliya Petrosyan to the core selection of Khrustalniy made me think: how to appreciate the work of this woman Eteri Georgiyevna Tutberidze, chief trainer, in charge over some pretty good personnel like Sergey Dudakov, Daniil Gleikhengauz, Sergey Rozanov and probably quite some more who go about their duties nameless but contribute to the effect nevertheless.

    Being chief of staff, chief trainer, head of the Khrustalniy department of Sambo-70 Children's Sports and Education School comes with lots of administrative duties also: keeping each student's (about 225 of them) dossier in order, preparing competition and progress reports, signing off all kinds of financial declarations and many other bureaucratic tasks. Then there is dealings with parents, other 'competing' rinks, MosKomSport and FFKKR officials, before even getting into her boots and taking to the ice to start working with the skaters. And of course a private family life, mother to a daughter and many other occupations make her a true taskmaster.

    From what I've gathered from the various interview, the skaters both admire and fear her, but probably no more than they would fear their headmaster, because the skaters have a working relationship with their trainers, and vice versa.

    For the sake of completeness, I consider the efforts and results of all Khrustalniy trainers equal, the sum of parts is what counts.

    The Tutberidze Effect at work?

    It would be interesting to follow Adeliya's progress for the purpose of studying the effect. She is not yet listed here on the official #TeamTutberidzeForProgress (my invention) VK page but is included in other listings.

    Khrustalniy is known, perhaps renowned and sometimes criticised, for the quality of its skating: lyrical, gentle, soft (not in the definition of poor or weak) together with explosive bouts into the most difficult jumps from the rule book and always with great attention to detail in execution, in choreography and in the expression of the 'image' the 'artistic director' has agreed on with the skater. My opinion is that Khrustalniy revolutionised the somewhat sedate activity that was ladies figure skating and elevated it into the realm of top sport. The quick rise and success of Khrustalniy led to a the sudden obsolescence of a whole generation of domestic skaters from rinks that had different ideas, and a worldwide 'arms race' in difficulty of content and quality of its execution, with only a select few Russian rinks and national federations being able to keep up. Not forgetting to mention The Tutberidze Effect favours certain anatomic and bio mechanical traits in the human body.

    So considering Adeliya is the average hardworking, studious, obedient, bright in the general sense, 11-12 year old child, what criteria have been applied to her to make the grade? To be included in the core selection amidst other kids her age, including boys, that form the training group, what is actually required of them? Children this age start to fully comprehend and understand the demands of sport at a high level and it is about the last year of age in which they unconditionally accept adult wisdom and authority.
    Their childhood 'self' is at its maximum, and the uncertainties and changes of puberty and adolescence are still far off their minds.

    Character traits required: discipline, self consciousness, ambition, toughness?
    Physical qualities required: feet, ankles, knees, hips in excellent working order, strong joints, muscles, straight limbs and back, good natural carriage and posture. Flexibility can be trained, strength and stamina increased. Artistic articulation can be learned.
    Mental qualities required: natural desire to work hard by yourself, responsibility in looking after yourself, attentiveness and learning capability including taking criticism to heart, quick application of newly learned and self reflection on progress and mistakes, easy adaptation to circumstances, thinking on your feet, a certain resilience to pain and physical discomfort?
    Innate talent is not required per se, but often helps you in really standing out from the rest.
    Negative traits or qualities that will disqualify you? Not being able to work in teams, egocentrism, self entitlement? There are few traits that cannot be changed in a person, but trainers are not paediatricians with a degree in child psychology and disorders.

    Children this age still have pliable minds, need constant tutoring and corrections, so trainers have quite some responsibility here, almost equal to parents or school teachers. Not actually raising the child, but building her character, guiding and praising, correcting when necessary. I will not use the word 'punishing', but know this happens too since Russia in my view still is a 'command and obey' society on many levels. Most of the kids are from decent working class families and have received a traditional upbringing in values, behaviour, world outlook, etc. Figure skating with government subsidies demands a certain responsibility, no wasting of these resources, the parents signed a contract which the child must fully understand in all its implications.

    Boys and girls training together not only teaches them respect for and proper manners in dealing with the opposite sex, it also has significant advantages: the boys learn this lyrical, soft and gentle style of skating typical of girls (stereotype), while the girls learn to master the explosiveness and athletic prowess of the typical male skater (another stereotype, I know). Actual competition results so far show, girls under The Tutberidze Effect score better than boys, but these statistics might be skewed because there are fewer boys, remember population and sample period and frequency?

    So, with Adeliya being a recent addition, the question raises itself: when will she be able to do the quad, the signature element of Khrustalniy, the mark you receive after you've completed your Rite of Passage ;-) ?
    What will she need to 'unlearn', even though one can presume she was noted for her technical staking skills while on probation?

    For a fair comparison and proper evaluation of The Tutberidze Effect, there also should be a same age new boy that recently came to Khrustalniy for monitoring. Any names?

    Hopefully we will be able to watch and follow Adeliya and her classmates (Sof'ya Akat'yeva, Vsyovold Knyazev, Mark Lukin (there are twelve 2007 born children listed) often in competitions, so we can see for ourselves what becomes of her under influence of The Tutberidze Effect.

    Another measure would be a kind of coefficient like results vs longevity, or results vs health, but those are best left to another discussion.

    PS: I was just having fun collecting this posting, it is not meant to criticise anybody or any method in figure skating.

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    a dark lord dante's Avatar
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    Eteri has answered questions about her methods dozens of times, and I think it would be more productive to start with listening to her. If you think about it, there seems to be no other way to dominate in the sports internationally than having:

    * Intrinsic motivation (seriously, can you imagine such a busy person as Eteri wasting her time and nerves forcing someone to train?)
    * Perfectionism as a part of the athlete's nature (taught by the parents, the previous coaches or in the team itself)
    * The bar raised extremely high by the more successful team members
    * Highly skilled coaches who can identify a slightest flaw in the technique or artistry

    I don't think a super lean body is mandatory, otherwise Daria Panenkova wouldn't have been accepted in the team. The other thing is that the kid should have some basic elements, depending on his age, which at least requires him to keep fit.

    Quote Originally Posted by Edwin View Post
    I will not use the word 'punishing', but know this happens too since Russia in my view still is a 'command and obey' society on many levels.
    I think a kid is kicked out long before any other punishment can be used on him. Naturally, Eteri is more authoritarian than any commercial coach, but she only trains people whose ambitions are stronger than the love of freedom.

    Besides, it's China and Japan that are 'command and obey' societies, while Russians are known to be even more rebelious than Europeans (I know since I work a lot with people around the world).

    Quote Originally Posted by Edwin View Post
    the boys learn this lyrical, soft and gentle style of skating typical of girls (stereotype), while the girls learn to master the explosiveness and athletic prowess of the typical male skater (another stereotype, I know)
    I think in their case the boys learn both artistry and use of brute force from the girls.

    As for Adelia, I think a single example will only get us so far. A more fundamental approach would be to gather statistics on as much athletes (and their progression) as possible in different teams, then formulate some hypotheses as formulae and then if the formulae don't contradict the data, we could figure out some strengths and weaknesses of Eteri team. But it would take too much effort for such a simple figure skating fan as myself.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Edwin View Post
    Being chief of staff, chief trainer, head of the Khrustalniy department of Sambo-70 Children's Sports and Education School comes with lots of administrative duties also: keeping each student's (about 225 of them) dossier in order, preparing competition and progress reports, signing off all kinds of financial declarations and many other bureaucratic tasks. Then there is dealings with parents, other 'competing' rinks, MosKomSport and FFKKR officials, before even getting into her boots and taking to the ice to start working with the skaters.
    Except she's none of the above, just main coach in "Khrustalniy" rink, but without any administration power over other coaches, only with training process leadership to some extent.
    It's cool to get your facts straight before writing an essay on the matter.

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    EG has done so much to save Russian figure skating from being mediocre in all four disciplines compared to what they used to be of course. the Russian standards were so high for thirty years or so in pairs dance and men that they look mediocre by now in comparison.

    I personally think Eteri is worth 10 to 20 extra points once she brings skater to a certain level like Yulia zhenya Alina and 3a. She and Sergey make an unbelievable difference. Danil too.

    I don't think her methods can be duplicated.

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    I'm not necessarily a fan of her methods but appreciate all that she has accomplished for the sport. I think she also has an ability to see potential in skaters that others might miss. I remember reading that Alina was rejected by Mishin's group. By all accounts she was a very average skater without all her triples and yet EG saw something in her and was able to help her to become Olympic and World champion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sugar Coated View Post
    I'm not necessarily a fan of her methods but appreciate all that she has accomplished for the sport. I think she also has an ability to see potential in skaters that others might miss. I remember reading that Alina was rejected by Mishin's group. By all accounts she was a very average skater without all her triples and yet EG saw something in her and was able to help her to become Olympic and World champion.
    Well, maybe at least you can explain to me what people (usually foreigners) mean when they say about Eteri Georgievna "her methods"? My hypothesis - maybe this is such a delicate formulation, a euphemism for the "russian methods"? (strict, screaming at children, use of intolerant direct formulations). Because her behavior as a coach is no different from the behavior of many other Russian trainers.

    For example, Sofya Samodelkina talks about her coach Davydov: "Sergey Dmitrievich coach is quite strict. Sometimes he can praise you, but only if you did something well. When he is in a good mood, he can make a little joke, but when he is in a severe mood, it is better not to approach him"

    Or for example about Svetlana Panova people say that she is a very strict coach.

    So, I’m interested in when foreigners say “Eteri methods”, do they say “Russian methods” or do they really distinguish her methods from the methods of other Russian trainers?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott512 View Post
    EG has done so much to save Russian figure skating from being mediocre in all four disciplines compared to what they used to be of course. the Russian standards were so high for thirty years or so in pairs dance and men that they look mediocre by now in comparison.

    I personally think Eteri is worth 10 to 20 extra points once she brings skater to a certain level like Yulia zhenya Alina and 3a. She and Sergey make an unbelievable difference. Danil too.

    I don't think her methods can be duplicated.
    I'd not say the Russian FS was mediocre in all four disciplines before TUT.
    Yes, not every 4y cycle was a success but some of those, maybe 50% of time, the RusFed did the job.
    Not many Feds may challenge all four medal sets. The US, Canada, China and Japan only.
    And I think the RusFed has a lowest budget among top five.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Orlov View Post
    Well, maybe at least you can explain to me what people (usually foreigners) mean when they say about Eteri Georgievna "her methods"? My hypothesis - maybe this is such a delicate formulation, a euphemism for the "russian methods"? (strict, screaming at children, use of intolerant direct formulations). Because her behavior as a coach is no different from the behavior of many other Russian trainers.

    For example, Sofya Samodelkina talks about her coach Davydov: "Sergey Dmitrievich coach is quite strict. Sometimes he can praise you, but only if you did something well. When he is in a good mood, he can make a little joke, but when he is in a severe mood, it is better not to approach him"

    Or for example about Svetlana Panova people say that she is a very strict coach.

    So, I’m interested in when foreigners say “Eteri methods”, do they say “Russian methods” or do they really distinguish her methods from the methods of other Russian trainers?
    I suspect some "foreigners" think that Eteri methods ≠ Russian methods. Otherwise they would criticise more russian coaches than just Eteri. There is a circle of them which adopted this conviction that Eteri is a cruel person, a copy-paste type of coach with total disregard to her students well being and hapiness, that she chooses only skinny girls, gives them bad tehnique and overworks them for success. At least this is what I understood from reading all sorts of comments here and not only. At the beginning it was only her, now Daniil is getting even more hate than her

    I don't agree with this version and I find it hypocritical. Most of them have no ideea about the russian coach landscape if they think ET is way harsher than anyone. I've read some awful things about Mishin in the past but he didn't get the same hate as Eteri outside of Russia. If Davydov and Panova will get to dominate in the future, they will be attacked also.

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    Fangirl of men’s spirals and split jumps el henry's Avatar
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    I will try to explain, and hope that it sheds more light than heat.

    I do not know who “foreigners” are? I very much doubt that all “foreigners” feel the same way about anything, any more than all Russians or Europeans feel the same way about everything. Even on this board, there are persons who do not identify as Russian who think Eteri is the greatest coach ever. Good for them

    I am American. I do not know any American who thinks all Russian coaches teach the same. I do not think Eteri coaches in the same way as Mishin. Now, I don’t spend my life thinking about Eteri or following her, so maybe she does teach the same way as Mishin (the only other Russian coach who I could pick out of a lineup), but I certainly make no such assumptions. Nor does anyone else.

    If I criticize Eteri, it is based on 1) interviews her students or former students have given and 2) the programs I see her students skate. Now, frankly, since I follow the ladies less and Russian ladies (except for one, now) even less than that, I can’t say I’ve seen every program her skaters have skated. I base my opinions only and solely on that.

    So if I see a comment, oh you just hate Eteri (no, I don’t care enough about her to hate her) oh you’re just jealous (Russian ladies can win every medal or no medal, I don’t care. I’m not invested in the ladies. I’m invested in Jason’s BFFs. Of course that’s the whole skating world) or you don’t criticize anyone else this way (of course I do, read my posts ), it well, I hate to say this, it bores me. I skip over it, because it has no bearing on my opinions.

    Now, if a poster were to say, well this quote was taken out of context, or that was an aberration and here’s why, that is a post I can engage. But not “oh you just don’t like her.” Not true

    As for Daniil, that again is based on what I see. I prize a beautiful spiral, men’s and ladies, a long held Ina Bauer, choreo like in Jason’s “Love is a B****” that creates a moment and holds it. I find that just as athletic and sporting as multiple moves and jumps. Another poster may not. That’s cool But it has nothing to do with Eteri. Or nationality. there are European and at least one Russian choreographer whose style I like, and whose programs I like watching.

    So I hope we can talk about where we really disagree, and not make assumptions. In my opinion, they don’t help.

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    Quote Originally Posted by el henry View Post
    But it has nothing to do with Eteri.
    Your whole post has very little/nothing to do with Eteri (and with the topic of the thread).

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    Quote Originally Posted by flanker View Post
    Your whole post has very little/nothing to do with Eteri (and with the topic of the thread).
    I was responding to comments in @Orlov’s and @Georgya’s posts. I find it very difficult to cut and paste on my iPad (as in I don’t know how) and I took the time for the explanation hoping the comments might help, both here and when they pop up in other threads.

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    Quote Originally Posted by el henry View Post
    I will try to explain, and hope that it sheds more light than heat.

    I do not know who “foreigners” are? I very much doubt that all “foreigners” feel the same way about anything, any more than all Russians or Europeans feel the same way about everything. Even on this board, there are persons who do not identify as Russian who think Eteri is the greatest coach ever. Good for them

    I am American. I do not know any American who thinks all Russian coaches teach the same. I do not think Eteri coaches in the same way as Mishin. Now, I don’t spend my life thinking about Eteri or following her, so maybe she does teach the same way as Mishin (the only other Russian coach who I could pick out of a lineup), but I certainly make no such assumptions. Nor does anyone else.

    If I criticize Eteri, it is based on 1) interviews her students or former students have given and 2) the programs I see her students skate. Now, frankly, since I follow the ladies less and Russian ladies (except for one, now) even less than that, I can’t say I’ve seen every program her skaters have skated. I base my opinions only and solely on that.

    So if I see a comment, oh you just hate Eteri (no, I don’t care enough about her to hate her) oh you’re just jealous (Russian ladies can win every medal or no medal, I don’t care. I’m not invested in the ladies. I’m invested in Jason’s BFFs. Of course that’s the whole skating world) or you don’t criticize anyone else this way (of course I do, read my posts ), it well, I hate to say this, it bores me. I skip over it, because it has no bearing on my opinions.

    Now, if a poster were to say, well this quote was taken out of context, or that was an aberration and here’s why, that is a post I can engage. But not “oh you just don’t like her.” Not true

    As for Daniil, that again is based on what I see. I prize a beautiful spiral, men’s and ladies, a long held Ina Bauer, choreo like in Jason’s “Love is a B****” that creates a moment and holds it. I find that just as athletic and sporting as multiple moves and jumps. Another poster may not. That’s cool But it has nothing to do with Eteri. Or nationality. there are European and at least one Russian choreographer whose style I like, and whose programs I like watching.

    So I hope we can talk about where we really disagree, and not make assumptions. In my opinion, they don’t help.
    "I chased you for three days to say how little I care for you!"

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    Fangirl of men’s spirals and split jumps el henry's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dante View Post
    "I chased you for three days to say how little I care for you!"
    I don’t understand I tried in good faith to respond to questions.

    Is there something you disagree with?

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    Interesting thread.

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    a dark lord dante's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by el henry View Post
    I don’t understand I tried in good faith to respond to questions.
    You wrote quite a long post for someone who doesn't care for Eteri or the ladies.

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    Fangirl of men’s spirals and split jumps el henry's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dante View Post
    You wrote quite a long post for someone who doesn't care for Eteri or the ladies.
    But I explained why I took the time to write the post, even though I’m not a big follower. (You want to see long posts, go the US men’s thread or the Jason or Donovan Fan Fest )

    I don’t see any reason I have given you to doubt my explanation, if that is what you are trying to do certainly the length alone is no reason to doubt it.

    But either it is accepted in the spirit in which it was written, or not. Peace

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    Quote Originally Posted by el henry View Post
    If I criticize Eteri, it is based on 1) interviews her students or former students have given and 2) the programs I see her students skate. Now, frankly, since I follow the ladies less and Russian ladies (except for one, now) even less than that, I can’t say I’ve seen every program her skaters have skated. I base my opinions only and solely on that.
    Ma'am, I didn't talk about criticism or opinion about programs style. I talked about the fact that I often see the expression "Eteri methods". Maybe, of course, I’m wrong, but I believe that this is about her coaching methods, I mean I always perceived it as "Еteri [coaching] methods" - that she is superstrict, etc. And this surprised me, because her coaching behavior is quite typical in our country. I spoke only about this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by el henry View Post
    I don’t understand I tried in good faith to respond to questions.

    Is there something you disagree with?
    Dante talked about what you pretty often write something like that

    Now, I don’t spend my life thinking about Eteri or following her
    but at the same time write large detailed texts If you really didn’t care (sorry - "don't spend life"), you wouldn’t even go into this thread, and if you would, you would quickly scroll, yawn and go out.

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    Fangirl of men’s spirals and split jumps el henry's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Orlov View Post
    Ma'am, I didn't talk about criticism or opinion about programs style. I talked about the fact that I often see the expression "Eteri methods". Maybe, of course, I’m wrong, but I believe that this is about her coaching methods, I mean I always perceived it as "Еteri [coaching] methods" - that she is superstrict, etc. And this surprised me, because her coaching behavior is quite typical in our country. I spoke only about this.
    Then if I misunderstood, I apologize, and I will try to rephrase.

    If I talk about Eteri coaching, it is based only on interviews or quotes I have read from her students about coaching. (I am vague because I was trying to speak theoretically and not practically). So I would say “I disagree with X decision about nutrition/training/whatever” based on the fact that I read “Y statement” from one of her skaters. If I referred to “Eteri methods”, I would be referring to specific actions. I don’t know that I’ve ever used that phrase, and I would ask others to be more specific, because I don’t know what it means

    I would not characterize an entire coaching style as “strict” or not. I wouldn’t know if those methods were common in Russia or not.So I wouldn’t come to a conclusion, myself, about a country or a style. It would be for others to say that, but I wouldn’t find it helpful, because personally I would not feel comfortable making generalizations.

    I hope this is more helpful.

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    Fangirl of men’s spirals and split jumps el henry's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Orlov View Post
    Dante talked about what you pretty often write something like that



    but at the same time write large detailed texts If you really didn’t care (sorry - "don't spend life"), you wouldn’t even go into this thread, and if you would, you would quickly scroll, yawn and go out.
    I’m sorry, I posted my other answer before I saw this.

    I disagree, because I think I know myself better than almost anyone on this Board and why would I mistate my motivations? But it’s certainly not worth any more pixels and brainpower to discuss. Peace to you too

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