Why are "run-throughs" bad? | Golden Skate

Why are "run-throughs" bad?

Greengemmonster

On the Ice
Joined
Oct 22, 2019
So often I read about people complaining that certain skaters from a certain school have to do many run throughs and that it's punishing on their bodies etc

Now bear with me because I have close to zero realistic skating knowledge.

Is that true?

If you don't do a run through how will you remember your routine or know whether you can do with full thing with all the jumps?

I've always thought it was fairly rational to just skate your entire routine like you would in competition.

What do you do (as in how do you train) if you don't do run throughs?

Random questions:

How long do you stop jumping before you lose a jump?

Say I can do a 3A (hehe in my dreams). Do I need to jump it everyday? If I don't jump it for a week or month do I have no 3A? As in if I stopped for a month and then tried to do a 3A, would I crash?

Why do people say that the team event tires the skater out? Isn't that performance just like a run through before the individual event? Like a trial test? Wouldn't you be practicing anyway even if you didn't do the team event so why would you be more tired?

Anyways please don't take offense! These are things I genuinely want to know and these questions have been swimming around in my head for a while!!!!
 

macy

Record Breaker
Joined
Nov 12, 2011
as for your first question, i guess it depends if you are referring to at competition practice ice or normal daily training. at practice ice many skaters won't do a full runthrough to conserve energy for the competition.

i think the reason Eteri's girls are so good and consistent is because of how many runthroughs they do everyday. i'd imagine they do a lot of jump consistency drills too. skating is all about consistency and muscle memory and the only way you're going to be able to perform when the pressure is on is muscle memory. you go on auto pilot, your body just knows what to do. a lot of times even when her skaters are off, they're still not falling or making major mistakes. an "off" performance to them might look like an amazing one to us. and it's not really a matter of remembering your program, but training your jumps in the program and building stamina. it's a completely different thing than doing jumps by themselves in practice. IMO if you're not pushing the full runthroughs in practice everyday you're setting yourself up for failure in competition.

to answer your other questions, i'd say it depends on a lot of factors on how long it takes to lose a jump. did they completely stop skating? did they completely stop exercising/any sort of physical activity? did they still maintain some sort of fitness level or keep skating without doing that jump (and doing other jumps?) i have never tried a triple axel in my life so i am speaking more generally, but if you want to keep doing that jump in your sleep then after you gain consistency with that jump, you need to be doing several everyday. as i said earlier, skating is all about muscle memory. if you don't do any for a week, you're gonna feel it when you go try one. your body won't be as automatic and it might take a day or two. if you don't do any for a month it's gonna take longer. if you stop skating for a month or two, gain weight and lose shape it's gonna be really damn hard to get it back. there are a lot of factors that go into that alone- take Gracie Gold as an example. the amount of work she has done to even get back to the level she is at today is insurmountable and goes to show just how difficult skating is and the incredible high level of fitness these athletes have.

obviously i have never been an olympic athlete, but i can relate to how tiring and mentally exhausting competing is, and that is why some people think the team event can tire an athlete out. competing in general is 90% mental (really the entire sport is). i couldn't even imagine what competing at the olympics feels like in this regard. this is evident in gymnastics too, i don't know how many times i've read from an olympic gymnast just how tired they were by the end of the competition. it's another thing about conserving energy for when it matters, but this depends on the athlete too. i think it could benefit some and be detrimental to others. See Julia Lipnitskaya in Sochi.

hope that helps!
 
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Greengemmonster

On the Ice
Joined
Oct 22, 2019
Thanks for that @macy

I feel a bit sheepish about the Olympics team question! 😅 What you said makes perfect sense. For some reason I imagined they'd just stroll out and skate it like a run through and voila.

Kudos to them that they are able to make us (well people like me) forget how hard and punishing it is because their skating is so beautiful!!!
 

cheerknithanson

Record Breaker
Joined
Jul 13, 2014
Country
United-States
I did cheerleading for 8 school years, and let me tell you, we kind of dreaded full run throughs. But they were extremely necessary to make sure we could get the stunts to hit during a full routine to the music.
 

Bluediamonds09

Medalist
Joined
Sep 8, 2016
Good idea for a thread!

My question: how can u tell if one ice dance team is better than another? What is "they're good in hold" ? Which lifts get more points and why? About twizzles, some teams do 3 sets of turns and some only 2, why?
 

el henry

Fangirl of men’s spirals and split jumps
Record Breaker
Joined
Mar 3, 2014
Country
United-States
I'm a little puzzled. I don't think anyone thinks run-throughs are bad? I think it is the amount of time that one spends on the ice, whether in run throughs or anything else, that might be questioned in terms of skaters health.

At TCC, the emphasis is on clean run throughs. Jason has said that if a skater completes a clean run-through, the coaches ring a bell, and that the skaters (or at least Jason) want to hear that bell. In doing a little research for your question. I found these interviews with Brian, which I had never read and learned new info. (2016)


“I expect all our skaters who are training for competitions to be ready and prepared to do run-throughs, and I want those run-throughs to be clean,” Orser said.

His students are also required to participate in mock competitions that take place before live audiences at various rinks around Toronto. “As we get closer to competitions, we hold simulations. Before we leave for them, we do a draw. We have judges and technical specialists and a 6-minute warm-up. After the events, their programs are critiqued, and we learn what will make things better,” Orser explained.


And before comps Javi liked to suck on lemon slices🍋

Brian on the psychology of run-throughs (make the skater think "own" the idea, rather than just expecting them to obey) (2020 translated from Russian)


Well, ok, we are telling them and then question arises: should I do a run-through today? And some guys will think and agree: yes, let’s do a full run-through. Of course, no one likes to do this – it’s hard. It’s like a marathon – well, let’s run our marathon today?

As a coach, of course, I understand that they need to do a run-through. I can go the simple way and say: today you are doing a run-through of the program. But I can make them think that this is their decision. They must do this – not because I forced them, but because they understand this will make them stronger. And if they do it today, then in three weeks their skating will become better – all because of the right choice.


These articles were so interesting; I'm glad you asked the question. :)
 

lariko

Medalist
Joined
Jan 31, 2019
Country
Canada
So often I read about people complaining that certain skaters from a certain school have to do many run throughs and that it's punishing on their bodies etc

Now bear with me because I have close to zero realistic skating knowledge.

Is that true?

If you don't do a run through how will you remember your routine or know whether you can do with full thing with all the jumps?

I've always thought it was fairly rational to just skate your entire routine like you would in competition.

What do you do (as in how do you train) if you don't do run throughs?

Random questions:

How long do you stop jumping before you lose a jump?

Say I can do a 3A (hehe in my dreams). Do I need to jump it everyday? If I don't jump it for a week or month do I have no 3A? As in if I stopped for a month and then tried to do a 3A, would I crash?

Why do people say that the team event tires the skater out? Isn't that performance just like a run through before the individual event? Like a trial test? Wouldn't you be practicing anyway even if you didn't do the team event so why would you be more tired?

Anyways please don't take offense! These are things I genuinely want to know and these questions have been swimming around in my head for a while!!!!
From I was taught years and years ago when I took Fitness Theory, the principle of fitness specificity applies to all sports. In short, you get good at what you practice. You don’t get good at swimming 100 m by running 10K. There are benefits to cross-training, but the emphasis gotta be on the main thing. So, I assume run-throughs should be good for business on presenting a routine, minus recovery, overtraining and injury potential. From the interviews I read with different skaters, they have pretty customized training depending on how/where they are.
 

kolyadafan2002

Fan of Kolyada
Final Flight
Joined
Jun 6, 2019
As Part of practice, doing run-throughs every day (full programs or sections depending on training plan) is always good.
Just don't go overboard (5 run-throughs in a day). If you can even run a semi-decent program after 5 run-throughs, your program is too simple.

I personally like the idea of every day doing 1 short, and 1 free program. (except for 1 day off training, and 1 technical day where you don't do run-throughs).
Then every other week I'd do back to back run-throughs (2 free program back to back) for fitness.
More than that is unnecessary, and in my opinion is a waste of time/leads to injury.

most important thing is to run-through with mistakes. Don't stop after a mistake. with this, running through is pointless.
 

saturdaysun

On the Ice
Joined
Mar 13, 2018
That's a good question about run-throughs and I find it puzzling too. I remember watching this Medvedeva interview (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SAtSIB9k2HQ) and she said some skaters who train elsewhere only did one run-through of their free program a week while under Eteri they did four... Both those numbers seemed low to me, I also wondered why you wouldn't do run-throughs every day.
 

Flying Feijoa

On the Ice
Joined
Sep 22, 2019
Country
New-Zealand
Good idea for a thread!

My question: how can u tell if one ice dance team is better than another? What is "they're good in hold" ? Which lifts get more points and why? About twizzles, some teams do 3 sets of turns and some only 2, why?
Not an expert on ice dance (I just do the pattern dance tests), but I think 'good in hold' means the two skaters are comfortable skating in/transitioning between close holds: waltz, foxtrot, Kilian positions. If you do it properly the skaters' bodies should be well-aligned and close together, but not look like they're grabbing on for dear life. It's a sort of foundational skill, and really important in pattern dances (which is how the sport began) although nowadays especially in the FD, many teams seem to spend a lot of time in open hold since it's a lot easier to skate around with someone when you're just holding their hand/shoulder.

I'm not as familiar with element rules though (lift, twizzles). I think it really depends on what's listed as a feature and what difficulty levels they're going for.
 

sheetz

Record Breaker
Joined
Jan 10, 2015
That's a good question about run-throughs and I find it puzzling too. I remember watching this Medvedeva interview (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SAtSIB9k2HQ) and she said some skaters who train elsewhere only did one run-through of their free program a week while under Eteri they did four... Both those numbers seemed low to me, I also wondered why you wouldn't do run-throughs every day.
I'm guessing she means a full run thru at peak exertion. Think of a FS runthru as equivalent to running a 1500m race. Nobody does a 1500m race every day because you need time for the body to recover or else you'll get sick and/or injured.
 

NanaPat

Record Breaker
Joined
Oct 25, 2014
Country
Canada
I'm not as familiar with element rules though (lift, twizzles). I think it really depends on what's listed as a feature and what difficulty levels they're going for.
Based on what I've heard commentators say, I believe the third twizzle in the twizzle element is optional, but if it's done (well) it ups the level by 1. One of the GP commentators said that one skater only got a level 3 on the twizzles because his third twizzle was "spinny" so didn't count toward/as a level.

There are enough features that skaters don't need the "third twizzle" feature to get a level 4.
 

Koatterce

On the Ice
Joined
Feb 20, 2018
Country
Canada
Good idea for a thread!

My question: how can u tell if one ice dance team is better than another? What is "they're good in hold" ? Which lifts get more points and why? About twizzles, some teams do 3 sets of turns and some only 2, why?
Skating skills are a huge huge part of ice dance - including speed, edge quality, edge control, and of course doing all the elements well and making them look easy. Step sequences and pattern dances are big elements (unlike the other disciplines). While not an explicit technical requirement, having that sense of where the other person is without needing to look is pretty important and it does contribute to both the technical and performance sides of things. This document has the list of positive (and negative) features for GOE which is also a nice guideline for how good teams are.

Good in hold: Flying Feijoa covered it really nicely - there are a number of different holds in ice dance, so teams should be able to skate in and transition between them comfortably and naturally. They need to skate as one unit - neither partner should be hanging onto the other, they should be consistently close together and in sync/complementing each other (depending what the steps call for).

Lifts: for any levelled element, including lifts, there are set requirements for what must be done to achieve higher levels. They can be found in this document here. For lifts specifically, the main level features include things like difficult pose/position, change of pose, entry features, exit features (see the document for specifics of what they are and how they have to be done to count), and there are some features that are specific to the lift type (e.g. more rotations for rotational lifts)

2 vs 3 twizzles: The basic requirement for twizzles is at least 1 rotation in each of the 2 twizzles. There are a number of requirements to get higher levels, but the relevant one here is to do additional features. For level 4, which basically every elite team is going for, they must do "at least 4 different additional features from 3 different groups". The 3 groups of additional features have 4-5 options each. One of the options in group C is "both partners perform a third Twizzle of at least 3 rotations, performed correctly, started with different entry edge from the first two Twizzles, and preceded by a maximum of one step for Set of Sequential Twizzles and for Set of Synchronized Twizzles" - so the teams you see doing 3 sets are going for this feature. But since for twizzles, there are many combinations of features that can get level 4 (even when accounting for building in redundancies), not every team will choose to do the 3rd set as one of their features.
 

Greengemmonster

On the Ice
Joined
Oct 22, 2019
What are you all talking about when you talk about edge?

I understand the flip and lutz edge take off! I can tell what's an inside and outside edge. I mean I don't have hawk eyes but I know in theory what you're talking about.

But sometimes people say Zzz doesn't have deep edges, what does that mean?
 

Flying Feijoa

On the Ice
Joined
Sep 22, 2019
Country
New-Zealand
What are you all talking about when you talk about edge?

I understand the flip and lutz edge take off! I can tell what's an inside and outside edge. I mean I don't have hawk eyes but I know in theory what you're talking about.

But sometimes people say Zzz doesn't have deep edges, what does that mean?
In that context it mean that when they're generally skating around/doing steps, the tracks made by the blade on the ice are not as curvy and their blade (and thus skating leg and body) doesn't lean to the side as much.
Obviously 'deep' is a subjective definition; it's easier to compare depth of edge when you see people doing the same or similar moves.
That's why the compulsory dance was such a useful event to rank skaters.

For instance here's Virtue/Moir doing the Argentine Tango:

And here is a junior ice dance team I picked at random (nothing personal, never seen them before!) from the 2018 JGP season, doing the same Argentine Tango pattern within their rhythm dance: https://youtu.be/FoH0J6-7ZJ4?list=PLntGO7HXqCfUUEg_FvY8XOc7m1-gv_ubD&t=134

You can see how V/M have a more 'lobey' pattern and their blades lean more to the side. Also they have lots of kneebend and speed, which tend to go together with deep edges.
 

eppen

Medalist
Joined
Mar 28, 2006
Country
Spain
I have gotten the impression that full runthroughs are also important for building stamina - you gotta be able to skate the free program particularly from start to finish with enough energy to do the second jumping passes and whatever is left at the end of the program. The more you do them, the easier (in theory?) it should get to do the whole 4 min (or 4 min 30 s in the past).

I remember also there being talk about Russian men in the past doing very few of them. They might do partial RTs, but hardly ever a full one. And for example, Javi trained with Morozov until the summer of 2011 and apparently did just that. When he went to Orser, he had to get used to doing lots of full RTs which he had never done previously (and was reportedly not very happy about it). Surely this has changed for a lot of skaters these days, but among the Russians, the Rukavichin camp boys do have visible stamina problems in their frees.

E
 

Greengemmonster

On the Ice
Joined
Oct 22, 2019
In that context it mean that when they're generally skating around/doing steps, the tracks made by the blade on the ice are not as curvy and their blade (and thus skating leg and body) doesn't lean to the side as much.
Obviously 'deep' is a subjective definition; it's easier to compare depth of edge when you see people doing the same or similar moves.
That's why the compulsory dance was such a useful event to rank skaters.

For instance here's Virtue/Moir doing the Argentine Tango:

And here is a junior ice dance team I picked at random (nothing personal, never seen them before!) from the 2018 JGP season, doing the same Argentine Tango pattern within their rhythm dance: https://youtu.be/FoH0J6-7ZJ4?list=PLntGO7HXqCfUUEg_FvY8XOc7m1-gv_ubD&t=134

You can see how V/M have a more 'lobey' pattern and their blades lean more to the side. Also they have lots of kneebend and speed, which tend to go together with deep edges.
Thank you so much!!!! It's really good to finally have some idea of what people are on about!!! 😅
 

cto888

Rinkside
Joined
May 11, 2021
Country
Spain
another question: how do people actually distinguish jumps? Is there any trick or its just experience? Unless the skater has a ponytail sometimes i have a difficult time getting the number of rotations, and that's without trying to "guess" which jump it was (except salchows or axels)...
 

GoneWithTheWind

On the Ice
Joined
Dec 7, 2018
Country
United-Kingdom
another question: how do people actually distinguish jumps? Is there any trick or its just experience? Unless the skater has a ponytail sometimes i have a difficult time getting the number of rotations, and that's without trying to "guess" which jump it was (except salchows or axels)...
I had trouble distinguishing jumps when I first became a more dedicated fan; for me it was experience watching to work out the jumps and I'd practise by watching videos with the tech box and trying to call what jump it was before it popped up. I'm getting better, but sometimes the complex entries throw me off.

I found this video really helpful too: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HkcAmGCkjtA
The creator does a good job of explaining the differences between jumps with enough detail to help but not too much to confuse.
 

skatesofgold

On the Ice
Joined
Jan 14, 2014
another question: how do people actually distinguish jumps? Is there any trick or its just experience? Unless the skater has a ponytail sometimes i have a difficult time getting the number of rotations, and that's without trying to "guess" which jump it was (except salchows or axels)...
I learned about the entrances of jumps from a DK book about figure skating. That really helped because I only got up to toe loops when I did figure skating myself. I've tested the other jumps on regular ground.
 
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