Competition Schedule and Grouping

Discussion in 'Moves In The Field' started by babbyrabbit, Jun 18, 2014.

  1. babbyrabbit

    babbyrabbit New Member

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    Is there a set protocol for scheduling a competition and order. As well is there set guidelines for how groups are separated?
  2. Skittl1321

    Skittl1321 Well-Known Member

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    In what country? If US, USFS has a PDF document about hosting non qual competitions. I'm sure ISI does too. There are rules about warm up lengths, time between warm ups, what levels can share the ice, max number of skaters on ice.

    There are not rules like "seniors must skate mid day"
  3. zaphyre14

    zaphyre14 Well-Known Member

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    In most US non-qualifying competitions, groups are split by level and then usually (but not always) by age. Basic Skills competitions generally allow no more than four skaters per group and then are split by age. If there is a wide age gap between skaters in the same level - Basic 1 has two skaters age 4 and age 8, for example, they may be split into two events with only one skater in each - or not. Generally those things are left up to the referee to decide. The referee (not the club) also sets the schedule, based on numbers of skaters, number of events and the levels of available judges. Which is why calling the club BEFORE the entry deadline to ask what day and time your skater will compete is a waste of time.
    Sylvia and (deleted member) like this.
  4. Clarice

    Clarice Active Member

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    What zaphyre said. All those decisions belong to the referee in the end.
  5. babbyrabbit

    babbyrabbit New Member

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    I thought it seemed in the past pre juv and under they were grouped by age. But it looked like to me at a recent competition the IJS kids were grouped by score. Some groups had really low scores and were comparable and the other group all very high and comparable. So I was just curious.
  6. gkelly

    gkelly Well-Known Member

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    You're talking about their scores at this competition? You think whoever split the groups predicted which skaters would earn high scores and which would earn low scores and divided them accordingly, and then they lived up to that prediction?

    There are two possible explanations that don't require that kind of prejudging:

    1) The groups were split by age. The younger skaters at these levels tend to be more talented and therefore earned higher scores; the older ones were more average or below-average for this test level and therefore earned lower scores.

    2) The groups were split randomly and the quality of skating was comparable across both groups. However, it just so happened that the technical panel on one group was much stricter about awarding levels and calling jump errors, and the other panel was more lenient, and/or the judges on the first panel were more generous with GOEs and PCS, and the judges on the second panel tended to score more harshly across the board.

    That's why there are always cautions that you can't compare scores directly from one event to another -- even two groups of the same level at the same competition, if the panels of officials are not the same for both groups.
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2014
  7. Skittl1321

    Skittl1321 Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, they weren't grouped by score potential. In many cases, the referee isn't local and won't even know who the skaters are when the schedule is made.
  8. babbyrabbit

    babbyrabbit New Member

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    Thank you all for the responses! I will share these findings with the other moms who were inquiring as well!
  9. Sylvia

    Sylvia Whee, summer club comps!

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    Good question, babbyrabbit - thanks to zaphyre for explaining and to gkelly for her logical post.

    There IS a documented procedure for seeding and group division at U.S. qualifying competitions -- see Rule 2460 and following (starting on page 112 of the USFS 2013-14 rule book): http://www.usfsa.org/content/2013-14 Rulebook For Printer 10-31-13.pdf
  10. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Well-Known Member

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    Even though I shouldn't be, I am sometimes surprised by some of the things parents look at when it comes to results and then they make assumptions based on them. I have constantly had to clarify these sorts of things at our rink.
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  11. littlerain

    littlerain New Member

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    I've read about competitions that split based on axel vs no axel, so that may have happened as well?
  12. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Well-Known Member

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    We get parents complain how unfair it is that their little darlings who don't have an axel have to compete against kids who do at certain levels. If they have done the test and passed, then that is what division they compete in, regardless of what elements they can do.

    Whatever way you split up divisions, create groups, age of skaters, etc the one thing I have learnt over the years that no matter what you do someone is going to complain. We get it with everyone from skaters to parents to the adults. You just have to nod your head politely but then do what you have to do. Life aint' fair baby.
  13. zaphyre14

    zaphyre14 Well-Known Member

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    One more point: generally the referee only get the number of skaters in each level: 52 Pre-Pre, 38Pre Juv, 27 Juv, 22 Int, etc. So he/she has no clue who the skaters are or what their previous scores might have been. The only person who would know the names at the time of the groupings would be the accountant who builds the events for the computer. And believe, me, with all the paperwork that the accountants do to set up for a competition, the last thing they're thinking about is the scoring potentials of the skaters!

    Oh, and one more thing: except in competitions where the starting order is determined by an Open Draw (the referee gathers the skaters to pull a numbered chip out of a bag), the starting orders are determined by the accountant who simply clicks a button in the program labelled RANDOM and the program shuffles the skaters around. No human conspiracies involved. So if Suzy ended up skating first three times in a row, well, they don't call it the luck of the draw for nothing.
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2014
  14. Skittl1321

    Skittl1321 Well-Known Member

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    That is usually based on the event you enter though; not a grouping within the event. (Because the referee/accountant aren't going to know who has an axel.)
  15. ioana

    ioana Well-Known Member

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    I'd say that depends on the event. Last year's adult silver category at the Cranberry Open had two levels for Adult Silver -axel and no axel, presumably based on whether or not the competitors wanted to try one in their program or not.
  16. gkelly

    gkelly Well-Known Member

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    Yes, but they registered for separate events -- either Silver w/ Axel or Silver No Axel. They didn't all register for the same Silver event and let the referee/accountant split it by guessing which ones were going to try axels.
  17. Skittl1321

    Skittl1321 Well-Known Member

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    Yep, that is what I was trying to say.
  18. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Well-Known Member

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    You could go by the PPC to determine who is going to do an axel in the program.
  19. gkelly

    gkelly Well-Known Member

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    The US doesn't use IJS at prepreliminary, preliminary, or adult silver levels, so there would be no planned program content sheets for the levels that might offer with- and without-axel events.
  20. Skittl1321

    Skittl1321 Well-Known Member

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    Even if they did- I really doubt the accountant would want to bother with that when there is that nice 'random' button available.
  21. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Well-Known Member

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    If adult silver is a competitive division at Obersdorf, why wouldn't the US use IJS for that level? It is the same set up as the rest of the adult events. Or is this a different adult silver?

    Just a question because it sounds like things are done differently in the US to here. Why does the referee set up the events in the US? Here we have a competition convenor to do that stuff. The referee basically turns up on the day (like the judges) and does the job of a referee.
  22. jenlyon60

    jenlyon60 Member

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    Currently for Adults, IJS is generally only be used at the Adult Gold and higher levels. For "standard track", IJS is generally only used at Juvenile through Senior, although it may be used at the lower levels (Basic Skills through Pre-Juvenile). However, I have heard that there are several competitions on the West Coast that regularly use IJS at the lower levels for at least some of the events. Otherwise, events at the pre-juvenile and below levels, and adult Silver and below levels are judged using the 6.0 scoring system. I haven't worked with Synchro competitions, so I don't know the gory details of which Synchro levels are IJS and which are 6.0.

    As far as event organization/set-up, at least in the middle Atlantic portion of the USA, most non-qualifying competitions will be organized by a club (or possibly a couple clubs working together). The club will have one or more individuals serving as the "Local Organizing Committee" or competition chairperson. Generally the competition chair works with the club to procure the ice, invites the officials, authors the announcement and submits it for sanctioning (approval by US Figure Skating), and often also serves as the registration POC. Many non-qualifying competitions now use some sort of online registration which has streamlined things a lot for the competition chair and/or registration POC. Normally the competition chair will work with the chief referee to ensure sufficient officials with the appropriate appointments have been invited.

    Once registration has closed, the competition chair typically provides a list of events and number of entries to the chief referee, along with the number of hours of ice coverage available and the hours of coverage. The LOC also provides the chief accountant a list of skaters with club names by event and group assignment if necessary. If one or more events within the competition are large enough to need to be split into multiple groups, sometimes the chief referee will do this, sometimes the chief referee will ask the LOC to do this, and sometimes the accountant gets asked to do it. In my experience as an LOC, chief referee for basic skills competitions and as an accountant, I've seen all 3. The chief referee then builds the schedule and assigns the judges and the chief accountant builds the databases in the appropriate scoring systems, based on the information received from the LOC and the chief referee.

    This is just a brief summary, and the specifics may vary somewhat for different clubs/competitions/areas of the USA. Also the flow of some of these items is different for Qualifying competitions.

    FWIW, there were approximately 350 non-qualifying competitions held in the US last year (non-qualifying competitions sanctioned through the competitions committee; I do not believe that this number includes Basic Skills competitions, which go through a different approval process.
  23. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for that information. That is interesting because here the referee has no involvement until the day of the event. Everything is done by the LOC and the Competition Convenor works out the divisions which are usually done by age, not jumping ability (axel/no axel).

    We use IJS for all divisions from Preliminary upwards (done their first Ice Skating Australia test). And all adult divisions use it too.

    Recently I trialled using IJS for the Aussie Skate (Learn to Skate program) levels here, just using components. The system is quite flexible so we had components for Skating Skills, Elements and Presentation and used from 0.25 (Poor) to 5.00 (Excellent). The Skating Skills ended up being the tie breaker in case of a draw because we consider at that level that is probably the most important thing about developing skaters. It was only a small event so we just did the data entry manually instead of setting up the full system. Deductions included 0.5 for a fall and 0.5 for an element from a higher level (illegal element). I was doing TC/TS and data entry for the other events (jack of all trades) so I kept an eye out for the falls and elements for those levels. It was quite an interesting exercise from my POV.

    If you are interested here is a copy of one of the protocols from the Aussie Skate event. At the end of the day it pretty much came out as it would have if were judging 6.0.

    http://results.iceskatingvictoria.org.au/2014/06/2014-06-08/AussieSkate-Freeskate2_FS_Scores.pdf

    My next project is to set up the category for Aussie Skate into the ISUCalc program.

    If anyone is interested in this please send me your email address via PM.
  24. misskarne

    misskarne Spirit. Focus. Ability. Tenacity. Aussie Grit.

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    Oh, that's quite interesting, Aussie Willy. I know for Artistic comps they use the PCS side of IJS, but I hadn't heard of trying to use it for the Aussie Skate levels.
  25. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Well-Known Member

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    It is basically just a judging system. They have talked about at ISA level for a couple of years, although when everyone talks about using IJS they focus on it must be about entering the elements. You can get a result on the components, like you do with artistic. What I used I actually came up with a few years ago but no-one was interested. My "campaign" is to basically filter what I did to people and they will spread the information by word of mouth.