Fixing the Canadian Ladies Program

Discussion in 'The Trash Can' started by algonquin, Feb 11, 2012.

  1. algonquin

    algonquin Well-Known Member

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    I am interested to know what FSU posters would do to fix the Canadian Ladies program. Let’s not just focus on the seniors here, what would you do to fix the whole program from the bottom up?
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2012
  2. professordeb

    professordeb Well-Known Member

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    Ship them all to a province other than Quebec once they hit puberty -- maybe even send them out of country to train ;)
  3. Marco

    Marco Missing Ziggy

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    They should ask the Canadian audience to stop giving out standing ovations for crap skating.

    And having Stojko and Robinson as multiple National Champions can't be good for inspiration.
    TheIronLady and (deleted member) like this.
  4. bek

    bek Guest

    I think they should look at what other successful programs are doing and copying what they can. What are the Japanese/Russians doing? What has the US done in the past (although the US could use some updating too).

    This being said I suspect that the Russians/Japanese success has something to do with how popular figure skating is in their perspective countries. However Canada has had no problem being competitive in the other disciplines. Perhaps more competition at the lower levels would be good.

    Also at the national level they can emphasis certain things that they feel needs to be emphasized. For example I know a couple of years ago the Russians introduced more points for 3/3s etc. The Canadians could institute bonuses for attempting all the jumps etc. This being said they obviously want to encourage quality.

    But I definetly think making the coaches should look at how other countries are developing their girls and see about making some changes there. Joannie Rochette's coach though who obviously did a terrific job; should perhaps help as well.
  5. manhn

    manhn Well-Known Member

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    Bear more children (esp. girls). Recruit more people from outside Canada (Get Paulina Whovever--any of the Paulinas!). Bribe Joannie to return to competitive skating.

    Canada's population is A LOT smaller than Japan, Russia and the US. Canada won't have the same depth in one discipline (although dance is strong at the moment) or across all disciplines (although Japan's pairs and ice dance programs are weak).

    I have no idea what Robinson and esp. 3-time World Champion Stokjo has to do with it. Both are skaters who did the best they did with what they had. To me, if I saw that with Canadian ladies and we got the same results, I'd be okay with it.
  6. Canadask8er

    Canadask8er New Member

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    What was with that comment about Stojko and Robinson hahaha Having a role model who won mutliple Olympic medals, World titles, World medals, etc etc etc Yah... thats bad for a youngsters coming up.... And Robinson, going from has-been to top 7 at the Olympics?? Yah that's also bad motivation and no source of inspiration at all.... Seriously ?? LOL

    Skate Canada announced a new competitve skating format for the upcoming years to help with the puberty monster. Apparently the structure for competitve skating is more geared towards success for men... because puberty makes them stronger. And then they also go into dance and pairs because of that fact too. The new format is to help skaters continue throughout the competitve years, so that we don't lose young talent. There are some very talented female skaters in the younger ranks.... however, some of them don't make it to Senior's because of the puberty-monster. Our Junior champ did quite well this year at Nationals. But like has been mentioned above, we don't have as big of a population as other countries, so we have fewer resources to choose from.
  7. ltnskater

    ltnskater New Member

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    More focus on jumps! MUCH more focus on jumps! This is the one thing that is holding Canadian ladies back, and it needs to be consistent jumping as well. Anything that will reward difficult jumps should be implemented, e.g. triple triple combo bonuses, bonuses for two triple lutzes/flips programs, etc.

    The double axel requirement for novice free programs this season is a good start, but there needs to be more.

    I think quality is important, but looking at the state of the Canadian ladies, difficulty and consistency in jumps is what we don't have, and what the Japanese and Russian skaters do have. Quality at this point, should definitely be second to difficulty, because a very nice clean high quality triple lutz double toe is simply not going to cut it internationally when up against a mediocre triple lutz triple toe.

    The other thing that is unfortunate is that even before puberty, we don't have any good Canadian ladies, I don't think we have ever had a "jumping bean" like in the US, Japan, or Russia. So for Canadian ladies, it much less to do with puberty and girls losing jumps, because they simply did not really have any jumps in the first place!

    I remember attending a competition once (summer) a few years back, pre juvenile level, skaters from internationals were able to compete, and Japanese skaters went 1 - 2 finish, doing double axels, and yes this was pre-juvenile.
  8. Alixana

    Alixana recovering Oly-holic

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    Jump-wise, Stojko would be a good model .. he actually rotated and landed his jumps!! ;)
  9. made_in_canada

    made_in_canada INTJ

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    At the pre-novice/novice level there are bonuses for putting in more difficult jumps. I think looking at the Novice and Junior competition from nationals things are looking a lot more positive on the ladies front. Puberty will always take out some girls it's just the way it goes. If you want a successful model, look at what Karen & Jason Mongrain are doing in Kelowna. It's amazing what they've produced/are producing there.
  10. Vagabond

    Vagabond Well-Known Member

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    You just have to persuade the young girls up there in Canada that they don't have to play ice hockey be tough and strong. ;)
  11. Subway

    Subway New Member

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    I agree with the province other than Quebec idea. How can the men's program reliably produce international podium-finishers and the women's program be what it is. I can't believe Phaneuf waited this long to leave Quebec.

    ETA yes, Canada's population is smaller than other major figure skating countries, but then how is it they have such strong men when fewer men pursue figure skating. In Canada many more women figure skate and look. I also agree it's the jumps.
  12. Subway

    Subway New Member

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    double post
  13. victoriaheidi

    victoriaheidi New Member

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    Who wound up getting the Worlds spot? I'm guessing 4CCs wasn't quite as effective as they'd hoped.
  14. elle123

    elle123 New Member

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    It is looking pretty grim for Canadian ladies right now. I only hope Brian is able to work his magic on Cynthia like he did on Javier - but that will obviously take time.
  15. Marco

    Marco Missing Ziggy

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    LOL I guess Skate Canada's attempt to brush off Canadian Nationals short program as a fluke for Phaneuf didn't work.

    And if Phaneuf could do even a 1toe after one of the jumps she landed, she would have beaten Lacoste. Oh well.
  16. euterpe

    euterpe Well-Known Member

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    Javier wasn't yet 20 and was in the early stages of his Senior career when Brian took him on. Cynthia is 24 and has been skating as a senior since 2004, and her skating habits have been engrained in her for a long, long time. Most elite skaters' careers start to wane as they approach 25, and IMO Cynthia's already entered that phase. I doubt Orser can help her.

    As for Lacoste vs Phaneuf, it doesn't matter which one goes to Worlds 2012, as the result will pretty much be the same. Neither one is likely to crack top 10. Since Amelie beat Cynthia at both Nationals and 4CC, Amelie should get the nod.
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2012
  17. Sylvia

    Sylvia Whee, summer club comps!

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  18. Marco

    Marco Missing Ziggy

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    Maybe leaving Phaneuf home is a good thing. Her only one good competition since recovery from injury was 2010 Worlds. Now she can have more time to rework things with Brian (darn that lutz). I suspect most of the work is with her head, not her blade.

    Congrats on Lacoste for making Worlds. If Phaneuf comes back strong next season, Lacoste will pretty much be fighting for her own spot by placing top ten at Worlds.
  19. fan

    fan Active Member

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    in practise, phaneuf lands maybe 1/10 lutzes. not all of her issues are mental - brian will probably rework the lutz technique.
  20. vmfan89

    vmfan89 New Member

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    This. A lot of canadian girls, especially in my community will prefer to play hockey or ringette than to figure skate. This could be problematic in the future is the number of girls entering skating is reduced.
  21. Vagabond

    Vagabond Well-Known Member

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    Thank goodness your boys at least aren't afraid to be considered graceful and artistic if they take up figure skating. ;)
  22. bbkenn

    bbkenn Well-Known Member

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    I agree about Robinson, but Elvis, even if you don't like him, was a very successful skater with multiple Canadian championships, 3 time World champion, 2 time Olympic Silver medalist... So I wouldn't call him a crap skater; that's just nuts.
  23. nadioso

    nadioso Member

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    One huge problem is the competitive structure .

    In mens, pairs and dance summer and fall competitions, all entrants compete in one group.

    In ladies, they are separated into several groups since there are many more entries than the other disciplines.

    The medals are given out for each group. The best skaters never face each other in a final.

    This means that our ladies compete in diluted fields with no incentive to push each other.

    I have seen a "winner" of a junior ladies group at one of the bigger fall competitions ( Octoberfest which is run by Central Ontario section ) land nothing more than a double axel. Even worse the said skater did not even try any triples in the warmup.

    The only ladies competition with event finals ( pre-novice to junior ) is Thornhill.

    Until we have event finals in all competitions at all levels, starting at pre-juvenile; the ladies will not improve. It is important that our best skaters face each other in competition often. Even within a section, often the only time the best skaters in that section face off in competition is at sectionals.

    The juveniles and pre-juveniles do not have a national competition and their highest competition is only sectionals. Considering that a typical summer or fall competition has skaters from multiple sections, having event finals has the potential of creating an even better field than a typical sectionals event.
  24. Marco

    Marco Missing Ziggy

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    How will Stojko's success (solely based on jumps) ever inspire a lady skater to work on style? or spins? or choreography? or expression?
  25. manhn

    manhn Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, because the men after Stojko had no style or spin or choreography.
  26. essence_of_soy

    essence_of_soy Well-Known Member

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  27. Sylvia

    Sylvia Whee, summer club comps!

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  28. ltnskater

    ltnskater New Member

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    O right, I forgot about these bonuses (cause most of my skating friends are either at the junior/senior level, or now quit after competing under rules where there were no bonuses), and yes, that too is a good start. They have just been implemented recently, and hopefully we will see the effects of those rules in the years to come.

    Thank you! Yes! I always suspected it was a combination of both mental and technical issues, confirmed when I saw her in practice last summer briefly... lutzes were not even consistent on practice which first of all, probably means they won't be there in competition, and second of all, does not give her good confidence in the jump.
  29. ltnskater

    ltnskater New Member

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    Ironically, one of my really good friends also won Octoberfest a few years back with only a double axel (two of them), in her group... at the novice level. :D

    And then at the thornhill competition this year... one of my friends placed near the top in the long program doing one triple and two double axels... at the senior level (which by the way has no split groups). :D I was very happy for her though!
  30. Jammers

    Jammers Well-Known Member

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    I think the population thing is a bit that's an excuse. Yes the US has a much bigger population but the whole of Canada is in cold weather country while most of the US is not. Imagine how many great athletes in the US never see an ice rink or play ice sports because they live in the south or other warm weather places. Places like Florida and Texas for instance where so many world class athletes come from. And plus there are so many other sports here that kids want to play. Like football and baseball.
  31. maharbabackward

    maharbabackward New Member

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    Mental toughness seems to be something lacking in most of the ladies. Even Joannie Rochette struggled with this, but was able to finally overcome it the last two seasons. I remember when I heard her mother had passed away and thought "Oh! No" thinking it would be difficult to perform in her country at the olympics with the expectations and now the burden of her mother's death. I'm glad she proved me wrong. Canada's women have been notorious headcases and sometimes they finally make a mark (see: Rochette, Manley) but unfortunately usually go the other way (see: Chounaird, Humphreys, ? Phaneuf). I think this question has been asked so often, it may put more than a lot of expectation to prove the doubters wrong.
  32. berthesghost

    berthesghost Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, because that's the problem with Canadian ladies today, they're just jumping beans with no interest in style. :rolleyes:

    But you're right on about inspiration. It's essential. That's why Sonja Henie, yuna Kim, midori ito, Barbara Ann Scott and shen&zhao never won ogm or worlds.. With no champions to inspire its absolutely impossible to ever succeed. :p
  33. Seerek

    Seerek Well-Known Member

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    is there any evidence to support that perhaps singles isn't necessarily the preferred discipline of the female skaters? We've had ladies who competed in singles with some success at the national level (Cynthia Coull - 2nd (1985), Jaime Sale - 5th (1995), Meagan Duhamel - 4th (2006), Jessica Dube - 6th (2008)) but ultimately opted for pairs over singles (with greater success).
  34. nadioso

    nadioso Member

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    Bonuses have always existed at the novice level and below. The bar for the bonuses was lowered this year.

    Before this season the novices got bonuses for triple loop and harder and pre-novices got bonuses for any triple jump.

    Under the old rules none of the novice ladies ( and none of the pre-novice ladies over the previous 2 seasons ) were collecting bonuses because none of the ladies were attempting the tricks to get bonuses.

    The new rules give bonuses for all triples at novice and double axel or harder at pre-novice.

    As well they get an extra jump pass ( one pass must be double axel or harder in order to use the extra jump pass ).

    The other new rules this year is removing the 0.5 deduction for falls on jumps.

    The only saving grace with the Canadian ladies is that the novices and juniors were at least attempting harder content this year. They are still way behind where they need to be but at least the younger ones have made steps in the right direction.
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2012
  35. sk8girl

    sk8girl Member

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    :rofl::rofl::rofl:
  36. Subway

    Subway New Member

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    Canadian ladies don't need to work on that stuff. They need to work on jumping.
  37. manhn

    manhn Well-Known Member

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    Canada's population is the same as California.

    Florida has a strong figure skating program.
  38. sk8girl

    sk8girl Member

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    True, but my understanding is that in Canada a MUCH higher percentage of the population is enrolled in figure skating compared to the U.S. I heard a few years ago that Skate Canada actually had MORE members than USFS, despite Canada's population being much smaller than the U.S. (I believe that was with ALL members of each federation, including recreational programs like learn to skate, etc., but still.) (Sorry, I can't remember exactly where I heard that, but I do remember it being a reliable source that I took seriously...) I have no idea if that's still true or not and I have no idea what the numbers are for competitive programs in each country.

    I think a big part of it is that in Canada almost every little town has an arena and a skating club. So, the vast majority of the Canadian population lives close to an arena and a skating program and a large percentage of Canadians end up enrolled in a Skate Canada program at some point, even if it's only for a year of learn to skate or something. (For example, I grew up in a town of 6000 and they had an arena and a Skate Canada skating club. The neighbouring town of 1500 people (only 8 km away) had their own arena and skating club, as did at least 5 other small to medium-sized towns within a half hour drive.) I have the impression that in a lot of areas of the U.S. this isn't true and the average person wouldn't necessarily have easy access to an arena and a skating club offering lessons (unless they live in a big city or an area where skating is very popular). For example, when I've travelled to Florida and looked for places to skate, I found that I pretty much had to drive to one of the major cities to skate -- there were no rinks in the smaller towns that I was visiting.

    Also, in the U.S., I think there are a lot more competing sports that are very popular, like basketball, football, baseball, etc. (all of which are less popular in Canada, I think). In Canada, hockey is huge and figure skating is also popular, so there is a lot of ice available and a lot of opportunity to learn to skate. That's obviously not to say that everyone who learns to skate will stick with it and go into either hockey or figure skating, but the point is that the pool of people that Skate Canada is drawing from isn't necessarily THAT much smaller than the pool that USFS is drawing from. (Definitely not as small as you'd think based on population, anyway.)
  39. Jammers

    Jammers Well-Known Member

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    Thank you sk8girl you made my point much better then i did. lol
  40. Vash01

    Vash01 Well-Known Member

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    I have always wondered by Canada has so many successful male skaters, but very few ladies in the singles (Liz Manley, Joannie R. are just exceptions, IMO). May be the most talented ladies go to pairs or ice dance, like the USSR in the past? Maybe Canadian fed should tap youngters (7-8 years old) with great jumping ability and veer them toward singles. That won't fix the problem in the near future though.