Pairs/Dance splits & partner search 2013 thread (all countries)

Discussion in 'Great Skate Debate' started by Sylvia, Feb 1, 2013.

  1. La La Candy

    La La Candy New Member

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    Interesting. When was this announced? It puts a new spin on things...are the ISU rules followed domestically or does this only apply to international competitors?
     
  2. Sylvia

    Sylvia On to GP & U.S. Sectionals!

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    See ISU Rule 108 (Age limits effective July 1st, 2014) that was passed at the ISU Congress in June 2012 - pages 103 ff.: http://www.isu.org/vsite/vfile/page/fileurl/0,11040,4844-206227-223450-177140-0-file,00.pdf

    USFS has no minimum or maximum age limits for their Novice, Junior, and Senior levels domestically. Does this apply to Skate Canada as well?
     
  3. Ziggy

    Ziggy Well-Known Member

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    I believe so.

    Because it makes so much sense to take spots away from teams, which are actually age-eligible... :shuffle:
     
  4. Sylvia

    Sylvia On to GP & U.S. Sectionals!

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    IMO, it's more about a flawed or outdated Nationals qualification system in the U.S. than a pairs age-eligibility issue.
     
  5. nikjil

    nikjil Active Member

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    The Nationals qualifications system really needs to change. It makes me nuts when I see 21-year-olds competing against the kids in novice.
     
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  6. Skittl1321

    Skittl1321 Well-Known Member

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    If it wasn't for the 21 year olds, many of the girls would never get to skate pairs at all. That experience helps develop them for later in their careers.
     
  7. gkelly

    gkelly Well-Known Member

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    So what do you envision as a better system?

    Is the goal to allow only teams who have the potential for senior success with their current partners to compete at all, and anyone else who might be interested in learning pair skating is out of luck?

    Should teams with mismatched ages or skill levels, or teams who are currently too young or too old to compete at their current skill level, allowed to compete in some other events along the way, but not allowed to qualify for nationals?

    I don't understand this thinking. There are few enough pairs in the world, and even within the US. It helps the field as a whole if there are more teams competing. If only ideal teams are allowed to compete, they will often have no one to compete against. Does it really help their development if the size of the field and the size of the country can sustain only one or two pairs competitions a year?

    Plus there could be a number teams that are not ideal now but who will become better matched as they both mature. Or who will each find more appropriate partners after they've had an opportunity to get experience skating pairs. Or only one of whom will go on to success with a more appropriate partner after having learned the basics with a less-ideal partner.

    Without those opportunities, how many of those would-be pair skaters would just give up on the dream of skating pairs and stick to singles, or quit skating entirely and find some other activity that actually lets them participate?

    Exactly.
     
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  8. Sylvia

    Sylvia On to GP & U.S. Sectionals!

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    I agree with gkelly and Skittl1321's points. It's NOT about age.

    Re-posting my reply in the U.S. Nationals Novice Pairs thread in Kiss and Cry to clarify what I meant re. the (IMO) "flawed or outdated Nationals qualification system":
    So, it's logical to say that Egbers/Simon (and possibly other pairs) should have "section-hopped" from the deeper, more competitive Midwestern section, but why should ANY teams (pair or dance) be forced to section-hop, probably at greater expense, in order to have a better shot at qualifying for Nationals? That's the inevitable result of the current qualification system and, IMO, needs to be changed.

    P.S. I apologize to those of you who are opening this thread with bated breath to see which team(s) are the latest to have split.

    ETA: Stacey Siddon, 18, and Jared Weiss, 20 (12th in Junior Dance at 2013 U.S. Nationals) are both listed on IPS as of today. Weiss lists himself as 6'6" / 198 cm tall!
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2013
  9. Dance truth

    Dance truth New Member

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    Good point
     
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  10. Debbie S

    Debbie S Well-Known Member

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    I've seen him in person and yes, he is very tall. :) But I imagine there are plenty of girls out there who would like to compete in dance but have been told they are too tall for a partner, so he shouldn't have a problem finding prospective partners.

    I noticed Allison Timlen, who competed at Nationals in Novice (2010) and Junior (2011 and 2012) is now seeking a pairs partner. Hopefully she can find a partner for the coming season.

    I agree that unbalanced sections is a big problem and there are so many instances where choosing the top 12 skaters across sections would be more fair. But I could see the potential for problems, like score inflation (i.e. let's fill Nats with skaters from our section) and qualifying comps could get even more political. And what if something happens to the judging system due to extenuating circumstances? I'm thinking about Easterns 2 seasons ago in Aston, PA, where there was a fire in one of the locker rooms overnight, forcing the next day's events to be relocated to another rink in the facility, and paper-and-pencil judging was used (IJS system was set up in the other rink and it would have been too time-consuming to move it for the day), with no replays. UR's were sight-only and comparing the protocols for the groups that had the SP and LP on different rinks/different judging systems, I remember thinking some of the skaters may have benefited from the lack of replay.
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2013
  11. Sylvia

    Sylvia On to GP & U.S. Sectionals!

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    I saw her new IPS profile, too, and think she may have good pairs potential (IIRC, others here have mentioned her name as a possibility before) - I hope she can find a suitable partner in the U.S.!

    Right, so are these good enough reasons for USFS to consider reducing the current 3 Sectional qualifying competitions to 2 or maybe even 1, like Skate Canada's Challenge?

    ETA:
    Steven Pottenger has a new IPS profile up today but he's NOT looking for a partner with whom to compete. Instead, he's advertising his services as a pairs coach for Juvenile on up: "My goal is to train good freestyle girls who want to learn how to skate pairs. With a little experience it will be easier to get a partner." Here's his Coach page on the new website for the Canton, Michigan training rink: http://internationalskatingacademy.com/coach/steven-pottenger/
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2013
  12. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

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    I love Pottenger's idea

    . In Dance, don't coaches pair with their students for tests?
     
  13. Jayar

    Jayar Well-Known Member

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    Finally, Alison! This is GREAT news!!!
     
  14. Debbie S

    Debbie S Well-Known Member

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    Hmmm, well, one one hand, it could decrease the politiks and would also decrease the amount of clubs needed to host Sectionals. But it would also increase the expenses of the clubs hosting Sectionals (and probably require more ice time/surfaces). And the expenses of the skaters, who would probably have to travel further. Maybe the solution to politiks is to have equal judging representation from all 3 sections at each Sectionals, if they do go the top-12 route. But that would probably also increase expenses for the host club. Sigh...I guess I have no solution....
     
  15. stjeaskategym

    stjeaskategym Well-Known Member

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    Yes. It's silly that geographic location can play such a huge part in qualifying for Nationals. Lopsided sections are inevitable, and "desperate" skaters sometimes play the game of switching clubs and sections when in need of an easier road to Nationals. Some pair teams will find a section that doesn't even have 4 pairs in it so that they can automatically qualify to Nationals without even showing up, which just seems lame.

    Reducing the number of qualifying competitions would help ensure that all the nation's best skaters are getting to Nationals, not just because of geography, but also because it may be easier psychologically on a kid going into a qualifier knowing they have to be, say, top 10 or 15 to qualify for Nationals instead of medal worthy. You can bet plenty of Nationals-worthy skaters having melted down at Sectionals over the years under the pressure of having to finish all the way up in the top 4.
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2013
  16. gkelly

    gkelly Well-Known Member

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    For pairs and dance, they could just have one qualifier held at one of the sections. E.g., one year all the pairs could go to Midwesterns and all the dance teams to Easterns, and the next year the pairs event could be at Pacific Coasts and dance at Mids, etc.

    For singles, especially the girls, there would still need to be earlier rounds of cuts before sectionals. It's usually at the regional level that inequitable numbers of competitors are an issue -- at sectionals the numbers are the same, although there may be variance in where the very best skaters happen to be located that year at that level. So I'm not sure how combining sectionals would solve the problem of uneven size/strength of various regions.

    I can see how it would, as stjeaskategym suggests, take the pressure off some of the better skaters who suffer from nerves when qualification for the big event is on the line.
     
  17. Ziggy

    Ziggy Well-Known Member

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    Yes, what Sylvia said. The system does need a complete overhaul.
     
  18. Sylvia

    Sylvia On to GP & U.S. Sectionals!

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    Okay! :D

    Well, since this is a pairs/dance thread, let's shelve the U.S. singles qualifying dilemma for the time being. :p
     
  19. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

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    When I went to the regional Metropolitan Opera Council Auditions a few years ago at Meany Hall on the University of Washington campus in Seattle, one of the contestants was in the Ladies room while I was standing on line. She was listed as from Houston in the program, and one of the audience members on the line told her how much she liked her performance of "Einsam in trueben Tagen" from Lohengrin, and she asked what her connection to the Northwest, thinking maybe she had been a member of the Seattle Opera Young Artists Program or was studying Wagner with Jane Eaglen, who taught at UW. The singer replied that she picked Northwest because she thought she had a better chance than whatever region Houston is in. (She was a member of the Houston Grand Opera Studio at the time.) She was completely open about it, no hesitation whatsoever; she was from Richland, Washington, and she could have just said she grew up in the region.
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2013
  20. johndockley92

    johndockley92 New Member

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    Couple things: I don't think there should be an age limit for novice & junior domestically. If a 22 year old man switches from singles to pairs, why should he have to compete senior his first year? It'd make it much harder for him to find a partner, it'd make for more duds at nationals, and frankly it'd be dangerous for him to try such hard elements in his first season (on most occasions anyways).

    Second: Maybe Allison will tryout with Rockne? She is the right size. Interesting!
     
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  21. Sylvia

    Sylvia On to GP & U.S. Sectionals!

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    For those interested in continuing the discussion of the topic - new thread started in the Trash Can: Challenge type event for US Nationals qualification?

    3 new profiles on IPS:

    Taylor Tran, age 20 (13th in Senior Dance at 2013 U.S. Nationals with Sam Kaplun who "has decided to take time off from competitive skating") - she's based in Ann Arbor, MI

    Kimberly Berkovich, age 17 (10th in Novice Dance at 2013 U.S. Nationals with Micah Jaffe) - relocating from Cleveland area to Shpilband in Novi, MI

    Simon Proulx Sénécal has joined his former dance partner Christina Penkov (they were 15th in Junior Dance at 2013 Canadians) on IPS.
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2013
  22. maatTheViking

    maatTheViking Skate America! Go!

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    I understand that the fields are really small, so it mig not work, but an idea would be to have age groups placed together inside each technical level group. This way you could novice age 18+' novice age 14-17' novice under 14 or whatever.

    Some sports do it like this - but it seems like there is not enough competitors at the right level. Might work for singles?
     
  23. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

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    It's always interesting for me to see the Novice dance teams at BC Summerskate, because there is such a different quality between two 18-year-olds skating together and a 14- and 15-/16-year old pair. Like with singles, the very young ones are doing all kinds of tricks that the older couples can't, but there's often wonderful flow and dance expression from the older couples that's lacking among all but the very best younger novices and many Junior couples.
     
  24. figuresk8302

    figuresk8302 New Member

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    I follow him on instagram and he posted several pictures today of himself and of the ocean in southern California so I think they might be having a tryout. I must say if you have an instagram it is a great way to get the skating news right away!
     
  25. mag

    mag Well-Known Member

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    I suspect with the Summer Skate teams it has more to do with who is coaching than anything else.
     
  26. MacombSk8rMom

    MacombSk8rMom New Member

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    I couldn't agree more. The younger the age cutoffs are, the fewer boys that will move on into dance or pairs.

    There is an important safety issue to consider for some of the boys/men who switch into pairs or dance at older ages - some of them don't develop enough muscles at a younger age to be safely doing the higher level lifting required these days. As the parent of a very tall skater, I can tell you that it takes time for muscle growth to catch up to growth in the frame/height.

    So, do we support the guys getting their experience at the level where they can do safely and build up skills, or should the boys just not bother to switch because they aren't ready to jump right into senior? There already isn't any reward in terms of junior grand prix assignments if boys make the switch later and don't have time to make the age cutoffs, do we also take away their ability to participate in sectionals and nationals at the novice and junior levels?
     
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  27. Sylvia

    Sylvia On to GP & U.S. Sectionals!

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  28. Sunshine2

    Sunshine2 New Member

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    I heard that he tried out with Hannah Klopstock she skated with Chad Phillips last year at Nationals in Novice they came in 8th place.
     
  29. Ic3Beast

    Ic3Beast New Member

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    I hear Elise is now skating with a guy from Texas.
     
  30. Sunshine2

    Sunshine2 New Member

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    Anybody know if Caitlin Fields has any tryouts with any guys I don't think that there are that many guys out there