The Skating Lesson Podcast

Discussion in 'Great Skate Debate' started by FSfan107, Jan 2, 2013.

  1. FSfan107

    FSfan107 Well-Known Member

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    I started following Jenny Kirk on Twitter the other day and saw she was starting a podcast with figure skating blogger Dave Lease. Their first interview is with Tai Babilonia. It's very interesting if I should say so myself! Here is the link to the 1st part of it:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=o0lHznAGxco
     
  2. Sylvia

    Sylvia On to Nationals!

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    Last edited: Jan 2, 2013
  3. manleywoman

    manleywoman podcast mistress

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    I'm listening to part 1 now. Wondering why Jenny/Dave felt like they had to split it up into so many small chunks, but I'm assuming they were trying to keep file sizes low.
     
  4. FSfan107

    FSfan107 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for those additional links, Sylvia. :)
     
  5. Fabrichnova

    Fabrichnova Active Member

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    I got a little teary hearing Jenny and Tai discuss their experiences with eating disorders. I like that the format lends itself it to them having a more frank conversation about certain topics in skating like body image issues and addiction.

    Tai's rant about boot problems is funny. As is a woman in her 50s still referring to John Nicks as "Mr. Nicks."
     
  6. lulu

    lulu New Member

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    A bit off topic from skating, but the "Cosby kids" still refer to Bill Cosby as "Mr. Cosby" in interviews. If nothing more than out of habit, I would still refer to most of my former teachers and professors as Professor, Mr/Mrs./Ms. unless specifically invited to do so differently. :)

    Sylvia, thanks for the link to the Kirk blog thread, she is a wonderful writer and very insightful. She writes specifically about her own battle with an eating disorder here: http://www.jenniferkirk.com/2012/05/29/the-unrealized-dream/
     
  7. NadineWhite

    NadineWhite Well-Known Member

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    I've honestly yet to ever watch a podcast, but I'm tempted to do so if only to see how Jennifer does. :) I've missed her writing and articles, et al. Glad she's doing fine and expanding her horizons. She's a great role model for those that inevitably no longer compete, but move on to other areas of their life.
     
  8. falling_dance

    falling_dance D. Murakami's Newest Fan

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    Yes. It may be that competition viewers will be hearing less and less about that sort of thing in the future, thanks to podcasts like this.
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2013
  9. reese

    reese Well-Known Member

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    The part about never sitting down w/ Randy to talk about Lake Placid blows my mind. It's been 33 years, it might be time to just hash that out w/ him and move on.

    I love all the not-so-thinly-veiled digs at current skaters (namely Tai at various US pairs teams and Jenny re: Jeremy Abbott's "nutrition" comment).

    Anyway, I dig the Dave/Jenny combo so far. Excited to see what else they come out with.
     
  10. floskate

    floskate Vacant

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    I enjoyed it although would have preferred it in one video. Can't you upload full length now on youtube? Great idea to have Tai as guest number 1. As Manleywoman proved, Tai is a talker and VERY honest!
     
  11. manleywoman

    manleywoman podcast mistress

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    Honestly, I didn't "watch." I had it on in the background while I was doing other work. I peeked once in a while though. :)

    I agree she was a good first guest. (It was also nice that they referenced my podcast in one of the videos).

    As someone who does this, I will be surprised if they are able to keep up with the pace of one podcast per week. It's really a lot of work. But good luck to them! I'd do one a week myself if I had the time.
     
  12. AndyWarhol

    AndyWarhol Well-Known Member

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    Love this, although, not surprised, I enjoy pretty much everything Dave does.
     
  13. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

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    I enjoyed "watching" and listening to this debut "Skating Lesson" Podcast interview with Tai (1/2 of my favorite pairs skaters)! :) I think it is a great idea their (Dave/ Jenny/ Tai) theme of reaching out and having the different generations of skaters communicating with each other ... this sharing "lessons" idea is a good one.

    I also feel that Tai's discussion of being open and honest as a step toward greater communication has resonance. I would agree with Jenny too that such openness and sharing will probably be realized only with skaters of different generations reaching out to each other individually. These types of efforts tend to happen from the bottom up, and not the top down.

    During the interview, Jenny and Tai seemed to speak from their heart and their gut and their wealth of growth experiences good and bad, sad and inspiring. Re some of the references made to specific skaters, I think there were many compliments given to a number of skaters as well, and the more critical references were not intended to be mean-spirited or to single anyone out in a personally negative way, but just to point out some of the general problems, difficulties and obstacles faced by skaters today vs in the 70s and 80s. I get Tai's wish that U.S. pairs skaters would learn the importance of staying together. I don't think she's placing all the blame on the skaters either, but only trying to point out that it is a confounding issue that skaters' coaches, agents, managers, parents and USFS seem to mishandle.

    I do think skaters today are kinda caught in the middle of all the hoopla, mental and physical pressures, and expectations which are magnified 1,000 percent in this age of the Internet and global immediacy. Skaters can't fly under the radar and have the chance to develop slowly within a localized supportive community of other skaters in the way that Tai and Randy were able to do in a bygone era (was it really that long ago, my heavens!) :drama:
     
  14. B.Cooper

    B.Cooper Active Member

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    I appreciate that Ms Kirk is branching out and trying new avenues to bring skating to the masses, and of course to the fans. I would have preferred a different cohost though...someone with a less biased perspective...someone who perhaps who had been in broadcasting of skating, or another skater, like Jenny, who has experienced the world of elite skating, to add perspective and a different background, stories, experiences to the interviews. Perhaps someone like Ben Agosto, or a coach, like Audrey Weisger, who is now doing SPARQ1, or even someone like Terry Gannon, who was around the sport long enough to bring a seasoned perspective to the interviews.
     
  15. skateboy

    skateboy Well-Known Member

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    I loved this interview, watched the whole thing. Especially liked Tai's rant about "after the fact" excuses: boot problems, injuries, etc. I've felt the same way for a long time now!
     
  16. FSfan107

    FSfan107 Well-Known Member

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  17. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

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    ^^ Wow, "taking off the veil!" I like how Tim owns up to the fact that s**t happens when the stakes are high, and in looking back he wishes that he had handled his break-up with Carol Heiss differently. He also implies that perhaps the same might be true for Frank in "firing" him. Brutal but honest description by Tim of how horrible he felt re the timing of the firing two days before an NHK competition.

    ITA re Tim's suggestion that it might be helpful for up-and-coming skaters if they were taught more about the hard realities of the sport prior to being caught up in a disillusioning set of circumstances that are the opposite of "rose-colored" dreams. And not only that, Tim also points out that it would benefit fans and the sport as a whole to be more open and not so PC and pristine about the harsh realities and back-stabbing :drama: going on behind-the-scenes.

    I look forward to hearing the rest of this podcast interview.
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2013
  18. aliceanne

    aliceanne Well-Known Member

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    Ben Agosto, Audrey Weisinger, and Terry Gannon are paid professionals who don't provide their services for free. This is afterall, free content, and Dave and Jenny are putting a lot of work into it. Dave's perspective as a fan and an adult skater is as valid as anyone's. Personally, I impressed that someone in their 20's knows as much skating history as he does and I appreciate the clips he posts.

    Kudos to Manleywoman too!
     
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  19. B.Cooper

    B.Cooper Active Member

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    To reiterate, I applaud Jenny in her efforts. Perhaps she will branch out over time an include others on her team of interviewers.

    On to Tim Goebel's clip.....he makes a very valid point, and one that few USFS skaters have rarely talked about.... the process of breaking up with a coach, when USFS encourages their athletes to be PC about the dissolution of a coaching arrangement (or any other subject matter that might provoke an emotional response). I am sure there have been many circumstances over the years when break-ups were not on the best of terms, and as Tim pointed out, perhaps not timed for good outcomes at a competition. But, I also have to wonder, how does an organization like USFS deal with situations like Tim's when they are "casual observers" for lack of a better phrase, of the relationship between the coach and the athlete....USFS is not in the rink day in and day out, they don't know what is being said on the ice...they only get reports from the participants (the athlete or coach) or bystanders, so then it becomes an issue of 'he said/she said" sort of thing, and nothing good comes of that type of argument/disagreement, and from the "corporate" standpoint, USFS encourages none of the participants to air their dirty laundry so to speak. It just becomes fuel for rumors, and as Tim points out, lots of back stabbing that goes on, the undermining of an athlete's achievements/success/goals for their season or career. Is it just an issue of maturation, and that many of these athletes have led unusually sheltered or focused lives, and that when a coaching relationship takes a turn towards being no longer productive for either the athlete or the coach, is it just better to walk away, and leave all the bitterness at the door? I also think it is a "generational" topic....that something like Tim and Frank's parting ways was handled differently than perhaps in 2012. Thinking back to the Carlo Fassi stories, and his strict disciplinarian environment for his athletes....they might have complained, but then they were sent home for the day or a week, until their attitudes changed. Frank skated and grew up in that environment, and I would assume his attitudes and coaching style were formed by a similar environment. That "veil" of propriety has continued for many in the sport to this day.
     
  20. aliceanne

    aliceanne Well-Known Member

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    My impression of Tim Goebel is that he can't accept the fact that his body changed and he couldn't do the big jumps any more.

    I don't know why he keeps bringing up his split with Frank. He set the tone for his relationship with Frank when he abruptly split from Carol Heiss two weeks before Worlds. The fact that Frank accepted him under those circumstances should have told him how Frank felt about loyalty and coaching relationships.
     
  21. TheIronLady

    TheIronLady New Member

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    Frank unfortunately went through a lot with Christopher Bowman, and I think at his advanced age, with the wisdom he had acquired, he might have made what was the necessary decision for himself. This is why we all need to learn not to let time or hard experiences embitter us or we will turn out short on patience and short on hope like Frank. I am not a fan of Frank's personality, but from the little I know of the situation, I believe firing Tim ultimately did not harm Tim's life (and it may have done some good for Frank's blood pressure).
     
  22. manleywoman

    manleywoman podcast mistress

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    I find the juxtaposition of back-to-back interviews between Tai and Tim to be interesting:

    Tai says that she and Randy (and nobody of her era) would ever ever talk back to a coach, or leave a coach, or disrespect a coach (she said the same in my interview with her as well). She also says that she's not sure how Sasha Cohen got away with treating Mr. Nicks differently. Skaters of her era really put the reins in the coaches' hands, for better or worse.

    Tim, from what I've gathered from both my interview with him and this latest one, is of the mindset that the skater has more latitude/ability to control his destiny. Skaters have the reins, for better or worse.

    Not sure which way is best, but it is a shift from how the relationships used to be. Coaches like Nicks, Carroll, Kohout, and my coach as well, have all said to me that skaters talk back more, skaters listen less, etc etc. And yes I know the ancient quote from Socrates about how adults always complain about the unruliness of the younger generation. But I'm not surprised at all if none of the older coaches want to deal with it, since they certainly don't need the stress or income. And to the above poster's point about Chris Bowman . . . . I think Frank has a very short tolerance at this point, fairly or unfairly. He put up with a lot from Bowman.
     
  23. aliceanne

    aliceanne Well-Known Member

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    I think the change in attitude came with the skating boom of the 90's. People started looking at talented young figure skaters as a financial investment and Olympic eligible skaters started getting agents. Also the restrictions on Olympic-eligible skaters earning money were lifted. Skaters started looking for the best financial deal as well as what was best for their competitive career. Also elite coaches were getting a percentage of their earnings so it was more worth their while to put up with a prima donna.

    I think before 1994 it was too cost prohibitive to coach hop and a skater had no hope of earning substantial money as a pro unless they won a big title so they had more incentive to listen to their coach. Now skaters have personal trainers, managers, choreographers, sports psychologists, dance instructors and agents advising them.

    As far as Frank is concerned, he got dumped by Michelle during an Olympic year and I haven't heard him complain about it. Frank does go on about Linda Fratianne and the 1980 Olympics, but he said in one interview that he learned his lesson then and he would never invest so much of himself emotionally in a skater again.
     
  24. TheIronLady

    TheIronLady New Member

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    I agree that what basically has changed in skating culture is not pinpointed by Tai. It was, as aliceanne says, the change from an amateur to professional sport. Perhaps the figures required a lot of discipline which may have uniquely affected skaters' attitudes. Nevertheless, the role of the skater is nothing like it was in 1980. It is a commercialized environment now. So aliceanne is right that all these things have altered how skaters are disciplined and taught/allowed to behave.
     
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2013
  25. TheIronLady

    TheIronLady New Member

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    One thing I enjoyed about the Skating Lessons interview with Tai Babilonia versus prior interviews like the one on the Manleywoman site is that they let Tai speak, and they didn't talk a whole lot. They also didn't talk about the microphone or anything like that. Those things can be a little distracting. I like their professionalism.
     
  26. manleywoman

    manleywoman podcast mistress

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    Gee. Thanks. :rolleyes: :(
     
  27. AJ Skatefan

    AJ Skatefan Well-Known Member

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    I love your podcasts, manleywoman.
     
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  28. shan

    shan Well-Known Member

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    I do too!! :cheer2:
     
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  29. reese

    reese Well-Known Member

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    I felt like Jenny and Dave had really interesting questions that were hard-hitting and surprising at times, but still respectful of Tai. Dave also really knows his skating history and both Jenny and Dave seemed well-prepared for the interview. It's hard to be kind and respectful without turning it into a fluffy interview, but they managed to pull it off.
     
  30. skatesindreams

    skatesindreams Well-Known Member

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    As do I!
     
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