U.S. Men 2012-13 news, updates & general discussion

Discussion in 'Great Skate Debate' started by Sylvia, Sep 16, 2012.

  1. carriemarie

    carriemarie New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Messages:
    328
    Seeing the event live my first impressions were Aaron first, Farris second. Max Aaron stands around a lot but he flies around the rink and although his PCS are lacking his program was electric that night. Miner was quite good and Jeremy was just frustrating to watch at the end. I have no problem with Aaron going to Worlds this year. The USFS needs to look past Sochi to 2018 for our men and set us up properly. There is very little chance a US man will be a factor in Sochi, so let's just move on and get our young guys out there. I don't think it is unrealistic for Aaron to make Fernandez-like improvements over the next couple of years. I don't find his basics bad and his speed is great. Before Nationals he was a middling Senior Man and not much of a factor, so his programs were set up with technical fire power to break into the last group, IMO. The strategy was to get him noticed on domestic soil and next year will be about international success. Is he our best hope for the next quad? I don't know, but I see him having great long term potential and its useless to send Jeremy out again and again with no real results. Personally, I like Farris and Johnson, and I wouldn't count Dornbush out just yet. I am not much of a fan of Brown and I think Armin and Messing need to really re-think their strategies. There was a lot of nice performances in men and I am going to wait to see how worlds pans out.
  2. luenatic

    luenatic Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2002
    Messages:
    2,493
    I don't know what Dornbush can do to be consistent. He reminds me of Trifun Zivanovic. I think Dornbush's problems with his jump is his posture. He's so far forward before the take off. But hey, Trifun was US Silver medallist!
    PeterG and (deleted member) like this.
  3. pinky166

    pinky166 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Messages:
    10,235
    No 3lz-1/2lo-3lo is a jump sequence, so he could still do a 3-jump combo. 3f-1/2lo-3s counts as a 3 jump combo because the free leg doesn't touch the ice between the 3 jumps. For the 3lz-1/2lo-3lo, the free leg comes down to take off for the 3lo so it gets counted as a sequence, gets 80% of BV, and does not count as a 3 jump combo. I was more thinking the 3f-1/2lo-3s as a combo anyways, because it would really only alter the last two jumping passes, and the 3 jump combo that's a 3-3 seems to be popular for the men as of late and brings in a lot of points if done well. In this video from summer 2011, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vdynmH7vpRc he does a 3f-1/2lo-3lo sequence at 02:18, which is why I suggested the 3lz-1/2lo-3lo sequence as a possibility because he has tried it in the past (and it actually looked decent there even with the stepout, and his jumps have improved a whole lot since then). He doesn't really need to change his layout anyways, it's just more if he's really trying to get higher onto the US Nationals podium next season or win JW this season with Kovtun and Yan having huge quads (and may even try 2 in the FS) and comparable PCS, tweaking a jump layout is a good way to get more points without having to obtain a brand new skill or rely so heavily on the execution of a certain difficult element.
  4. pinky166

    pinky166 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Messages:
    10,235
    Dornbush was consistent in 2010-2011, though. I think his sudden thrust into being a contender at a young age and the attention and expectations, pressure that came with it, coupled with his boot problems last season, illness/injuries this season, and focusing a lot on the quad have hurt his consistency the past two seasons. But I tend to think he can probably regain it, as he does not seem to have the nervous disposition of a classic "headcase type" that makes you wonder if they are ever going to be reliable. He's been reliable in the past and he still has all the tricks, and is pretty young so I don't worry about the injuries continually creeping up on him at least not for a few more years. It might just take a little more time for him to regroup and emerge as a strong competitor again, but once he does, he can likely do very well.
  5. PrincessLeppard

    PrincessLeppard Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2003
    Messages:
    21,977
    Are they still counting sequences as only 80% of BV? :wall:
  6. carriecmu0503

    carriecmu0503 New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2007
    Messages:
    191
    delete
  7. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

    Joined:
    May 24, 2003
    Messages:
    19,356
    The fall deduction was changed from relying on the judges to deduct from P/E to a formal deduction applied by the tech panel in the second season; the fall deduction appears in the 2004 SA protocols. Aside from enforcement, the change made the minimum fall penalty absolute across disciplines and segments, whereas, had the P/E deduction been applied consistently, it would have been factored differently, depending on the discipline (1 for Men's SP vs 2 for Men's FS, vs. .8 for Ladies and Pairs SP vs. 1.6 for Ladies and Pairs FS, etc.). It also meant that it could also be deducted from other components, whether or not that was applicable to the billet points, but that was the case when it was a P/E deduction.

    ETA: Based on the Technical Rules definitions of jump combinations and sequences, by definition, a series of jumps connected by .5 loop is considered a combination, where the .5 loop counts as a 1Lo and the third jump. Jump sequences are defined as having hops and other steps between the jumps, but the .5 loop no longer counts as a sequence connector.
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2013
  8. Skittl1321

    Skittl1321 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2007
    Messages:
    11,072
    I've always found this strange. Relatively, a fall hurts a ladies score much more so than a man's, and the penalty for low level skaters falling is much higher than when skaters fall in high level competition (1 point off a quad- no big deal, 1 point off a single loop- huge deal; low level skaters have to skate clean, seniors- eh).
  9. YukiNieve

    YukiNieve Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2003
    Messages:
    632
    Is Jonathan leaving the competitions? :(
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2013
  10. Wyliefan

    Wyliefan Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2005
    Messages:
    17,642
    Sounds like it. What a pity. :(
  11. orbitz

    orbitz Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2004
    Messages:
    9,814
    Where did he come from? He's definitely not a splashy skater, but his LP was very elegant. I'm a sucker for anyone with good forward camel spins, and AJ has one of the better ones among the men.
  12. Sylvia

    Sylvia Whee, summer club comps!

    Joined:
    May 27, 2002
    Messages:
    29,981
    I mentioned earlier in this thread that Alex Johnson's 7th place finish should give him a Senior B international at least (his most recent and only senior international to date was 2009 Finlandia Trophy where he placed 10th). Johnson's bio on IN: http://web.icenetwork.com/skaters/detail.jsp?id=100072&mode=I
    He did well nationally and internationally as a junior, and has persevered despite his low placement at the past 3 Senior Nationals. He's originally from Minnesota, moved to Colorado Springs to be coached by Tom Zakrajsek, and now is coached by his choreographer, Tom Dickson.
  13. dinakt

    dinakt Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2008
    Messages:
    3,736
    NOOOO!!!
    Just read the tweet.
    Wonder what Jonathan chooses to do next. Dancing, choreo, smth. completely different?
    I'll really miss him. One of the joys of last years was to see what programs Cassar came up with. He has such exquisite detail and line. If he stops skating in public, it'll be sad news for me.
  14. Sylvia

    Sylvia Whee, summer club comps!

    Joined:
    May 27, 2002
    Messages:
    29,981
  15. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2009
    Messages:
    4,480
    ^^ Thanks Sylvia. I just saw that article. I'm glad Adam is enjoying working with Rafael, and that their work together has been so productive. It will be great if Adam gets the quads in his repertoire for next season -- he seems to feel that he's right there with gaining confidence on them. Certainly, his 3-axel is looking great. I'm glad Adam will have the chance to compete at 4CCs this year, so his season is not over quite yet. :) I think Adam did a wonderful job at Nats and he may have been given more credit if, 1) he'd landed the second of his 3/3 combos in the sp; and 2) if he'd had a better GP showing this season -- but since he got a late start re adjusting to a new training environment, I'm just glad he turned things around so well by Nationals. It will be great if Adam is becoming consistent with the quad and can "bring it" next year along with his perfected 3-axel and his superlative artistry.

    Speaking of artistry, I wish Tom Z or the article writer or whoever would stop with trying to overplay the big "A" in connection with Max. Artistry is not a specialty of Tom Z's, and it's quite obvious that Max still needs to work on that aspect of his skating, so it is a bit silly for Tom Z to state that "Max and Patrick approach [the sport] in an artistic way and also a sporting way." :confused: Seriously? I do think it's wonderful that Max and Patrick are friendly and that Patrick has been helpful to Max (altho' it's easier to be helpful when you're being helpful to someone who is not a fierce rival). Max already noted in the press conference that he talks a lot to Patrick, and its fine to see that mentioned again since the article is based partly on the press conference, but I think the Patrick connection is being overplayed way too much. And, I thought Tom Z's statement: "Max is kind of a European-style men's skater..." to be very odd and historically a strange reference, since North American style skating has traditionally been considered more athletic. Has a flip-flop occurred in terms of styles? I don't think so, not just because of the quad. The sport is more global today and so for a variety of reasons there is no longer just one particular style of skating exclusively associated with certain countries or regions, IMHO.

    Ultimately, Max will be judged on his own raw talent and performances, not on his association with Patrick Chan. BTW, Tom Z saying: "They talk about ESPN..." is so laughable. I mean fine, if they both follow baseball or football, or "he-man" sports and like to check out ESPN. :p But, pardon me, the way Tom Z threw out that reference makes it sound like code speak for, "They're so macho."

    Putting that aside, I do disagree with most of the negative criticism of Max in this thread post-Nationals. While Max is not one of my favorite skaters, I am impressed with his improvement this season, and I enjoyed watching both of his programs. He may have been slightly under-marked in the sp, and a bit over-marked in his fp, so I guess it evens out somewhat. I would have been thrilled to see Jeremy or Ross win. Or even Ricky or Adam if they were both at full strength. However, I can definitely accept seeing Max edge it out. Before the competition began, I would never have imagined feeling that way. Kudos to Max! Go Jet!

    Ross might have won had he not been slightly downgraded on his quad in the sp, and had he not popped his second 3-axel in the fp. Jeremy could also have won perhaps had he focused on going clean, although it was a tough call re whether to go for the quad. In any case, even with falling on it, had Jeremy went clean the rest of the way, he had the opportunity to pull out a win. So it is what it is, and I see more positives than negatives re U.S. men. Wishing Ross and Max both all the best at 4CCs and Worlds.

    In order to be competitive in this changed environment of men's figure skating, quads are necessary. Ideally, top-notch artistry might eventually become equally important if there ever comes a day when a man who sports consistent quads can also deliver a beautiful, nuanced wonderfully choreographed performance in the manner of Alexander Johnson, and move across the ice in a way that comes close to approaching the masterful artistry of Jeremy Abbott.

    Hanyu is wonderful but he lacks artistic maturity and endurance (altho' Orser is helping him with the latter). When Patrick is on he's great, but he is not known to always be technically consistent especially early in the season. It is nice to see Patrick focusing on further developing his artistic side this season. Dai has charisma and technical skills to die for, and he's wonderful to watch, but he's not always consistent on the quad either. Javi Fernandez is stepping it up now with 3 quads in his fp, but he still needs to work on his presentation skills, as well as consistency. It was clever of Orser to give Javi the Chaplin fp in order for Javi to practice projecting more to the audience.
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2013
  16. skateboy

    skateboy Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2006
    Messages:
    4,232
    I wish him well.
  17. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2009
    Messages:
    4,480
    ^^ Yes, I will miss seeing Jonathan Cassar at Nationals. I really hope he will have the opportunity to skate in some shows and professional competitions!

    There is a tribute thread for Jonathan that was started in The Skip.
  18. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2009
    Messages:
    4,480
    I wonder, is there anything that the U.S. men are doing (especially those who are training the quad) to try and avoid injuries (e.g., proper stretching and warming up; regular physical therapy/ massage and orthopedic check-ups to try and monitor and/or prevent possible injuries? Or, is there any real way to monitor this? Is it just a matter of training smart, and also having a strategy in practices and in competition to avoid doing too many quads over a short period of time?
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2013
  19. pinky166

    pinky166 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Messages:
    10,235
    I think off-ice training helps strengthen the body a lot to try and prevent overuse injuries. This has become true of most sports in recent years just as they get more and more demanding. Stretching, lifting weights, core strengthening and flexibility exercises, thorough warm-ups and cool-downs, along with PT if said skater is fighting off an injury, can all make a big difference and make the body much less prone to injury.

    I don't know anything about landing quadruple jumps, but even just as a recreational runner, taking the time to stretch before and after running, doing some weight training, and knowing what/when to eat to help your body recover quickly and effectively makes a big, big difference in terms of keeping serious injuries at bay, and even the nagging aches and pains to specific joints/body parts. I would assume most skaters at this level have a very wholistic approach to their training - IE they don't just skate and skate throwing quads left and right until they get it consistent.
  20. Sylvia

    Sylvia Whee, summer club comps!

    Joined:
    May 27, 2002
    Messages:
    29,981
  21. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2009
    Messages:
    4,480
    ^^ Yes, thanks Sylvia. I recall reading that article last year. It's interesting to take a look at it again. Many of the U.S. men mention the physical demands and also the mental challenges in training the quad, but none of them really speak specifically regarding the necessary pre-conditioning and all around physical monitoring required. (Probably they all are engaging in such warm-up, cool down and massage therapy strategies as part of their overall training in general, but it seems as if it's even more important to focus on in training quads).

    In reading the article again, I took particular note of the fact that Max Aaron and Alexander Johnson both spoke about the importance for them of perfecting their triple jump technique first: "Aaron's first step was to refine the technique of his triple Salchow so that he got into a rotating position in the air faster..." And per Johnson: "I started working on the basic technique of my triples, and when that felt solid enough to try a quad, we went for it."

    Ross and others mention the "toll on your body," and Doug Razzano cautions: "... don't overdo it and listen to your body because these are the jumps where the injuries happen." So, therefore, IMO a more structured and well-thought out training and conditioning approach should be carefully designed and implemented (taking into account physical variations and different needs and tendencies among individual athletes). As it is now, it seems to be a kind of Wild Wild West atmosphere with everyone trying stuff out and toughing it out to see what works best for them and when the showdown with the quad occurs event after event and season after season, it's just the luck of the draw as to who remains standing in the end. And even then, without a better overall strategy and physical conditioning program with orthopedic check-ups, multiple injuries and surgeries might loom either before or after retirement.

    In regard to injuries stemming from overuse of the quad, probably a lot depends upon individual athletes' physical makeup and training strategies. For example, Ilia Kulik has not seemed to have suffered many (or any?) quad-related injuries, but then he didn't compete the quad over a long extended period of time. He won Olympic gold in 1998 at the age of 20 and promptly retired.
  22. overedge

    overedge Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2005
    Messages:
    17,461
    Pretty much every skater at an international level (in the US and Canada at least) is working with trained exercise professionals and physiotherapists who are doing exactly that for each one of them. If a skater wants to push things beyond what is physically sensible for them, that's their choice, but I don't think you can blame a rash of injuries on their training and conditioning programs not being properly designed.
  23. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

    Joined:
    May 24, 2003
    Messages:
    19,356
    Timothy Goebel discussed this in his Skate Lesson Podcast interview. He spoke about doing virtually no warm-up and starting to jump and jump and jump off the bat. It was the macho thing to do, just like tennis players talked about similar things back in the day. Mets outfielder Mookie Wilson blew out his shoulder when his then-manager insisted he throw at full strength at the beginning of spring training one season.

    Like anything else, if athletes are trained from the beginning to warm up properly, do off-ice training, and to build into their jump practices, it's a habit that many or most will continue. The fluff piece on Chan's off-ice training regimen last season couldn't hurt, as athletes try to replicate successful methods and emulate systematic, professional training methods.
  24. BittyBug

    BittyBug Quadless

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2003
    Messages:
    15,088
    I think you also need to look at the coaches, as there's a fine line between pushing your skater through a blah day, tiredness, etc. and forcing them to skate injured (i.e., "you're just faking because you're feeling lazy today," when in fact the skater may truly be injured). Examples of this abound.
  25. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2009
    Messages:
    4,480
    Yes, I think that's the key. It's important to "replicate successful methods and emulate systematic, professional training" and conditioning practices. I get the sense that people within the sport have only recently begun to understand the full measure of the daunting implications of training and competing quads. I don't think any systematic conditioning and injury prevention program/ strategies have been put into place across the board yet.

    As BittyBug notes, varying coaching methods and approaches also have a huge impact on whether athletes are fully aware of and engaged in implementing smart training and conditioning strategies/ techniques.
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2013
  26. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

    Joined:
    May 24, 2003
    Messages:
    19,356
    I've always wished there was a skating equivalent of ballet barre, where each skill is warmed up before going on to do control moves, combinations and jumping, each progressing to the next. Imagine if after off-ice stretching and warm-up, every skater had to start with basic stroking, then edge work, then holding edges, then FW passages of different character, then spins -- Button said Lussi taught jumps as spins in the air -- then jumps, then programs. This is financially unviable, unless skaters are taught in groups, but I think the skaters would be more accomplished all around and the programs more watchable.
  27. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2009
    Messages:
    4,480
    ^^ Sounds like a great approach, even if as beginning and ending practices at training rinks.

    Where did you read that about Lussi's training techniques? Maybe there is something that skaters today can learn from some of the better training/ coaching methods (likely some have already been passed down -- but there is not seemingly a uniform approach). In acting, different approaches and methods to working on craft might be okay, but maybe in such a physically demanding sport/ art such as figure skating, a more unified training and conditioning approach is needed.
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2013
  28. Sylvia

    Sylvia Whee, summer club comps!

    Joined:
    May 27, 2002
    Messages:
    29,981
    A follow-up local Arizona article on Max Aaron: http://www.azcentral.com/sports/aze...rink-quitting-us-figure-skating-champion.html
    ETA brief article link from the Jewish Daily Forward:
    http://forward.com/articles/170407/figure-skater-max-aaron-advances-to-world-champion/
    Oops! :p
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2013
  29. jlai

    jlai Title-less

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2002
    Messages:
    8,775
    I remember Flatt being told to do a triple right off the bat, as a way to increase confidence in the jump (or something like that). hmmm.
  30. skatesindreams

    skatesindreams Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2002
    Messages:
    13,667
    aftershocks, you may be interested in this:

    1980 Gustave Lussi - Pioneer American Coach
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rxNN2XgDLkU
  31. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

    Joined:
    May 24, 2003
    Messages:
    19,356
    There was a longer piece on Lussi's teaching that I once downloaded from FS Vids, also moderated by Button (or with lots of comments by him), but I don't see it on YouTube. He and interviewees discussed his teaching philosophy, and IIRC, there was at least one scene in it in which he sat in chair, maybe in the rink opening, and coached a skater or two in spins. I seem to remember Paul Wylie -- who did train with John Curry for at least a short while, maybe during a summer? -- but I don't remember if he was interviewed or was also one of the skaters being coached.
  32. MacMadame

    MacMadame Internet Beyotch

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2005
    Messages:
    15,897
    When I was skating, my lesson time was during the day so I was on the ice with a lot of elite skaters. They all started out with stroking and a warm-up routine of some sort.

    Some of them cut their warm-ups short because they were young and stupid but so do some ballet dancers. ;)
  33. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

    Joined:
    May 24, 2003
    Messages:
    19,356
    Some ballet dancers might cut their warm-ups short before performances, but company class is usually a must, and cutting it short or coming late can mean not getting cast, which most dancers try to avoid. In a lot of dance academies' pre-professional divisions, they won't let you into class late, unless there are official circumstances.
  34. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2009
    Messages:
    4,480
    ^^ Yes, the comparisons between figure skating and ballet are very interesting. I never thought of it before, but someone recently noted in another thread that men in ballet do a lot of rotational jumping somewhat similar to the athletic feats of male skaters, although dance floors have a lot more give than frozen ice.


    Thanks so much skatesindreams for the link! I look forward to taking a look at it.
  35. skatesindreams

    skatesindreams Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2002
    Messages:
    13,667
    Here's some more information:
    http://iceskatingresources.org/LussiSystematicJump&SpinTechniques.html
    http://skatetape.com/instructional.aspx
  36. gkelly

    gkelly Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2003
    Messages:
    10,492
    In the old days, skaters would usually do a patch session before each freestyle session, so that got the muscles warmed up and the alignment centered over the blades.

    But they didn't do as much off-ice warmup or off-ice training in those days.

    Now it would be up to coaches to train their skaters to warm up appropriately before starting to work on the more challenging or riskier skills. I'm sure some coaches make more of a point of it than others. And because much practice is not directly supervised, there's no guarantee that kids will do what they're supposed to instead of what they're interested in. Those who are serious about their training and have coaches who are serious about instilling smart training habits are more likely to reach the higher levels and the harder jumps, but there will still be some who skimp on warmups.
  37. A.H.Black

    A.H.Black Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2002
    Messages:
    2,019
    I have a special about Lussi - I think it's the one you remember - http://www.tcm.com/tcmdb/title/464975/Gustave-Lussi-The-Man-Who-Changed-Skating/ I recorded it from PBS. The skater in the small rink was Tracy Damigella. Button appears in it but does not narrate. Very informative and interesting.

    I remember Paul being quoted extensively after Lussi's death but he wasn't in this special. I don't know if Paul was ever coached directly by Lussi, however, his coach Mary Scotvold was coached by Lussi. Lussi's influence is in about the third generation at this point.
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2013
  38. Sylvia

    Sylvia Whee, summer club comps!

    Joined:
    May 27, 2002
    Messages:
    29,981
    Tatjana Flade just tweeted: "Adam Rippon (USA) withdrawn from 4Conts due to injury. :-( Replacement Richard Dornbush."
  39. PinkFeathers

    PinkFeathers Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2012
    Messages:
    196
    Ricky just tweeted "Would watch the #SuperBowl right now, buuuuut I'm last minute packing for #4CC right now. Osaka here I come!" So, yep :( Poor Adam, but yay, Ricky!
  40. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2009
    Messages:
    4,480
    ^^ Oh no, Adam. :( I was really looking forward to seeing Adam perform his programs this season for a final time. He seemed to be enjoying them so much at Nationals! What kind of injury has Adam sustained? Does anybody have more details? Hope he heals fully and is back training soon.

    Nice for Ricky to have a chance to compete. I hope he's feeling stronger and can have a good competition to end his season on a high note.