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  1. #1
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    Technical Question re Jumps and Rotations

    I've always wondered something about jumps but don't have the technical knowledge. Surely someone here can help!
    When skaters do jumps, whether front entry or back entry, they seem to exit backwards. Do they ever exit frontwards? Is it possible? Could someone do a 2 1/2 axel, for instance?
    If it is possible, why don't they do it now? I may have dreamt this but I thought there was a time in earlier years when the jumps were very different (in terms of rotation not posture).
    Any help appreciated!

  2. #2

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    You can land forwards as well as backwards, but the problem is that if you take off backwards, landing forward only gives you a half-rotation and not a full rotation. And under the IJS (correct me if I'm wrong, technical people) most of the half-jumps are not recognized as jumps, so they don't get counted as jump elements. They can be connecting elements that count toward transitions marks.

    So if you can do, say, a 1 1/2 salchow, it would only get counted as a single salchow, and if you can do 1 1/2 rotations, you might as well do two and get credit for the double jump.

    That being said, in the ISI (Ice Skating Institute) test system, there are several half-jump elements in the freestyle tests - half toe-loop, half-flip, ballet jump (pick takeoff like a toe loop, forward facing hop on pick with arms and legs in an arabesque position, land and travel forwards). I found these really helpful in working on the fully rotated jumps, because they make you think about what you are doing with your body, and force you to control the jump so that you can land it nicely after a half-rotation.
    We live in an ageist society where everything is based on youth, but I hated being 18. I don't like teenagers any more now than I did then. I'm 49 now and there is no way that I'd go back to my teens and 20s - even if I knew what I know now, I don't want to go through all that again. I found it a very difficult time. - Buzz Osborne of the Melvins

  3. #3
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    I was working on a 1 1/2 flip- 1 flip combo/sequence and IJS came in and made it worthless! It was a pretty cool combo for someone without any doubles, if I say so myself.

    So yes, Scrufflet, you can land jumps forward but it isn't common.

  4. #4
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    The best I managed was a shoot-the-duck in the Brantford Flashing Blades. I was a lollipop in Candyland but I was desperate to be a Sugar Plum Fairy! Sigh, oh shattered dreams!

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    You did it, though! How many people can say that?

  6. #6
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    Thank you, you're right! It took place in the Arctic Arena, long gone. I'm also long gone from Brantford. Wonder where they skate now.

  7. #7
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    When you land forward, you do it like a bunny hop (toe pick then opposite foot). It creates the possiblity of half and 1.5 jumps, for example, the half flip, which has an ordinary flip takeoff, half a revolution, and a forward landing. As others have said, this isn't counted as a full rotation jump (and 1.5 only counts as 1 rotation etc), but it does have some uses:

    -- Footwork: full revolution jumps can't be used in footwork but halfs can. I've also heard this is true of ice dance, but I'm not sure on that one.
    -- Learning: Skaters often learn the half flip before the full flip etc.
    -- Safety: I can't remember where I heard this, but someone on the Internet said that skaters learn bunny hops so that they can control accidental forward landings when learning axels and doubles. Because if you actually didn't know how to land forward in an emergency, I imagine it would be quite dangerous if you accidentally underrotated and needed to.

    From my extremely limited experience of jumps (waltz, tap toe and bunny hop), I can say that landing backward seems more natural. I'm not sure if it's from watching so many other people landing their jumps backward, but the first time I actually managed to land a waltz jump and glide away, I was surprised at how natural it felt compared to my many trips and stumbles on bunny hop landings. I guess it's because the blade is designed more for backward landings than forward ones, and there's a low risk of toepick tripping when going backward.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by overedge View Post
    You can land forwards as well as backwards, but the problem is that if you take off backwards, landing forward only gives you a half-rotation and not a full rotation. And under the IJS (correct me if I'm wrong, technical people) most of the half-jumps are not recognized as jumps, so they don't get counted as jump elements. They can be connecting elements that count toward transitions marks.

    So if you can do, say, a 1 1/2 salchow, it would only get counted as a single salchow, and if you can do 1 1/2 rotations, you might as well do two and get credit for the double jump.

    That being said, in the ISI (Ice Skating Institute) test system, there are several half-jump elements in the freestyle tests - half toe-loop, half-flip, ballet jump (pick takeoff like a toe loop, forward facing hop on pick with arms and legs in an arabesque position, land and travel forwards). I found these really helpful in working on the fully rotated jumps, because they make you think about what you are doing with your body, and force you to control the jump so that you can land it nicely after a half-rotation.
    Actually, if you did a 1-1/2 salchow, it could either be given the value of a single salchow with negative GOE's (since all listed jumps are supposed to land backwards on one foot), or it could be given no value and just be considered a connecting move instead of a jump. That's because a 1-1/2 salchow is an unlisted jump, falling into the same category as a split jump, half axel (one revolution, taking off and landing forward) or a 1-1/2 flip. I used a half axel at the beginning of my footwork a few years ago, and I also saw a senior level skater do a very nicely executed 1-1/2 flip as a connecting move in a step sequence. It was not counted as a jump. Incidentally, even a double walley--2 revolutions landing backwards--wouldn't count as a jump, since the walley is an unlisted jump.

  9. #9
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    Honestly, I think forward landings never really happened because backward landings are just safer on multi-revolution jumps.

    When you land backward, you should be making first contact to the ice with your toe pick and immediately stepping down to the backward outside edge. The balance point is easier to control because it's under the ball of your foot near the pick. The balance point on a forward edge is closer to the heel, more difficult to control, and there's more risk of catching the toe pick.

  10. #10
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    overedge,sk8er1964,Bunny Hop, Doubletoe and vesperholly...
    Thankyou so much for your detailed responses! I really appreciate it. It would be fun to see Invent-a-jump, the new Olympic team sport(ha, I wish) on tv sometime. Sounds like some of you are doing it already.

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