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  1. #1

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    What happened to ladies skating?

    I barely watch ladies skating anymore, it just kind of bores me now. It occurred to me that the top ladies programs of today (Carolina, Mao) would not have had a chance medaling at any of the Olympics from 1992 onward.

    In fact, a top 5 finish would have been improbable.

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    Blame it on COP. The skaters are using the system to win with less jump content and more of everything else. I am not saying I like it, but that's what it is. Hopefully Mao will add the triple axel to her LP at worlds to up the ante.

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    Quote Originally Posted by skateboy View Post
    I barely watch ladies skating anymore, it just kind of bores me now. It occurred to me that the top ladies programs of today (Carolina, Mao) would not have had a chance medaling at any of the Olympics from 1992 onward.

    In fact, a top 5 finish would have been improbable.
    Conversely, some of the Olympic medalists since 1992 would be hard pressed to finish in the top five Worlds this season -- Baiul, Hughes, and Kerrigan (at least the 1992 version), to name just three.

    Blame it on 6.0.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vagabond View Post
    Conversely, some of the Olympic medalists since 1992 would be hard pressed to finish in the top five Worlds this season -- Baiul, Hughes, and Kerrigan (at least the 1992 version), to name just three.
    Totally disagree with you, especially Kerrigan. She was did more in 1992 than today's girls do. Bauil and Hughes would have been dinged for two-foots, edge calls and URs, but they were doing a complete repertoire of jumps, so I think they would still fare okay.

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    because of CoP... bla bla bla.

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    A judging system gets what it selects for, not what the designers think they're selecting for.

    In simpler terms - behavior that's rewarded will increase, behavior that's punished will decrease.

    The jihad against under-rotation that the ISU pursued a few years ago didn't convince skaters to fully rotate their jumps (if they could to that they already would have been doing so) but to eliminate ambitious jumps, potential problem jumps and jump combinations that they weren't 100 % sure of.

    Reward risk-taking and you'll get more risk-taking. Reward ugly spins and you'll get ugly spins.

    Ruthlessly punish minor lapses of technique and you'll have competitors scaling back what they attempt.

    Finally, an unpretty (but probable) truth: Most ladies simply don't have the muscle mass to do triples the same way men do. So they developed a set of workarounds to create the illusion that they could becuse audiences mostly prefer flawed triples to perfect doubles. Either judge mens and ladies jumping differently or be content with programs winning without many triples.

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    Quote Originally Posted by skateboy View Post
    Totally disagree with you, especially Kerrigan. She was did more in 1992 than today's girls do. Bauil and Hughes would have been dinged for two-foots, edge calls and URs, but they were doing a complete repertoire of jumps, so I think they would still fare okay.
    Of course Kerrigan did more than today's women do. She did an eighth jumping pass, which wouldn't count today!

    Kerrigan's FS jump content in 1992 was: 2A, 2F, 3T, 3S, 2Z+2T, 3R, 2A, 2A, 3T+3T. The eighth jumping pass (which she threw in because she wasn't able to add a 3T onto the earlier solo 3T) would be invalid, so her jumping content would include only three triple jumps, none higher than a 3R, and none of those in combination. I would expect Kostner, Asada, Suzuki, Murakami, and whatever American and Russians go to Worlds to do more than that. Her spins and step sequences wouldn't have scored many points, though I suspect she could probably have done more if she had to compete under CoP.


    [ETA: I was mistaken here -- that was her FS at Nationals.]

    Baiul had five triples in her FS, of which only two were clean. That really isn't going to cut it in 2012. She also had no step sequence in her FS, so her Base Value would be very low. And her spins weren't much by today's standards.

    Hughes had underrotated triple loops at the end of her two combinations in the FS, so she'd probably get -3's on those along with lower base value. She also flutzed. Thus, she arguably had only two triple-jump elements that would get positive GOE. And her PCS for the SP would probably be fairly low. (I think she totally deserved her gold medal, but I don't think she'd do all that well at Worlds this season.)
    Last edited by Vagabond; 12-27-2011 at 03:51 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vagabond View Post
    The eighth jumping pass, of course, wouldn't count today, so her jumping content would be three triple jumps, none higher than a 3R, and none of those in combination.
    Why do you assume it would be the 3T-3T that wouldn't have counted? I don't think that was the last thing in her program.

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    Last edited by Vagabond; 12-27-2011 at 03:51 PM.

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    Wait a minute, the jump content you mentioned isn't quite right. Her Oly jump content was: 2A, 3F, 3T-1T, 3S, 1LZ, 3R, 3T (hand down). No eighth jumping pass. 5 triples, 4 clean.

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    It's not just about jumps. Oksana Baiul won with less triples than Nancy Kerrigan, Lu Chen, Surya Bonaly, and Yuka Sato.
    Ladies today aren't worse skaters. If you compare Mao Asada, Carolina Kostner and others to ladies from the past, they are better in many areas, including skating skills and step sequences.
    The fact is that, apparently, ladies can't work on everything at the same time, and do a program with hard steps, hard spins and difficult jumps. JMO.

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    You can't compare skaters who were brought up and competed under the old 6.0 system with today's COP skaters. Its like comparing chalk with cheese. You can only judge a skater by the rules, standards, and conditions that existed at the time. If Oksana Baiul had been brought up and competed under COP, she would almost certainly have turned out to be a completely different type of skater. Her training regime would probably have been pretty similar to today's Russian juniors like Sotnikova, Tuktamysheva, Lipnitskaya, and Radionova. In fact, Baiul, who won the 1993 Worlds at the age of 15, would probably be pretty similar to Adelina Sotnikova (who is also 15) - far more technically gifted than under the 6.O system, but less artistically developed (although Sotnikova for her age is a very good artistic skater as well, as would Baiul have still been under COP). Hence, the regulatory system that exists at the time determines what type of skaters you get, because the coaches will always adjust the training regime to extract the most out of it. Accordingly, whereas under the 6.0 system, coaches would address artistry and technique in equal measure at a young age, under COP coaches will always concentrate heavily on technical issues with young skaters (as that's where the points are) and gradually add artistry as the skater gets older (i.e. the emphasis is firmly on establishing a solid technical grounding first and foremost). That's why with the Russian juniors, they are superb technicians, but less developed artistically (which is added later as they grow older). As stated, that's why Baiul would almost certainly have been a completely different type of skater at the age of 15-16 under COP and far better technically - as she would have been given a much better technical grounding similar to today's Russian juniors (Ukraine still being in the Soviet Union when Oksana was growing up and learning to skate). Nevertheless, COP did not exist back in 1993/94 and under the old 6.0 system, Baiul did not need the technical ability of COP skaters to win the world and olympic titles. Her artistry more than made up for any technical deficiencies she had (and her competitors were not much better - which was to be expected - they were taught to the standards that existed at the time), and her coaches obviously got it right as artistry was where the marks were under the 6.0 system.

    A lot of revisionists try to re-judge the 1994 Olympics using COP standards and try and make out a case for a Kerrigan victory. But as Baiul and Kerrigan would have been completely different types of skater under COP, its a completely pointless exercise. The best you can do is to say well Baiul would probably have turned out like Adelina Sotnikova under COP and Kerrigan would probably have turned out like Alissa Czisny. Hence, if the 1994 Olympics had been held under COP conditions, your best comparison will be the 2013 World Championships (the first Worlds Sotnikova will be eligible to compete in), or even better the 2014 Olympics (i.e. by comparing where Sotnikova and Czisny place). Not a very satisfactory comparison to say the least, but nor is re-judging a competition that took place in the 6.0 system era by COP standards.

    Interestingly, Baiul's idols were Jill Trenary and Katarina Witt - two of the best artistic skaters of the time. That says a lot about the 6.0 system and its heavy bias towards artistry and well choreographed programs.
    Last edited by Maofan7; 12-27-2011 at 10:32 AM.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by skateboy View Post
    I barely watch ladies skating anymore, it just kind of bores me now. It occurred to me that the top ladies programs of today (Carolina, Mao) would not have had a chance medaling at any of the Olympics from 1992 onward.

    In fact, a top 5 finish would have been improbable.

    ladiezzzzzzzzzzzzzz......

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    I agree that the ladies event has been ruined (for me) by the not so new judging system. I pray for the day's when a lady could do a camel spin without the pull up to her head-or laid back spin or spiral.
    Everything has to be so difficult to get the levels now that it's more like gymnastics.
    Kwan's free skate at the 2001 Worlds was for me the last truly great yet simple (by simple I mean by today's standards) free skate.
    Adding double toe loop or double loop to triple jumps may be difficult but most of the time look messy.
    Kerrigan when she got it right-Olympic shorts in 1992 & 1994 & at the worlds in 1993 were fantastic to watch.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vagabond View Post
    Baiul had five triples in her FS, of which only two were clean.
    I know that the 3T was slightly two-footed and the 3F very obviously so, but what was the third triple-jumping error? Did she flutz?

    Asada would've been in trouble without at least a 3flutz in the SP combination jumping pass, but I could see her medaling at the Olympics in the 1990s with her 2011 NHK FS (2A, 3F2R, 3flutz, 2A3T, 3F<2R<2R, 3S, and 3R that was heavily two-footed).
    Last edited by falling_dance; 12-27-2011 at 11:24 AM.

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    Asada could have flutzed though with little penalty....

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    IMO the fact that frontrunners are lacking in the field takes the most of the fault.(I don't think it's all about CoP) When Yuna had flawless 3-3s and Mao was pushing 3As endlessly, the level of fields altogether went up just to have a shot at medaling and now that none of both is existent, it's much easier to medal without any of those and it became uninspiring and just plain normal.

    Look at this wonderful clip bartek posted a couple of weeks ago and be amazed how many ladies were pushing their own envelopes. How exciting was that?!
    http://www.fsuniverse.net/forum/show...57#post3408257

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    I wonder if somebody posted this same sort of thing in a chat forum back when for the first time they allowed women to show their knees when they competed?
    I guess the hard thing for a lot of people to accept is why God would allow me to go running through their yards, yelling and spinning around.


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    Current position in best skater of 2011 poll with 199 votes cast:-

    1. Men - 77 votes
    2. Ice dance - 71 votes
    3. Pairs - 32 votes
    4. Ladies - 19 votes

    That says it all about the current state of ladies skating - at a low ebb. Hopefully, the new Russians, Gracie Gold, and a revitalised Mao can inject new life into it.

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    Mao would have been multiple champion in the 6.0 system. Remember how many points she lost up until 2010-2011 season with her 3A< which had a base value of a 2A. Her 3Flutz would receive no penalty and she would probably still try 3F-3L since there were no UR. I can understand your point with Carolina, but not with Mao.

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