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  1. #81
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    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    I've never thought about the layback as breasts in the air. Interesting that you do.
    I don't care about modesty but most laybacks look fugly.

    I'd just like to see the rules for men and women equal.

    So giving the choice for men to do a spiral sequence in the FS and not requiring women to do laybacks and spirals if they don't want to.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ziggy View Post
    So giving the choice for men to do a spiral sequence in the FS and not requiring women to do laybacks and spirals if they don't want to.
    Oooooh, yes please!

    On two fronts: I am as flexible as a brick and my spirals suck and my layback probably will too, but I could do steps

    And I LOVE watching men do spirals. Plushenko's arabesque was to die for, it's a shame he never did it more often. Jason Brown has some very nice spirals and I think we would be surprised to see who else in the mens' field has nice spirals that they just never use.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gkelly View Post
    But none other require the head to be off axis from upright (either back or sideways), which certainly challenges the balance more. However, can it be required in a way that doesn't demand flexibility?
    Yes. See Kwan's crescent spin. She didn't have the most flexible of backs and came up with this creative solution.

    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    I think that the flexibility in spirals and laybacks is fine and should be rewarded, but that it shouldn't be elevated over any of the other skills, and especially over form in general, proper jump technique, and use of proper edges.
    Why can't they all be rewarded? Flexibility is something I value because it helps prevent injury but more selfishly, it creates beautiful lines. I like beautiful lines. Otherwise I'd watch speed skating. It's like saying, lets eliminate flexibility in ballet and just have the jumps, jetes and fine pointe work. Where would ballet be?
    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post

    Many of the top Ladies are performing 3/3's in SP (now), with the trend going upward, and very few men are performing quads in the SP. Women's solo jump difficulty is close to par with the Men.
    I am sure you've noticed how much higher men's event totals are vs. women. Most top men's jump content is much much higher in difficulty than most top women. Should I do a layout of the current world champs? Kostner doesn't even do a lutz.
    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    The spiral is no longer a requirement for the SP and is considered in transitions.
    That's too bad. OTOH, someone upthread had mentioned how ugly some of the spirals are so some competitors are better off.
    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    Ladies can show mastery of the sport -- blade and body control -- in the FS by doing a circular step sequence and a straightline or serpentine sequence sequence as well as they can show it by doing a spiral step sequence.
    They can glide on one foot across the diagonal length of the rink while maintaining a difficult balancing position and executing a COE while presenting the audience with an aesthetically pleasing picture? Spirals are beautiful, very hard to do so it looks good and therefore should remain a part of the sport. Can't do the full 180 extension? Do the catchfoot like Slutskaya, Wagner and Zahra Lari.

    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    I don't think that women should have to display flexibility in lieu of harder jumps and jump combos, and that is what both spirals and layback spins require.
    Not in lieu but along with. If men can do spirals well, more power to them. Women who can do harder jumps and jump combos do them. Just look at Tuktamysheva. And Asada is still struggling with the 3 axel but she is trying, no one is holding her back.
    Last edited by IceAlisa; 04-24-2012 at 04:28 AM.
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  4. #84

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    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    Yes. See Kwan's crescent spin. She didn't have the most flexible of backs and came up with this creative solution.

    Why can't they all be rewarded? Flexibility is something I value because it helps prevent injury but more selfishly, it creates beautiful lines. I like beautiful lines. Otherwise I'd watch speed skating. It's like saying, lets eliminate flexibility in ballet and just have the jumps, jetes and fine pointe work. Where would ballet be?

    I am sure you've noticed how much higher men's event totals are vs. women. Most top men's jump content is much much higher in difficulty than most top women. Should I do a layout of the current world champs? Kostner doesn't even do a lutz.
    That's too bad. OTOH, someone upthread had mentioned how ugly some of the spirals are so some competitors are better off.

    They can glide on one foot across the diagonal length of the rink while maintaining a difficult balancing position and executing a COE while presenting the audience with an aesthetically pleasing picture? Spirals are beautiful, very hard to do so it looks good and therefore should remain a part of the sport. Can't do the full 180 extension? Do the catchfoot like Slutskaya, Wagner and Zahra Lari.

    Not in lieu but along with. If men can do spirals well, more power to them. Women who can do harder jumps and jump combos do them. Just look at Tuktamysheva. And Asada is still struggling with the 3 axel but she is trying, no one is holding her back.

    ^^^all of this.

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    Very inspiring indeed! If/when there's a video of her performing, I'm definitely going to check it out. Actually, at my rink here in Montreal, there's a youngish lady who competes wearing the hejab. Just a couple of weeks ago I attended the club end-of-the-season show, and she performed in a couple of the group numbers. Her costumes matched the other ladies except for the darker tights, and the hejab which matched the costume (along with an explosion of sequins ) It surely grabs your attention and made her stand out!

    Question for those of you who would know about this: Do middle-eastern/gulf countries not usually have female participants in such sports as swimming and track & Field? If so, I hope Zahra wouldn't get too much flack for her (very decent) costumes. It would be ironic if she's criticized from the countries that brought us belly-dancing

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ziggy View Post
    That is great news!

    Great that women can skate in trousers/unitards now, nothing stopping the costumes from being 'modest'.

    Theoretically a hijab should not be allowed in ISU competitions though, given it's a prop isn't it (being detachable)?

    I definitely do not want to discuss the political aspects of this (that's what PI is for), just making a technical point about the rules.

    Skaters never cover their heads and only used hats and similar when they were explicitly allowed to do so given the Short Dance theme.

    I imagine (and hope) that no referee would actually enforce that rule against a girl who chose to skate in a hijab, though.
    I've seen several skaters in the U.S. compete wearing hijab: it's most certainly not a costume deduction, and a hijab is no more "detachable" than a skating dress is detachable - in the sense that they can both be removed - and is definitely less detachable than the hairpieces worn by many female skaters, which fall out with surprising regularity.

    Also, before the rule change, there was no rule prohibiting women from wearing pants in competition: they just had to have something that could be considered a skirt over the hips. The young women who I've seen compete in hijab typically wore a dress-like long-sleeve shirtdress that extended over the hips, matching trousers, and a well-secured hijab that coordinated with the overall outfit. I saw young women compete in this ensemble before the rule change allowing trousers went into effect, and it was considered no different under the rules from a skater who wore black tights under a black dress.

    The conversation has taken a turn away from discussing modesty, so I won't say very much, but I will note that it's interesting to read what others define as "modest" and the assumptions that are being made about what qualifies as "modest" for Muslim women; those assumptions strike me as being closer to what I would identify as "modest" in fundamentalist Christianity as practiced in the U.S. compared to moderate Islam, actually. FWIW, different religions - and different cultures and different individuals - have varying thoughts about what constitutes "modesty," which is generally about more than just clothing: it's about modest behavior, thought, deed, action. One non-Muslim friend of mine includes "no corporate logos" in her definition of modesty, while another who is Christian tries to avoid wearing neon colors and only wears skirts that fall mid-calf (her teen girls wear pants or skirts that fall around/below the knee). Another friend, who is Jewish and married, would never leave her house without her hair covered, but regularly wears tight clothing that I would never dream of wearing because my definition of "modest clothing" includes loose, layered clothing. There's a tremendous amount of variation among Muslims, both in the U.S. and in the most of the Middle East, about "modest dress." In my current community, it's very common to see hijabi women wearing brightly colored hijab that coordinate with their very-fashionable outfits, although there are also women who wear only solid, dark colors, typically the same color hijab->foot.

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    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    Why can't they all be rewarded?
    I don't know why you're convinced I think that things should be not rewarded or that they should be eliminated. There's a huge difference between rewarding something through incentives -- i.e. higher base values -- and requiring it. They can reward it all they want.

    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    Flexibility is something I value because it helps prevent injury but more selfishly, it creates beautiful lines. I like beautiful lines. Otherwise I'd watch speed skating. It's like saying, lets eliminate flexibility in ballet and just have the jumps, jetes and fine pointe work. Where would ballet be?
    Back to its roots: in the time of classical ballet -- i.e., Petipa and Ivanov -- there were no arabesques above waist height; to do so was considered anti-classical and out of balance and proportion.

    You don't watch Men's or Ice Dance, where there are no spiral or layback spin requirements, because somehow both are like speed-skating? I would die a happy girl if there were Ladies who started skating like Takahashi, Kozuka, Chan, Ge, Abbott, Gachinski, Bourzat, Tkachenko (without the drama face), Soloviev, Tran, Buttle, and I'm I could think of more if it wasn't too late for

    A skater can show great flexibility in the context of transitions, step sequences, spins, and jump landings. Takahashi, Jason Brown, and Robin Szolkowy, Victor Pfeiffer, Misha Ge, Ilia Tkachenko, and the young Plushenko come to mind. If a Men's skater doesn't have flexibility, he can avoid it, but the 80% of the women who perform layback spins and spirals in a perfunctory way at best and at worst are forced to do them to somehow compensate for having easier jump content .

    The current judging also rewards flexibility and air position in spirals over stability, good running edge, and deep edges: Sasha Cohen was the poster child for that. But then it also gives high scores to skaters who jump with bent-over entrances and mule kicks if the jumps are considered difficult enough, and quad twists where the lady lands draped over the man's shoulder like a Girl Scout sash.

    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    I am sure you've noticed how much higher men's event totals are vs. women. Most top men's jump content is much much higher in difficulty than most top women. Should I do a layout of the current world champs? Kostner doesn't even do a lutz.
    Setting aside the two most obvious inequities in the scoring system -- the 80% factor penalty in Ladies PCS in both programs and the eighth jumping pass for men -- my point was that in the SP, not the FS, Ladies jump content is improving and starting to close the gap, in base score at least, and if the younger Ladies keep up their harder 3/3's (big if), the difference between their SP base scores and the average Men's SP base score will be between the 3A and the 2A.

    Although there's a higher presentation standard for Ladies, they still must do 25% more to get the same PCS as a Men's skater -- which is about 10% of the total score, if TES and PCS are about equal for Men, which has been the IJS ideal. I think the PCS penalty is enough of a penalty for Ladies, without having to show hyper-flexibility. Should the Junior Men be forced to do layback spins and spiral step sequences because they have somewhat similar jump content to the Senior Ladies? (They both have 12 elements in the FS.) Carolina Kostner would have been JGPF Men's Champion, if her PCS hadn't taken the 80% factoring penalty.

    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    That's too bad. OTOH, someone upthread had mentioned how ugly some of the spirals are so some competitors are better off.
    So are spectators.

    I much preferred Shizuka Arakawa's stupendous Ina Bauer to her fine spiral.

    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    They can glide on one foot across the diagonal length of the rink while maintaining a difficult balancing position and executing a COE while presenting the audience with an aesthetically pleasing picture?
    Not without changing positions, but in a step sequence, glide across at least half of the rink while maintaining difficult constantly changing balancing positions, constantly changing edges, turns on one foot, and spiral positions.

    If the Men had to do the same, I might find it ugly, like I do with watching most male Pair skater perform them, but I wouldn't have a problem with the double-standard.

    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    Spirals are beautiful, very hard to do so it looks good and therefore should remain a part of the sport. Can't do the full 180 extension? Do the catchfoot like Slutskaya, Wagner and Zahra Lari.
    There's nothing to stop Ladies from doing spirals, and the ones that can do them well can continue to do them, even under the new proposal. (So can the ones who don't do them well.) They will have a choice, which I Now, if the ISU will only get rid of the required layback spin.

    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    Not in lieu but along with. If men can do spirals well, more power to them. Women who can do harder jumps and jump combos do them. Just look at Tuktamysheva. And Asada is still struggling with the 3 axel but she is trying, no one is holding her back.
    I have no problem with this, as long as the women aren't forced to do elements that Men aren't by the rules.

    In the current system, Men are not forced to do any harder jumps than Ladies. If they need to do them to be competitive, they will. If Ladies need to do layback spins and spirals to be competitive, they will. Competition and results will drive them.
    Last edited by kwanfan1818; 04-24-2012 at 11:09 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by 5Ali3 View Post
    The conversation has taken a turn away from discussing modesty
    It should have never taken this turn in the first place, IMO.

    This is not PI.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MR-FAN View Post
    Do middle-eastern/gulf countries not usually have female participants in such sports as swimming and track & Field?
    There have been several Muslim women runners who have competed in the Olympics, like Hassiba Boulmerka from Algeria, but AFAIK none who have worn hijabs.
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    Quote Originally Posted by overedge View Post
    There have been several Muslim women runners who have competed in the Olympics, like Hassiba Boulmerka from Algeria, but AFAIK none who have worn hijabs.
    That's not correct. Ruqaya Al Ghasara, a sprinter from Bahrain, worn a hijab at the 2004 and 2008 Olympics.
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    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    I don't know why you're convinced I think that things should be not rewarded or that they should be eliminated. There's a huge difference between rewarding something through incentives -- i.e. higher base values -- and requiring it. They can reward it all they want.
    Because a few posters, including yourself, are clamoring for the elimination of the requirement.
    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post

    Back to its roots: in the time of classical ballet -- i.e., Petipa and Ivanov -- there were no arabesques above waist height; to do so was considered anti-classical and out of balance and proportion.
    So what? Why do you bring up the roots? Should I bring up the roots of figure skating where there were barely any triple jumps? Why is this relevant?
    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    You don't watch Men's or Ice Dance, where there are no spiral or layback spin requirements, because somehow both are like speed-skating?
    I don't really watch dance but I do watch men's. The requirements are different because the a man's body and a woman's body are better suited for different things physically, no matter what they told you in your sociology class. Are you advocating for the same standards in every sport? The London Olympics are coming up, should all athletes be judged by the same standard? Why separate men's and women's events at all? Let them all compete en masse against each other.
    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    I would die a happy girl if there were Ladies who started skating like Takahashi, Kozuka, Chan, Ge, Abbott, Gachinski, Bourzat, Tkachenko (without the drama face), Soloviev, Tran, Buttle, and I'm I could think of more if it wasn't too late for
    I hope you find your happiness in other sources. Women are not putting a clean 3 axel in their program and you want several and a quad.
    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    A skater can show great flexibility in the context of transitions, step sequences, spins, and jump landings. Takahashi, Jason Brown, and Robin Szolkowy, Victor Pfeiffer, Misha Ge, Ilia Tkachenko, and the young Plushenko come to mind.
    So why not in a spiral? Some of them do it. But because they carry a burden of expectation of much more complex jump content, they don't have to. As I've mentioned, the women who can do more complex jumps are numbered like Tukt and Asada whose 3 axel was MIA this season. No one is holding the women back from harder jumps. No one.
    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    If a Men's skater doesn't have flexibility, he can avoid it, but the 80% of the women who perform layback spins and spirals in a perfunctory way at best and at worst are forced to do them to somehow compensate for having easier jump content .
    Yes. They have to do something if they are not doing quads or 3 axels.
    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    The current judging also rewards flexibility and air position in spirals over stability, good running edge, and deep edges: Sasha Cohen was the poster child for that. But then it also gives high scores to skaters who jump with bent-over entrances and mule kicks if the jumps are considered difficult enough, and quad twists where the lady lands draped over the man's shoulder like a Girl Scout sash.
    Really? I was under the impression that Zhang got penalized for the mule kick to the point that she had to relearn the technique. I wonder why she bothered if there was no penalty...Really, think about it.
    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post

    Setting aside the two most obvious inequities in the scoring system -- the 80% factor penalty in Ladies PCS in both programs and the eighth jumping pass for men -- my point was that in the SP, not the FS, Ladies jump content is improving and starting to close the gap, in base score at least, and if the younger Ladies keep up their harder 3/3's (big if), the difference between their SP base scores and the average Men's SP base score will be between the 3A and the 2A.
    Excepting when the men throw in a quad in the SP. Which they are doing.
    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    Although there's a higher presentation standard for Ladies, they still must do 25% more to get the same PCS as a Men's skater -- which is about 10% of the total score, if TES and PCS are about equal for Men, which has been the IJS ideal. I think the PCS penalty is enough of a penalty for Ladies, without having to show hyper-flexibility. Should the Junior Men be forced to do layback spins and spiral step sequences because they have somewhat similar jump content to the Senior Ladies?
    Why are you comparing junior and seniors? First the roots of ballet, now a different age category? They are junior for a reason, the expectations are lower.
    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    In the current system, Men are not forced to do any harder jumps than Ladies. If they need to do them to be competitive, they will. If Ladies need to do layback spins and spirals to be competitive, they will. Competition and results will drive them.
    You keep saying that but it's totally divorced from reality. Yes, they are forced if they want to be on the podium. End of story. It's a de facto rule.
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    Quote Originally Posted by allezfred View Post
    That's not correct.
    Which is why I said "as far as I know".
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    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    Because a few posters, including yourself, are clamoring for the elimination of the requirement.
    I could be misunderstanding something, but giving skaters a choice between a spiral sequence and MITF sequence is not the same as completely doing away with an element. I'm pretty sure we're still a long way away from having spirals and laybacks on an endangered species list when it comes to ladies programs...

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    I would guess that most skaters would choose a path of least resistance. It's a numbers game, why exert yourself without extra incentive?
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    Quote Originally Posted by ioana View Post
    I could be misunderstanding something, but giving skaters a choice between a spiral sequence and MITF sequence is not the same as completely doing away with an element.
    Exactly

    Skaters go after the elements and levels based on points awarded for such. The reason so many do catch-foot positions is because they are awarded more points/higher levels. Step sequences and spins are awarded different levels based on the difficulty involved. Presumably a good layback would be worth more than an upright scratch spin. So skaters looking to capitalize on points would do that (or some fugly catch-foot variation ).

    Personally I'd rather have skaters, both male and female, be able to craft programs that draw upon their strengths rather than impose some genderized notion of appropriate male/female skating. Let skaters choose for themselves how they want to express themselves artistically and aesthetically. This isn't the 1950's anymore, for goodness sake

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    Quote Originally Posted by agalisgv View Post
    Personally I'd rather have skaters, both male and female, be able to craft programs that draw upon their strengths rather than impose some genderized notion of appropriate male/female skating. Let skaters choose for themselves how they want to express themselves artistically and aesthetically. This isn't the 1950's anymore, for goodness sake
    Unfortunately skating is still very much stuck in the 1950s.

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    Skating is a judged sport, which means standards and requirements. If everyone did their own thing, there would no way to compare skateres' performances. And newsflash: most sports have women's and men's categories with different requirements, not just skating.
    Last edited by IceAlisa; 04-24-2012 at 09:19 PM. Reason: Typo. Damn iphone.
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    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    Because a few posters, including yourself, are clamoring for the elimination of the requirement.
    Surely someone who was born into the former Soviet Union can appreciate the difference between restrictions/requirements and options/incentives, no?

    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    So what? Why do you bring up the roots? Should I bring up the roots of figure skating where there were barely any triple jumps? Why is this relevant?
    You asked "Where would ballet be?", and I answered it: to the standards of Petipa, arguably the greatest ballet choreographer of all time, not to mention Anna Pavlova, Mathilde Kschessinska, Olga Preobrajenska, Pierrina Legnani and the generation of ballerinas before them: Grahn, Grisi, Cerrito, and Taglioni. The ballerinas of the Italian style moved more quickly and could do a lot of technical things that modern day ballerinas cannot, much more akin to skating skills and step sequences than spirals and laybacks.

    Peggy Fleming was one of the most balletic Ladies skaters, and there wasn't a required spiral sequence in 1968. She added them, rarely lifting her leg above 95 degrees, as transitional elements.

    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    I don't really watch dance but I do watch men's. The requirements are different because the a man's body and a woman's body are better suited for different things physically, no matter what they told you in your sociology class.
    Or perhaps because the requirements are self-selecting, and the women who are successful are the ones who can meet the current women's requirements that emphasize flexibility at the expense of other skills?

    Almost every especially flexible ballerina I've heard speak or write on the subject has said that flexibility is a trade-off with control and stability. Perhaps women with less flexibility could have as important an impact on other aspects of figure skating -- for example, stronger jumps and/or Chan-like edges -- if they weren't screened out by the flexibility requirements. They're athletes, not applicants to the Vaganova Academy.

    Good form and technique within styles is common to most forms of movement, but figure skating is not ballet, and, IMO, should not be held to ballet standards or a ballet aesthetic.

    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    Are you advocating for the same standards in every sport? The London Olympics are coming up, should all athletes be judged by the same standard? Why separate men's and women's events at all? Let them all compete en masse against each other.
    Having the same rules and competing against each other directly are very different things.

    Perhaps the best analogy to what I'd like to see in skating is diving. Men and women compete in the same categories (10m platform, 3m and 10m springboard, synchronized 3m springboard and 10m platform). The men do six dives and the women five, much like the Men's program is 30 seconds longer than the Ladies' programs. Both men and women are required to do one dive from each of the five categories, and the men chose a second dive from any category.

    The men choose dives with higher degrees of difficulty, yet the women are not required to do stick to some category of girlie dives that required additional physical characteristics or, for the most part, better form, or be restricted from highest degree of difficulty dives. (These are restricted by age, not gender.) There are graceful men and women divers, and there are powerful, athletic men and women divers. All are expected to point their toes and hold their straightened legs together on entry.

    Also, if there's a woman who can compete on all of the Men's apparatus and be the best all-around gymnast in those events or vice versa, I have no problem with them competing.


    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    I hope you find your happiness in other sources. Women are not putting a clean 3 axel in their program and you want several and a quad.
    You're talking to the wrong person here. I might clamor for the removal of gender-based restrictions and requirements in figure skating as well as changes to the Zayak rule to give skaters more options, but I've never been one to clamor for more rotations, and I'm the last person who would whine about Buttle earning a World Championship or Lysacek winning the Olympic gold medal without a quad and against men with them.

    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    So why not in a spiral? Some of them do it. But because they carry a burden of expectation of much more complex jump content, they don't have to. As I've mentioned, the women who can do more complex jumps are numbered like Tukt and Asada whose 3 axel was MIA this season. No one is holding the women back from harder jumps. No one.
    I simply don't buy your argument that Ladies should have other requirements because they don't carry the burden of more complex jump content. They already have the higher bar to clear with the PCS penalty and higher standards for the same PCS scores. In the FS, they're already skating a program that's 30 seconds shorter.

    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    Yes. They have to do something if they are not doing quads or 3 axels.
    Not buying it.

    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    Really? I was under the impression that Zhang got penalized for the mule kick to the point that she had to relearn the technique. I wonder why she bothered if there was no penalty...Really, think about it.
    Yes, really. Zhang got fine scores when she was landing her mule-kick jumps and under-rotations weren't being called by the technical team -- she was well-rewarded with one Junior World gold and two Junior World silvers despite her mule-kick -- and she didn't bother to change her technique until she could no longer land her jumps. Kanako Murakami, was second in the SP at Nice despite her mule kick, and even though, combined with her growth spurt, it is already interfering with her landings, she was fifth overall.

    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    Excepting when the men throw in a quad in the SP. Which they are doing.
    Some are.

    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    Why are you comparing junior and seniors? First the roots of ballet, now a different age category? They are junior for a reason, the expectations are lower.
    There are 15-20-year olds competing at Junior Worlds, and 15-20-year olds competing at Senior Worlds. (Sometimes, like Dennis Ten, they are competing at both.) The concession to their age is shorter programs and fewer elements in the FS, and a specific jump designated as the solo jump in the SP. However, if there is some absolute technical content that a skater should have to be able to do in order to not have to show flexibility skills, and most of the Junior Men aren't meeting that, shouldn't they have to display something else because, they're not doing twp 3A's and a quad or two quads and a 3A?

    I suppose they are on their way to be Real Men, and because of this, they get to use their training time on harder jumps and don't have to compromise jumping ability with flexibility requirements.

    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    You keep saying that but it's totally divorced from reality. Yes, they are forced if they want to be on the podium. End of story. It's a de facto rule.
    It's an incentive. If they don't, then many times they aren't competitive, except when they are.
    Last edited by kwanfan1818; 04-25-2012 at 12:40 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    Surely someone who was born into the former Soviet Union can appreciate the difference between restrictions/requirements and options/incentives, no?
    A non-sequitur.

    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    You asked "Where would ballet be?", and I answered it: to the standards of Petipa, arguably the greatest ballet choreographer of all time, not to mention Anna Pavlova, Mathilde Kschessinska, Olga Preobrajenska, Pierrina Legnani and the generation of ballerinas before them: Grahn, Grisi, Cerrito, and Taglioni. The ballerinas of the Italian style moved more quickly and could do a lot of technical things that modern day ballerinas cannot, much more akin to skating skills and step sequences than spirals and laybacks.
    However, ballet isn't there, thankfully and these days a ballerina without flexibility will not find a job.
    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post

    Or perhaps because the requirements are self-selecting, and the women who are successful are the ones who can meet the current women's requirements that emphasize flexibility at the expense of other skills?
    Have you seen the movie The Social Network? If you have, you may recall that Mark Zuckerberg was accused of stealing the idea of Facebook and building the site himself. His defense: if they had invented Facebook, they would have invented Facebook. If the women could do harder jumps, they would. Are you seriously suggesting that the layback and spiral is what keeping Asada from landing her 3 axel? What evidence is there for this? Where is the quad from the not so flexible female skaters? Any woman who could bust out a 3 axel and a more complex 3/3 or even a quad, would do it. Again, see Tutkamysheva. If they could do it consistently enough to put into a competition, they would.
    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    Almost every especially flexible ballerina I've heard speak or write on the subject has said that flexibility is a trade-off with control and stability. Perhaps women with less flexibility could have as important an impact on other aspects of figure skating -- for example, stronger jumps -- if they weren't screened out by the flexibility requirements.
    That's a theory for which I have seen no proof. Sasha Cohen is no proof because I believe all her problems were purely psychological. Also, see Kirov and Bolshoi schools of ballet where flexibility and control/strength are combined beautifully.
    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    Good form and technique within styles is common to most forms of movement, but figure skating is not ballet, and, IMO, should not be held to ballet standards or a ballet aesthetic.
    Figure skating is a sport where a beautiful line is important. Again, flexibility not only helps achieve the aesthetically pleasing line but also helps prevent injury. Consider that.

    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    Having the same rules and competing against each other directly are very different things.
    Again, this is divorced from reality.


    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    Also, if there's a woman who can compete on all of the Men's apparatus and be the best all-around gymnast in those events or vice versa, I have no problem with them competing.
    That's nice but do they? Where are these women gymnasts who do rings and other traditionally men's apparati. Who is keeping them away from them? Don't tell me it's flexibility because male gymnasts are very flexible.

    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post

    You're talking to the wrong person here. I might clamor for the removal of gender-based restrictions and requirements in figure skating as well as changes to the Zayak rule to give skaters more options, but I've never been one to clamor for more rotations, and I'm the last person who would whine about Buttle earning a World Championship or Lysacek winning the Olympic gold medal without a quad and against men with them.
    But that's history. Try to compete against Chan without a quad. Not. Going. To Happen. Takahashi landed two quads in his last competition, one in the SP. Please lets get back to real world.
    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post

    I simply don't buy your argument that Ladies should have other requirements because they don't carry the burden of more complex jump content. They already have the higher bar to clear with the PCS penalty and higher standards for the same PCS scores. In the FS, they're already skating a program that's 30 seconds shorter.
    And that's a hard thing? A shorter program? I don't understand what you are arguing at all. You don't have to buy my argument. I don't insist on it.

    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post

    Yes, really. Zhang got fine scores when she was landing her mule-kick jumps and under-rotations weren't being called by the technical team -- she was well-rewarded with one Junior World gold and two Junior World silvers despite her mule-kick -- and she didn't bother to change her technique until she could no longer land her jumps.
    Care to mention her achievements as a Novice? Who cares what happened then? She got slammed as a senior and relearned the technique, therefore the incentive is there. That's proof right there.
    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post

    Kanako Murakami, was second in the SP at Nice despite her mule kick, and even though, combined with her growth spurt, it is already interfering with her landings, she was fifth overall.
    Her "mule kick" is nowhere near that egregious as Zhang's was. You know what I really wish she got slammed for? Her poor posture. Murakami and Hanyu both.


    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    There are 15-20-year olds competing at Junior Worlds, and 15-20-year olds competing at Senior Worlds. (Sometimes, like Dennis Ten, they are competing at both.) The concession to their age is shorter programs and fewer elements in the FS, and a specific jump designated as the solo jump in the SP. However, if there is some absolute technical content that a skater should have to be able to do in order to not have to show flexibility skills, and most of the Junior Men aren't meeting that, shouldn't they have to display something else because, they're not doing twp 3A's and a quad or two quads and a 3A?
    They are juniors, why are you applying senior standards to them again?
    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    I suppose they are on their way to be Real Men, and because of this, they get to use their training time on harder jumps and don't have to compromise jumping ability with flexibility requirements.
    I am FAR from convinced that having a nice layback or a spiral impairs you jumping ability. What about Arakawa and her Ina? That required extreme back flexibility. Kwan's spiral was close to 180 although not all the way, but a lot higher than a lot of women today and she jumped fine. This is all conjecture brought up to serve a very strange agenda. Why are you on the rampage against flexibility? It prevents injury and looks good. All skaters, male and female should try to achieve it.

    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    It's an incentive. If they don't, then many times they aren't competitive, except when they are.
    Again, try going against Chan et al without all the bells and whistles. Earth to kwanfan1818, please come back. I hope you are not coaching some young man, telling him he will be just fine without a set of complex 3/3s, 3 axel and a quad.

    Since we are on the subject of ballet, flexibility and jumps, have you seen Natalia Osipova? Hardly an inflexible individual and someone who could easily get into the layback or spiral position. Have you seen her jump? Do you know they call her Natalia airlines?

    Finally, Mayo clinic approves of flexibility:
    Stretching can help improve flexibility. And better flexibility may improve your performance in physical activities or decrease your risk of injuries by helping your joints move through their full range of motion.
    http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/str...SECTIONGROUP=2
    Last edited by IceAlisa; 04-25-2012 at 04:52 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    What about Arakawa and her Ina? That required extreme back flexibility.
    Wow, you have a very long list of reasoning. Well, I do not know much on flexibility, but I think one cannot use Arakawa as a proof.

    I heard that two of her spine bones are shaped irregular, which allows the extreme flexibility. Her Ina Bauer is a unique case. That cannot be replicated or generalized to other skaters' situation.

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