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  1. #1
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    Revamping COP and Overhauling the SP/LP

    Mods- not sure if this belongs here in here or in the Trash Can; please move if needed.

    We got into an off topic discussion in another thread regarding possible changes to the COP/IJS and I think the question deserves its own thread. After the season ends, the system will be reevaluated and tweaked as it is every year. What changes would you like to see?

    I feel that the ISU needs to rework how the SP and LP are scored and figure out a way to differentiate the two, as the LP has become - literally - a longer version of the short program, whereas under 6.0, the SP had a specific purpose: required elements and specific deductions with the goal of assessing one's standard of skating based on a predefined criteria. The LP, OTOH, allowed skaters the freedom to focus on their strengths without fear of penalty. They just built their technical merit as high as they could using their strengths.

    Below are my recommendations for how the SP and LP should be structured. I will follow up with levels/GOE, but realize this is a lot to digest.

    Short Program
    I think the SP should go back to simply testing proficiency within the RE. Reintroduce the spiral sequence, and grade everything at Level 1, focusing on skating technique, quality and execution. Jump values and GOEs would be adjusted to be consistent with the scoring of the other components, depending on where they fit in terms of importance. Use this program to build skaters' strength across all skills by requiring that both an edge and toe jump be performed, as well as different spin positions.

    Allowing more skaters the chance at being in contention after the SP would be a major plus for the sport. The fact that someone with such beautiful skating skills as Nikodinov would be buried under COP under COP isn't right. Skaters with great technique should be allowed their chance to gain points, just as those with added flexibility and skill are. This system would also keep SP scores much more contracted, preventing the Yuna's and VT's of the world from winning when the game is supposed to only be halfway over.

    SP
    1) Jump combination (minimum 3-2)
    2) Solo jump* preceded by steps (steps given separate GOE)
    3) Double axel
    4) Flying spin (alternating between camel and sit)
    5) 1-position solo spin (must be different than flying spin); I think the layback requirement is outdated and favors certain body type
    6) Combination spin
    7) Spiral Sequence (minimum 3 positions)
    8) Step Sequence

    *Solo jump must come from different family of jumps than that used for the first jump within the combo (in the case of a 3-3, solo jump is up to the skater's discretion)

    Long Program
    Meanwhile, the LP can retain a level system for jumps, spins and steps to allow skaters to build points around their strength, allowing 1-2 "free" items of equal value to be included: a spiral sequence, ChSt, 1-position spin, jump of any rotation, etc..

    LP
    1) 7 jumping passes*, 1 being an axel (for ladies)
    2) Minmum 3 spins, 1 of which must be a combination
    3) Step Sequence
    4) Choice between spiral sequence, ChSt (with 3-second spiral required within), 1-position spin, or series of unlisted jumps (minimum 2); given same point value and judged solely on GOE

    *combos multiplied by 1.1, sequences 1, and falls receive -3 mandatory along with a deduction worth 25% of the jump
    **maximum 3 jumps per program eligible for 10% bonus

    Program Components
    The goal of condensing the PCS is to allow the judges to make more accurate assessments, by combining areas that might seem duplicative on the surface. Including "overall impression" is aimed at providing an area within IJS to account for the performance as a whole. Ideally, each component would show up, and the judge would enter a score for each skill within the category. The would be averaged, but all numbers would be shown on the protocols. This is to ensure judges fully understand how each component is defined.

    Skating Skills
    [ 7 ] Blade Work: minimal scratching, use of deep and correct edging
    [ 8 ] Speed: ability to generate and control speed with little pushing or pumping
    [ 7 ] Form: correct posture, competent stretch and flexibility, tight legs during jump elements
    [ 8 ] Overall Strength: ability to complete jumps and spins of the highest level from all traditional entries and positions
    TOTAL AVERAGE: 7.5

    Choreography
    [ 6 ] Ice Coverage: use of entire ice surface, setting jumps with adequate space before the boards
    [ 5 ] Range of Motion & Balance: use of entire body and utilizing skills that make use of all levels and planes, placing elements consistently throughout the program, minimal clustering of similar elements
    [ 5 ] Transitions: little use of stroking or 2-foot skating between elements, using MITF and connecting steps to transition between elements, placing spins or unlisted jumps directly before/after jump, unexpected or difficult entry into elements, minimal break in choreography to prepare for elements
    [ 5 ] Timing & Movement: use of choreography that fits the selected music, accuracy of choreography within a defined theme (ex: tango), appropriate use of arms, placing elements and choreography in time with the music, use of tempos to create highs an lows within program
    TOTAL AVERAGE: 5.25

    Performance & Overall Impression
    [ 5 ] Interpretation: ability to perform choreography in time with the music and evoke an an appropriate interpretation, connection with audience commitment to choreography and/or selected theme (ex: waltz) or character
    [ 4 ] Continuity: completion of program from start to finish without interruption due to error or rest stops, stamina from beginning to end of program
    [ 4 ] Cleanliness: ability to complete planned content at the highest quality
    [ 5 ] Timing: placing and completing elements and choreography in time with the music, use of tempo to create highs an lows within program
    TOTAL AVERAGE: 4.5
    Last edited by JJS5056; 01-29-2014 at 06:26 AM.

  2. #2
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    Technical elements are rewarded under TES, why do you want to reward them under PCS again? PCS were designed to reward specific skills relating to skaters' movement and how it relates to the music. People need to stop anchoring on the mistakes and make an effort to consider everything in the program on its own merit.

    I do agree that there is currently some overlap that could be worked on. Some of the same things are rewarded under PE and IN. But then what you have suggested suffers from the same problem with timing coming under two different components. I think that it's impossible to completely remove the overlap because of the 'holistic' nature of the sport.

    PE as a component should get rewritten IMO, because currently, it is a mish-mash of very different things and is really hard to evaluate. To give an example: You have a skater like Lucine who shows very good projection and commitment to presenting his program but he has an appalling posture, poor lines and his movements are very wooden. So he satisfies some of the criteria very well and some very badly. And then you have the criteria of movement being in character of the music which is something very different again and I don't understand why it doesn't come under IN.

    Most importantly, ISU needs to devise some kind of system for marking PCS because at the moment, there isn't one. Singles & Pairs have basic criteria only with no explanation for how the marking process should look like and Ice Dance has this huge table which is completely impractical and pointless.

    Also: panels should be split because it's impossible to focus on both GOE and PCS at the same time if you want to do it properly.

  3. #3

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    Agree with maximum 3 jumps getting bonus after halfway point.

    I also would abolish halfway point bonus in the sp.

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by JJS5056 View Post

    SP
    1) Jump combination (minimum 3-2)
    2) Solo jump* preceded by steps (steps given separate GOE)
    3) Double axel
    4) Flying spin (alternating between camel and sit)
    5) 1-position solo spin (must be different than flying spin); I think the layback requirement is outdated and favors certain body type
    6) Combination spin
    7) Spiral Sequence (minimum 3 positions)
    8) Step Sequence

    *Solo jump must come from different family of jumps than that used for the first jump within the combo (in the case of a 3-3, solo jump is up to the skater's discretion)
    What do you mean by a different family of jumps? Do you just mean that it must be a different jump, or do you mean if the first jump in the combo is a toe jump then the solo must be an edge jump and vice versa?

  5. #5

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    I have an amazing idea for cop! Burn it and destroy it in the same way that it has destroyed this sport and made it into the robotic snoozfest that it has become

  6. #6
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    I agree on the issue that it's weird the FS is judged as a continuation of the SP,
    There needs to be some sort of different value, Not just using your SP+FS to break 200 or whatever

  7. #7
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    Two major changes that I think would bring in more casual skating fans -

    1. Penalize falls more heavily.
    2. Reward 3-3s more.

  8. #8
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    I'm not sure if penalties for falls should be punished severely, I'd like to see skaters try to push themselves. If falls are severely punished, I believe that the reaction will be to stay in a safe comfort zone, which I believe is detrimental to any sport. You'll end up with an exhibition and not a competition.

    I think using a carrot and not a whip is the best way to go, I'd rather watch a splat fest where the end results are less predictable over a snooze fest with predetermined winners.
    Some say that in the Autumn all her arms go brown and fall off. And that if she wrote you a letter of condolence she would at least get your name right.

  9. #9
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    If multiple falls, Or any bad mistakes for that matter could have accumulative deductions could work,
    Like if you fall a second time, it's 2.5 points deduction, or if you underrotate a second jump it's a downgrade,
    Or if you make a second 2 foot or arm down it's a 1 deduction like a fall

    I mean, If you're a great overall skater you could probably rise above these too and not completely fall away,
    But there will be less cases of people winning with 3 falls and a double, and stuff

  10. #10

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    I want the classic layback postion (shoulders square, free leg turned out at the hip) awarded as a feature. It's the most beautiful position in the layback family, and skaters are being encouraged to skip it in the current scoring. And they can even get good GOE while bypassing it too, if the spin is fast and the Beillman position well-stretched. Ick.

  11. #11

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    A separate panel of judges for PCS.

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by caseyedwards View Post

    I also would abolish halfway point bonus in the sp.

    No thank you. I hated seeing SPs where the first 3 elements were jumps.
    "Corporation, n. An ingenious device for obtaining individual profit without individual responsibility." - Ambrose Bierce

  13. #13
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    de-anonymize the judges.

  14. #14

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    Short Yeses from me to suggestions offered above:

    Losing anonymity

    Specific details of what counts as a feature up for discussion -- I'd be happy with finding good ways to reward good classic laybacks and other basic but not necessarily easy positions etc. -- the trick is finding a way to define it that doesn't also reward half-hearted attempts at the basic position. Same for, e.g., scratch spins.

    Gradually increasing penalties for additional falls

    More flexible minimums and maximums of each kind of element in the freeskate, with some optional element types

    Better rules/guidelines for judging PCS

    All of the above could be done with simple tweaks to the existing rules.

    Or the PCS and division of labor among officials could be restructured, the requirements in short vs. long programs could be restructured, as JJS5056 suggests in the first post. Such more major changes are worth considering here, debating what the intended goal is and how best to achieve it.

    I'll come back later with longer posts to add some of my own thoughts on these topics.

    Definitely interesting as a thought exercise, and maybe would get some ISU folks thinking along those lines if they happen to read here. But I don't expect them to consider any massive changes right away, especially if they'd be expensive to implement.

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    I'm a big fan of the simplicity of 6.0. Even if skaters do elements with lots of turns or added positions well, it's often still a headache to watch something so complicated.

    With that said, I suggest the following changes:
    - Make the point differential between levels smaller so that there is more focus on execution. Maybe even make level 3 the highest level to make programs a bit simpler and not crowded with turns and positions.
    - I know many people disagree with me on this point, but I don't think URs should have a downgrade. Rather, URs should be reflected in GOE, maybe a mandatory -2 or -1 GOE. I still don't know why some people think it's ok that a double can be worth more than a URed triple.
    - Bring back the spiral sequence for the ladies.
    - For heaven's sake, decrease the requirements for footwork levels, or at least make it a level 3! Footwork sequences have become so long and convoluted, at this rate they're eventually going to take 2 minutes to do one day.
    - PCS inflation has been going on for awhile and needs to be checked. Today, a 9 is probably worth the same as an 8 4-8 years ago. I'm not sure if this can be reflected in system changes but it needs to be addressed.

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by shady82 View Post
    I know many people disagree with me on this point, but I don't think URs should have a downgrade. Rather, URs should be reflected in GOE, maybe a mandatory -2 or -1 GOE. I still don't know why some people think it's ok that a double can be worth more than a URed triple.

    I read this on Golden Skate and didn’t fact check this, but posters there said that under-rotated jumps get a double hit – a downgraded element plus negative GOE. If that is true, then yeah, that should be fixed so a skater doesn’t get dinged twice for it. Pick one place or the other to ding them for a UR.
    What would Jenny do?

  17. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by snoopy View Post
    I read this on Golden Skate and didn’t fact check this, but posters there said that under-rotated jumps get a double hit – a downgraded element plus negative GOE. If that is true, then yeah, that should be fixed so a skater doesn’t get dinged twice for it. Pick one place or the other to ding them for a UR.
    Downgraded jumps (<<, more than half a revolution short of rotation) get much lower base value and -2 to -3 GOE, and the final GOE must be negative. So yes, the penalty is quite severe and mainly in the lost base value. If the judge honestly thought the jump was rotated in real time, or if one jump in a combination is downgraded but the other was good, then -1 is possible for the final GOE, which is not much different than 0. Most often, jumps that are that short look bad in real time as well and may have other errors (with additional penalty if the additional error is a fall).

    I think it does make sense to penalize twice in these cases, so that the final point values for jumps with the same base value and various combinations of errors work out in approximately this order:

    *Clean, strong/enhanced double jump.
    *Clean but not special double jump.
    *Downgraded triple, landed on one foot, only things wrong with it are severe underrotation and probably wrong landing edge = fully rotated double with minor flaws
    *Downgraded triple with severe underrotation and also other errors (e.g., incorrect takeoff, hand down, free foot down, step out) = rotated double with similar or more severe errors
    *Downgraded triple with fall = rotated double with fall

    Underrotated jumps (<, between 90 and 180 degrees short) get moderately lower base mark (70%) and judges are supposed to reduce the GOE by -1 to -2, but the final GOE does not have to be negative.
    So judges could be further reminded that if the element looked good in real time and there were other good aspects to the element, it's OK to leave the final GOE as 0 or +1 -- in theory, with enough other good aspects, it would even be permissible to leave it as +2.
    Thus the underrotated triple will still be worth more than a double, and an otherwise good but underrotated triple can be worth more than a fully rotated triple with other errors.

  18. #18
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    I would use the numerical scores to rank the skaters (74.57 first, 72.47 second, 71.09 third, for example) in each segment, but when it came to determining the final placements and medals, I'd go back to ordinals. I don't like that someone can get buried in the SP just based on points, nor do I like that someone can win overall just by the SP if they muck up the FS or FD. You win the SP by 13 points? Great, but you're also going to have to skate a good FS to actually win the whole competition.

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    All I would like to see is the removal of the rule that the choreo sequence must be after the step sequence (it is fairly obvious which sequence is which, so I think the rule just hampers creativity).

    I would like a limit on number of FS jumps that can be in the bonus.

    LOSING ANONYMITY! I agree with the poster above that said this.
    That's it!

  20. #20
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    Anonymity isn't a part of COP though. We've had it since 2002/2003 and it isn't even used at all competitions.

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