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FS expressions?

Discussion in 'Moves In The Field' started by DannyCurry, Mar 11, 2011.

  1. DannyCurry

    DannyCurry Active Member


    I'm still working on my dissertation, focusing on the terminology of figure skating.

    I am now looking for a specific figure skating jargon, that is expressions used only by figure skaters or fans, and wouldn't be understood by the 'layman'. Those are distinct from the technical terms and are rather informal, mainly used orally.

    My supervisor wants me to find for instance, some phrases meaning "fall" :cold:

    Any advice would help,

    PS: I'm also looking for pre-2004 rules to analyze how the vocabulary of FS changed since the implementation of the IJS. Does anyone know where to find those? They seem impossible to find :S
  2. C_T_T_

    C_T_T_ Well-Known Member

    People generally just say fall!

    Since COP came in you'll find people talking about levels on spins and footwork which didn't exist before. Downgrades, under-rotations and edge calls weren't that important under the old system.

    I'm not sure exactly what you mean by informal jargon. Just a few to see if this is what your thinking off...

    - "pop" referring to a jump which the skater opens up in the air instead of pulling in, meaning its a single instead of double or triple

    - "telegraphing" when a jump has very long entrance or build up

    -"lip/"flutz" names given to flip/lutz jumps taking off the wrong edge

    Is that the kind of thing your looking for?

    Also, you didn't ask but you may be interested- skating terms differ around the world. In the UK fpr example, toe loop=cherryflip, camel spin= parallel spin and shoot the duck= teapot. Some parts of the world call a loop jump, a rittberger.
  3. FigureSpins

    FigureSpins Well-Known Member

    In terms of judging, a fall is a fall.

    In common usage, there are euphemisms or disphemisms, such as:

    face plant (forward-facing fall, faces don't have to touch the ice)
    splat (fest if everyone in an event takes a tumble)
    zammed (as in "she zammed the ice on that fall")
    crash (hit the wall)
    sat down (literally sitting down instead of landing the jump)

    Other regional terms: UK Drag = US Lunge.

    Pre-2004 rule books aren't online, so if that's your only resource, you're probably out of luck.
    You'd have to look for old rulebooks; some big skating clubs like SC of Boston have FS libraries that might have copies if you can't find one through a research library.
  4. gkelly

    gkelly Well-Known Member

    People did talk about jumps being "cheated" (or "underrotated" to be more politically correct), but there wasn't consistent language to distinguish between whether the jump counted as what it was intended to be or was laughably not even close. Individual speakers may have had colorful individual ways of expressing the latter.
  5. nicklaszlo

    nicklaszlo Member

    If you are looking for primary sources, you should contact the various skating federations and the hall of fame in Colorado springs. USFSA's Skating Magazine has about a century of terminology and rule changes, and is presumably easier to read than rule books.

    The Evolution of Dance on Ice by Lynn Copley-Graves has excellent information about the evolution of pre-IJS rules. Unfortunately it is not really a scholarly work and does not cite sources, but if you look closely you can figure out how Copley-Graves did her research. I think the main source for the book was Skating Magazine.

    What discipline are you in?

    Of course you can find lots of figure skating glossaries with Google.
  6. minx

    minx Active Member

    Chacked is the biggest insider term I know but mostly used by fan boards.

    For falls, I've heard about vertical failure or more politically correct, vertically challenged. An older term was that someone was shiny side up too much. (blades in the air and not on the ice.) With new judging system it's fairly common to make the < with one's fingers sideways near the head, even outside of the arena by skaters with skaters as a shorthand for something that sucked.
  7. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Hates both vegemite and peanut butter

    "Staining the ice" - gotten from a comedy show during the SLC Olympics may years ago to describe someone falling on their butt.
  8. Diane Mars

    Diane Mars Active Member

    Don't forget about the crotch grab and the O Face, lol !
  9. FigureSpins

    FigureSpins Well-Known Member

  10. minx

    minx Active Member

    I gather you're looking for the Urban Dictionary of skating. I definitely agree with O face.

    Gyno lifts

    "that's very Plushenko" (programs that are entirely choreographed in the center of the ice facing the judges) or, Shorthand references of one skater's well know style, usually not in a good way.
  11. DannyCurry

    DannyCurry Active Member

    Wow, thanks so much for all your answers!!!

    I did know «pop», «telegraphing», «lip/flutz» but hadn't thought about what we call 'regional variations' in linguistics, (so thanks C_T_T for pointing to 'cherry flip' and 'parallel spin', I'm not too familiar with the FS terms used in the UK; are there a lot of differences with American English?).

    :lol: at the «face plant», «zammed», «vertically challenged», «shiny side up too much», «staining the ice», «crotch grab» and «gyno lift». Those are great and are exactly what I'm currently looking for.

    I've been working on the IJS rulebook and communications, as well as some other FS books, either in French or English, but I didn't find much specialized terminology in those. I've tried to contact some Federations, unsuccessfully. You're right, I should try to contact FS clubs instead. Thanks for suggesting that.

    Yes, let's say that. I've already 'extracted' all the technical terms from the IJS rulebook and now I have to find some informal jargon, but it needs to be understood by the 'community of skaters' as my supervisor put it.

    I'm studying specialized terminology, that is the vocabulary out of which you can infer the whole 'conception' of a specific field, if that makes sense. You could say it's a pointless discipline but it can be interesting. For instance we make specialized dictionaries or glossaries. I made one bilingual dictionary on 'theatrical curtains'. Oh well you can still say it's pointless lol, but I quite liked how we could show, from the vocabulary, how the cultural practices onstage differ in France and the UK/USA. This year I chose to work on FS because it's my favorite sport, but studying its terminology is far from exciting, probably because I need to find 'scholar work' and theories that can be applied to this sport..
    Anyway, when I graduate (hopefully in July) this will be over and I'll enjoy FS as much as I did before :)
  12. gkelly

    gkelly Well-Known Member

    These are fan terms that are specific to FSU. I don't think they would be understood by the "community of skaters" that DannyCurry is looking for.

    Well, "crotch grab" is self-evident, but not in a skating-specific way.

    I haven't heard this at the rink, only in fan contexts, but it wouldn't surprise me if some skaters/coaches/judges make fun of those lifts with this or a similar term.

    Again, are these shorthands that would be used and understood in rinks? How much does the community of skaters overlap with the community of skating fans? There are plenty of competitive skaters who don't really follow elite skating, especially in other disciplines, and aren't as knowledgeable about skating history before their time as the average fan.

    I remember in the early 2000s overhearing an international-level ice dancer mentioning that she and her partner had just worked with a choreographer who had also choreographed for some French guy who won bronze at the Olympics. She didn't know the French guy's name. Saying "that's very Candeloro" would not have been a meaningful shorthand for her. And when the adult ice dancers she was talking to supplied the name and expressed surprise that she didn't know the name of a recent Olympic medalist, her response was "I'm a skater, not a fan."

    Of course, many competitive skaters, coaches, and judges are also fans, or keep up with current and past elite skating as part of their professional knowledge. The two groups overlap, but one is not a subset of the other.

    So my question for DannyCurry is, how are you defining the population you're interested in?
  13. minx

    minx Active Member

    Memes are funny in what sticks and what doesn't. Skaters would probably know a Boitano Lutz, but not the history. Boitano skated before some of them were born but thanks to South Park, Boitano's name has had staying power. Skaters don't think "1988 Olympics guy, arm above head" they think "South Park song , arm above head"
  14. FigureSpins

    FigureSpins Well-Known Member

    I've never heard of "gyno lifts" or the "That's very Plushenko" remark, so I think they are more FSU terms. EYS? (j/k)

    I have heard (and use) the term "Butt Spin." The more polite title, which you'll find on skater's program sheets, is the "A-Frame Spin."
    The skater spins in an "A" position, bent over at the wais with leg splayed, to spin with the head facing down below the hips.

    Another resource to consider are skating magazines as NickLaszlo pointed out.

    Commercially, "International Figure Skating" is a good source, with some phrases that vary internationally, same thing with "Blades on Ice." I think "32 Degrees" is out of print now.

    If you can find old copies of the USFSA's "Skating" magazine or the PSA's "Professional Skater Magazine," they would also be very useful in terms of judging information.

    The ISI has their magazines online, going back for several years:
    . Recreational Ice Skater ... http://www.skateisi.com/site/Sub.Cfm?Content=Publications_Ris (Geared towards skaters)
    . ISI Edge ... http://www.skateisi.com/site/Sub.Cfm?Content=Publications_ISI_Edge (Geared towards rinks, directors and coaches.)
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2011
  15. Diane Mars

    Diane Mars Active Member

    @gkelly : like any "slang" ("insider", if you prefer) vocabulary, it's NOT common to everyone... otherwise, it wouldn't be "figure skating jargon, that is expressions used only by figure skaters or fans", but common usage...

    @DannyCurry : thanks for pointing what you're really looking for if there's any misunderstood, in order not to "send you" the wrong way...

    ... To illustrate what I'm trying to explain, have a look here : http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=310730951875 (Fyi, this group has been crated by Debi Thomas, :respec: !)
  16. Bev Johnston

    Bev Johnston Well-Known Member

    Human Zamboni - when someone falls repeatedly during their program. I think this term was coined at the 1992 Olympics when French skater, Laetitia Hubert, had a disastrous free skate that included many falls.
  17. vesperholly

    vesperholly Well-Known Member

    One big one that I haven't seen mentioned yet is "cheated" - referring to any jump that is underrotated (part of the rotation happens on the ice, not in the air).

    Are you looking for jargon that skaters and coaches use, or fans? I find that few skaters, unless they're also online fans, use things like "Chacked".
  18. FigureSpins

    FigureSpins Well-Known Member

    I think gkelly mentioned "cheated."

    Here are a few expressions used at competitions, then and now:

    . No Show - a skater who is registered, but doesn't show up.
    . Scratched/Withdrawn - a skater who notifies the officials that s/he won't be skating.
    (I think there's a distinction of "scratched" being last-minute or during warmup, "withdrawn" being prior notification.)
    . Exhibition Only - skaters that are skating during a competition, but are not competing. They request a critique from the judges instead.

    While IJS is familiar to most skating fans because of the high-profile competitions, the 6.0 system is still in use within the US for lower-level competitions, so those phrases are still relevant.
  19. FigureSpins

    FigureSpins Well-Known Member

    Sorry, didn't mean to post twice in a row.

    The granddaddy of all sarcastic skating phrases is to say "Toepick!" when someone trips.

    It's a reference to the movie "The Cutting Edge." Everyone time the former hockey player trips, and inevitably falls, his snotty partner sweetly says "toepick!" and skates away.

    "Scotty Turns" are a series of fleet-footed turns, named after Scott Hamilton.
  20. vesperholly

    vesperholly Well-Known Member

    I think scratched is just slang for withdrawn, not an actual separate term.

    That reminds me of another slang phrase, scratch spin, which generally refers to a one-foot spin, typically a spin that is only a one-foot spin from start to finish. You could say back scratch as well for a backward one-foot spin.

    Change-foot spins which do not change a position are often called "___ change" - ie, sit change is a very common slang for a forward sit spin/backward sit spin combination. Strangely, I don't hear "camel change" very often, mostly "camel-back camel". But since that got taken off the Novice FS, no one does that spin anymore :p

    Waxel is a term for an axel jump that went very badly, a similar name for a salchow is wowcow (which I say to my students and it always gets a laugh).

    There are some odd names for beginner skills - swizzles/sculling, shoot-the-duck, rocking horse. I wish I could remember where I read the etymology of mohawk and choctaw turns, it's not on Wikipedia.
  21. gkelly

    gkelly Well-Known Member

    I've heard ice dancers jokingly refer to the Westminster Waltz as Westmonster, the Viennese Waltz as Vietnamese, European as You're-a-pullin'.
    And officials unofficially refer to novice ladies as nervous ladies.
  22. LilJen

    LilJen Reaching out with my hand sensitively

    And the Kilian is the "Kill-Me-Now."

    I refer to the Hickory Hoedown as the Hokey Hoedown.
    gkelly and (deleted member) like this.
  23. FigureSpins

    FigureSpins Well-Known Member

    Is this where you read it - Joanne Schneider-Farris on about.com?


    The turns were named after Native American tribes in honor of their dance steps, according to the sources cited in the article.

    Those tribes were originally living where New York State now exists, which is why I pronounce those terms in my thickest NY accent, thank you very much.
  24. skateboy

    skateboy Well-Known Member

    If no one has mentioned it, there's always the term "splatfest."
  25. Doubletoe

    Doubletoe Well-Known Member

    I've always heard the European referred to as the "You're a peon" or "You're a pee-on", LOL!
  26. RFOS

    RFOS Well-Known Member

    I've heard "Fiasco Tango" for Fiesta Tango as well. ;)
  27. Doubletoe

    Doubletoe Well-Known Member

    Ha ha! Love it!
  28. FigureSpins

    FigureSpins Well-Known Member

    When a skater lands a jump and immediately goes into a three turn, it's called "three-ing the landing." It usually happens on underrotation, but many half-jumps (like the Split jump) that are not checked properly on landing end up "three-ed."
  29. Doubletoe

    Doubletoe Well-Known Member

    Not sure if anyone has mentioned the "toe-axel" (a double or triple toeloop where the skater turns forward on the picking toe before leaving the ice). This is an error that results in an underrotation or downgrade call.

    Also, how about the "kiss 'n' cry"?

    And "jumping bean" - A young skater who is a great jumper, sometimes at the expense of the rest of his/her skating, and sometimes--in the case of girls--only until the "puberty monster" hits.
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2011
  30. Sk8ing Wizard

    Sk8ing Wizard New Member

    One quickie that you probably know.

    Dead Ice/Dead Session: a session of ice that's basically empty. This is where higher-level skaters lovvve practicing, and will go to any lengths to find