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What should the ISU do to resurrect Figure Skating in the US and Europe?

Discussion in 'The Trash Can' started by Maofan7, Mar 19, 2011.

  1. miki88

    miki88 Active Member

    Well, I think it would help very much if the US had stars like MK, Cohen in the future. There's a lack of strong personalities that will attract audiences attention. There's Johnny Weir, but unfortunately his priority is no longer skating.
  2. attyfan

    attyfan Well-Known Member

    Do you think another whack would help? If so, who should get whacked? who should do the whacking? (if it is $peedy who should be whacked .... "the line forms on the right ..."
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2011
  3. aliceanne

    aliceanne Well-Known Member

    I have to defend poor Todd. I've seen him 3 times in local exhibitions (1994-2006) and he always brings his A game (triple axel et al). I'll admit he's not much on tv, but especially up close he's impressive physically and smiles like he's enjoying every minute of it. He never comes unprepared or with a technically watered-down number and the crowd responds.
  4. Judy

    Judy Active Member

    Oh I don't think that Weir has the star power or the appeal. For America it's all about their women stars. Every other discipline is 2nd rate for them. They need to have another Michelle Kwan-like star.
  5. loulou

    loulou Let It Snow

    You need good coaches and rinks, and you need them to be affordable.
    The routines should be more appealing and results more audience friendly.

    1) Coaches. I've seen far too many jokes that the ISU credites as coaches. Please, make a better selection. Have better schools. A coach status cannot be reward for having been a stinky skater 15 years. Investing in coaches is more important than investing in athlets.

    2) Rinks. If you have to travel 3 hours a day for practices, and you have to wake up at 5, it's not going to be popular.

    3) Affordable. Money needs to be drained and smartly re-invested. It's going to be a hard process to start, but good management would be what gets this going.

    4) Audience friendly and appealing. I understand current rules were supposedly made to avoid cheating. There's no rule in the world that can't be played. - What sometimes we see is an environment that can't stand cheaters and points at them. Which is effective. Figure skating needs a lot of cleaning up: fairness can't really be forced on people, but a fair environment can be created through education. So start teaching officials, coaches and skaters why fairness is their own interest, even when it doesn't look like so.

    That's no easy business. But, even more than skills, it would require honesty, honest intentions. Pushing agendas here and there must stop.

    Why is that honesty doesn't pop up into my mind whenever I read Cinquanta?
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2011
  6. mmscfdcsu

    mmscfdcsu Skating Pairs with Drew

    They will flock to a male star if the star gives them a good show for the money. Brian Boitano carried COI for a very long time. His power, technique and willingness to try all kinds of music made him very popular. Brian was all for giving the audience its moneys worth. Johnny is still too immature. He is all about Johnny just thinking about skating to what he wants such as MY Way, the Lady GaGa stuff and Russian elevator music. As he matures he should learn that it is supposed to be about the audience not his constant need to make a personal statement. YMMV
  7. paskatefan

    paskatefan Well-Known Member

    Thank you! Todd "flies" on the ice, and to fully appreciate him, you've got to see him in person. Of course it is so hard to photograph him while he's skating. Our pictures come out blurry when he's in motion.
  8. CynicElle

    CynicElle Well-Known Member

    I have to stick up for him too ... I just saw him in SOI a few weeks ago and was very pleasantly surprised by what a performer he's become. There was a time when I would have thought sticking Todd and Kurt in a number together would be horribly unfair to Todd, but I thought he kept up with Kurt really well in that clown number this season. Not that I think he's *the* personality that's going to turn skating's popularity around, but he's fun to watch now.
  9. RubyLaRhumba

    RubyLaRhumba New Member

    Agreed, on all points!
  10. mmscfdcsu

    mmscfdcsu Skating Pairs with Drew

    NO, NO and NO to vocals. That only leads to programs with really bad music and the skaters trying to get some silly message across. What we need is more skaters with training in music and dance who can actually use the music to enhance the skating. Vocals would just lead to more boring skating to songs like "Imagine" which is some of the most boring music on the planet. And no teenie bopper music allowed. The Christina, Gaga, Justin etc. needs to stay on Nickelodeon Network.
  11. michiruwater

    michiruwater Well-Known Member

    Christina, Gaga, and Justin are definitely not shown on Nickelodeon and never could be without some massive censoring.
  12. l'etoile

    l'etoile New Member

    I don't know many stuffs and detailed rules or anything, but as a figure skating fan, that should not be happening. omg.
  13. aliceanne

    aliceanne Well-Known Member

    I'd like to see some of the skating moms go at. That would make a top rated reality show.
  14. flutzilla1

    flutzilla1 Forever Ogling Ingo

    I think something that would help immediately would be for USFS to make a better attempt to spread out its major events (Nationals and Skate America) throughout the various areas/regions of the US. Having the 3 of the most recent 4 big USFS events in two adjoining states (and the next two just in one state!) is really not helping. I am not sure why the old method of moving Nationals to each section every year (so it was in each one every 3 years) was discarded, as it was a lot fairer to both fans and skaters. I think seeing events like Nationals and Skate America live makes a much bigger impression and helps to build long-term fans better than the strategy they seem to be following now, which is relying solely on broadcasting the comp into people's homes and hoping enough people will take the time to watch them on TV. Devoted fans of skating find it hard to justify the expense of a thousands-of-miles-away trip to Nationals or SA, so I don't see how it could be reasonable to expect that a casual fan will choose this option very often either.

    That said, the whole bidding process should probably also be overhauled. If clubs/interclub councils could suggest areas instead of having to submit bidding packets first, putting USFS HQ at the helm to then chose an area in advance and then do the bulk of the bigger logistical planning, it would be a lot easier to get more of the clubs to help get volunteers together, as most clubs are working just to avoid declining membership as it is, and many do not have the manpower to even run a club competition, much less take on the very complicated and work-intensive bidding process. Having these events nearby would also help build local club numbers back up. I saw that the local rinks' USFS Learn to Skate table at the FanFest in Greensboro was doing brisk business -- I bet they saw a huge increase in kids signing up for learn to skate directly as a result of them getting to check out the competition first-hand.
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2011
    PeterG and (deleted member) like this.
  15. FigureSpins

    FigureSpins Well-Known Member

    Evan's been a boon to FS in the US, although the Ladies are always preferred more by our populace. Still, young skaters know his name, Flatt and Yu-Na. Non-fans know only Evan, although Bradley's very popular in my neck of the woods lately.

    Personally, I think the quad is overrated - it adds nothing to the programs artistically and most people can't tell the difference without Scott squealing and cheering. To me, it's a circus trick, although I respect the difficulty of doing one.

    I do think a separate "Technical Elements" spin and jump competition would help figure skating to grow by appealing to a broader audience. That would be a more appropriate place for the Quad to be truly appreciated.

    People who blow off figure skating because they're ignorant, homophobic, costume-haters or just not interested in the artistic side of skating, would probably find a strength and speed event focused on jumps and spins intriguing. It would build respect for the difficulty of the sport and educate the general public.
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2011
  16. SkateFan66

    SkateFan66 Active Member

    I agree 100%! I saw Todd in SOI in 2010, the Caesar's Tribute, and SOI 2011 and he was fantastic. He skates with great speed, and he still has fantastic spins and jumps.
  17. ks777

    ks777 Well-Known Member

    1. Allow current music with vocal
    2. Allow Backflip
    3. bring in some famous singers during the zamboni time
    4. Allow jeans or whatever the skaters want to wear
    5. no more those feminine costumes on guys, no tight pants on guys allowed
  18. falling_dance

    falling_dance Coaching Patrick

  19. gkelly

    gkelly Well-Known Member

    How about allowing all these in the exhibitions? ;) Casual audiences who care more about this stuff than skating technique won't know the difference.

    4 is already allowed -- the costume rules are not as strict as you think.
    5 will not be forced on skaters -- the costume rules are not as strict as you want.
  20. Triple Butz

    Triple Butz Well-Known Member

    Right, because current popular pop singers don't ever wear form fitting tight clothes...:shuffle:

    Do people really think pop vocals will make a difference in skating popularity? I don't. Classical music was just as "old fashioned" in the 80's and 90's as it is today, and skating was still popular. As much as I hate fluff pieces, I think the US needs to do more. We just need people to feel more connected and invested in our skaters.
  21. skateboy

    skateboy Well-Known Member

    I always knew that girl was trouble! ;)
  22. Extranjera

    Extranjera Member

    Figure skating isn't so popular in Europe and US because currently we don't have such "stars" like Yuna, Mao, Kwan or Slutskaya. If we have more single skaters who win competitions (especially ladies because this discipline has always been the most popular) Europeans and Americans will be much more interesing in fs.

    And I agree with some of you that there should be more programs to current music like for example Takahashi's "Swan lake" ;) Programs like this one may attract the attention of young people.
  23. loulou

    loulou Let It Snow

    Or maybe vice versa.
  24. Andrushka

    Andrushka Well-Known Member

    Popularity of skating in the US is in the lap of US Figure Skating.They were given suggestions in an open forum at GC from various delegates from all over the U.S.6 years ago(and I imagine at other times as well )and chose not to take any of them.
    flutzilla1 and (deleted member) like this.
  25. duane

    duane Well-Known Member

    I never said to make it only about the jumps! Of course the other elements (both technical and artistic) play a role.

    And, I don't think FS has or would suffer. Over the years, there have been countless skaters--both male and female--who combined the difficult jumps with grace and artistry.
  26. Firefly123

    Firefly123 New Member

    Careful. I made them a bit sensitive to this issue. (See old locked threads).:lol:

    I for one agree with you, but to a more extreme degree. It is too bad there is not a way to combine the technical elements and "extreme" skating to form a "different" less artistic more athletic type of event. (Of course, as was pointed out to me last time, this would not be "figure" skating per se.) The way I look at it, ice dance emphasizes beautiful edges and artistic interpretation over jumps/spins. Too bad there isn't a discipline on the other side stressing jumps/spins over edges/art. (A kind of "extreme" skating event.) I also did inline and have spoken to teen boys on the skatepark (skaterbois) who do skateboarding/inline on ramp jumps and they really did admire my 360s and 720s. I spoke to them and found that most would be interested in an "extreme" type sport (even on ice), but the "artistic" side turns them off....WAY off. :(

    Point is that I actually asked teen boys and this is what they said they would be interested in.
  27. sarakimm

    sarakimm Member

    I find all of this appreciation for Johnny Weir's personality amusing. Where were all of you when he was being vilified by his own federation and openly ridiculed by fellow skaters and coaches? The USFSA couldn't wait to get rid of him and openly preferred Mr Boring who can barely carry on an interview or express an opinion. Evan, Rachael, Jeremy, and most of the rest are so incredibly BORING both on and off the ice. I don't want people getting scored on personality, but I feel that individuality and creativity is totally undervalued right now.

    As to what could the ISU do.....get rid of Ottavio!!!!! Stop letting all the old men make the decisions if you want to attract a younger audience.
  28. Civic

    Civic New Member

    Neither do I. I still think it's a mistake to allow them in the original dance and free dance. IMO, the reason most figure skaters choose boring music is because they and their coaches aren't very knowledgeable about music. Music has to fit several requirements in order to be effective skating music:

    1) It must lend itself to linear (as opposed to vertical) movement.

    2) It must be at a beat the skater can maintain.

    3) You must be able to discern the melody and flow despite music cuts.

    4) The skater must be able to effectively interpret it.

    That's a tall order to fill. I suspect that most skaters and their coaches don't have strong music backgrounds. Their knowledge of musical genres is probably limited to western classical music standards and pop music produced within their lifetimes. When you combine limited knowledge of music with eligible skating music requirements, you wind up with the overuse of certain musical warhouses like "Carmen" or "Otonal".
    gkelly and (deleted member) like this.
  29. Triple Butz

    Triple Butz Well-Known Member

    I agree with pretty much everything. I think another big problem is that many skaters, coaches, and choreographers go looking for music by watching old skating programs, rather than going through hundreds of CDs or better yet, going to hear live concerts.
  30. victoriaheidi

    victoriaheidi New Member

    Hmm, maybe I could earn some money by advising coaches on classical music? ;)