Frequently, fans post suggestions that there should be a rule requiring X or forbidding Y. Sometimes it's obvious that these suggestions are tongue in cheek -- there have been a number of whole lighthearted threads over the years full of suggestions to ban certain musical selections, clothing choices, etc.-- sometimes they seem to be serious, and sometimes it's hard to tell. For this thread, I'd like to ask people to keep their tongues out of their cheeks and seriously look at the big picture. If we're up to speed on the current short program required elements and well-balanced free program rules, we know what the sport of figure skating currently requires of its senior competitors, and juniors if we follow those rules as well. There are also a number of skills that are highly encouraged by the way the way they are officially scored, and others that are discouraged by the lack of scoring rewards (and in some cases penalties). So that's the current state of what the ISU has chosen to reward or disregard. What if we wanted to think about other approaches? Don't bother to figure out "how" yet -- where to tinker with the current rules or whether to scrap all previous rules and scoring systems and start from scratch. For now, let's just focus on the "what" -- make a list of skills and qualities we want to make sure that everyone can execute. And also look at extra skills that not everyone will do but that should get rewarded. What should be forbidden or penalized? Remember that the senior-level rules apply to anyone who enters a senior competition in their own country, not just to those who are good enough for international assignments. So what is reasonable to require of anyone who aspires to senior level competition, knowing that many will fall short, in general or in a specific performance? When/if we get to the "how" we can figure out how to penalize such failure. Looking only at singles skaters, what requirements should apply to all and what should be required of men but not women or vice versa? Should anything be allowed for one sex but not the other? If we have two phases of competition to work with, should one focus on establishing minimum requirements and the other focus on skaters pushing their own maximum capabilities? Do we want to look at junior (or lower) requirements as a way to ensure that skaters have already established certain skills before reaching senior competition?