U.S. Women [#1]: The Contenders Unmask Themselves

AxelAnnie

Like a small boat on the ocean...
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13,513
I thought Gracie's SP is quite good, the step sequence could be more detailed IMO. I'm sure she could up the level there if she chooses. It could make the piece even more special.

In these days of the internet both raising up and ripping down Simone Biles, it strikes me as something similar to what Gracie has been through. She didn't have a remarkable free skate. It's not worth ripping her effort though. 🤷‍♂️
Simone and Gracie, IMO, are very different stories. Simone, at the top of her sport, knew that mentally she had to walk away. That is an enormous amount of self-awareness and maturity.

What I don't get with Gracie is why is she doing this to herself? It seems clear that she is in the same place she has been for years. It is hard to watch this once-gifted woman skate like she is a junior just coming up the ranks.
 

Debbie S

Well-Known Member
Messages
13,022
Why did Ting withdraw from the freeskate at this competition?
I assume she (and the other skaters who w/d after the SP) only intended to skate the SP at this comp. The way comp registration is set up now, skaters competing in the IJS Int and higher levels can only register for Combined (SP and FS) - this is due to the creation of the National Qualifying Series, which is not actually happening this season but presumably will return next season. If they only want to skate SP, they just withdraw afterward. Previously, it was not unusual to see skaters registering only for SP or FS in summer comps.
 

AxelAnnie

Like a small boat on the ocean...
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13,513
Gracie should retire when she's decided she's had enough and not a moment before. Not matter what we may read into her performances, only she knows what's best for her.
Well, maybe she doesn't know what is best. Sometimes it is hard to see clearly what you need. And, wanting is very different from needing.
 

ErikWilliam

Well-Known Member
Messages
860
What I don't get with Gracie is why is she doing this to herself? It seems clear that she is in the same place she has been for years. It is hard to watch this once-gifted woman skate like she is a junior just coming up the ranks.
That's all I was saying, but I guess only a female can make such a statement on these boards unmolested. Quite a double standard. FWIW, if Gracie was a 25 y/o male skater I would have the same opinion. But nope, some have to throw their man-hate around here like a badge of feminism.
 

AxelAnnie

Like a small boat on the ocean...
Messages
13,513
That's all I was saying, but I guess only a female can make such a statement on these boards unmolested. Quite a double standard. FWIW, if Gracie was a 25 y/o male skater I would have the same opinion. But nope, some have to throw their man-hate around here like a badge of feminism.
Don't be so sure about that. I get molested here all the time!
Remember that often it is easier to shoot the messenger than listen and analyze the message.
 

ErikWilliam

Well-Known Member
Messages
860
Well, maybe she doesn't know what is best. Sometimes it is hard to see clearly what you need. And, wanting is very different from needing.
But what could she be doing differently to change course??? Because she's three years into her "comeback" and couldn't land even one triple jump in a LP and there's little difference in her overall skating. And people still think she has a chance at Skate America?!?! I was amazed at the work Ting Cui has done with her new coach, I think it's Dubova. Ting may have been out two years, but WOW, she's become an amazing skater/performer, someone you want to watch skate. Gracie doesn't really look like she's done much in the way of skills/performance to make it seem she's all that invested in this. In my manly man opinion of course.
 

ErikWilliam

Well-Known Member
Messages
860
Don't be so sure about that. I get molested here all the time!
Remember that often it is easier to shoot the messenger than listen and analyze the message.
I know, I'm fine. I was actually molested from 13-15 so these wannabe SJWs who just like to squawk don't bother me. I find it sad how vicious and wrong they are, but whatever. I just hope it's not a reflection of how boring/sad/pathetic their lives actually are.
 

AxelAnnie

Like a small boat on the ocean...
Messages
13,513
But what could she be doing differently to change course??? Because she's three years into her "comeback" and couldn't land even one triple jump in a LP and there's little difference in her overall skating. And people still think she has a chance at Skate America?!?! I was amazed at the work Ting Cui has done with her new coach, I think it's Dubova. Ting may have been out two years, but WOW, she's become an amazing skater/performer, someone you want to watch skate. Gracie doesn't really look like she's done much in the way of skills/performance to make it seem she's all that invested in this. In my manly man opinion of course.
I suspect people love her and want her to be who she was. But she is not. I don't get what is going on in her brain, or who is encouraging her to keep trying to get somewhere she clearly isn't going.
 

Wyliefan

Trying to appease the skategods
Messages
31,715
I know, I'm fine. I was actually molested from 13-15 so these wannabe SJWs who just like to squawk don't bother me. I find it sad how vicious and wrong they are, but whatever. I just hope it's not a reflection of how boring/sad/pathetic their lives actually are.
What you went through is horrible and I'm truly sorry to hear about it. If I hurt you, I'm sorry for that too.

What I was trying to say, albeit facetiously, is this: There is a long and sad history of men telling women "You can't be happy doing this" and trying to make them do what they decide would be better for the women. I've experienced it myself, and it was very hard for me. I'm still living with some of the fallout of it. So in that context, it's perhaps a good idea to phrase things as suggestions and speculations, rather than declarations.

Truce?
 

ErikWilliam

Well-Known Member
Messages
860
What I hope for this board is that we all accept that each member here brings to the table a very wide range of life experiences, knowledge, education and for the most part I find the people here offer valuable commentary. But we have to not let our own personal experiences cloud what is actually being said by others. I've been harassed for being a man on this board, and for "mansplaining" when all I'm doing is giving a very vanilla gender-irrelevant opinion. Some women here might not like a man's opinion on anything, and attempt to demean any man they disagree with and accuse him of mansplaining. I haven't seen any mansplaining. It's obvious when it's there, and it annoys me when I read it. I myself am sensitive to "heterosplaining", "Christiansplaining" because I've been abused in my life by those groups. But I'm not calling everyone out for it, especially if I really don't know their backstory. My closest friend is a bisexual female who has a transgender son. Most of my friends are women. They do not act at all like many of the women on this board, and it makes me sad for some here. You see 'evil' in people that are your damn ALLIES. Read the room better. Or wait until you can before you make ludicrous accusations and belittling comments.

From my own personal experience, I felt like I was stuck/trapped in my career. I hated it. Dreaded going to work. Held back tears driving to work, barely held them back in the "office" and barely got to my car at the end of the day before breaking down. The light and fire that got me to the highest levels of my profession was gone. Done. I was suicidally depressed and miserable and didn't want to go any further with my present life So I knew I had to make a major change. I checked my portfolio and realized I could quit and still maintain my lifestyle for 20 more years, so I took the leap and quit. I knew that at some time in the next 20 I would find something else that will light my fire/ambition where I'd be a success again in. But staying in my career was killing me. Killing my spirit. Well, thank god I had the strength to walk away. My life now is everything I've ever wanted. I took a risk, and it paid off. And I now have the rest of my life to just ENJOY and be HAPPY. Had I stayed in my career I would have slowly or quickly drunk myself to death because I didn't care about the future. There was no future there. I'd probably be dead now, almost 100% sure of it. Depression and feeling trapped/miserable is a bad combo.

So that's why I am offering my genderless opinion on Gracie. I do not know her personally, but I see shades of her in me. Just continuing doing what she knows and can make a living doing even if it gives her little if any happiness. The struggle with depression, anxiety. I hope she has someone with issues similar to her that can help her and give her advice. Sometimes breaking away from what you know into an unknown is the best decision to make. There can be a world of happiness on the other side of the rainbow. Waking up each morning without dread is much better.

I'm not "mansplaining" this. I am merely "humansplaining". "BeenThereDoneThatsplaining". Thx.
 

haribobo

Why is summer so hot omg
Messages
8,381
Potentially, we could see Nationals qualifying turn out this way (18 total)...lots of conjecture here so this can be updated as the season unfolds...

TOP 5 2021- Bradie, Amber, Karen, Alysa, Mariah
JGPF- Isabeau, Lindsay
3 Intls- Starr, Gabriella
2 PAC- Sierra, Sofia F.
2 MID- Paige, Maryn
2 EAST- Audrey, Rena
Next 3- any of Sonja H., Finley H., Gracie, Pooja, Ting, Hanna, Maxine, Joelle Lin, Jessica Lin, Violeta U., Emily Zhang, Courtney
 
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Frau Muller

Sailing the Seven Ultra-Cs!
Messages
14,259
What I hope for this board is that we all accept that each member here brings to the table a very wide range of life experiences, knowledge, education and for the most part I find the people here offer valuable commentary. But we have to not let our own personal experiences cloud what is actually being said by others. I've been harassed for being a man on this board, and for "mansplaining" when all I'm doing is giving a very vanilla gender-irrelevant opinion. Some women here might not like a man's opinion on anything, and attempt to demean any man they disagree with and accuse him of mansplaining. I haven't seen any mansplaining. It's obvious when it's there, and it annoys me when I read it. I myself am sensitive to "heterosplaining", "Christiansplaining" because I've been abused in my life by those groups. But I'm not calling everyone out for it, especially if I really don't know their backstory. My closest friend is a bisexual female who has a transgender son. Most of my friends are women. They do not act at all like many of the women on this board, and it makes me sad for some here. You see 'evil' in people that are your damn ALLIES. Read the room better. Or wait until you can before you make ludicrous accusations and belittling comments.

From my own personal experience, I felt like I was stuck/trapped in my career. I hated it. Dreaded going to work. Held back tears driving to work, barely held them back in the "office" and barely got to my car at the end of the day before breaking down. The light and fire that got me to the highest levels of my profession was gone. Done. I was suicidally depressed and miserable and didn't want to go any further with my present life So I knew I had to make a major change. I checked my portfolio and realized I could quit and still maintain my lifestyle for 20 more years, so I took the leap and quit. I knew that at some time in the next 20 I would find something else that will light my fire/ambition where I'd be a success again in. But staying in my career was killing me. Killing my spirit. Well, thank god I had the strength to walk away. My life now is everything I've ever wanted. I took a risk, and it paid off. And I now have the rest of my life to just ENJOY and be HAPPY. Had I stayed in my career I would have slowly or quickly drunk myself to death because I didn't care about the future. There was no future there. I'd probably be dead now, almost 100% sure of it. Depression and feeling trapped/miserable is a bad combo.

So that's why I am offering my genderless opinion on Gracie. I do not know her personally, but I see shades of her in me. Just continuing doing what she knows and can make a living doing even if it gives her little if any happiness. The struggle with depression, anxiety. I hope she has someone with issues similar to her that can help her and give her advice. Sometimes breaking away from what you know into an unknown is the best decision to make. There can be a world of happiness on the other side of the rainbow. Waking up each morning without dread is much better.

I'm not "mansplaining" this. I am merely "humansplaining". "BeenThereDoneThatsplaining". Thx.

Very touching words, EricWilliam. I'm totally with you!
Onwards and upwards to a fabulous season for all of our US women favorites! We have a bucket-load of talent, whether or not they're #1 in world rankings at the moment; they're full of potential heading into 2026.
 

Vagabond

Well-Known Member
Messages
19,451
I wish we avoid the use of triggering terms like “molested” that have a specific and well-understood meaning? Having someone disagree with you in a discussion or criticize your arguments is not being “molested.”
transitive verb
1 : to make unwanted or improper sexual advances towards (someone) especially : to force physical and usually sexual contact on (someone) He was sent to prison for molesting children.
2 somewhat old-fashioned : to annoy, disturb, or persecute (a person or animal) especially with hostile intent or injurious effect
I think that the poster in question used the term correctly in its second sense.

Now, can we all move on?
 

clairecloutier

Well-Known Member
Messages
11,864
I can't really argue with a dictionary definition; however, that said, the dictionary itself indicates that that usage of the term is "somewhat old-fashioned" and, personally, I can't recall seeing that term used in that way anywhere else in recent memory. I'd also argue there was an aggressive tone, as the users were implying that they are were being unfairly or hostilely targeted. I suppose it all doesn't really matter. However, this IS a forum in which all communications are written, so word choice does affect people's responses to posts.
 

peibeck

Simply looking
Messages
26,363
Simone and Gracie, IMO, are very different stories. Simone, at the top of her sport, knew that mentally she had to walk away. That is an enormous amount of self-awareness and maturity.

What I don't get with Gracie is why is she doing this to herself? It seems clear that she is in the same place she has been for years. It is hard to watch this once-gifted woman skate like she is a junior just coming up the ranks.

No, in fact, they are NOT very different stories. Remember when Gracie was first in the SP at Boston Worlds, then fell to fourth overall? The next season she was ripped to shreds on this very board as being fat, lazy, poor work ethic, not trying, weak... Meanwhile what she was going through was not known.

Once she finally spoke out about her mental struggles, the whole tone about her changed on this board for a time. It was, quite frankly, the only time she got fairly universal support on here.

Now, knowing she still deals with these struggles, the nastiness is back. Posters act like she is completely oblivious of how she is competing for some reason. As if, for some reason, she should not be allowed to compete, if she so wishes. Why not just go after the person who finished last too? Obviously they will never be good, right? Why even try???

@ErikWilliam I'm a guy on this board too and -I feel- I've made some great bonds with ladies on this board. So, I hope you don't think I was trying to "man-splain" at you. :lol: This a great place to agree and disagree and view many opinions. And while I can absolutely be catty and (honestly) unkind at times, I try and also remember these athletes can do things I could never, never do. So urging someone to quit a sport they have to love to even put themselves out there in even small club comps, at any level, is something I just try and refrain from... in any sport.
 

Maximillian

RIP TA
Messages
4,747
Simone Biles issue is not a 'mental health' thing, it's a 'brain' thing, as in there is a disconnect between the signals her brain is sending to her body and her body's response. It's informally called the 'twisties', and many elite gymnasts has struggled with it and have been discussing it online over the past week. Though mental health might have some causality to the situation, that has never been shown or proven.
 

AxelAnnie

Like a small boat on the ocean...
Messages
13,513
Well we will have to disagree about the similarities simone took herself OUT at the top of the world when she knew her mental health could not could not withstand it.

Gracie keeps coming back. She is still struggling. She was a brilliant skater. She is no longer that. I don't see that she has returned to her former self in the last years. The question I see is if something is damaging your psyche and mental well being stop doing yourself harm. Fix the underlying issues...find something else you can be passionate about. A brilliant skater fumbling all around the rink is the same as a any athlete who stays too long at the party. Figure skating like gymnastics and riding ate highly competitive judged sports. There are new kids with tons of potential who could use the experience. I know people love Gracie..and we love a great comeback story. I worry that the cost of consistently not being who you were will take its toll on a troubled mind.
 

Vagabond

Well-Known Member
Messages
19,451
Simone Biles issue is not a 'mental health' thing, it's a 'brain' thing, as in there is a disconnect between the signals her brain is sending to her body and her body's response. It's informally called the 'twisties', and many elite gymnasts has struggled with it and have been discussing it online over the past week. Though mental health might have some causality to the situation, that has never been shown or proven.
Simone Biles herself sees it as a mental health issue.
“Whenever you get in a high stress situation you kind of freak out and don’t really know how to handle all of those emotions, especially at the Olympic Games,” Biles told reporters on Tuesday. “I have to focus on my mental health and not jeopardize my health and wellbeing.”
The National Alliance of Mental Illness sees stress a mental health issue.
Stress affects your entire body, mentally as well as physically.
Calling stress a "brain thing" rather than a mental health issue does a disservice to those experiencing it.
 

Maximillian

RIP TA
Messages
4,747

Simone Biles herself sees it as a mental health issue.

The National Alliance of Mental Illness sees stress a mental health issue.

Calling stress a "brain thing" rather than a mental health issue does a disservice to those experiencing it.
This is the only response I'm giving to this and I hate that I'm even doing this because we all know the whole point of your posting this was to feel morally superior...so enjoy... Simone, literally couldn't compete because her body would not work. And for those who post about mental health being part of the brain, my only response to that would be: you don't label a brain tumor or a head injury a mental illlness, now do you? Mental health is part of the brain, not everything in the brain= mental health

 
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Theatregirl1122

Needs a nap
Messages
25,206
This is the only response I'm giving to this and I hate that I'm even doing this because we all know the whole point of your posting this was to feel morally superior...so enjoy... Simone, literally couldn't compete because her body would not work. And for those who post about mental health being part of the brain, my only response to that would be: you don't label a brain tumor or a head injury a mental illlness, now do you? Mental health is part of the brain, not everything in the brain= mental health


Sorry, but the article you just linked disagrees with your point?

That said, when under pressure, athletes may try to take more conscious control of their motions, and this process can actually lead to errors, and sometimes the twisties.

"An athlete may try to compensate for increased physiological or cognitive stress or a lack of confidence by trying to consciously control movements that were previously automatic," Moran-Miller said. The resulting motion tends to be "less fluid, less accurate, more strenuous and more error-prone" than it otherwise would be.

"There's a sweet spot, in this arousal level ... where you're able to do the task really well," Youdan said. Some degree of stress can be helpful, as it can boost alertness and focus one's attention, but too much stress can interfere with the brain's ability to initiate learned motor sequences, according to a 2019 report in the journal Frontiers of Psychology. This may be related to the stress-induced release of glucocorticoid hormones, such as cortisol, since the motor cortex, cerebellum and spinal cord all carry receptors for these hormones. And without that learned motor pattern being initiated automatically, a gymnast can experience the twisties.

Sports psychologists like Moran-Miller help athletes develop strategies to offset the potentially detrimental effects of stress on their performance.

And

ports psychologists also work with athletes to determine whether a particular skill itself triggered the twisties, or if specific environmental factors were more to blame.

The article itself talks about stress being the cause and talks about preventing it with a sports psychologist and treating it with a sports psychologist. The fact that it is stress triggered and treated by a psychologist indicates that yes, it is mental health. It's not a brain tumor.
 

kwanatic

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,749
Back to Gracie...

I thought the SP was good. I'm not crazy about her (or anyone who isn't Michelle) using EOE but I think the music is a good choice for her. It's a heavy-lifting piece meaning it does a lot of the work. I'm just happy she's not doing anymore pop-covers or melancholy ballads--I'm kinda over the poor music choices all these girls are making nowadays. For an Olympic year, I'm glad she's going a bit more traditional.

I think Gracie's issues are what they have always been when it comes to her skating: her nerves, her timing, getting in her head, etc. Unfortunately, at this point, I'm still really doubtful she'll be able to do enough to get herself into the top 5 at nationals this year. The prospects for the team are pretty much set (Tennell, Liu, Chen, Glenn, Bell). That's not to say someone can't come in and shake stuff up--no one had a clue Bradie would end up leapfrogging everyone at nationals in 2018--but it's not looking like it will be Gracie. There have been improvements to her skating but she's not at a level to be competitive on the national stage which means her chances of being selected for the US team are even lower.

We'll have to see what she does this season. At the very least I'm hoping she can turn in a clean performance of that SP at nationals--I think that would give her a very lovely moment that might make all of this worth it.
 

Coco

Rotating while Russian!
Messages
16,433
For Simone, I think both views are correct. She had what can best be described as "sudden onset vertigo while airborne." This is a physical condition with physical realities. Who knows, maybe she had a mild ***** in her inner ear? But mostly likely, it was caused by a combination of physical and emotional stress. In the world of gymnastics, if it didn't exist the day before and there was no obvious physical injury or illness, this means that it is a "mental" issue.

Once she got lost in the air (twice - because it also happened in warmups), it would have been horribly dangerous and irresponsible for her to continue. Any other gymnast would have been pulled, but because she's Simone, I think the coaches were in shock and she had to ask for a sub although she clearly NEEDED a sub.

Her comment about preserving mental health wasn't about avoiding additional stress or 'feelings,' imo. It was about avoiding the experience of attempting skills that, given the lack of air awareness, would have been almost sure to result in catastrophic injury.
 

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