14 April 2012

Understanding the figure skating scoring system


It would be useful for us to better understand the new figure skating scoring system. I'll report here Cameron Scott's article, because I think it will help us in this.

The International Skating Union (ISU) judging system has been used to judge all figure skating since 2004. It replaced the previous 6.0 system after the 2002 Winter Olympic Games judging controversy.


Under the 6.0 system, skaters had been judged relative to each other on technical merit, required elements, and presentation. The new ISU judging system is based on elements and program components. The scoring of the elements portion is completely independent of other skaters. However, the scoring of program components is based on a comparative scale against an “average” performance.

Elements

Elements are individual parts of the program, such as jumps and spins. Each type of element is identified by a technical specialist who assigns it a base value, using instant replay video if necessary. Small changes can change one element into another. Too long an interval between jumps can even convert a jump combination into a skating sequence, which has a much lower base value.

A panel of judges then assigns a grade of execution (GOE) ranging from -3 to +3. Starting an element from the wrong blade edge automatically makes the GOE negative. The GOE is converted into a value using the ISU table from rule 322. The highest and lowest scores are dropped, and the remainder are averaged. This number is added or subtracted from the base value to get the final value of that element. Adding together all the individual element scores gives the element score.

Olympic figure skating short programs have seven or eight required elements. Figure skating long programs have between twelve and fourteen elements. Although the number of elements in a program is fixed, Olympic figure skaters are free to choose the type of element within the requirements. Single skaters skating a short program can have a maximum of two solo jumps, but those jump elements could be a single, double, triple, or quadruple toe loop jump, axel jump, salchow jump, loop jump, flip jump, or lutz jump, or even a walley jump, split jump, or waltz jump. Other elements have even more options. Olympic figure skaters usually hone their programs to get the highest possible element value within their abilities.


In their short programs, single skaters are required to have one combination jump, two solo jumps, one spin combination, two solo spins, and one or two skating sequences. Pairs short programs must have two lifts, a throw jump, a side-by-side jump, a side-by-side spin combination, a pair spin combination,a death spiral, and a skating sequence.
In their long programs, single skaters are required to have eight jumps (seven for women), three spins, and two skating sequences. Pairs long programs must have four lifts, four jumps, two spins, a death spiral, and two skating sequences.

Elements which go beyond these requirements are identified by the technical panel, but have a GEO and mark of 0. A single skater who performs a third solo jump in his short program gets no credit for it.

Program components

In the new ISU judging system, Olympic figure skaters are marked on presentation based on five program components:

  1.  skating skills
  2.  transitions
  3.  performance
  4.  choreography
  5.  interpretation

Ice dancing uses only four program components. Instead of program component scores for transitions and choreography, ice dancing uses a timing component.

These components are marked on a scale from 0 to 10 in increments of 0.25, with a mark of 5 being considered “average.” The highest and lowest scores are dropped, and the remainder are averaged. The average is then multiplied by a factor of between 0.8 (women’s solo short program) and 2 (men’s long program) to get the final value for that program component. Adding together all the individual program component scores gives the program component score.


The multiplication factor is always set so that the program component score has a similar weight to the element score. Programs with more elements or higher GOEs have higher multiplication factors than programs with fewer elements or lower GOEs. Men’s short programs have a factor of 1, men’s long programs a factor of 2. Women’s and pairs short programs have a factor of 0.8, long programs a factor of 1.6.

This system is intended to judge skaters independently rather than relative to each other, reducing the chance of a predetermined win such as was seen in the 2002 Winter Olympic Games judging controversy.

Deductions

Deductions are given for falls, time violations, costume and prop violations, music violations, excessive interruption, and illegal elements. These are noted separately on the judging form, also called the protocol. Because the program is so carefully scripted to maximize points, the only deductions usually seen at the Winter Olympics are for falls. Canadian ice dancing Olympic hopefuls Scott Moir and Tessa Virtue have altered the dismount of their signature lift, nicknamed the Goose, because the original 360 spinning dismount might be ruled a jump and jumps are illegal in ice dancing.


The final score

Adding the technical score to the program component score, taking into account all deductions, gives the segment score. The segment scores for the short program and free skate are added together to give the total competition score.

10 comments:

  1. Bel post Laura .... certo ci sono molte critiche alle nuove modalità di punteggio - ma quello che mi piace meno è che l'atleta non ha quasi più nessuna libertà - anche il libero è pieno di elementi obbligatori ...... ma cosa lo continuano a chiamare libero se di fatto libero non è proprio più!

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  2. Trovo che questo sistema sia più oggettivo del 6.0, ma anche più contorto e, come dici tu, lascia meno libertà agli atleti che finiscono per avere programmi simili (soprattutto nella danza). Non dico che sia completamente da rifare, ma magari qualche limatura potrebbero dargliela...

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  3. si sono d'accordo anche io - è un metodo sicuramente più oggettivo del 6.0 ma non privo di difetti - un atleta non può nemmeno essere più molto creativo - quasi tutto è obbligato e non si possono fare molte cose - ma alla danza hanno sicuramente "tagliato le ali" diciamo così!
    Insomma si può fare di più!

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  4. Sì può assolutamente fare di meglio. Chissà se prenderanno spunto dalle critiche di molti pattinatori ed ex pattinatori per migliorarlo...

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  5. Lo spero fortemente Laura. Spero che tu stia passando un bel fine settimana.
    Io sono al 7° cielo ....... ho comprato i biglietti per Opera on Ice - non vedo l'ora che arrivi il 22 Settembre ....... era dalla prima versione Ottobre 2011 che facevo il filo alla versione 2012 ..... ed ora a breve avrò nelle mie mani i biglietti !

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  6. WOW!!!! Sono felicissima per te!!! Aspetterò con ansia il tuo racconto della visione dal vivo dello spettacolo!
    Spero che come l'anno scorso lo daranno in tv per Natale: ok, non sarà come vederlo dal vivo, ma è sempre un gran bello spettacolo! ;)

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  7. Penso che di sicuro lo ridaranno alla TV (anche se non sò se per Natale (visto che lo spettacolo è per il 22 settembre !) comunque - ti racconterò di sicuro tutto quando tornerò da Verona dopo averlo visto !
    E si sicuramente è un bellissimo spettacolo - anche alla TV ...... penso che lo rivedrò anche io quando lo daranno

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  8. Apsetterò con ansia il tuo racconto e la trasmissione in tv dello spettacolo!!!

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  9. A parer mio, è un discreto SCANDALO il fatto che al "Champions on Ice" di Rimini abbiano vietato foto e video... nemmeno fosse una riunione del G20!

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  10. Sono perfettamente d'accordo. Non è molto carino impedire ai fan di fare foto. Andiamo lì per vedere e incontrare i nostri campioni, è normale che vorremmo immortalare il momento.

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