The ISU Congress is going on this week and they are continuing their continual ''enhancement'' (aka slaughtering) of the sport. By nature, I am a purist. I don't necessarily like change. Bring back compulsories in gymnastics. Hell, bring back figures.
As of right now, the ISU has officially eliminated the Compulsory Dance and the Original Dance. We've known this was coming for a while. I don't love it. I think the compulsories certainly had merit, but they also used them to bury teams. It was interesting to rank the teams against one another, but that doesn't sell tickets or get television ratings. The new combination dance is basically a natural evolution of the continual evolution of the Original Dance/Original Set Pattern. It is what it is and the good teams will continue to make interesting programs.
My big gripe is with the elimination of the spiral sequence for the ladies short program. There are certain elements that are iconic in figure skating and the spiral is one of them. A gorgeous layback is another. These are marketable, stunning, iconic images that separate the good skaters from the great skaters. Is the world supposed to shun spirals because Yu-Na sucks at them? One needs to really wonder why they are eliminating the spiral. Outside of North America, the world has never taken the element all that seriously. As it went on, nations began campaigning for the focus to be on the edge of the spiral and not the position (yes, major eye roll over that bullshit logic). Some even complain that they need to eliminate it because the patterns are all the same under the IJS. If that is the issue, then change the criteria, not the elements.
There comes a time when enough is enough. Who is running this joke of a sport? What exactly is their vision?
Call me old fashioned, but I live for Kwan's smiral, Cohen's perfection proportion between leg and back, and Bobek's hand over her heart.
Apparently, eliminating the footwork sequence was briefly discussed but did not go over well.