1996 ISU Congress:
Actions Taken - Part 2




Last month we summarized some of the actions taken at the 1996 ISU Congress held in Davos, Switzerland that deal with the overall direction of the ISU. In this article we provide details of changes made to the rules concerned with skating standards and requirements for singles, pairs, and dance.

The following items only cover changes to the rules. They are not a complete rendition of all requirements under each heading. For a comprehensive explanation of all the rules for the 1996-97 season the 3rd edition of the Spectators Guide is recommended.






Short Program

Vocal music with lyrics is not permitted. This is a clarification of the current ruled to distinguish between music with lyrics (words) and music with vocalizing (the voice used to produce sounds).

Any element completed after two minutes and forty seconds will be considered omitted. This clarifies how elements completed after the permitted duration of the program will be marked.

Short Program for Senior Ladies

The jump combination requirement was changed to consist of a double with triple or triple with triple.

Short Program for Junior Ladies/Junior Men

Three groups of required elements are now specified for each event. The groups will rotate each year. The required elements for 1996-97 are as follows.

Junior Ladies

a. double axel
b. double Lutz preceded by footwork or other skating movements
c. jump combination - double with double or double with triple
d. flying camel spin
e. layback or sideways leaning spin
f. spin combination - only one change of foot at least one change of position
g. spiral step sequence
h. step sequencel

Junior Men

a. double axel
b. double or triple Lutz
c. jump combination - double with double or double with triple
d. flying camel spin
e. sit spin with one change of foot
f. spin combination - only one change of foot at least one change of position
g. step sequence
h. step sequence

Other Changes to Short Program Requirements

Solo spins must consist of at least 8 rotations. Spins with one change of foot require a minimum of 6 rotations on each foot, for a total of not less than 12 for the spin.

Flying spin position must be obtained in the air. A minimum of 8 rotations in the landing position is required. Upright rotations at the conclusion of the spin do not count towards the minimum rotations required. Rotation on the ice prior to the takeoff is not permitted.

Junior men change sit spin requires a minimum of 6 rotations on each foot for a total of not less than 12 rotations for the entire spin. The change of foot may be executed in the form of a stepover or a jump.

Step sequences must be progressive only. Retrogressions are not permitted, but short stops in accordance with the must are permitted.

Short Program for Senior Pairs

Three groups of required elements are now specified for this event. The groups will rotate each year. The required elements for 1996-97 differ from the prior requirements in three respects.

1. The lift must be a hip lift takeoff.
2. The death spiral must be a forward inside death spiral.
3. Step sequences must be progressive only. Retrogressions are not permitted, but short stops in accordance with the must are permitted.

Marking of Singles and Pairs Short Programs

The characteristics considered when assigning the mark for technical merit were revised to add the following:

1. The position in the air and the landing of flying spins.
2. The difficulty of connecting steps.
3. The overall speed of the skating.

The characteristics considered when assigning the mark for presentation were revised to add the following:

1. The variation of the speed of the skating.

Short program deductions for pair changed to 0.1 to 0.4 for failures and 0.5 for omissions, for solo jump and death spiral.

Well Balanced Free Skating for Senior and Junior Singles

The requirements for a well balanced program were revised. Programs must include one jump combination or sequence but not more than three in total (this will eliminate dreary programs with a double toe on the back of every jump). Only two different triple jumps may be repeated, and if repeated one must be as part of a combination jump and the other as part of a second combination jump or a jump sequence. No triple jump can be attempted more than twice. (This clarifies that the rules on repeating jumps refers to attempts at a jump not the number of times successfully completed.)

Men's freeskating programs must have one traditional step sequence and one moves in the field type step sequence. The moves in the field sequence is defiined as a sequence of linking steps and footwork, that may also include other free skating movements such as turns, spirals, arabesques, spread eagles, Ina Bauers, and flowing moves with strong edges.

At least four spins for seniors and three for juniors are required. At least one must be a combination spin, one must be a flying spin. Solo spins must have a minimum of 6 rotations, and combinations spins a total of 10 rotations. Spins with less than these numbers don't count towards meeting the required number of spins. The spin combination must include at least one change of foot.

Well Balanced Free Skating for Senior Pairs

The requirements for a well balanced program were revised. Programs must include one side-by-side jump. Since formerly two were required, the purpose of this is to reduce the number of side-by-side jumps in pair skating. Programs must include one pair spin combination, one pair spin, one death spiral, and a second death spiral of a different type or another pivot type maneuver. Formerly pairs were expected to do one pair spin combination, one death spiral, and either a second pair spin or death spiral. Thus, pairs are expected to do one less side-by-side jump and one more pair move compared with the former rules.

Marking of Singles and Pairs Free Skating

The characteristics considered when assigning the mark for technical merit were revised to add the overall speed of the skating.

The characteristics considered when assigning the mark for presentation were revised to add the following:

1. The variation of the speed of the skating.
2. The utilization of the ice surface.

For each extra or lacking element of a well balanced program a deduction of 0.2 will be taken in the mark for technical merit.

In marking spins judges will consider the smoothness of the entry, control of the rotation, number of rotations, speed of rotation, centering of the spin, and control of the finish. In flying spins the height of the jump, the position in the air, and the landing are also considered.

The following will be penalized by the judges:

1. Lying and prolonged and/or stationary kneeling on the ice at any time.
2. Unnecessary and prolonged posing and/or movements executed on two feet.
3. Multiple executions of movements where neither skate is on the ice.

Interpretive Free Skating

The proposals regarding the inclusion of an Interpretive Free Skating program in open international competitions (ProAms) passed. The details of these proposals can be found in the May issue.

Ice Dancing Compulsory Dances

Introductory steps no longer limited to seven. Introductory steps may now not exceed the introductory phrasing of the specific music used. Theatrical opening poses are forbidden. Opening poses that reflect the character of the dance are allowed.

All compulsory dance must be started so that the steps of the first side of the pattern are skated in front of the judges, unless otherwise specified by the referee. If the starting side is changed it must be announced at the time of the first draw for staring order.

A deduction of 0.1 to 0.2 from the mark for Timing/Expression has been added for inappropriate clothing.

Ice Dancing Original Dance

The dance must have the character of a ballroom dance translated to the ice by flow and use of edges.

The musical introduction may be without beat or melody for a maximum of 10 seconds.

Skating on two feet by either partner, or both, is not allowed, except that 2 highlights where one or both partners are on two feet may be included, with a maximum duration of 5 seconds.

Ice Dancing Free Dance

Deep edges are required.

Separations to permit a change of hold or position are permitted. Separations at the beginning or end of the dance are permitted, provided they do not exceed 10 seconds.

Hand-in-hand positions, skating one after the other, and mirror skating must be avoided.

Stops are permitted with a maximum duration of 5 seconds.

Lift requirements revised to permit lifts in which the hands of the lifting partner are not raised higher than the head. Lifts are permitted to enhance the dance to emphasize the character of certain passages of music.

Pirouettes and spins are permitted but are not to exceed 5 rotations.

The name of the second mark was changed to Presentation.

Interpretive Free Dance

The proposals regarding the inclusion of an Interpretive Free Dance program in open international competitions (ProAms) passed. The details of these proposals can be found in the May issue.

Precision Team

In international competitions, up to 25% of the team members may be foreign members, if permitted by the National Associations of those skaters.

World Team Skating Championships to be scheduled in the first two weeks of April.

For international competitions, senior teams can be 16 to 24 skaters, junior teams can be 12 to 20 skaters.

Any element completed after 2 minutes 40 seconds in a short program will be marked as omitted.

Vocal music may not be used. Music must have a melody and a constamt beat. Free skating music must have at least one change of tempo.

No more than 6 teams may skate without an ice resurface.

Warmup time shall be 1 minute for both the short program and free skating.

Short Program Requirements

Circle: minimum revolutions requirement removed, must include a minimum of two step sequences, separations are permitted.

Line: must include a minimum of two step sequences, separations are permitted.

Block: must inclued a minimum of two step sequences, separations are permitted.

Wheel: minimum 3 revolution requirement removed, no more than three geometric shapes permitted.

Intersections: back spirals prohibited, moves to regroup prohibited. Intersections to consist of one-half the team moving through the other half.


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