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Glossary of Skating Terminology


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Pair combination spin: A pair spin which includes one or more changes of foot or position during the spin.

Pair girl: A female skater with more guts than brains who skates in a pair team.

Pair guy (or boy): The large piece of meat who skates in a pair team and who's job is to make the pair girl look good.

Pair lifts: The lifts permitted in pair competitions in which one or both of the hand(s) of the lifting partner is/are raised above shoulder level, with the intention of fully extending the arm(s); subdivided into twist lifts and overhead lifts.

Pair skating (pairs): A discipline of skating in which two skaters perform maneuvers together on the ice in programs choreographed to accompanying music.  Typically a pair consist of a man and a woman; however, the rules allow events where two persons of the same gender form the teams - known as similar pairs.

Pair spin: A spin in which two skaters hold onto each other during the spin.

Panel: The group of judges that mark a competition.

Panel Grade of Execution:  The combined Grade of Execution point value for an element.  Each Grade of Execution mark from the panel of judges is converted to a Grade of Execution point value using the Scale of Values. The Grade of Execution point values for all the judges are then combined together using either a straight mean or a single trimmed mean.

Paragraph figure: A compulsory figure in which both lobes of the figure are skated on one foot.

Phrase: 1. A segment of a musical composition, usually consisting of four or eight measures (2, 4, 8, 12, or 16 measures in the music used for ice dancing). 2. A series of dance movements forming a unit in a choreographic pattern.

Pirouette: In ballet, to make one full turn of the body on the point of the toe or the ball of the foot. In skating, an alternate term for a spin used more commonly in Europe than in North America.

Piston roll: A traveling two foot sit spin. Frequently terminated with an Arabian or flying camel.

Pivot: A position in which a skater rotates around the toe picks of one skate while the other skate traces a circles on the ice.

Platter lift: An overhead lift. The partners skate facing each other, with the lifting partner skating backwards. The lifting partner places his hands on the hips of the lifted partner (toward the front) near waist level. The lifted partner is raised overhead with the arms of the lifting partner fully extended. In the air, the lifted partner's position is parallel to the ice with an arched back and with the legs extended gracefully backwards, one of which will be straight and the other bent. Variations consist of different arm and leg positions of the the lifted partner. At the lower levels the lifted partner may choose to grasp the lifting partner's wrists during the takeoff.

Pointed out: See turned out.

Pointed in: See turned in.

Popping a jump: The aborting of a jump after the takeoff, the result of which is that the intended number of rotations are not completed.

Protocol:  The published record of all the marks received by skaters for a performance.  This term is used for both the marks for a single skater and the marks for an entire competition.

Pre-Call:  The advance warning the Assistant Technical Specialist gives the Technical specialist for what type of element is next (a jump, spin, etc.) in the performance.

Press lift: An overhead lift. The partners skate facing each other, with the lifting partner skating backwards. They clasp hands and the lifted partner is raised over the lifting partner's head. In the air, the lifted partner maintains an arched back with the legs extended back and split in a "V" position supported by the lifting partner's hands. In the air the partners face in opposite directions. Variations include releasing the grip of one hand in the air and setting down the lifted partner using one arm. See also one hand press lift.

Presentation mark: The second of two marks awarded using the 6.0 system when judging singles, pairs, and synchronized team short and free skating programs, original set pattern dances, and original dances, based primarily on the choreography of the program and the quality of its presentation.

Program Components: (IJS) A group of marks the judges award a performance for certain aspects of the performance other than the allowed elements.  Different program segments have different combinations of program components, typically three to five depending on the category and segment.  The exact aspects of the performance marked also varies from one category and segment to another.  Program components for singles skating include: skating skills, transitions, performance and execution, composition, interpretation.  Some of these and others are used for pair skating and ice dancing.

Program Component Score: (IJS) The total points a performance earns from the program component marks given by the judges for the performance.

Progressive steps: Steps in the same direction as the overall motion of the pattern.

Pull through: A dance move in which one partner pulls the other partner past or through the first partner (e.g. under a leg or between the legs) in a rapid gliding motion.

Pulling in: The action at the takeoff of a jump, or during spins, of bringing the arms and/or legs closer to the rotation axis of the body to increase the speed of rotation.

Pushback: A free skating move in which the skater glides forward in a spiral position, gently rocks up on the toe picks of the skating foot, pushes back, and glides out backwards in a spiral position.

Copyright 2020 by George S. Rossano