Skating Fridays

Feedback from a National Tech Specialist (part 1)

I have been very fortunate to have been introduced to a national technical specialist. He is, in fact, the person who “called” my free skate event at Adult Nationals in 2022. For you non-skaters, that means that this individual is the one that identifies the element a skater executes and tells the officials what it is. Most of the time, the performed element should be the same thing as what is listed on the Planned Program Content sheet, which is required for all IJS competitions. Sometimes, the executed element doesn’t match what was intended. The tech specialist’s role is to identify what was actually performed, while the judges grade how well it was executed.

I’ve had the great fortune to have had several lessons with this individual while traveling for work. At my last lesson several months ago, he asked to see my spins. At the time, we had not finished choreographing my new program yet, so I wasn’t sure what they would be. I asked him if it would be OK for me to send him the videos via text, and he graciously agreed.

This is the first spin that I sent him. I had hoped to develop this as a level 4 camel spin, knowing that the maximum I could ever receive for my skating level is a level 3. The levels I was hoping to achieve were: 1) Camel spin in the opposite direction, 2) Change of edge, 3) Camel grab, 4) Difficult exit (salchow-like hop)

Here are his notes:

  • First camel not held for 2 revolutions (knee drop)
  • Edge was short (both the first edge and the outside edge)
  • Camel forward was OK but make sure the knee doesn’t drop
  • Exit is minimal; I expect the standard to be raised in a clarification from ISU

I agree with his feedback and know that this spin still needs some work. I’ve decided to make some edits to it, so we will see how the next iteration goes.

Stay tuned next week for another analysis!

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