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Author Topic: Moves in the Field Testing and Coaching  (Read 4318 times)

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Offline jumpingbeansmom

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Moves in the Field Testing and Coaching
« on: September 21, 2010, 04:08:45 PM »
Do most of your competitive skaters have separate moves coaches?  How far ahead of their competitive level are they testing moves?  My dd is tested through Juvenile and is competing juvenile.  She tried Intermediate under the change wire, but didn't pass the brackets, so now she will have to do the new test.

Her old and new coaches have opposite end of the spectrum approaches- the old one worked moves constantly and far ahead of their competing level (but she was also a synchro coach).  The new team, teaches and tests the moves as needed- often feeling to me a bit like a cram, but on the other hand I also wonder if mastering the test patterns is harder when you are testing so far above your competition level.

Anyway, just looking for experiences, not sure if I like either approach or neither of them- dd hates moves so this doesn't help.

Offline rsk8d

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Re: Moves in the Field Testing and Coaching
« Reply #1 on: September 21, 2010, 04:38:58 PM »
I specialize in moves in the field as well as off-ice.  I am not a primary competition coach, as I have two small children, so many coaches in my area hire me to work with their students on moves.  I find it is easier to have a specialist moves coach, as the skater will always be practicing  them every week.  If one coach is in charge of everything, sometimes moves get neglected in competition season.

I always like to test skaters several moves tests ahead of their freestyle level.  In the IJS, skaters are expected to do clean rockers, counters, loops, etc. at the juvenile and intermediate levels.  If these skaters aren't tested up, it typically shows in their ability to do footwork and with their basic skating skills.  I've seen many skaters just 'skid by' in moves in order to compete  a certain level that season, and it definately shows in their component scores.  Moves are the basis of everything in skating, and if a skater doesn't have a good foundation of skating skills and turns, he or she will not do as well competitively in the long run.  The same pertains to off-ice.  If a skater doesn't naturally have the core strength and single leg stability to be consistent with jumps, it will take much longer to get them.  JMO.....
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Offline Isk8NYC

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Re: Moves in the Field Testing and Coaching
« Reply #2 on: September 21, 2010, 06:39:43 PM »
This is also how some coaches are saving money on the USFSA coaching expenses like the annual registration fee and CER compliance.  They work as a secondary coach and don't take students to competitions and tests.  I think it makes a lot of sense, but I'm not sure that's what was intended.
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Offline twokidsskatemom

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Re: Moves in the Field Testing and Coaching
« Reply #3 on: September 21, 2010, 06:44:11 PM »
A few reasons to be ahead of fs tests..
One  way to get better scores under IJS is the skating skills,transitions ect. The harder the footwork the more points.
Another is its hard if you dont pass and therefore  cant move up in fs.We just attended a test session the day before the deadline for regionals.Someone was testing intemed Fs and didnt pass.She had already signed up for regionals.She isnt going now and doesnt get her money refunded. Too much stress!
My dd is pre juv and taking Novice moves after regionals.My DS is prelim and talking intemed moves.Just easier and they do better when they compete as they have strong edges and  good footwork.
imo

Offline techskater

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Re: Moves in the Field Testing and Coaching
« Reply #4 on: September 21, 2010, 07:52:08 PM »
Most skaters that do well are several moves tests ahead of their FS (if not done with MIF).  While MIF aren't perfect, they do encourage stronger skating skills the higher the level (which translates to SS, TR, IN, CH scores)

Offline Isk8NYC

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Re: Moves in the Field Testing and Coaching
« Reply #5 on: September 21, 2010, 07:55:35 PM »
I like the less-stress of having skaters test ahead one or two levels on Moves.  That way, there's no need to do contingency testing and take a chance on losing the second test fee if the skater doesn't pass the Moves.  Of course when they DO pass, they regret not signing up for the freestyle, lol
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Offline rsk8d

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Re: Moves in the Field Testing and Coaching
« Reply #6 on: September 21, 2010, 08:07:31 PM »
This is also how some coaches are saving money on the USFSA coaching expenses like the annual registration fee and CER compliance.  They work as a secondary coach and don't take students to competitions and tests.  I think it makes a lot of sense, but I'm not sure that's what was intended.

Do people really do that?  Doesn't every coach have to register and do the CER courses if they are teaching students?  BTW, I take all of my students to tests, and the other coaches aren't involved with their MIF.
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Offline Isk8NYC

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Re: Moves in the Field Testing and Coaching
« Reply #7 on: September 21, 2010, 08:21:16 PM »
Not every coach has to register and complete the CER requirements unless they want to coach skaters at events.  In this situation, the secondary coaches are really part-time instructors with very few private lessons.  The "main coach" is responsible for the skater's performances, so s/he sign the test/comp forms and puts the skater on the ice at events. 

I only team-teach one student (at the mother's request) so I defer everything to the main coach.  While I worked on Moves with this student, so did the main coach, so it wasn't a big deal when the main coach signed the form and put the skater on the ice at the test session.  The rest of my students take one lesson a week with me and we split it between Moves and Freestyle.
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Offline drskater

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Re: Moves in the Field Testing and Coaching
« Reply #8 on: September 21, 2010, 09:21:47 PM »
OMG -- this! Maybe I'm cynical about about testing because of my background (collge professor) but I'm not all that impressed by the new CER requirements and etc. Believe it or not, there really are some coaches for whom the $150.00 PSA membership is too expensive. Plus, all this "master rated" and etc. is meaningless in real world circumstances. USFS and PSA doen't seem to count actual coaching expereince (how many years, how many students at high levels, what the coach himself or herself may have accomplished) when it comes to ratings. What seems to matter more is CER and tests online (not free). Canada went through this whole mess in the 1990s and as a result, many experienced and highly accomplished (effective) coaches ended up lower rated than the coaches who played the system. I don't doubt that the new requirements are well-intentioned but  skaters, students, and parents should be aware that ratings and etc. are more about working the system than actual teaching effectiveness.

Offline dak_rbb

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Re: Moves in the Field Testing and Coaching
« Reply #9 on: September 21, 2010, 11:05:33 PM »
My skater has had a separate moves coach for a few years now.  He allows her main coach to focus on jumps and spins.  He also provides a bit of a "bad cop" to the main coaches "good cop".  That's an exaggeration, but not entirely untrue.  This is a good thing, since dd really is not naturally the precise, careful type and sometimes needs a bit of pushing to practice her moves.  Her moves coach does not solely focus on the tests.  They also spend time on program footwork and just working on exercises for general stroking, edges, turns, etc.

Most of the skaters around here are about 2 MIF tests ahead of their competition level.  My daughter is a bit behind--working on Juvenile moves and competing preliminary, but I think more because there hasn't been a lot of pressure to test.  As long as her skating skills are improving, I'm fine with being one or two tests ahead with MIF.

Offline Isk8NYC

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Re: Moves in the Field Testing and Coaching
« Reply #10 on: September 22, 2010, 06:56:45 AM »
USFS and PSA doen't seem to count actual coaching expereince (how many years, how many students at high levels, what the coach himself or herself may have accomplished) when it comes to ratings.
That's untrue: the PSA ratings REQUIRE coaches to test up to, or have students who have tested to, certain levels in order to advance in their ratings.  http://www.skatepsa.com/Rating%20Requirements/08%20FREE%20SKATING%20Requirements.pdf  I'm not criticizing you or the PSA, just clarifying the statement.  The coach cannot register for the next-level test until the requirements are fulfilled.

Back on topic:
In order to skate the freestyle level well, the skater really does need to be one or two tests ahead with MIF.  The skating skills MIF develops really shows in the element strength, plus it helps the skaters progress faster with their freestyle elements when they have strength and control of their basic skating skills.  

There's no rule that says you must stay at/around the same levels in MIF and Freestyle.  A skater can test all the way up in Moves without ever taking a Freestyle test.  The only time it's commented on is when the skater competes.  Once they advance more than two levels in MIF, people start to speculate about "unfair advantage" and "sandbagging." *shrugs*
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Offline jumpingbeansmom

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Re: Moves in the Field Testing and Coaching
« Reply #11 on: September 22, 2010, 08:16:15 AM »
 If one coach is in charge of everything, sometimes moves get neglected in competition season.


I definitely see this happen

Offline jumpingbeansmom

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Re: Moves in the Field Testing and Coaching
« Reply #12 on: September 22, 2010, 08:18:42 AM »
A few reasons to be ahead of fs tests..
One  way to get better scores under IJS is the skating skills,transitions ect. The harder the footwork the more points.
Another is its hard if you dont pass and therefore  cant move up in fs.We just attended a test session the day before the deadline for regionals.Someone was testing intemed Fs and didnt pass.She had already signed up for regionals.She isnt going now and doesnt get her money refunded. Too much stress!
My dd is pre juv and taking Novice moves after regionals.My DS is prelim and talking intemed moves.Just easier and they do better when they compete as they have strong edges and  good footwork.
imo

Yikes, that WOULD be stressful...my dd was always a couple moves tests ahead until just this summer-  I would like her to retake intermediate during the winter.   As she is only turning 10, I doubt she'll move up to intermediate for a while in FS.

Offline Sk8Dreams

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Re: Moves in the Field Testing and Coaching
« Reply #13 on: September 22, 2010, 02:42:29 PM »
Plus, all this "master rated" and etc. is meaningless in real world circumstances. USFS and PSA doen't seem to count actual coaching expereince (how many years, how many students at high levels, what the coach himself or herself may have accomplished) when it comes to ratings.

In addition to what Isk8NYC said, although the Basic Accreditation exam is fairly simple, the oral ratings exams are quite difficult, requiring a combination of serious experience and study.  It is not unusual to fail several times on the way to a Master rating, and it most definitely takes years of experience to get even close to being ready for that rating exam.  I would have to say that just taking the oral rating exams is a valuable educational experience.
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Offline Sk8tmum

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Re: Moves in the Field Testing and Coaching
« Reply #14 on: September 22, 2010, 07:06:28 PM »
It is interesting to see this focus on the Moves tests in the States. While we do have skills tests (sort of/kind of moves in the field, but, much much much less involved) - they do not link in any way to freeskate levels, either in test or competitive track.  You test freeskate, and that's that ... and if you are not in the test track, there is no requirement for stroking or other such in the test at all; in fact, they removed the requirement for minimum Skating Skills scores for competitive tests this year (although minimum PCS does apply, which does include skating skills, of course).

However, yes, my kids do have specialist coaches in what you would term Moves in the Field; we have a specific coach working on footwork, turns, edges, transitions, etc. Reasoning being that it is a key component of skating, and a primary coach "farming this out" to an expert in the area gives a benefit to the skater while freeing up time for the freeskate coach. 

Offline isakswings

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Re: Moves in the Field Testing and Coaching
« Reply #15 on: September 22, 2010, 11:38:21 PM »
Do most of your competitive skaters have separate moves coaches?  How far ahead of their competitive level are they testing moves? 
Anyway, just looking for experiences, not sure if I like either approach or neither of them- dd hates moves so this doesn't help.

At dd's rink, no. Usually the primary coaches work with their students on moves. That said, I would say at least half of the kids in dd's club are coached by a husband/wife team and they each take turns coaching their students. One works on moves while the other works on jumps and programs, ect. Their students usually test up and I would imagine that is because they can team teach and cover a lot more then say my dd's coach can. With that said, I can totally see how having a coach just for moves can be beneficial. Dd's coach works alone, so she has to focus on everything. I imagine working alone can make it hard to fit everything in, esp when preparing for a competition.

Just today, my skater had her first lesson with her dance coach(and she liked dance!). Dd will have once weekly lessons with the dance coach. We added dance to help with her edges, arms and posture. Dance coach is also qualified to teach moves. Primary coach and dance coach have talked and while dance coach will focus on dance, primary coach might have her work on moves as needed too. It doesn't matter to me... I have left that decision up to the coaches. I'll just smile and pay the bill. LOL!

So to answer your question...around here most skaters take moves from their primary coaches and whether or not they test up, depends on the coach.

Offline phoenix

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Re: Moves in the Field Testing and Coaching
« Reply #16 on: September 23, 2010, 08:47:29 AM »
At my rink, whether or not there's a separate moves coach, there almost always is a separate moves lesson. So most kids have their FS lessons, plus their moves lessons.

Offline kssk8fan

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Re: Moves in the Field Testing and Coaching
« Reply #17 on: September 23, 2010, 10:32:03 AM »
my daughter is taught moves by her primary coach.  However, 5 minutes of each lesson is spent on moves.  It may just be one pattern or a "piece" of a pattern that she works on but it's an ongoing and never ending part of her skating.  She'll also spend a portion of her practice time working on moves as well.

I think it's just part of the overall package. 

Offline jumpingbeansmom

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Re: Moves in the Field Testing and Coaching
« Reply #18 on: September 23, 2010, 11:36:22 AM »
my daughter is taught moves by her primary coach.  However, 5 minutes of each lesson is spent on moves.  It may just be one pattern or a "piece" of a pattern that she works on but it's an ongoing and never ending part of her skating.  She'll also spend a portion of her practice time working on moves as well.

I think it's just part of the overall package. 

My dd avoids it like the plague...but she is getting more reasonable as she is getting older and starting to really get practice and such..hey she is even taking ballet

Offline isakswings

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Re: Moves in the Field Testing and Coaching
« Reply #19 on: September 23, 2010, 09:36:49 PM »
My dd avoids it like the plague...but she is getting more reasonable as she is getting older and starting to really get practice and such..hey she is even taking ballet

Haa haa! So does mine usually, but on Tuesday her coach told her she HAD to practice them for X amount of time and guess what? She did it. Hee hee! The better she gets, the less time she will HAVE to spend on moves. Prior to this, she was supposed to spend at least 15 minutes on moves a session. Now it's longer until her coach says otherwise. LOL!

Offline kssk8fan

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Re: Moves in the Field Testing and Coaching
« Reply #20 on: September 23, 2010, 11:42:31 PM »
The better she gets, the less time she will HAVE to spend on moves. Prior to this, she was supposed to spend at least 15 minutes on moves a session. Now it's longer until her coach says otherwise. LOL!


The more time she spends on moves, the better everything else will get!

Offline isakswings

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Re: Moves in the Field Testing and Coaching
« Reply #21 on: September 24, 2010, 08:59:18 PM »
The last 2 sessions she skated, she spent 45 minutes on moves. Coach told her she had to spend that long on moves and by golly she did it. She did come off the ice a couple of time to ask me how much time she had left. Funny thing, there is a CLOCK on the wall that she could read herself! Crazy kid. I think I will tell her next time, that she needs to check the clock when she starts and time herself. LOL! Now it's that darn axel. I think she is a bit scared of it now. She jumped it today and landed some, but she seems gun shy after last weeks comp. :) Coach had her jumping them today.