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Section A - Official Regulations - 120 Marking of the Free Dances

  1. Technical Score
    1. Scale of Values
      A table with the scale of values of the required elements for the free dance is updated in Skate Canada and ISU Communications. This scale of values (SOV) contains base values of all the elements and adjustments for the quality of their execution. The base values are measured in points and increase with the increasing difficulty of the elements. The difficulty of the required elements in the free dance is determined by their levels of difficulty.
    2. Levels of Elements Difficulty
      Technical specialists will determine the name and the Level of every required element in the free dance. All elements are divided into at least four Levels depending on their difficulty. The description of characteristics that give an element a certain level of difficulty is published and updated in ISU Communications.
    3. Grade of Execution (GOE)
      Every judge will mark the quality of execution of each required element in the free dance depending on the positive features of the execution and errors on the seven grades of execution scale: +3, +2, +1, base value, -1, -2, -3. Each + or - grade has its own + or - numerical value indicated in the SOV table. This value is added to the base value of the element or deducted from it. The guidelines for marking of required elements performed are published and updated in Skate Canada and ISU Communications.
    4. Illegal Elements/Movements
      There must be a 2.0 point deduction for every illegal element/movement performed in the free dance. For the list of illegal elements/movements for free dance Technical and Qualifying Competition Handbook. If there is an illegal movement during the execution of any element, the deduction for an illegal movement will apply and the element will receive Level 1 if the requirements for at least Level 1 are fulfilled. Otherwise the element will be called “no level”.

      The scale of values of the required elements may be updated and will be published in Skate Canada and ISU Communications.
  2. Program Components Score
    1. Definition of Program Components: In addition to the technical score each of the judges will evaluate the couple’s whole performance which is divided into five (5) program components in the free dance (skating skills, transitions/linking footwork/movements, performance/execution, composition/choreography, interpretation/timing).
      1. SKATING SKILLS
        Overall Skating quality: edge control and flow over the ice surface demonstrated by a command of the skating vocabulary (edges, steps, turns etc.), the clarity of technique and the use of effortless power to accelerate and vary speed

        Criteria:
        • Balance, rhythmic knee action and precision of foot placement
        • Flow and effortless glide
        • Cleanness and sureness of deep edges, steps and turns
        • Power/energy and acceleration
        • Mastery of multi-directional skating
        • Mastery of one foot skating
        • Equal mastery of technique by both partners shown in unison
      2. TRANSITIONS/LINKING FOOTWORK /MOVEMENTS
        The varied and or intricate footwork, positions, movements and holds that link all elements and constitute the distinct technical content of the dance

        Criteria:
        • Variety
        • Difficulty
        • Intricacy
        • Quality;
        • Balance of workload between partners
        • Variety of dance holds (not excessive side by side and hand in hand)
      3. PERFORMANCE/EXECUTION
        Performance – the involvement of the couple physically, emotionally and intellectually as they translate the intent of the music and the choreography Execution - the quality of movement and precision in delivery. This includes harmony of movement

        Criteria:
        • Physical, emotional and intellectual involvement;
        • Carriage
        • Style and individuality/personality
        • Clarity of movement
        • Variety and contrast
        • Projection
        • Unison and “oneness”
        • Balance in performance between partners
        • Spatial awareness between partners – management of the distance and management of the changes of hold.
      4. COMPOSITION/CHOREOGRAPHY
        An intentional, developed and/or original arrangement of all types of movements according to the principles of proportion, unity, space, pattern, structure and phrasing

        Criteria:
        • Purpose (idea, concept, vision)
        • Proportion (equal weight of the parts)
        • Unity (purposeful threading)
        • Utilization of personal and public space
        • Pattern and ice coverage
        • Phrasing and form (movements and parts structured to match the phrasing of the music)
        • Originality of purpose, movement and design
        • Shared responsibility in achieving purpose by both.
      5. INTERPRETATION/TIMING
        The personal and creative translation of the rhythm and/or character and content of the music to movement on ice

        Criteria:
        • Effortless and correct movement in time to the music (timing)
        • Expression of the music’s rhythm, character content and style
        • Use of finesse* to reflect the nuances of the music
        • Relationship between the partners reflecting the character and content of the music
        • Appropriateness of the music
        • Keeping a good balance between skating to the beat and melody

          Note: If the music does not have a rhythmic beat, the judges must take a deduction from the component for timing/interpretation

          *Finesse is the skaters’ refined, artful manipulation of nuances. Nuances are the personal artistic ways of bringing variations to the intensity, tempo, and dynamics of the music made by the composer and/or musicians.
    2. Marking of Program Components
      Program components are evaluated by judges, after the completion of a program, on a scale from 0.25 to 10 with increments of 0.25. Points given by the judges correspond to the following degrees of the components: <1 - very poor, 1 - poor, 2 - weak, 3 - fair, 4 - average, 5 - above average, 6 - good, 7 - very good, 8 - superior, 9-10 - outstanding. Increments are used for evaluation of performances containing some features of one degree and some of the next degree.
      Guidelines for judging are published and updated in Skate Canada and ISU Communications
    3. Deductions
      Deductions are applied for each violation according to the regulations (see regulation 110 – Determination and Publication of Results.
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