Triple lutz | Importance of preparation: Is it really essential?
A case of study: Triple lutz of Anna Pogorilaya (Russia). Anna is 17, young talented skater and reigning European bronze medalist. She is part of this new generation of skater.
During the Cup of China 2015, ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating, Anna Pogorilaya wasn't confortable on her triple lutz (3Lz). Executed three times during this competition, two times in combinaison jump and one as solo jump. In the short program, she landed the triple lutz with a touch down, with a hand. But it was too difficult to succeed the triple toe loop. A fall in this mandatory element. Fourth after the short program, Anna did a fantastic 3Lz combo, scoring 11.70 points with GEO+2. But 40 seconds later, she fell on the second triple lutz.
How is it possible? What happened?
To understand better the reason why Anna failed on her second triple lutz, I made some advanced analysis with a stromotion effect (Dartfish effect). Unfortunately, the stromotion of the third triple lutz is not usefull. The camera angle is not right to get a profile view, for example.
The preparation in a jump is a key moment really important. It prepares to succeed or not. All coaches are agree on this point.
I defined the preparation part when she is start to be on inside edge until she is in toe-pick position.
- Fig.1 Triple lutz, short program with the preparation part ( Click Here to enlarge the picture)
On the Fig.1, we can see on the last freeze frame that she landed too much on the toe-pick. This explains the fall on the triple toe-loop. She was clearly destabilized. Unfortunaletly, we don't have the same angle to compare her 3 triple lutz, executed during this competition.
But we can guess that Anna was already too much on her toe-pick during the preparation because of her pelvis position ( Green arrow). Her pelvis is inclined forward ( Butt out). That's the only problem with this entrance. If you don't lock enough your pelvis, it will move during the preparation. Because we lead the move by the free leg. She worked also a little bit laterally.
- Fig.2 Triple lutz, Free Skating (Source Youtube, low quality)
New path of preparation, the most used actually
On the figure 2. we can see clearly the path of the preparation. That is why I publish it, despite the low quality of this picture. She does a change of edge, starting with a long inside edge to finish in outside edge. With this approach, the skater is sure to be in the correct edge at the beginning of the jump. No deduction!
This is the path the most used actually. It allows no doubt about the quality of the edge when the skater does the take-off.
The duration of the preparation part
I define preparation time as moment when Anna starts the inside edge part until the toe pick position. On figure 1 and 2, I timed the duration of each preparation, noted part 1 ( Preparation).
|Element||Duration part 1|
|3Lz, Short program||01.760|
|3Lz combo, Free Skating||01.835|
|3Lz, Free Skating||01.501|
Both triple lutz combo have almost the same time preparation. Anna made small mistakes in her starting position in the short program. It can explain the touch down with hand. Below, you can watch the three triple Lutz of Pogorilaya in slow motion ( 25% of the real speed).
As coach, I think she trained elements of her program by sequence. For example, 3Lz+3T, 3Lo (triple loop) and 3Lz with all the choreography. This sequence takes 1min. I think it's more a mental problem or an hesitation/doubt who caused that. Anna is 17, a very talented skater but also young. She finished 3rd last season on the European Championship. I really think she can be in the Top 5 worldwide this season. But she must be more consistent during big events. With video training, she can complete her training and work more her mental training. For example, using mental picture of her jumps.