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Over the Edge


President’s Message





| Jimmie Santee | Christine Fowler-Binder

| Tom Hickey | U.S. Figure Skating


Sport Science




Real Life Coaching


Legal Ease

| Heidi Thibert

| Carol Rossignol | Bob Mock

| David Shulman



Endeavor to Persevere


PSA/ISI Merger Press Release


U.S. Figure Skating Rule Changes


2016 Hall of Fame: Hans Gerschwiler |


Learn to Skate USA |


2016 ISI/PSA Conferences & Trade Show Recap


2016 Edi Award Recipients


2016 U.S. Open Figure Skating Championships Results

| Holly Malewski

Kent McDill

Terri Milner Tarquini



Obituary Rating Exams Passed New Members PSA Calendar of Events Jimmie Santee | Editor Carol Rossignol | Contributing Editor Amanda Taylor | Art Director Elizabeth Thornton | Advertising/Editorial Assistant

Issue No 4 #ISSN-574770 |


Find, Friend, Follow

» COVER Avonley Nguyen & Maxwell Gart | Intermediate Ice Dance



OVER THE EDGE Jimmie Santee, MPD, MG


The Line That's Crossed M

y last editorial seemed to strike a major chord with a number of our readers. In fact, I received more responses than any other editorial I have written in the last 10 years. I thought that what I wrote was the apex of the controversy but I was wrong in that assumption. Despite the fact that the Russians were dealing with the meldonium outbreak, they were also dealing with accusations that their anti-doping laboratories had destroyed thousands of urine samples in order to avoid exposure to WADA investigators. The specific issue nonetheless, is that there are new witnesses and developing evidence that the Russian government officials allegedly orchestrated the entire fiasco. Following the airing of investigative journalist Hajo Seppelt’s documentary, “Doping—Top Secret: The Shadowy World of Athletics”, on the German TV network ADR (Olterman, 2014), WADA identified Dr. Grigory Rodchenko, Director of Rusada’s (Russian Anti-Doping Agency) anti-doping laboratory, as the “linchpin” in what they described as an “extensive state sponsored doping program” (Schwirtz, 2016). Dr. Rodchenko was forced to resign and, fearing for his safety, moved to Los Angles. Shortly after that, two top doping officials died within weeks. The first was Vyacheslav Sinev, the founding chairman of Rusada, who died on February 3. No cause of death was published. The second death was a former director of Rusada, Nikita Kamayev, 52, who reportedly died of a heart attack. Both had resigned their positions in December following the same WADA report (Kramer, 2016). WADA shortly thereafter suspended Rusada, and the UK Anti-Doping Agency (Ukad) moved in to test Russian athletes beginning in November of 2015. Ukad attempted to test athletes 247 times between then and May. “Attempted” is the key word, as 99 of those athletes could not be found by the agency to be tested. One athlete refused, and of the remaining samples that were tested, 20% failed! Ukad control officers reported that during the testing, Russia’s Security Services officers were present, threatening to revoke their visas if they “showed up again” (Sean Ingle, 2016). On April 8th, it was reported in the New York Times that Russia was keeping entire teams from competitions over fears that they would test positive for meldonium. Most notably was the decision to not send its under-18 to the World Junior Hockey Championships. Russia’s sports minister, Vitaly Mutko, stated that the players had taken meldonium prior to the ban on January 1, 2016 (Reevell, 2016). Days after Russia pulled its hockey team from the World Junior Championships, WADA lifted the suspensions for 14 of the 172 athletes who tested positive for meldonium. The doping agency said it could not determine how quickly the drug would clear the body. Taking meldonium on December 31, when it was still legal, would still provide a performance boost for some time. Athletes who tested positive before March 1 could be reinstated. Talk about a mixed message. That being said, a total of the evidence, along with several key witnesses coming forward, equals the sum that someone with authority was and still is pulling the strings.



PSA OFFICERS President First Vice President Second Vice President Third Vice President Treasurer Past President PSA BOARD OF GOVERNORS West Mid-West East Members at Large

Committee on Professional Standards Ratings Chair Seminar Chair ISI Rep to PSA U.S. Figure Skating Rep to PSA U.S. Figure Skating Coaches Executive Director Legal Counsel COMMITTEE CHAIRMEN Awards Coaches Hall of Fame Education Seminars State Workshops Apprentice Area Representatives Hockey Skating PS Magazine Sport Science Endorsements Executive Executive Nominating Finance Fundraising Ethics and Legal Nominating Professional Standards PSA Rep to ISI Ratings Special Olympics

Christine Fowler-Binder Alex Chang Rebecca Stump Tim Covington Carol Murphy Angela Riviello Phillip Mills Todd Sand Teri Klindworth Hooper Patrick O'Neil Tim Covington Robyn Petroskey-Poe Cindy Sullivan Jason Dilworth Carey Tinkelenberg Robbie Kaine Tom Hickey Don Corbiell Scott McCoy Ben Miller-Reisman Kelley Morris Adair Jimmie Santee David Shulman Tim Covington Kelley Morris Adair Heidi Thibert Don Corbiell Tom Hickey Rebecca Stump Gloria Masterson Leous Paul Paprocki Bob Mock Heidi Thibert Jamie Santee Christine Fowler-Binder Angie Riviello Carol Murphy Patrick O’Neil David Shulman Angie Riviello Robbie Kaine Gerry Lane Tom Hickey TBD

PSA AREA REPRESENTATIVES Area 1 Martha Harding Area Area 2 Anne Marie Filosa Area Area 3 Lee Cabell Area Area 4 Tim Covington Area Area 5 Gloria Masterson Leous Area Area 6 Kevin Curtis Area Area 7 Liz Egetoe Area Area 8 Melanie Bolhuis Area Area 9 Lisa Bardonaro-Reibly

10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17

Stacie Kuglin Brigitte Carlson-Roquet Sharon Brilliantine Tracey Seliga-O’Brien Lisa Mizonick Don Corbiell Josselyn Baumgartner John Kauffman

DISCLAIMER: Written by Guest Contributor | PSA regularly receives articles from guest contributors. The opinions and views expressed by these contributors are not necessarily those of PSA. By publishing these articles, PSA does not make any endorsements or statements of support of the author or their contribution, either explicit or implicit. THE PROFESSIONAL SKATER Magazine Mission: To bring to our readers the best information from the most knowledgeable sources. To select and generate the information free from the influence of bias. And to provide needed information quickly, accurately and efficiently. The views expressed in THE PROFESSIONAL SKATER Magazine and products are not necessarily those of the Professional Skaters Association. The Professional Skater, a newsletter of the Professional Skaters Association, Inc., is published bimonthly, six times a year, as the official publication of the PSA, 3006 Allegro Park SW, Rochester, MN 55902. 507.281.5122, Fax 507.281.5491, Emai: © 2016 by Professional Skaters Association, all rights reserved. Subscription price is $19.95 per year, Canadian $29.00 and foreign $45.00/year, U.S. Funds. ISSN-574770. Second-class Postage Paid at Rochester, MN 55901 and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER send address changes to The Professional Skater, 3006 Allegro Park SW, Rochester, MN 55902. Printed in the USA.

The Joy of Coaching

“A very clear explanation of the benefits appeared in an article on the website, “Runners World.” Many drugs boost blood flow by opening up arteries, but unlike most blood boosting medications, meldonium blocks the action of carnitine, an amino acid. Without carnitine, the body burns more sugar which requires less oxygen than when the body burns fat for fuel. According to cardiologist Justin Trivax, M.D., medical director of the Cardiovascular Performance Clinic at Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak, Michigan, “This drug takes a little bit of oxygen and makes a lot of energy, compared to when you didn’t have the drug—for that same amount of oxygen, you’d have less energy,” he says. “More energy is all you need to have better performance” (Kuzma, 2016). “

“The Joy of Coaching is about you and who you are as a coach today. It is about your coaching heritage, your skating DNA and where you sit in the coaching family tree.” ~ Bob Mock, PSA President 1994-1999

More recently, the U.S. Justice Department has opened a formal investigation. From a cocktail of steroids to meldonium, Russian athletes in figure skating, short and long track speed skating, hockey, curling, cross country, bobsledding, skeleton, track and field, tennis, cycling, and swimming have failed tests… some meldonium, and some steroids. Re-testing of B samples from previous Olympic Games are being executed. Medals will be taken. One thing is certain, winning gold means everything to the Russian government. It appears that they will do anything above or below the line, to accomplish that. To be continued…

Bibliography Kramer, A. (2016, February 15). Nikita Kamayev, Ex-Head of Russian Antidoping Agency, Dies. Retrieved from Kuzma, C. (2016, March 14). What Runners Need to Know About Meldonium. Retrieved from Runners World: Olterman, P. (2014, December 13). Russia accused of athletics doping cover-up on German TV. Retrieved from Reevell, P. (2016, April 8). Russia Says Fears About Doping Results Led to Withdrawl of Teams. Retrieved from Ruiz, R. R. (2016, May 17). Justice Department Opens Investigation Into Russian Doping Scandal. Retrieved from Schwirtz, R. R. (2016, May 12). Russian Olympic Doping Operation Detailed by Lab Chief on the Run. Retrieved from Sean Ingle, O. G. (2016, May 13). Pressure to Bar Russia from Rio grows as UK anti doping team’s work obstructed. Retrieved from

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PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE Christine Fowler-Binder, MPD, MG

Greetings Fellow Coaches! I

would like to take this opportunity to introduce myself. My name is Christine Fowler-Binder and I am the new PSA president. I live in Irvine, California and teach at the Aliso Viejo and Lake Forest Ice Palace Ice Rinks. I am lucky enough to teach under John Nicks and alongside Jenni Meno, Todd Sand, and Vitaliy Novikov everyday. Most of my days are spent directing ice dancing teams, teaching moves in the field, doing choreography, and instructing skaters during stroking and edge class. When I’m David Raith, U.S. Figure Skating Executive Director, Sam Auxier, U.S. Figure Skating President, Christine Fowler-Binder, PSA President, Rob McBride, ISI President, Angie Riviello, past PSA President, and Jimmie Santee, PSA Executive Director at the ISI/ not working, I love spending time PSA Joint Conference in Las Vegas, NV, June 1, 2016. with my kids—Allie, 15, and Owen, 11, and my husband, Kurt. opportunity for I have been involved with PSA at the board level since PSA to fulfill 2006. Past President Robbie Kaine encouraged me to run its mission. The for the board when I was moving from the East Coast to merger of these California 10 years ago. Robbie and I team taught many two outstanding dance teams together on the East Coast and when I had to associations is a move to California (for my husband’s job), Robbie asked benefit to not me to run for the West Coast board position. He explained only PSA and that I would have so much extra time on my hands (since ISI members, I wasn’t going to be teaching as much) that I would find but the ice fulfillment in giving back to our sport. He was right about sports industry feeling fulfillment in giving back to a sport I love, but I as a whole. never found that extra time he said I would have! Together, we In 2006, I served as the West Coast board representawill more effective, then moved onto Seminar Chair, 3rd Vice President, tively provide 2nd Vice President, 1st Vice President, and now President. the critical Christine with skaters at the 2016 As PSA Seminar Chair, I was able to help U.S. Figure U.S. Figure Skating Championships leadership and Skating with the Moves in the Field roll out. I truly enjoyed programs of both meeting new people, being involved with focus groups and organizations in a manner that will best serve the ice sports educating coaches across country. During these 22 seminars industry in the future. in six weeks, I realized what a remarkable organization PSA I look forward to working with ISI president, Rob is and how many coaches give freely of themselves to help McBride, and U.S. Figure Skating to make this merger better educate our membership and I was happy to continue beneficial for all organizations involved. my service from that point forward. In closing, I want to thank Robbie Kaine, Kelley MorrisThe last 10 years have been a true learning experience Adair, Jimmie Santee, and Angie Riviello for guiding me for me. I’ve been able to serve on the board at all levels over the last decade. Your guidance and encouragement will and learn the organization’s business from many different never be forgotten and I hope to make you proud! positions. I believe my past experience will help me better lead this organization over the next three years. »» For more information on the ISI/PSA merger, see page 17 I feel that the merger of PSA and ISI will be an exciting



OBITUARY Irene (Maguire) Muehlbronner November 17, 1929 – April 10, 2016

On April 10, 2016, at age 86 years, of Blue Bell and formerly of Glenside, PA, the beloved wife of the late Walter Sr. M uehlbronner passed away. Irene‘s impact on skating stretched over seven decades as both a skater/competitor and coach. She and her husband-to-be (Walter Muehlbronner) met at the Brooklyn Skating Club. They began skating together in 1947 and competed in ice dance and pairs. They were silver medalists in both the 1949 and 1950 U.S. Nationals in Gold Dance and Gold Pairs and went on to represent the U.S. on the World team at the 1950 Worlds, where they placed third in the international dance championships. They retired from competition in 1950 and went to Philadelphia on the promise of jobs as skating instructors. They married in 1951 and began to teach, then joined the PSGA in 1952. Ice Follies offered them a contract and they agreed to join the show for one year, and stayed for seven. They were the first competitive dance team to star in a major ice show. Afterwards, they turned their talents back to teaching in 1958—Walter at the Wissahickon Skating Club, of which he later became manager; Irene at the Philadelphia Skating Club and Humane Society. She later joined Walter at the Wissahickon SC as the first female coach. They taught and raised four sons, Richard, James, Peter, and Walter Jr., three of whom played ice hockey. Her husband, Walter, managed the Wissahickon SC and her son Wally followed in his father’s footsteps as the Director of Hockey. Irene took over the Basic Skills Program in the late 1950’s and grew the program for decades until 1990. Irene truly devoted her life to the sport of figure skating and to her family. She will al-

David M. Dore, B.A., B.Ed, C.A.E. August 9, 1940 – April 8, 2016

David Dore passed away peacefully on April 8, 2016 in Ottawa, Canada at age 75. Mr. Dore served as president of the Canadian Figure Skating Association (now Skate Canada) from 1980-84, and then led Skate Canada as the Director General for 18 years. He retired from Skate Canada and completed his years in skating

ways be remembered for her sense of humor and bright, permanent smile. Ruth Adlam, a longtime friend of Irene said, “Irene was always so encouraging to skaters at every level but had a special place in her heart for teaching group lessons. She had a twinkle in her eye when on the ice and she brought a love of skating to everyone she worked with.” In addition to running the Basic Skills program, Irene worked with adult skaters and helped to build a strong adult figure skating and ice dancing community along with Walter. Walter and Irene ice danced their way into every skating 1954 Vacation in Sun Valley; Irene and Walter Muehlbronner enthusiasts heart and will always be remembered for their significance in the ice dance community, and in particular for the speed and perfection with which they danced the very difficult pre gold dance, the Kilian. Perhaps it was Irene’s pleasant Irish wit that lent itself to the flawless Kilian that the entire skating community had the pleasure of witnessing and appreciating for so many years. Irene and Walter were honorary members of the Professional Skaters Association, receiving the Lifetime Achievement award in 1981. They were inducted into the PSA Coaches Irene and Walter Muehlbronner in 1995 Hall of Fame in 2008. She was master rated in dance/free dance and group instruction. Walter died in 2005 and was a of the Professional Skaters Foundation past president of the PSA from 1972 –1974 Scholarship Program. and was the first Ratings Committee Chair. Irene will be sorely missed by all who Together they created the Walter and Irene knew her. Muehlbronner Scholarship Award as part

as the 1st Vice President Figure Skating of the International Skating Union, a role he was elected to at the 49th ISU congress held in Japan in 2002. A survivor of polio, David took up skating as part of his rehabilitation and a love of figure skating kept him there for 63 years. In 2002 he received the International Olympic Committee’s highest honor, the Olympic Order. In 2008, he was inducted into the

Skate Canada Hall of Fame as a builder and bestowed an honored member of Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame and he was the recipient of three Governor General Awards. Dore was a national medalist, a world and Olympic level judge, and was involved locally at the club and section level. The timeless impact David Dore had on skating will never be forgotten. PHOTOS COURTESY OF SKATE CANADA




The Importance of Knowledge of the IJS When Taking a Choreography Rating Exam B y c o L L e e n J . M i c K e y, c H o r e o g r a P H y r a T i n g S c H a i r


am frequently asked why a choreographer needs to know the ISU Judging System (IJS) for choreography ratings. First and foremost, we must remember that the PSA is the recognized coaching education and accreditation organization for U.S. Figure Skating. Because the IJS is required for all competitions from juvenile through senior, it is vital that these rules and standards are understood and applied. The first level of the choreography exams is the registered level and covers pre-preliminary through pre-juvenile. Since IJS is not required at competition for these levels, only a few questions are asked on that topic. The candidate needs just an awareness of IJS for the registered exam. Certified through master needs a very thorough understanding of IJS for each level. When conference was in Colorado Springs a few years ago, a world judge and an international judge observed rating exams. I was on the panels for the choreography ratings that they observed. From their perspective, they appreciated the fact that such an emphasis was placed on the importance of knowing the rules of the sport. Rules exist to keep the sport fair and safe. Although choreography has such a strong creative emphasis, it is important to remember that skating is a mixture of art and sport. When the athletes compete, they are entering an event with very clear rules. This is very different from choreographing for a show. Now that most people are familiar with the IJS, as it has been implemented since 2003, IJS is the scaffolding on which a program is built. Let’s look at this from a different perspective. Let’s say a choreographer has either no knowledge or limited knowledge of IJS, and they are hired to create a program for an athlete, whether it be an open juvenile girl or a senior lady who is a national competitor. They may not adhere to the rules of IJS because they are not knowledgeable. Since the directing coach must make sure the athlete is not penalized and receives all the possible points they can, he or she then has a lot of work to go back and change the choreography. This situation can become a waste of time and money for both the athlete and the directing coach. The other scenario might occur when the same choreographer is hired, and neither the choreographer nor the directing coach is knowl-

edgeable of the IJS rules. In this case, the skater might be penalized and not potentially receive all the points possible. Other details to take into consideration are: An athlete will receive a higher grade of execution (GOE) when a jump or a spin is matched to the musical structure; that is rather obvious. Take this concept a step further, and consider when a choreographer is choreographing a short program for a junior level athlete. The athlete is directed to spin in the upright Biellmann position after six revolutions in a layback because the music is building and it matches the crescendo. The choreographer instructs the skater to hold their layback sideways for two revolutions then clearly change the position to backwards for two revolutions, then change to an upright layback for two revolutions, then move into the upright Biellmann for eight revolutions because the changes match the musical structure. The choreographer anticipates a level 4 layback spin. After a competition, the athlete looks at their protocol, and the call is only a level 2. Why? In a short program for junior athletes, the skater must hold the layback for eight revolutions prior to moving into the upright Biellmann position, or it is not awarded. In this situation, the eight revolution feature is not awarded either. This oversight can cost an athlete necessary points that might have helped the skater move on to final round, sectionals, or even nationals. Another scenario: In an attempt to be creative, the choreographer comes up with some interesting spin positions for some originality points. Again, the choreographer is anticipating certain levels on the spins. If the choreographer is not aware of the definition of spins, it could again cost the athlete to lose valuable points. If a free leg in a camel is in a “creative” position, but the knee is dropped below the hip, then the athlete may not be awarded a camel as one of the three basic positions. The same situation could happen with an upright or a sit position. Also, a choreographer must know the difference between a “simple” variation and a “difficult” variation in a spin. Which one receives a level? The IJS Technical Panel Handbook clearly states that a simple variation does not increase the level. Likewise, the choreographer must know the definition of a “difficult variation.” The IJS Technical Panel Handbook defines a continued on page 13



Recently Passed

RATING EXAMS Congratulations to the following coaches who passed the Basic Accreditation (BA) written rating exam in the PSA E-learning Academy: PSA E-Learning Academy Jennifer Beckemeyer Mauro Bruni Annacaye Clark Alexey Crogh Jennifer Finkler Natalie Lau Brittany Marshall Kathleen Mitchell Lauren Ross Yeaji Shin Kristina Soto Marissa Spivack Kymberly Tompkins Timothy Xavier

Congratulations to the following coach on his Emeritus rating: Charles (Chuck) R. Rossbach, Sr. Emeritus-16: CP-71, CD-71, SG-71, MFF-82, Hockey Level I-05, Hockey Level II-05

Congratulations to the following master-rated coaches! Kimberly Berry MPD Patti Brinkley MPD Kirsty Cameron MG Jonathan Cassar MFS Eve Chalom MD Ana Cecilia Cantu Felix MS Marie Furnary MM Tammy Jimenez MG Christopher Kinser MG Garrett Kling MC David Redlin MM Erika Roberts MM Kelly Rossbach MM Disa Steiber MG Kimberly Stahle MFS



coachuelastions !

Congratulations to the following candidates who passed a rating exam: Las Vegas, NV | May 30-31, 2016 Robin Aprea RM, RPD Rebecca Arnowitz RC Anna Baram SFS, CM Denise Beaumont CM Shannon Bennett RFS, CFS Kimberly Berry SPD Melanie Black SM, RG Natasha Bowers CFS Lyndy Brown CFS, CM Beth Bruss RG Mauro Bruni RFS, RC Michele Cantu Felix RFS, CFS Alexis Capouellez RG Eve Chalom SD Chelsea Chasman CG Stephen Chasman RM, CM, RC Annacaye Clark RG Alyssa Craig RFS, CM Elizabeth Egetoe RF Kelly Everett RM, CM Olga Garrity CM, RG, RC Ileana Garza RFS Anne Goldberg RC, CC Julia Golovina SM Tiffani Healey RG Rebecca Healey SG

Trisha Hessinger RD, RF, CF Megan Hines RM, RG Nancy Hitch RG Joy Hoedel-Elder RC, RF Chris Houston RFS Grant Huang SC Jennifer Kelly RM Valerie Knopp RM Deborah Lalone RM Melanie Lambert CP Jaqueline Laniado RG Renee Lepley RFS Autumn Lorca-Merono RFS Alexis Mante RFS, RM Brittany Marshall RFS Tiffany McNeil SFS Kathryn McSwain CC Rodrigo Menendez RFS Rachel Miller RG, CG Lezlea Miller Zessin SM Tara Modlin RFS Daniela Mora Garza RFS, CFS Cheri Neset CM Whitney Overchuk RFS, RM Fred Palascak RM, RG, CP Taffee Palmer CFS

Ana Palomo RFS, CFS Elizabeth Parker-Silver RG Glenn Patterson RM Michael Phaneuf RG, RD Gabriela Placeres RFS, CFS Jessica Posada-Gonzalez SFS Denae Raught RD, CD Megan Roth CFS, CG Jacqueline Sadowski RFS, CG Shira Selis RM, RS Yeaji Shin RC, CC Karen Skifstrom SG Haley Smith RM, RG Erin Stevens RFS Rebecca Stump RPD Nani Tanaka RFS, CFS Phillippa Teague RG Elizabeth Thornton CPD Tiffany Thornton SC Kymberly Tompkins RFS, RM Jessica Ward RFS Kimberlie Wheeland RPD, CPD Jessica Williams RFS Lyn Witt CM Ashley Wyatt SC Nicole Zawojski CC

Congratulations to the following coach and her master-rated mentor for completing the PSA Apprentice Program: Apprentice: Erin Murphy

Level & Discipline: Level 1 Free Skating

Mentor: Kori Ade, MFS

Coaches who received a master rating this past year and attended the master-rated reception in Las Vegas May 31, 2016. PS MAGAZINE



SafeSport for Coaches B y H e i d i D e L i o T h i b e r t a n d S u s i W e h r l i - M c L a u g hl i n


n an effort to keep coaches informed with any changes to U.S. Figure Skating policy or guidelines, the following has been reprinted with permission from U.S. Figure Skating. All coaches should be sure to become familiar with all of the rules of U.S. Figure Skating that pertain to SafeSport.

U.S. Figure Skating Harassment and Abuse Policy

Revised (November 2013) (Approved by U.S. Figure Skating Board of Directors November 9, 2013) U.S. Figure Skating strives to provide a safe environment for its members and to protect the opportunity of its members to participate in our sport in an atmosphere that is free of harassment and abusive practices. The association will not tolerate or condone any form of harassment or abuse of any of its members including coaches, officials, directors, employees, parents, athletes, and volunteers—or any other persons—while they are participating in or preparing for a figure skating activity or event conducted under the auspices of U.S. Figure Skating.

DEFINITIONS 1. Harassment Harassment is defined in various sources such as case law, state legislation, sports organization and professional association codes of conduct and training manuals, corporation and workplace documents, and human rights commission materials. U.S. Figure Skating has not adopted any specific definition of harassment, choosing instead to defer to such general sources and definitions for reference and application, depending upon the circumstances. The following, however, presents a general overview. • Behavior: Any pattern of physical and/or non-physical behaviors that: � (a) are intended to cause fear, humiliation, or annoyance, � (b) offend or degrade � (c) create a hostile environment, or � (d) reflect discriminatory bias in an attempt to establish dominance, superiority, or power over an individual participant or group based on gender,



race, ethnicity, culture, religion, sexual orientation, gender expression, or mental or physical disability • Environment: Creation of an environment through behavior or course of conduct that is: � insulting � intimidating � humiliating � demeaning, or � offensive • Harassment usually occurs when one person engages in abusive behavior or asserts unwarranted power or authority over another, whether intended or not. It includes: � name-calling � taunts � threats, � belittling, � unwelcome advances and � requests for sexual favors, as well as undue pressure to perform or succeed. � Harassment includes child abuse. 2. Child Abuse A legal definition of child abuse exists in each state. For purposes of enforcing this policy, U.S. Figure Skating adopts the legal definition of child abuse of the state(s) in which the child resides and where the incident of child abuse occurs. If there is a conflict between the state laws defining child abuse, the definition that provides the child with the greatest protection will be used for enforcing this policy. A child is someone under the age of 18 or who has not attained the age of legal majority in the state in which he or she resides. • Child abuse and misconduct can be physical, sexual or emotional in nature. Child physical abuse includes physical contact—or the threat of it—that intentionally causes bodily harm or injury to a child. This includes, for example: � hitting � shaking � kicking

� shoving a skater into a barrier, etc., � as well as forcing an individual to skate when he or she is injured, or � mandating excessive exercise as a form of punishment • Child physical abuse also includes: � providing alcohol and drugs to a minor � knowingly permitting an athlete to return to sport prematurely following an injury � chronic inattention to a child’s basic needs and welfare • Child sexual abuse involves any sexual activity between an adult and a minor. Sexual contact between minors can also be abusive if there is a significant imbalance of power or disparity in age, development or size, such that one child is the aggressor. The sexually abusive acts may include: � sexual penetration � sexual touching � noncontact sexual acts such as taking and/or distributing sexual explicit photos � or sending sexually suggestive written or electronic communications • Child emotional abuse involves a pattern of deliberate, non-contact behavior that has the potential to cause emotional or psychological harm to a participant. These behaviors may include, for example: � patterns of verbal behavior attacking an athlete personally, or � a pattern of ignoring an athlete for extended periods of time

PROCEDURES FOR REPORTING CHILD ABUSE 1.) Report the abuse to authorities. In most states, you are obligated to bring this matter to the attention of local law enforcement or a public child welfare organization and make a report. In fact, not reporting the incidents in some states is against the law and the coach or witness could be liable for failure to report. Some states have a “Mandated Reporter Status.” Be aware of your state laws and specific reporting requirements as people involved in certain occupations must report suspected child abuse. If you do not know which authorities to contact in your state, call the National Domestic Violence/ Abuse Hotline 1800-799-SAFE (1-800-799-7233 or 1-800 787-3224 TDD). All calls to the hotline are confidential, and callers may remain anonymity if they wish. You may also call Victims Assistance Ministry at 1-800355-2545 or seek help directly by contacting one

of the Child Protective Services or one of the Law Enforcement Agencies in your area. 2.) Report the abuse to U.S. Figure Skating. Notify the U.S. Figure Skating vice chair for SafeSport or 3.) Alert the rink management, if appropriate. 4.) Alert at least one of the following: the Club President, Club SafeSport Compliance Chair, or other appropriate board member.

PROCEDURES FOR REPORTING HARASSMENT Harassment, as defined herein, between or among U.S. Figure Skating members, shall be reported to the chair of the Ethics or Grievance Committee as soon as is practicably possible, per GR 1.03. Depending on the nature and/or severity of the harassment, the reporter may also choose to contact a local law enforcement agency or seek assistance from a local or state human rights commission.

VIOLATION OF HARASSMENT AND ABUSE POLICY Any person in violation of this policy statement will be subject to disciplinary action in accordance with Article XXV, Section 3 of the U.S. Figure Skating bylaws. Any person convicted of child abuse in a court of law shall be permanently banned from membership in U.S. Figure Skating and from participation in U.S. Figure Skating programs and activities, in accordance with the association’s Code of Ethics.

RETALIATIONS OR THREATS OF REPRISAL Retaliation or threats of reprisal against an individual for filing a complaint under this policy or for participating or assisting in any procedure under this policy will be considered harassment for the purpose of this policy.

CONDEMNATION OR GROUNDLESS ALLEGATIONS If a person in authority knows or should reasonably have known that harassment or abuse may have occurred and fails to report it or take appropriate action as set out in this policy statement, that person may be subject to disciplinary action per Article XXV, Section 3, of the U.S. Figure Skating bylaws. Further, any person who makes groundless allegations or complaints of abuse or harassment may be subject to disciplinary action per Article XXV, Section 3, of the U.S. Figure Skating bylaws. Access the U.S. Figure Skating SafeSport Handbook at:




How to Avoid or Overcome Performance Slumps B y D r . Wa d e G i lb e r t, C o a c h E d u c at i o n A d v i s o r t o H u m a n K i n e t i c s ; P r o f e ss o r , D e pa r tm e n t o f K i n e s i o l o g y, C a l i f o r n i a S ta t e U n i v e r s i t y, F r e s n o ; F r e s n o , CA Reprinted With Permission From Human Kinetics, Inc.


hether coaching, or competing as an athlete, there inevitably comes a time during the season when performance and energy levels dip. Few teams are as fortunate as the record-setting Golden State Warriors in the NBA to be sailing along, seemingly on a smooth path for a deep run in the playoffs. Similarly, in more individual sports, rare is the wrestler, golfer or swimmer who doesn’t have at least a few poor matches, rounds or meets and could benefit from proper support from a coach. Experienced championship coaches like Bill Self at the University of Kansas understand that periodic slumps are normal and don’t panic or rush to make big changes: “Everybody goes through funks like this. I mean, the Royals won the World Series. Didn’t they have a crappy end of August and early September? That’s what happens in sports.” As coach Self notes, everyone can be expected to have ‘bad days’. However, these are not slumps. Performance slumps are defined as unexplained drops in performance that go beyond normal performance fluctuations. Performance slumps create adversity, but successful coaches believe that adversity simply creates opportunity. This is the message 5-time national football championship coach Nick Saban gives to all of his teams: “When obstacles are placed in front of you, don’t say ‘Why me?’ Instead, say, ‘How can I overcome this?’” Coaches can help their athletes avoid, or overcome, a performance slump by first understanding the root cause of slumps. Performance slumps typically can be attributed to physical and mental fatigue. Watch for the natural tendency when struggling during a slump to push athletes with more training and harder workouts. This inevitably only accelerates athlete exhaustion and frustration. The easiest and most effective way to prevent or end a slump is to adjust the training schedule as the season progresses. In fact, legendary basketball coach John Wooden always held his longest practice sessions at the start of the year and gradually shortened practices throughout the season. Although practices can be short-



ened across the season, the intensity should remain high to help athletes stay sharp. Coaches should also consider replacing some physical practice with mental practice as the season wears on. Standard mental practice techniques include imagery and meditation. For example, after mid-season 90-minute physical practices could be split into 75 minutes of physical practice and 15 minutes of mental practice. Coaches need not fear a loss of conditioning with this approach as long as they keep physical practice intensity high. Furthermore, research shows that when athletes combine imagery with physical practice they outperform athletes who rely solely on physical practice. Athletes can use their imagery or meditation time to visualize themselves performing the skills needed to achieve the desired performance outcome. The focus should always be on the steps needed to achieve the next win, not winning. For example, Nick Saban always tells his teams, “Every time you think of winning the national championship – stop. Instead, think of what you have to do to dominate your opponent for sixty minutes.” During the season coaches should pay close attention to how each individual athlete responds after a performance setback or a loss. This will help coaches proactively identify which athletes might be most susceptible to a performance slump. Some athletes place too much emphasis on the outcome and develop perfectionist tendencies. These types of athletes may be overly critical of themselves—and their teammates—and fall into a psychological slump spiral. If an athlete makes a big deal over an ‘off day’ performance, they may fall victim to negative self-talk and come to expect poor performances, and increasingly become more pessimistic. This can lead to learned helplessness—or giving up. Listen to how your athletes talk about poor performance. If they say things like ‘We never can hold a lead’ or ‘I can never make that play’ that shows they are starting to believe the poor performance is an expected and normal pattern.

normal, but temporary, if they don’t panic or lose faith in their training. A great way to help athletes learn this lesson is to let them hear from other athletes who have successfully overcome a performance slump. Consider bringing in former members of the team or reading them stories about famous athletes who have overcome adversity or performance setbacks. This is a valuable strategy for building mental toughness and works particularly well with young athletes who may be experiencing a performance slump for the first time.

Teach them to acknowledge the poor performance as momentary and fixable, and design follow-up practices to specifically address performance gaps. The negative self-talk that can creep into athlete’s head after poor performance should also be countered with positive self-talk. For example, baseball players have been found to work their way through hitting slumps by using self-talk statements such as: • “You’re at this level for a reason.” • “Keep telling yourself you are a good hitter.” • “You know that you are good enough.” • “Slumps are a natural part of the game.” Performance slumps can also drain team trust and goodwill. As athletes fall deeper into the psychological slump spiral stress levels will rise. This leads to increased friction between teammates and strains coach-athlete relationships. To avoid losing team cohesion coaches can consider periodically during the season replacing a traditional practice with a fun team outing to release some pressure. Common examples include taking the team bowling, going to a movie, or still meeting at the practice facility but playing a game from a different sport. For example, if you are coaching basketball and the team is struggling consider mixing in a game of volleyball or floor hockey for a practice. Once when working with a college golf program we held a ‘pumpkin practice’ to help athletes re-energize when it was evident they were slumping. It was Halloween and the coach brought pumpkins to the driving range and placed them on boxes at different distances. Athletes then competed against each other to see who could destroy the pumpkins. The athletes unwittingly were practicing many important golf skills (club selection, shot approach, focus, competing under pressure) while having their most fun practice of the season. The following week the team set a course record and captured their first tournament win. Finally, teach your athletes that the occasional ‘off day’ is

About the author: Visit the ‘Coach Doc’ for coaching articles and webinars. Dr. Wade Gilbert is an award-winning professor in the Department of Kinesiology at California State University, Fresno. Dr. Gilbert holds degrees in Physical Education, Human Kinetics, and Education from the University of Ottawa in Canada. Upon completion of his doctoral degree he was selected for a post-doctoral fellowship in the International Center for Talent Development at the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA). Dr. Gilbert’s areas of expertise include coaching science, talent development, sport and exercise psychology, physical education and youth sport. He has over 20 years of experience conducting applied research with partners around the world spanning the full range of sports and settings from local youth leagues through to World Cup Soccer. Dr Gilbert is widely published and is frequently invited to serve as a featured speaker at national and international events. He is co-editor for the International Sports Coaching Journal and the Routledge Handbook of Sports Coaching, and is an associate editor for the Journal of Sport Psychology in Action. As a result of his many contributions, Dr. Gilbert has served as a scientific advisor to organizations ranging from school districts, collegiate teams, Olympic organizations and the United Nations. He currently serves as the chief scientific advisor to BeLikeCoach, a national non-profit dedicated to improving the quality of youth sport settings in the United States. References: Ball, C. T. (2013). Unexplained sporting slumps and causal attributions. Journal of Sport Behavior, 36(3), 233-242. Cogan, K. (2014). Moving past performance slumps. Olympic Coach Magazine, 25(3), 12-14. Available at Dunn, J. G. H., Dunn, J. C., Gamache, V., & Holt, N. (2014). A person-oriented examination of perfectionism and slump-related coping in female intercollegiate volleyball players. International Journal of Sport Psychology, 45(4), 298-325. Kaiser, J. (2008). Surviving the mid-season slump: Re-energizing and motivating your program [DVD]. Monterrey, CA: Coaches Choice. Lebron, F., Collet, C., & Guillot, A. (2010). Benefits of motor imagery training on muscle strength. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 24(6), 1680-1687. McCrann, P. (2016). How to handle the mid-season slump. Active. Retrieved fromhttp:// Mango, K. (2011). Beware of the mid-season slump. Gatorade. Retrieved fromhttp://www. Newell, J. (2016, January 21). Bill Self confident KU basketball will snap out of slump. The Topeka Capital Journal – Online. Retrieved from Prapavessis, H., & Grove, J. R. (1995). Ending batting slumps in baseball: A qualitative investigation. The Australian Journal of Science & Medicine in Sport, 27, 14-49. Saban, N. (2007). How good do you want to be? A champion’s tip on how to lead and succeed. New York: Ballantine.



m m m m m m m m m m m m 12

Endeavor to

PERSEVERE Holly and sister Shannon await results at the 2010 U.S. Synchronized Skating Championships


hen you find yourself questioning whether you have the passion to make it through a season, or future seasons for that matter, reflect on why you fell in love with skating/coaching in the first place. Was it watching your skaters and their countless medals won at competitions? Was it when your vision of the perfect package/program/costume came to life? Was it the moment you realized your dreams, despite what seemed to be fruitless efforts for months, maybe even years, of practice? Was it the fact that you know you are the coach and you must lead by example and would never let your skaters give up or give up on them? For the past year I have faced this challenge. For me, it was for every single one of those reasons, and more. My sister, Shannon Peterson, has been battling breast cancer for a year, and the battle is still not over. Her strength to persevere is my inspiration, my inner strength, and my reality check. There were moments I did not want to continue without her by my side and even more moments I did not think I could. My sister, and coaching partner, Shannon, continues to push her body, mind, and soul to levels I am not sure I could ever endure. Watching her fight the fight of her life made skating and coaching challenges pale in comparison. Ironically, despite the emotional turmoil of the season, Shannon drew her strength to battle cancer from her experiences as a skater, and we drew our strength from her. She would come to as many practices as she could. On the sideline, she would sit, armed with only an iPad, bucket,


by Holly Malewski, MS

and blanket. She selflessly coached even though she was coughing, shaking, pale, exhausted, and wearing a scarf or a wig to mask her loss of hair. Maybe only once a month, maybe three times‌ we were at the mercy of chemotherapy, radiation and multiple surgeries. There was not one of us who would dare complain of an injury, being tired from schoolwork, or too many run-throughs. Throughout our lifetime, we all have faced roadblocks that seemed insurmountable. But as we all know, skating has taught us to persevere and that is what I will do. I will teach as I always have, by continuous self-reflection, continuing education, and by reminding myself of the common goal I share with my sister, Shannon, and our skaters. Giving up has never been an option and will never be an option. Not for this Crystallette family. We will endeavor to persevere, both on and off the ice. You will too.

RATINGS continued from page 6

“difficult variation” as a movement of a body part/leg/arm/ hand/head, which requires more strength or flexibility and has an effect on the balance of the main body core. Only these variations can increase the level. With regard to the Choreographic Sequence, what if the choreographer “heard” that a double jump can be part of the sequence, and the jump will not be called and will not occupy a jump box. A double Axel is placed towards the beginning of a Choreographic Sequence. The athlete goes to competition. The protocol then would have the double Axel as a listed jump, and it will occupy a jump box. In addition, the last jump box would receive no value. The Choreographic Sequence is now concluded with the preparation to the next element, (in this case, a double Axel). Since the double Axel was performed towards the beginning of the sequence, there is a good chance that the sequence was not “clearly visible” to the technical panel, and it would receive no value. The choreographer needs to know the rules. Jumps with a maximum of two revolutions are allowed and a double Axel is two and half revolutions. There are many different scenarios, but the bottom line is that a choreography rating candidate must understand the rules of our sport in order to earn a PSA rating. Otherwise the rating’s credibility is at stake. All coaches working under the IJS must learn the rules of the IJS at some point to function effectively, and we have a responsibility to our athletes to stay current. In preparing for an exam, studying to learn the IJS is a wonderful opportunity to grow as a choreographer and coach. If you are a coach that is apprehensive about this area, start with reading everything on the U.S. Figure Skating website under “Technical Info”. We are allowed to attend technical panel schools as observers, or if interested, start testing to become a technical specialist yourself! Find a technical specialist in your area or a coach who is knowledgeable, and ask for their help. Start learning one rule at a time. Before long, it will become familiar, and you will be much better equipped to help your athletes succeed! Last but not least, if you have questions about the outcome at competitions, I would encourage you to kindly and respectfully find the technical controller of the event in question. Controllers are judges, and they are the only ones you can speak with. Coaches cannot approach the technical specialist or the assistant technical specialist with questions. From my experience, the technical controllers are very willing to help share information and explain the outcome. I would encourage anyone who is a choreographer from beginner levels to advanced skaters consider taking a choreography exam. Preparation will take work, but it is rewarding and will equip you to do a better job on the ice with your athletes. Happy choreographing! Colleen J. Mickey, MC, MFS, MM, National Technical Panel Specialist in Singles. Colleen has been the Chair of the Choreography Ratings Committee for the past several years. She has presented both Choreography and IJS at five different Ratings Prep sites.

Nashville conference & trade show

May 24-27


Find your coaching rhythm

in music city



EDUCATION Carol Rossignol, MD, MS, MG, MPD, MFF

The Starving Baker Syndrome National Teacher Appreciation Day was back in May and Dr. Tim Elmore wrote an article called the “The Starving Baker Syndrome”. So many coaches have changed the lives of skaters each and every day—without a word of thanks from their recipients. Coaches and teachers are unsung heroes. Coaches spend themselves emotionally and often are not remunerated adequately. So, I am voicing my appreciation to you on behalf of all those who benefit from your wisdom and dedication. Thank you, coaches!

We all recognize this truth: we’ll not be able to help anyone next to us if we don’t first ensure we’ve got oxygen ourselves. Bingo. What I am suggesting coaches and teachers do is not selfish at all; in fact, it may be the most selfless act you can practice. We are so much more valuable to others when we enter our day full and nourished—mentally, emotionally, physically, and spiritually. I believe we must feed ourselves before we feed anyone else.

Six Practices to Feed the Baker:


Dr. Tim Elmore suggests six ways you can refresh yourself as a teacher, coach, or leader. In fact, if you’re feeling like a “starving baker”, I’d start right away. If you’re an administrator, find ways to make room for your staff to practice these ideas. If you’re a parent, why not express gratitude for your kids’ coaches by sharing this list with them. In any case, when summer starts soon—this might serve as a good plan to implement over the holidays:

ay I take a moment and remind you of the number one occupational hazard for coaches in all sports. You might call it, “The Starving Baker Syndrome.” The Starving Baker is one of our Habitudes®—an image that forms a good leadership habit and attitude. Imagine a baker, serving up cinnamon rolls, pastries, doughnuts, cakes and pies—but he does it so long and so hard that he wears himself thin. He is skinny as a rail and exhausted from never stopping to eat. In fact, he is a starving baker. He is so busy baking confections for others, he neglects to stop to eat, and he starves himself. Get it? This is an image illustrating what almost every coach and teacher experiences at some point. They can lose themselves in service to others, and fail to care for themselves. Sometimes, it’s easy to feel selfish when we push pause and actually relax, or read a book for refreshment, or somehow nourish our minds. But we must. We must learn to feed ourselves.

Skaters on the ice. I just flew home from Las Vegas and once again heard the flight attendant give her speech on safety before we took off. Do you remember the last portion of her little speech? She always says: “In case of an emergency, oxygen masks will drop from the ceiling. Put the mask on yourself first before helping someone next to you.” It’s interesting. We never question that direction. Not one person on my flight stood up and complained, “Well, that just sounds downright selfish to me!” Of course they didn’t.



1. Do something brand new. Here’s a question for you: When was the last time you did something for the first time? Too often we slip into ruts and call them grooves. Our habits require no thinking. Over the next 90 days, try something brand new to clear the cobwebs from your brain. Why not check something off your “bucket list” with a new outdoor venture? 2. Do something rejuvenating and fun. I have such a warped work ethic, that sometimes I feel guilty just doing something fun. It’s wrong. Research has shown that both kids and adults perform better when their day or week is broken up with engaging activities that participants call “fun.” Identify an activity you’d love to do, but feel you’re too old or too out of shape. Then, do it. 3. Do something that stretches your thinking. This one works almost every time. Read a book or several magazines that normally you’d not consume. See what it does to your thought patterns. Winston Churchill said, “Change is as good as rest.” Just digesting new content or material can put a skip in your step. Jot down what you read or listen to—then add action steps.

Protect your assets with insurance BY JENNIFER RAINS In the world of sports, there are so many things to consider from day-to-day training activities, nutrition, competition events, and continuing education to name a few; but, what about protecting your personal assets?

4. Do something with people who fill your tank.

Do you have an insurance policy? Are you protecting your operations through risk management strategies such as utilization of waiver and release forms?

Wise educators and leaders know that just as a car runs on gasoline, they run on the emotional fuel of intentional relationships they’ve invited into their life. Why not choose a few people who ignite or refuel you intellectually or emotionally and get coffee with them. Find people who make you laugh or think or wonder.

Whether you are risk adverse or a risk taker, insurance is an easy solution to protecting your assets and your ice skating operations. Professional Skaters Association (PSA) realizes the benefit of this important protective measure and has teamed up with ESIX, Entertainment & Sports Insurance eXperts (ESIX) to offer PSA members an affordable insurance solution.

5. Do something in a new place (location). You likely know already—travel is an education in itself. I took my kids on trips all over the nation and the world as early as two years old. Guess what? I benefited from them as much as they did. Seeing a new culture, new landscape, new people and languages can shake us up in a marvelous way. Why not choose a place to go? 6. Do an event that will ignite your mind and heart. One way I feed myself every year is to choose events or conferences that I know will fill me up. I know I’ll learn new ideas, gain creative practices and network with like-minded and brilliant people there. May I suggest one that will do this for you? How about our annual conference? Next year the PSA conference and trade show is in Nashville, TN, May 24–27, 2017, or attend Ratings Prep in Birmingham, AL August 6–7, 2016. Adapted from Dr. Tim Elmore, Growing Leaders, Inc. Dr. Tim Elmore is a leading authority on how to understand the next generation and prepare tomorrow’s leaders today. He is a best-selling author, international speaker, and president of Growing Leaders, a nonprofit that helps develop emerging leaders under the philosophy that each child is born with leadership qualities.

The Professional Skaters Association insurance program was designed to help protect PSA members by offering extensive liability limits and customized coverages at an affordable premium. Despite insurance market trends, the PSA has successfully secured the same noteworthy coverage with no change in premium for the 2016 season. The program provides the following coverage: • • • •

Liability for Third Party Lawsuits (i.e. Injured student/ parent sues the skating instructor) Liability & Property Damage for temporary use of a venue/facility Accident Medical coverage for Instructors Weekly Accident Income benefits

Your time is valuable and schedules are hectic, which is why the PSA insurance is available 24/7 through on online platform. Need proof of insurance at 5am on a Saturday? No problem! The application process is simple and can be completed in a matter of minutes. PSA insurance participants also have access to produce third party additional insured certificates through the online portal. Don’t let this important protective measure go unaddressed; protect your operations and assets by purchasing coverage now at:



Don't miss a Nationwide Seminar coming soon to a city near you! Half-Day Seminars – Earn 6 PSA Educational Credits AREA 9 Cleveland Skating Club/Cleveland, OH

Full-Day Seminars – Earn 12 PSA Educational credits AREA 16 The Rinks-Anaheim Ice/Anaheim, CA

Date Saturday August 27, 2016

Date Sunday August 21, 2016

Host Lynn Rimmer

Host Russ Scott & Christopher Pottenger

AREA 7 Germain Arena/Estero, FL

AREA 12 Ralston Arena/Omaha, NE

Date Sunday August 28, 2016

Date Sunday August 28, 2016

Host Lisa Geltz-Perri

Host Jason Dilworth & Ashley Wyatt

AREA 5 Philadelphia Skating Club & Humane Society/Ardmore, PA

AREA 10 Bloomington Ice Garden/Minneapolis, MN

Date Sunday September 11, 2016

Date Sunday September 11, 2016

Host: Regina Barr

Host PSA Office / Barb Yackel

AREA 10 Kern Center/Milwaukee, WI

AREA 2 Skating Club of Boston/Boston, MA

Date Saturday September 17, 2016

Date Sunday September 18, 2016

Host Craig Bodoh

Host Becky Stump & Linda Blount AREA 15 Yerba Buena Ice Skating Center/San Francisco, CA Date Friday September 30, 2016 Host Don Corbiell & Deborah Davis

Visit to learn more and register 16



ISI Executive Director Peter Martell, PSA President Christine Fowler-Binder, Past PSA President Angie Riviello, and ISI President Rob McBride present news of the merger to attendees at the opening presentation of the 2016 ISI/PSA Conferences.

ISI, PSA Merger Strengthens Service to Ice Sports Industry Historic organizations align efforts with eye toward future. As announced June 1 at the ISI/ PSA Conferences & Tradeshow in Las Vegas, PSA and the Ice Skating Institute (ISI) are consolidating operations and management to further strengthen industry services and programs. Effective Sept. 1, management of ISI will be the responsibility of PSA executive staff, as ISI Executive Director Peter Martell retires Aug. 31. PSA and ISI will continue to offer the same valuable services to their members. Participation in each association still requires separate memberships until otherwise noted. Over the past eight years, the PSA and ISI have worked collaboratively on coaching educational programs, multiple joint conferences and standardized coaching ethics. It is through this mutually beneficial relationship that both organizations realized the value of consolidating efforts. Both believe that the streamlining of programs and services will unify the industry, thereby reducing costs to

skaters and coaches, while improving participation and retention for arena owners and operators. PSA President-elect Christine Fowler-Binder stated that the merger of the two associations is a benefit to not only PSA and ISI members, but also the ice sports industry as well. “Together, we will more effectively provide the critical leadership and programs of both organizations in a manner that will best serve the ice sports industry in the future,” she said. “Our commitment to both memberships remains strong,” said ISI President Robert McBride. “This merger preserves the mission and founding principles of both ISI and PSA as we seek new and more effective ways to deliver critical services to our constituencies.” There will be no changes to the ISI skating program through the 2016-2017 season. ISI will continue to provide their standard skating programs, conduct ISI testing, and offer local and national competitions. ISI will also continue to offer their

iAIM certification program for ISI administrative members and coaches. All 2016-17 ISI national and local events will continue as planned. The new arrangement does not affect ISIAsia rinks, coaches, or skaters. During this transitional period, PSA, ISI and U.S. Figure Skating will explore the opportunity to eliminate duplicate programs. For instance, negotiations will begin to support a single, national learn-to-skate program and a recreational competition track that will combine best practices of each group’s curriculum. We will continue to keep industry members informed on developments. For more information, please refer to the FAQ on and



May 2016

U.S. Figure Skating Rule Changes This year, the Governing Council considered approximately 70 rule changes. Here is a summary of those that will have the greatest effect on coaches. Singles • IJS deductions for time violations were amended to make the deductions lower for intermediate, juvenile, and adult singles events • The IJS deduction for falls was lowered to -0.5 for novice singles events • The IJS jump bonus rules for novice and juvenile singles events were amended • Beginning Feb. 1, 2017, the choreographic step sequence will be changed to a leveled step sequence in both the intermediate short program and the intermediate well-balanced free skate. The program time allowances will each be increased by 10 seconds to accommodate this change (2:10 maximum time for the intermediate short program and 2:40 +/- 10 seconds for the intermediate free skate). The step sequence will be allowed a maximum of a Level 2. Only Simple Variety (seven turns) and rotation in each direction covering at least a 1/3 of the pattern in total for each rotational direction will be evaluated for the level. Synchronized Skating • Rule 7000 now gives U.S. Figure Skating the flexibility to incorporate changes made to the ISU’s advanced novice free skate event into the U.S. Figure Skating novice free skate event • The chair of the Synchronized Skating Committee, in consultation with the national vice chair of the Synchronized Development Subcommittee, and the national vice chair for synchronized skating on the Technical Panel Committee will prepare the list of well-balanced program elements for qualifying IJS levels other than collegiate, novice, junior and senior to correspond with the elements available each year. The list will be published as a Technical Notification on the U.S. Figure Skating website within 45 days of publication of the corresponding ISU Communication. • The entry deadline for the qualifying sectional synchronized skating events was changed from Dec. 1 to Oct. 1. Announcements will now be available by Aug. 15. Teams still have until Dec. 1 to make roster additions.



• Starting with the 2016-17 season, juvenile synchronized skating well-balanced free skate events will be judged under the IJS • The moves in the field test requirements were raised for juvenile, intermediate, novice, junior and senior synchronized skating events, to go into effect July 1, 2017 Pairs • The pair test requirements for the juvenile through senior pair tests were amended to better align them with the pair well-balanced program requirements for the same levels • Lower level pair tests were removed as a pre-requisite for higher-level pair tests. Skaters can now enter the pair test structure based solely on their moves in the field test accomplishments • IJS deductions for time violations were amended to make the deductions lower for intermediate, juvenile and adult pair events Ice Dance • The reskate procedures for pattern dance tests were amended to make them more consistent with the reskate procedures for other types of tests • The music requirements were changed for the intermediate, juvenile, pre-juvenile and adult free dance events to make them consistent with the music requirements for the novice, junior and senior free dance events • IJS deductions for time violations and violations of music requirements for dance were amended to make the deductions lower for intermediate, juvenile and adult dance events Adult Skating • The requirement to do a jump combination or jump sequence in the championship masters junior-senior and masters junior-senior well-balanced; championship masters intermediate-novice and masters intermediatenovice well-balanced; championship adult gold and adult gold well-balanced; championship adult silver and adult silver well-balanced and adult bronze well-balanced free skate events was removed • The adult silver, adult pre-silver, adult bronze, adult pre-bronze and centennial dance events were reduced

from two final-round dances to one final-round dance. The test qualifications were also amended for the adult gold, adult silver, adult pre-silver, adult bronze and adult pre-bronze dance events. • The test qualifications were amended for the adult gold, adult pre-gold, adult silver and adult pre-silver solo dance events • The prerequisites were amended for the adult and masters free dance tests; and adult and masters passing averages were added for the solo free dance tests • IJS deductions for time violations (singles, pairs and dance) and violations of music requirements for dance were amended to make the deductions lower for adult events Competitions • The protest rules (rules 1501-1506) were amended, mostly for clarification, but the time limit for filing a protest at a competition was amended to “no later than 60 minutes after the posting of the official results of that event” • The bye rules were clarified and amended to allow international competitors to compete at regional and/ or sectional championships without losing their byes or affecting who else qualifies • Rule 2466 was amended such that when there are more than 24 entries in any event at a qualifying competition, the top four finishers from each qualifying group and the competitors with the next four highest scores from all qualifying groups will now qualify to the final round Combined Report of Action


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These changes only represent a portion of what was approved by the Governing Council on April 30. To get the full details of all of these changes and others, please see the 2015-16 Combined Report of Action, available on the U.S. Figure Skating website at The Combined Report of Action is the only official report of U.S. Figure Skating bylaw and rule changes and contains all changes that were made by the U.S. Figure Skating Board of Directors and the Governing Council this past season. As always, we caution coaches from using word-of-mouth, Facebook, or other unofficial information found via the internet to educate themselves on rule changes. Coaches should utilize the Combined Report of Action with their 2015-16 U.S. Figure Skating Rulebook until the 2016-17 U.S. Figure Skating Rulebook becomes available. U.S. Figure Skating hopes to have the 2016-17 rulebook available online before the rule changes go into effect July 1. Once finalized, the rulebook will be posted online at and made available through the U.S. Figure Skating Publications App. A link to order a printed copy will also be available on the U.S. Figure Skating website.

Phone: (941) 721-1234 Email:





Hans Gerschwiler H

ans Gerschwiler, the Professional Skaters Association Hall of Fame inductee for 2016, came from a different time and place, and with a different form of figure skating expression. His greatest skating accomplishments came in teaching others how to teach the method that came from his uncles Jacques and Arnold. Born in Switzerland in 1920, Gerschwiler trained to be a champion ice skater under the tutelage of his uncle, Arnold Gerschwiler, who learned a highly scientific approach to skating introducing the idea of physiology to the pursuit, from his own brother Jacques. Such teaching flew in the face of the previous styles of ice skating- the technically proficient skaters doing figures, and the aesthetically pleasing skaters who combined physical skill with the beauty of ballet. But Hans Gerschwiler won using his uncle’s style, and when he came to North America, he brought with him the




Gerschwiler method of skating, creating a new pursuit of skaters to use the science of physiology along with the technical and dance aspects previously employed. Gerschwiler’s accomplishments as a skater were impressive, but could have been more impressive if not for the interruption from World War II. After debuting as a skater in 1939, he worked during the war, but trained sufficiently for the day when international competitions could again occur. He won the 1947 World Figure Skating Championships in Stockholm and the European Figure Skating Championships, then went on to claim the silver medal at the 1948 Winter Olympics, finishing behind American Dick Button. He was the first Swiss man to win a silver medal at the Olympics until Stephane Lambiel did so in this century. Gerschwiler turned professional after the 1948 Games, and eventually wound up in Canada, where he began his coaching career. He came to North America at a time similar

“I thought the most important pros were the ones who started the people skating.”


Excerpt from “From Guinea Pigs to Champions; From an interview with Hans Gerschwiler,” The Joy of Coaching. (2013). PSA



4. 1.) Hans with skaters at the Glencoe Club in Calgary, Canada 2.) Hans pictured with his students at the South Mountain Arena in West Orange, New Jersey 3.) Hans works with student Michael Scott in Winipeg 4.) Speaking to a group in 1989 5.) Uncles Jacques and Arnold work with Hans

to the immigration coaching legends and Hall of Famers John Nicks and Carlo Fassi. While coaching in Toronto, Gerschwiler trained Canadian Ladies Champion Margaret Crossland, Junior Ladies Champions Joan Shipham and Doreen Lister, and Canadian skater and coach Doug Leigh. Gerschwiler then moved south into the United States and ended up in New Jersey, working at the South Mountain Arena in West Orange. There he coached and influenced skaters such as Carol Noir, Suna Murray, Scott Cramer and David Lipowitz. While there, he influenced Hall of Fame coach Peter Burrows to come to the United States as well, and the two worked together, with Burrows doing much of the international traveling with students when Gerschwiler was unable to do so. Gerschwiler, who is retired following a severe stroke, now lives in Pinehurst, N.C., and was represented at the Hall of Fame induction ceremony by two of his sons. The lasting influence of Gerschwiler will exist not for his individual skating accomplishments or for the accomplishments

of the skaters he worked with, but for his influence on the coaches of figure skating in the United States. Gerry Lane, currently the Director of Skating for South Suburban Ice Arena and Family Sports Center in Colorado, remembers running into Gerschwiler when the two of them worked on the East Coast. “My first teaching job was in upstate New York, but whenever we ran into each other, he was always very helpful to me,’’ Lane said. “He was a mentor, one of the first coaches who gave back to the young coaches, which was unusual in those days. A lot of them back then didn’t want to share their secrets, but Hans was always very forthcoming and helpful.” The PSA is proud to honor Hans Gerschwiler in our Coaches Hall of Fame where he now joins the ranks of other great coaches of the sport. More memories and photos of the Gerschwilers can be found in our Joy of Coaching book, available at Photos courtesy of Hans Gerschwiler



Learn to Skate

USA By Terri Milner Tarquini


very single skater, no matter the sport or the discipline, had the first time they stepped on the ice, the first time they fell, and the first time they got back up. Some of these athletes with blades on their feet go on to launch themselves impossibly high in the air for breathtaking jumps, or outwit a bevy of defensemen to score a hat trick of goals, or push so powerfully and efficiently that they set speed records on a frozen oval. These skaters also learn resilience, fortitude, and a passion for skating that is life-altering. But all of those future exhilarating accomplishments start somewhere. And that’s where the Learn to Skate USA program comes in. Learn to Skate USA, an update and rebranding of the Basic Skills program following much collaboration between skating powerhouses U.S. Figure Skating, USA Hockey, and US Speedskating, launched June 1. “The huge thing is that all of the national governing bodies of skating —U.S. Figure Skating, USA Hockey, US Speedskating, as well as the Special Olympics—saw the importance of teaching solid fundamentals for a successful starting-off point for their various sports,” said Susi Wehrli McLaughlin, U.S. Figure Skating’s senior director of membership. “Having these



partners to really grow skating sends a very strong message. This is the Learn to Skate program. This is where it starts.” During a two-year, in-depth process, U.S. Figure Skating surveyed skaters, parents, skating directors and staff to critically assess Basic Skills, which launched in 1968. With an eye on modernizing and enhancing the program for a new generation, a new name and added technology was needed. “We reached out to experts in all areas of skating and took a hard look,” Wehrli McLaughlin said. “Learn to Skate USA is a different approach and includes all of the disciplines. Everything had a full revision. We really wanted to create something where skaters could get started, gain confidence, and then go in the direction they choose.” When it comes to a unified approach for teaching skaters from the very beginning to the more advanced, specialized areas of skating such as free skate, power hockey, ice dance, synchronized skating, speed skating, adult fitness, pairs, Artistry in Motion, theatre on ice, and therapeutic recreational skating which includes Special Olympics, there needs to be a cohesive plan. “There are so many different options in skating,” Wehrli McLaughlin said. “We wanted to make sure there’s a clear pathway so people can continue skating and get all the benefits out of the sport.” Armed and educated with a revamped program, a select group of skating professionals had the Herculean task the past few months of visiting nearly every rink and club across the nation to lay the

groundwork that will become the foundation for Learn to Skate USA. These 10 “business development specialists” met with a diverse mix of arena managers, skating directors, board members and head coaches to introduce them to the new program, whether they had a Basic Skills program or not. Their success rate has been off the charts, according to U.S. Figure Skating. “We are not promoting just one rink or one program,” said Carey Tinkelenberg, business development specialist for the Midwest. “This is so much bigger than what it has ever been. It’s about the joys of learning to skate. This is communicating the broader mission that it’s not just about elite skating, it’s also about character building, teaching healthy lifestyles, building life skills, and growing confidence on and off the ice.” These are some of the bigger life lessons that skating inherently teaches, but the key to the future of skating begins with well-trained coaches. “The basics of skating are the foundation of everything that comes next,” said Tinkelenberg, who is also the founder and director of the Northfield Skating School in Minnesota. “And if we do not have excited, knowledgeable, and educated coaches, we will not retain skaters in the sport. I fully supported Basic Skills, but this program is a whole new level of support and modernization—for everyone involved.” Learn to Skate USA offers coaches a standardized certified education online course, new instructor handbooks and an enhanced Skate Coach app that is a visual

new l ogo! LEARN TO SKATE USA AT A GLANCE: NEW NAME: Learn to Skate USA MISSION STATEMENT: To provide a fun and posi-

tive experience that will instill a lifelong love of skating.

MARKETING AND SUPPORT MATERIALS: The Learn to Skate USA program provides extensive communication resources for skaters, parents, instructors and directors to support our mission.

PROGRESSIVE CURRICULUM: The curriculum offers


something for everyone - beginning with the first steps on the ice to the mastery of advanced techniques.

an all-new, easily accessible website. It is both mobile responsive and modular in design.


Introducing the first management system made exclusively for Learn to Skate USA

field day, all endorsed by the PSA. “The app has over 400 videos,” Wehrli McLaughlin said. “There is video of every single element in the Learn to Skate USA program that coaches can easily access from a mobile device while they are on the ice to ensure that they are teaching skills properly to maintain standardization.” Parents play a key role in a young skater’s success and many of those surveyed said parent education was at times inconsistent. Learn to Skate USA addresses those concerns in “The Parent Handbook,” included in the membership packet mailed directly to the member’s home. The handbook answers questions, gives tips, and acts as a parent orientation before their child even steps onto the ice. “It’s important that parents get really good information,” Tinkelenberg said. “They need to feel that skating is beneficial so they can see how valuable it can be to the rest of their child’s life.” Recognizing the demands on skating directors, Learn to Skate USA features a new, comprehensive management system that allows administrators access to everything needed to run a successful program: curriculum, rosters, schedules, management tips, programming ideas, instructor resources, and a print portal for name tags, report cards, and certificates. “When it came to helping directors, we said, ‘Let’s dream big,’” Tinkelenberg said. “And now we have one piece of software that covers everything. These tasks used to take hours and hours of time. This program gives the directors that time back so they can

focus on what matters—growing and promoting their businesses.” The new Learn to Skate USA website ( is mobile-responsive (so it can be pulled up on a phone or tablet), and features an interactive map with all of the participating Learn to Skate USA programs. There’s also the must-have hashtag: #learntoskateusa. “Program directors, parents and skaters can hashtag an event and it will appear on the website,” Wehrli McLaughlin said. “It’s a really fun and interactive website for people to visit and get information.” While the three governing bodies recognized a need for uniformity, they were aware that no two rinks or clubs are alike. As such, it was important for managers and directors to be able to implement Learn to Skate USA in a way that still works best for their individual skating situation. “It had to be standardized enough to be a recognizable brand, but flexible enough to be a fit for all different types of programs,” Tinkelenberg said. “The program really hits both of those things right on.” And when directors and instructors have questions, the backing is there.

members. The system offers all of the necessary information and tools needed to assist in directing a quality skating school.

INSTRUCTOR TRAINING: Earning the reputable Learn to Skate USA instructor certification will ensure that all staff members have the minimum standard of knowledge in teaching all topics associated with the program.

“We want everyone to feel supported and to know that this is a partnership with us,” Wehrli McLaughlin said. “Retaining skaters is so important in keeping rinks open and keeping skating alive. We did the work to improve the quality and to make things as simple as possible so everyone—facilities, clubs, directors, skaters, parents—can enjoy the benefits of skating.” The unifying steps taken by the various ice sports to dig in and overhaul Basic Skills have resulted in a new landscape for skating. “The relationship that has been fostered among the national governing bodies and the implementation of the new program has been really, really impressive,” Tinkelenberg said. “The amount of data collection and collaboration that went on through this was huge. They took their time and sifted through everything and they did it right. It’s changing the face of our ice sports.” LEARN MORE

CONTACT memberservices@learntoskateusacom

U.S. Figure Skating would like to thank the dedicated team of Learn to Skate USA’s Business Development Specialists: * Cathryn Schwab * Lisa Musmanno Blue * Paula Wagener Blonder * Denise Hughes * Jason Dilworth

* Carey Tinkelenberg * Kimberly Berry * Mark Fitzgerald * Michelle Lauerman * Patti Brinkley



ISI/PSA Conferences & Trade Show Las Vegas, Nevada | May 31-June 4, 2016



he 2016 ISI/PSA Conferences and Trade Show was months in the planning, but came together seamlessly with Las Vegas as the backdrop for a wonderful week of continuing education, networking with fellow coaches and rink owners and Scott Hamilton managers, and attending the many social events and multitude of things to do in Las Vegas. The conference was centered on the themes of “Back to Basics” and “Personal Branding”.



TUESDAY, MAY 31 The ISI Conference opened on Tuesday, May 31 with the ISI CAE class, “Managing Diversity” and weSkate Instructor Classes, and the traditional welcome to attendees, while U.S Figure Skating/ PSA held an educational track for elite coaches all day, and PSA held ratings exams. Those were followed by a full array of sessions covering too many topics to list. The ISI District meetings occurred after that, and then everyone headed over to the 2016 U.S. Open Professional Figure Skating Championship, presented by PSA. WEDNESDAY, JUNE 1 Wednesday morning brought the ISI Roundtables, PSA’s Newcomers Meeting, and the PSA Area Reps bright and early in the morning, followed by the


joint conferences opening keynote speaker, Scott Hamilton, speaking to a packed room about his thoughts on the “State of Skating Today,” sponsored by K & K Insurance Group Inc. All day there was a plethora of educational choices for information-hungry coaches and rink staffs on every topic from “Customer Service & Retention” to “Principles of Risk Management” to “Off-Ice Training Tools for Synchro Success.” The Director of Coaching Education at the USOC, Chris Snyder, explained the USOC American Development Model for long-term athlete development. PSA Master Rated coaches, Diane Miller and Jackie Brenner, spoke on “Professionalism & Proper Business Practices for Longevity in Coaching.” Led by Mitch Moyer, the U.S. Figure Skating High Performance Department presented on





3. 1.) Randy Gardner, John Nicks, and Tai Babilonia share a laugh as they reminisce about their careers 2.) On-ice sessions were thoroughly enjoyed by all! 3.) Keynote speaker Scott Hamilton entertains a packed ballroom 4.) Rafael Arutyunyan illustrates his approach to coaching OPPOSITE PAGE: Doug Haw and Cindy Solberg present their methods for


introducing and developing jumps at the Las Vegas Ice Center.

the “Components for Athlete & Coach Development.” The hit of the afternoon was 2015 and 2016 Coach of the Year, Rafael Arutyunyan, delighting coaches with his “Methodology of Jumping” presentation, complete with personal stories peppered with Rafael’s unique sense of humor and insights. At the PSA business meeting, Jimmie Santee welcomed U.S. Figure Skating President, Sam Auxier, who spoke about the ISU World Championships in Boston and the impending merger of ISI and PSA. ISI President, Rob McBride, shared his confidence in the historic direction for the two organizations. USOC High Performance Director for Winter Sports, Scott Riewald, led a panel discussion of USOC National Team Coach Leadership Program. U.S. Figure Skating has three coaches participating in the program. The evening started out with the time-

honored ISI/PSA Presidents’ Reception, sponsored by Ice Rink Events & Disney On Ice. The room was full of friends getting reacquainted and discussion of the day’s events. The ISI Awards Dinner, sponsored by American Insurance Agency & Tokio Marine HCC, featured a retirement farewell to Peter Martell, ISI Executive Director, and the induction of Tai Babilonia and Randy Gardner into the ISI Hall of Fame. This award was presented to Tai and Randy by their long-time coach, John Nicks in a sentimental and humorous walk down memory lane. THURSDAY, JUNE 2 Thursday was “Rink Day” in the morning with breakfast sponsored Riedell Skates & Eclipse Blades. On-ice presentations featured an array of sessions about the importance of teaching quality fundamentals in skating, figures, pairs, synchro, ice



THE RAFAEL SHOW: Coach of the Year winners Rafael Arutyunyan and Nadia Kanaeva take to the ice for their ‘Principles of Successfully Teaching Jumps’ with Adam Rippon demonstrating their systematic, theoretical analysis of jumping methods.

Doug Ladret presents Fundamentals of Pair Skating.

Lee Ann Shoker engages coaches on the ice with Synchro Fundamentals.



dance, jumps, spins, moves in the field, turns, dance steps, hockey, and choreography. Box lunches were sponsored by our magical friends at Disney On Ice. The afternoon highlight was 2016 U.S. National Men’s Champion, Adam Rippon, demonstrating, and sometimes explaining, the principles of how Rafael Arutyunyan connects his jump theory to technique to a packed rink of coaches. Back at the hotel, Tai, Randy, and Mr. Nicks invited coaches “Inside the Skaters’ Studio” to hear about the special relationship between this legendary coach and two of his most famous athletes. There were many more sessions that included concussion awareness and plus a workshop to help coaches grow their business with personal and professional branding. Rounding out the day, coaches learned about targeting learning styles for improved performance or spent a 50-minute session with 2010 U.S. National Ladies Champion and 2010 Olympian, Rachael Flatt, to hear about the Positive Coaching Alliance. After all that education, everyone

was drawn to the official opening of the ISI/PSA Trade Show & Reception, where beverages were generously sponsored by Controlled Dehumidification IMS. With so many quality exhibitors in attendance, attendees had access to every facet of the sport. For more on the Trade Show, see page 29. FRIDAY, JUNE 3 Friday morning opened up bright and early with Janice Forbes garnering words of wisdom on coaching policies in the 21st century from Rafael Arutyunyan and John Nicks. This presentation was a very interesting conversation of insightful questions with sometimes unexpected responses. All morning sessions went on with diverse topics such as “Organizing Hockey Tournaments” to “Arena Leadership in the 21st Century” to a lesson on “Digital Music Editing” to Jimmie Santee presenting on “How the FTC Ruling Affects Coaches.” The ISI/PSA Trade Show & Buffet Lunch was sponsored by Becker Arena Products Inc. The weSKATE & iAIM graduation ceremony was held for newly ac-

Alex Chang addresses a comment during the SafeSport Open Forum along with Patrick O’Neil, Susi Wehrli-McLaughlin, and Heidi DeLio Thibert.

John Nicks and Rafael Arutyunyan discuss coaching policies and how they have changed over time.

credited candidates in those programs, along with International Judging System sessions and a scientific session on the biomechanics of jumping presented by Dr. Lee Cabell. Coaches heard from Rachael Flatt’s perspective about what athletes expect from their coaches, and the day’s learning closed with a panel of SafeSport scenarios and solutions. The elegant and entertaining PSA Awards Dinner—dubbed “An Evening in Paris”—at the Paris Hotel was sponsored by Riedell Skates and Eclipse Blades and co-hosted by Doug Mattis and Doug Ladret. More awards coverage can be found on page 28. SATURDAY, JUNE 4 If you still had questions concerning IJS you had another opportunity first thing Saturday morning to ask Alex Chang and David Santee. As determined by the standing room only audience, Saturday’s most popular session was the “Learn To Skate – USA” informational presentation led by U.S. Figure Skating’s Senior Director of Membership, Susi Wehrli McLaughlin, and assisted by

Diane Miller encourages Paul Wylie to give her Fundamentals of Figures a try.

four of the Learn To Skate USA business specialists. A two-hour presentation with questions and answers unveiled the new program to eager attendees. Created in partnership with USA Hockey and US Speed Skating, U.S. Figure Skating has revised the basic skills curriculum to entice skaters of all ages and all levels to simply come into rinks to learn to skate without dividing customers into competing groups of hockey, speed and figure. The wonderful week of learning was brought to an end at the PSA conference closing where PSA president, Angie Riviello passed the gavel on to in-coming president, Christine FowlerBinder. Contrary to the popular phrase that “what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas,” the PSA encourages the attendees to take the learning from Vegas home to improve their management and teaching practices. The PSA conference in 2017 will be held in Nashville, TN, May 24-27, and promises to be another adventure in academics and applications of everything skating. See you there!

Lee Cabell presents Jumping Higher More Effectively.

Rachael Flatt explains What Athletes Expect from their Coaches.



What happens in Vegas... ENDS UP IN PS MAGAZINE!

2016 Edi Awards & Recipients Coaches Hall of Fame Hans Gerschwiler Distinguished Official Award Doug Williams Betty Berens Award Paul Wylie F. Ritter Shumway Award Richard Dwyer

g n i n e v AninE

s i r a P

Cohosted by Doug Ladret & Doug Mattis | Assisted by Adam Rippon & Rachael Flatt

Sonja Henie Award

Ekaterina Gordeeva

Gustave Lussi Award Ben Agosto Joe Serafine National Volunteer Of The Year Award Rebecca Stump Alex Chang

Ekaterina Gordeeva

Hans Gerschwiler’s sons, Hans & Jeff

Rafael Arutyunyan & Nadezda Kanaeva

Alex Chang

Rebecca Stump

Richard Dwyer

Aleksey Letov & Olga Ganicheva

Cindy Stuart

Sheila Swasey

Jimmie Santee

Lindsay Slater

Paul Wylie

Honorary Member And Lifetime Achievement Award Angie Riviello Garrett Swasey Fritz Dietl National Award For Ice Arena Excellence Ice Den Scottsdale Coach Of The Year Rafael Arutyunyan Vera Arutyunyan Nadezda Kanaeva Photo Of The Year Mark Walentiny Developmental Coach Of The Year Olga Ganicheva Aleksey Letov Paul McGrath Choreography Award

Cindy Stuart

Pieter Kollen Sport Science Coaching Award Lindsay Slater SPONSORED BY



Thank you


Thank you Trade Show Exhibitors! Accent Refrigeration Systems Ltd.

Maximum Solutions Inc. MK/John Wilson

American Insurance Agency

Munters Corporation

Avanta Skating Boots

North East Ice Skating Managers Association (NEISMA)

Becker Arena Products Inc. CALMAC Corporation CIMCO Refrigeration Inc. Controlled Dehumidification IMS

Professional Plastics Inc. Professional Skaters Foundation ProSharp Inc.

Davis Mechanical Service Inc.

Reklys Enterprise

Energie Innovation Inc.

Riedell Skates

EntryEeze LLC

RinkMusic, Inc.

ES Performance

Rink Systems Inc.

Frontline Solutions LLC

Risport Skates

Gabriele Photo LLC

Safehold Special Risk Inc.

Harlick & Co. Inc.

Scott Hamilton CARES Foundation

Ice-America IceBuilders Inc.

Skater Rater Skates U.S. Inc.

ICEskate Conditioning Equipment

Skating Registration Inc.

Innovative Training Systems

SP-Teri Co. Inc.

Intellenergy LLC

Stangco Industrial Equipment Inc.

International Play Company ISIA Education Foundation Jackson Ultima Skates Inc. Jammin Apparel Jet Ice Ltd.

Tai Art U.S. Figure Skating Unlimited Motion LLC Zamboni Co.

Latec Instruments Inc. PS MAGAZINE



Mark Walentiny R E SU LTS



Stephanie Chace Bass and Ashley Clark




Special tha our wonder nks to ful judges



A Real Look at Becoming a Figure Skating Coach


our parents wanted you to be an attorney or perhaps something in the medical profession. Maybe a school teacher, accountant or a real estate broker. They wanted you to have a “real job” with real benefits. Quietly, figure skating kept tugging at your heart strings. You loved the sport so much as an athlete, it just seemed natural that you would pursue skating as a career in some way. Something deep down inside just kept drawing you back. Opportunities for show skating became few and far between as the traditional ice shows fell out of the main stream, and becoming a skating judge was just not in the cards, but a career as a figure skating coach seemed like the perfect fit. Becoming a skating coach had a very strong appeal. You always admired your coaches as role models, and the occupation seemed rewarding and admirable. Additionally, there appeared to be a lot of financial rewards if you worked hard and did a good job. Of course there was the glamourous side of the job—dressing up and appearing at competitions, test sessions and maybe even travelling across the country and around the world. With a little luck, you might someday appear on television as the coach of a top skater! How much more celebrity status this side of Hollywood could you find in a profession? With all of this in mind we thought it would be interesting to research this topic with a cross section of coaches from across the country. The group would coach at every level and age group. Three questions were selected to uncover the decision to be a coach and to find out what the positives and negatives are in choosing coaching as a career. 1. At what moment in your life did you decide that you wanted to be a professional skating coach? One coach told us that she was totally fed up with skating as a skater and wanted nothing to do with any part of the sport until her friend invited her to attend a touring ice skating show. She had so much fun and enjoyment that she joined the show and regained her passion, eventually joining the coaching ranks. Another coach told us that he was inspired by his coach’s big car, which the coach parked outside of the Olympic Arena in Lake Placid. “Every day he pulled up in this blocklong car that would rival any lawyer or doctor’s car. I figured, how could I go wrong becoming a coach? When I met that coach again years later, he told me that the car was beautiful, but he had to drive all over creation to teach lessons and

the car often was broken down and he would have to sleep in his car!” Our surveyed coach went on to say, “I never got a car like that, but coaching has been pretty good to me.” “While I was still a competitive skater, a fellow skater came over “...if you do it well, skaters not only become great and asked me to look at his skating athletes, they also become great people from learning the life lessons from our sport.” jumps. I watched for a while and made a few suggestions. The jumps actually improved and my friend said, ‘Wow, you really helped, thank you so much!’ At that moment, I thought that maybe I had a gift for coaching. That was the point when I knew I was going to be a coach.” 2. What was the single most positive aspect of choosing coaching as a career that totally surprised you? “The great feeling you get when your skater peaks perfectly in their competition (or test) program for a great skate and you know that they just blew the roof off the arena!” “The really great surprise that if you do it well, skaters not only become great skating athletes, they also become great people from learning the life lessons from our sport.” “Finding out after attending a PSA Conference that even though you have problems, lots of other coaches have the same problems! So you get the feeling that we are all in this together.” “Knowing that one of the biggest positives is that, when done correctly, skating can be a totally life-changing experience.” “When I teach my students each day, I also learn something new from each of them. There is always something new to learn and I like that.” “I was taking my Senior Figure and Freeskating rating in Lake Placid, NY. I was very stressed out about the exam and the fact that my panel consisted of Cliff Thaell, Don Continued on page 33 PS MAGAZINE


LEGAL EASE David Shulman, MFF, MP

The Sun Rises:

A New Day Has Begun T

hose who read this column should remember that I said I would be discussing the latest information dealing with legalization of marijuana. How will such programs as ‘SafeSport’ in the skating rink treat this issue? How will the rule requiring a test for illegal drugs required of skaters at elite level deal with competitors from a state accepting marijuana use and possession as legal? Now is the time to examine the issues and to prepare and respond as is needed. It has been unclear how the courts across the United States will treat medical marijuana in the workplace as well as in sports activities. People are using marijuana where the state legislature has seen fit to accept early medical evaluation showing great promise in treating certain medical conditions. Most of the complaining of abusing of marijuana sound similar to abuse of alcohol. The expanding number of states which allow using marijuana for treating an ever-expanding list of “It has been unclear illnesses and conditions makes for how the courts across a certainty of collision with rules versus reality. the United States At present, the abuse of marijuana in states which permit will treat medical use is being treated on a case-by-case basis. This gives little guidance to the marijuana in the legal practitioner who must provide advice to a client. workplace as well as The federal fair employment and housing act is in all in sports activities.” states. If you are on a subsidized program receiving government aid, use of marijuana will cause loss of federal aid. Let’s assume you apply for skating a scholarship. If federal funds are involved you may be denied eligibility in applying for funds. Receiving state aid may be difficult if the federal government is involved. The strange relationship of state versus federal is the game that creates the tension.



Remember, to register under the lawful use of marijuana for medical purposes, state law saying “okay” does NOT guarantee it IS okay. Period. How are the various professional agencies which license the doctor, lawyer, and other licensing boards dealing with this issue of the state saying lawful, and federal saying unlawful? The boards have provisional responsibility for the discipline of a particular profession. All are treading very slowly. I know that some of this seems far-fetched and it may not apply to very many skaters and coaches, but it should be known that the courts are looking for a reasonable accommodation when there is someone using marijuana for medical purposes. Remember, the federal law does not recognize marijuana as a legal consumable product. Stay tuned.

Did you know that you can find PS Magazine on the web?

To read a digital version of the magazine, visit and click About Us and navigate to the Publications link.

Real Life Coaching continued from page 31

Laws, and Peter Dunfield. I went through the exam with these three iconic coaches. After I finished they told me I had passed and that they thought my exam was excellent... that was an incredible positive moment for me.” 3. What was the single most negative aspect of choosing coaching as a career that totally surprised you? “Four words: ALL OF THE DRAMA.” “Learning that coaching is not a 9-5 job. The reality is we are never off the clock.” “Coming to the realization that no matter how long you teach, no matter how many gold medalists you produce, or how many top competitive skaters you have instructed, you still have to continue to prove yourself everyday as a coach.” And, as one coach said by summing up the whole profession: “Just know that because of the competitive nature of what we do on a day-to-day basis, just when you think you have the whole skating and coaching rat race figured out, bigger and faster rats will appear!” Now it is your chance to weigh in on the three questions regarding the coaching profession. What motivated you to become a coach? What were your positive and negative experiences as you began to pursue your career? You are welcome to tell us your story by contacting me at


EXCELLENCE ON ICE Wouldn’t you like to count your club or rink among the most progressive in the nation? REQUIREMENTS

To participate in the EOI program all coaches of the club or rink must be PSA members and carry liability insurance. Member coaches receive a variety of benefits which include: seminars, workshops and conferences, eligibility for ratings and accreditation, group health insurance, liability insurance, PS Magazine subscription, and job placement services.


Register now and receive national and international recognition as a progressive training facility dedicated to excellence in coaching both on and off-ice. As a registered facility you will receive an ‘Excellence On Ice’ shield to be displayed in the arena, international recognition in PS Magazine, and access to a resource coordinator in the PSA office—all at no cost!


Remember to renew your EOI listing for the 2016-2017 membership year!





Welcome coac hes!

NEW MEMBER SPONSOR Caterina Alf Sarah Belair Taylor Blair Scott Davis Jillian Dibona Anja Fischer Kendra Friedland Amanda Gelb Troy Goldstein Luis Guerra-Lozano Alexandra Haguewood Austin Hale Yana Hanes Brendon Herr Taylor Holz Linda Illsley Lam Ka Po Joyce Emily Lepek Kyle MacMillan Elinor Milos Cheyenne Mueller Heidi Narramore Kaylar Neumann Andrew Newman Jonathan Nuss Jennifer Parker Carol Patton Cecilia Picard M. Beth Remakel Tammy Remakel-Ryan Lauren Ross Alec Schmitt Valeriya Sergeeva Oleksii Shumskyi Sarah Smith Katherine Spurgeon Jocelyn Theisen Kaylee Theisen Christina Zaitsev


Martine de la Torre Amanda Marston-DeAguila Michelle Drouin-Riederer Kathy Casey Ashley Knight Mary Kroll Cassie Joyce Sharon Smith Jimmie Santee Andrew Foland Jan Tremer Alena Lunin Megan Sienicki Jacqueline Kulik Cassandra Milosh Lisa Navarro Brian Chimuk Rockne Brubaker Adam Munday Rob Peal Jan Tremer Tami Mickle Gerry Lane Candice Alor-Morris Rockne Brubaker Gilley Nicholson Christian Martin Jennifer Cherry Jan Tremer Jan Tremer Charlene Wong Faye Ghielmetti Arkadiy Sergeev Igor Lukanin Jennie Walsh Jan Tremer Jan Tremer Jan Tremer Serguei Zaitsev


Coaches present at the Rankings acknowledgment during the PSA Membership Meeting at the 2016 ISI/PSA Conferences June 1, 2016.

RANKINGS Bridget Carrig – Level I Nancy Hitch – Level I Marissa Spivack – Level I Elizabeth Egetoe – Level III Amber Kole – Level III Nicholas Kole – Level III Jessica Posada-Gonzalez – Level III

David Redlin – Level III Karen Gesell – Level IV Lisa Reid – Level IV Sherri Terando – Level IV Inese Bucevica – Level VII Serhii Vaypan – Level VII

Next Ranking Deadline is September 1, 2016. Visit for more details!

Do you know coaches who are new to the profession, or are there skaters (age 16 or older) in your rink who have the potential to be a great coach? Help them get a head start on their coaching career, and encourage them to join PSA! As their sponsor, you can guide and encourage them to get educated and maintain professional membership with PSA. Visit or contact Elizabeth at to learn more about PSA membership opportunities.

How to Fix “Wide Arms” On Jump Take Offs Obviously, with Champion Cords Sheila Thelen PRESIDENT – Champion Cords PRESIDENT – Champion Skating Harness EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR –

Grassroots To Champions

This was just easier to explain in video (as is most figure skating/moving sports). NOTE: This is the opposite of the “Gus Lussi Method” (big, wide, open, “star fish” take offs). THIS VIDEO SHOWS: A FAST & QUICK & NARROW TAKE OFF! Easy to use on all levels of skaters. (I think we can all agree – that makes sense.) ENJOY!

Champion Cords are endorsed by the PSA! Order yours at • • PS MAGAZINE





J U LY Date: Location: Event: Credits: Host: Contact:

July 16-17 Area 10 Richfield Arena, 636 E 66th Street, Richfield, MN 55423 Minnesota State Workshop at Skate St Paul Saturday 6:00-8:30 pm, Sunday 11:00 am-3:00 pm 6 PSA credits Ann Eidson PSA Office 507-281-5122 or


June 30th, 2016

Date: Location: Event: Host: Contact Credits:

Sunday July 24, 2016 Area 6 Kettler Capitals Iceplex, 627 N Glebe Rd #800, Arlington, VA 22203 Foundations of Coaching Course (8am – 5pm) – attendees receive a Coaches Manual. This course is equivalent to a Basic Accreditation (BA) rating exam Lori Cervinka Barb Yackel 12 PSA credits


July 1st, 2016

Date: Location: Event: Contact: Credits:

Wednesday, July 27 Area 16 San Diego Marriott La Jolla hotel, 4240 La Jolla Village Drive, La Jolla, CA 92037 Phone: 1-858-587-1414 Oral Rating Site at U.S. Figure Skating Synchronized Skating National Coaches College [Wednesday 8am-8pm] PSA Office 507-281-5122 or 1 PSA credit per oral exam taken


Rating Exams June 17, 2016

AUGUST Date: Location: Event: Contact: Credits:

Friday, August 5 Area 9 Pelham Civic Complex and Ice Arena, 500 Amphitheater Rd, Pelham, AL 35124 Oral Rating Site at Ratings Prep [Fri 8am-8pm] PSA Office 507-281-5122 or • Register 1 PSA credit per oral exam taken


Oral Rating Exams June 5, 2016

Date: Location: Event: Contact: Host: Credits:

Saturday & Sunday, August 6 - 7 Area 9 Pelham Civic Complex and Ice Arena, 500 Amphitheater Rd, Pelham, AL 35124 Ratings Prep [Sat 8am-6pm, Sun 8am-6:00pm] PSA Office 507-281-5122 or • Register Danny Tate 28 PSA credits


Prep Deadline July 6, 2016

Date: Location: Event: Speaker: Contact: Credits:

Saturday, August 6 Area 9 Ohio Health Chiller North Ice Rink, 8144 Highfield Dr, Lewis Center, OH 43035 phone 740-549-0009 U.S. Figure Skating J.E.T.S. Judges Seminar [8:30 am – 5:30 pm] Eric Hampton Andrea Giovanello 614-264-4565 7 Pre Approved credits


Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Date: Location: Event: Host: Contact Credits:

Sunday August 14, 2016 Area 9 Ford Ice Center, 5264 Hickory Hollow Place, Antioch, TN 37013 Foundations of Coaching Course (8am – 5pm) – attendees receive a Coaches Manual. This course is equivalent to a Basic Accreditation (BA) rating exam Paula Trujillo Barb Yackel • Register 12 PSA credits


July 15, 2016



Please visit for the complete Calendar of Events

CLASSIFIEDS ADVERTISE WITH US! AUGUST Date: Location: Event: Credits: Host: Contact:

August 19 Area 3 Florence Township Municipal Bld, 711 Broad St, Florence, NJ 609-499-2525 New Jersey State Workshop [2:30 pm – 7:45 pm] Registration at 2:00 pm 6 PSA credits Patricia Mudge 609-351-5577 PSA Office 507-281-5122 or


July 29th, 2016

Date: Location: Event: Hosts: Contact: Credits:

Sunday, August 21 Area 16 The Rinks-Anaheim Ice, 300 Lincoln Ave, Anaheim, CA 92805 Full-Day Nationwide Seminar [8:00am-5:00pm] Russ Scott & Christopher Pottenger PSA Office 507-281-5122 or 12 PSA credits


July 21, 2016

Date: Location: Event: Contact: Credits:

Saturday, August 27 Area 7 Germain Arena, 11000 Everblades Pkwy, Estero, FL 33928 Oral Rating Site [Saturday 8am-8pm] PSA Office 507-281-5122 or • Register 1 PSA credit per oral exam taken


Oral Rating Exams June 27, 2016

Date: Location: Event: Host: Contact: Credits:

Sunday, August 27 Area 9 Cleveland Skating Club, 2500 Kemper Rd, Shaker Heights, OH 44240 Half-Day Seminar – Jumps & IJS [1:00pm – 5:00pm] Lynn Rimmer PSA Office 507-281-5122 or 6 PSA credits


July 27, 2016

Date: Location: Event: Host: Contact: Credits:

Sunday, August 28 Area 7 Germain Arena, 11000 Everblades Pkwy, Estero FL 33928 Half-Day Nationwide Seminar - Moves in the Field & IJS [12:30-5:00pm] Lisa Geltz-Perri PSA Office 507-281-5122 or 6 PSA credits


July 27, 2016

Date: Location: Event: Hosts: Contact: Credits:

Sunday, August 28 Area 12 Ralston Arena, 7300 Q Street, Ralston, NE 68127 Full-Day Nationwide Seminar [8:00am-5:00pm] Jason Dilworth & Ashley Wyatt PSA Office 507-281-5122 or 12 PSA credits


July 27, 2016

Let the skating community know about your upcoming event, product, service, or job opportunity by advertising with the PSA! We offer many different advertising options at affordable rates. For more information, go to our website at and click on "Advertise With Us".

Coach Gear

Check out our NEW, FUN apparel unveiled at the 2016 ISI/PSA Joint Conference!

HOT TICKET ITEMS! New active apparel from Kristi Yamaguchi’s Tsu-ya line

Down Minne-skirt— warm and versatile for coaching on the ice

Super-soft rainbow tee — a staff favorite!

PLAN AHEAD! Date: Location: Event: Contact: Credits:

October 28-30 Area 11 Hilton Chicago O’Hare Airport, O’Hare International Airport, Chicago, IL (cut off PSA rate October 14th) Master Oral Rating Site [Fri 8am-8pm] PSA Office 507-281-5122 or • 1 PSA credit per oral exam taken


Oral Rating Exams August 28, 2016

Our popular teal shell jacket is going fast!



3006 Allegro Park SW Rochester, MN 55902

Congratulations competitors!

Jodeyne Higgins & Sean Rice, Kristina Struthwolf-Leato, Remington Burghart, Anna Cobb, David Lipowitz, Rose Kathy, Ryan Santee, Kyle Shropshire, Sarah France, Mark Stanford, Ashley Clark, Rohene Ward, Giselle Gorder, Rachel Peterson, Stephanie Chace Bass, Anna Cobb, Alex Murphy, Kristina Struthwolf-Leato, Arielle Trujillo, Brenda Tarkinton, Mauro Bruni, Stephanie Chace Bass, Craig Heath, Nancy Pluta, Rory Flack, Melanie Lambert & Fred Palascak, Derrick Delmore, Kristen Nardozzi & Nick Traxler, Jonathan Cassar | MASTER OF CEREMONIES: Doug Mattis

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July/August 2016 PS Magazine  

Welcome to our July/August issue! Mark Walentiny's Photo of the Year greets us on the cover of an issue packed with skating world goodies.

July/August 2016 PS Magazine  

Welcome to our July/August issue! Mark Walentiny's Photo of the Year greets us on the cover of an issue packed with skating world goodies.