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 Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics

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Batsuchan
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PostSubject: Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics   Sun Feb 28, 2010 10:21 pm

I thought we should start a thread where we can discuss Mao's plans for the future/our thoughts on what she should do separate from the Olympics thread, so here it is. Very Happy

I actually started writing this post yesterday, but Mao, she's always full of surprises, and now half the things I was going to mention have already been decided!! WOW!

Well, I'm no coach and I'm no expert, I'm just a huge Mao-fan, so I'm going to start us off with a few observations.

1) The judging system is what it is, flawed though it may be
-I will be the first to tell you that the judging system is a sham, that triple axels and quads need to have higher base values, that Mao should get credit for all the difficulty she puts in her program
-However, this is not the thread for that discussion. (Feel free to start a new one for that.)
-Mao herself refuses to get drawn into that debate, so for the purpose of this discussion, I'm going to assume that the judging system stays the way it is.

2) Mao clearly has plans to work on her jumps
-Though so far I haven't seen any direct quotes from Mao, it seems that she will be working on the 3-3s, the lutz, the salchow and maybe even a quad? The last article I read had Mao quoted as saying, "The quad is not my goal," but a source close to her said, "She's achieved 3 triple axels in one competition, so the next step is the quad."

3) Mao has to decide how much she values winning
-If Yu-Na doesn't retire and continues to skate like she has been, and the scoring system stays the way it is, then it seems clear that the judges are telling Mao that what she is doing is not enough.
-A number of people here have expressed concern about Mao attempting the quad--not just because of the risk of injury, but also because of the way it may make her program unbalanced. It is not clear that the judges will reward Mao for doing a quad.
-So I think at some point, Mao may need to decide how much she values winning versus doing a program that she can be satisfied with, one that includes all the elements she wants to include.

It is my personal opinion that although Mao wants to win, most of all, it seems she values personal development and constant evolution.

I'm not sure Mao would want to win so badly that she'd give up the 3A in favor of two triple-triples, or allow herself to be pigeon-holed as the 'cute, pwetty pwincess' skater because that's what the judges want to see her as.

I'm not sure Mao would want to win so badly that she'd do the same kind of program and the same jump layout every year.

So if things stay the way they are, I think that at some point, Mao will have to decide, do I want to be the strategizing skater that plays to the judges, or do I want to do what I want to do, even if it's less CoP/judge-friendly?

If it were up to me, I'd have Mao Asada playing up her light, lyrical, balletic style to the max and milk the CoP because I want to see her win. But above all, I want Mao Asada to be happy with herself, and if that means tackling music that would be out of her comfort zone, or trying all kinds of super-risky crazy jump layouts, then I am behind her 100%. Yep!

4) Mao loves TAT, and TAT loves Mao, but Mao has also said she would one day like to work with Japanese choreographers
-We all know that Mao and TAT really love working with each other; they're more like grandma/granddaughter. TAT loves testing Mao's limits, giving her that most difficult step sequence; it's fun for her. And Mao loves being tested, she loves the challenge. So I think it's likely that TAT will continue choreographing for Mao, but perhaps not all of her programs.
-In the "Japan Ladies Figure Skating Fanbook 2010," Mao was saying that she finds it difficult to express her opinion in English to her foreign choreographers, but when she was working with Kenji Miyamoto*, she could say things like, "What about doing it this way?", and they could joke around, so practice was fun. So she has thought it might be good to work with Japanese choreographers.

Personally I would love to see Mao work with a Japanese choreographer and skate to some Japanese music, like Joe Hisaishi stuff! Very Happy

Well, I guess that's all I have for now, so go ahead and discuss! flower

My one major suggestion for Mao is to get a better costume designer, or get Mai's input, or something. Mao, you're a pretty girl, and I know you look good in anything, but seriously, you CAN do better! Hell, no!

******

* Addendum: The same book had an interview with Kenji Miyamoto, and there's an awesome Q&A:

Q: When you choreographed for THE ICE in 2008, you said that Mao was too good at everything, so it was tough for you...

A: That's right! While I was still thinking about the choreography and moving around, within one second, she'd be doing the exact same movement as me behind me. No matter what movement I did, she'd be able to do it all in a flash! The top skaters can all learn choreography quickly, but there's no skater faster at learning than her! I'm still thinking and she moves behind me like that--what a nuisance! I thought. (Laughs.) [I wanted to say], "I'm sorry, but would you mind going over there and taking a break?"

Q: So she makes you, the choreographer, do harder and harder things?

A: Yes. But what's even better about Asada is that she doesn't say "It's done" when we've finished the choreography; she keeps practicing it on the side. After a while she'll come to me and say, "Here, it's like this, but how about this instead?" or "What if we do it more like this?" She gives me suggestions. And when I see it, I think, "Ah, yes, that way the body line is prettier," and she makes my choreography better. She doesn't just accept programs that others have choreographed, she also can make her own suggestions.

***
I was ROTFLMAO about Kenji wanting Mao to go take a break. But this is why I think it might be good for Mao to work with a Japanese choreographer, because she could add in her own input, and really make the program her own. Very Happy

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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics   Sun Feb 28, 2010 11:17 pm

Great suggestions Batsuchan! I also wish Mao will do layouts and programs that milk this system and start winning because I get so upset when I hear these people criticizing her for not doing these things. I want the judges to finally acknowledge how great her skating is again and silence all these people once and for all. As for choreographers, I don't mind if Mao uses Lori Nichol again or a Japanese choreographer. I wonder who choreograhed Akiko's LP because it's really good! cat
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics   Sun Feb 28, 2010 11:53 pm

aoi88 wrote:
Great suggestions Batsuchan! I also wish Mao will do layouts and programs that milk this system and start winning because I get so upset when I hear these people criticizing her for not doing these things. I want the judges to finally acknowledge how great her skating is again and silence all these people once and for all. As for choreographers, I don't mind if Mao uses Lori Nichol again or a Japanese choreographer. I wonder who choreograhed Akiko's LP because it's really good! cat

I think it's Lori Nichol for her LP. Great choreo like you say! I also like Akiko's EX choreo from last season. It was Tango.
I said it in another thread that I like Daisuke's LP choreographed by Camelengo.

Personally, I don't want to see Mao trying quad (athought I would love her to see practising with Plushy). I'd prefer to see 3-3 again and lutz.

Rules change so often in Figure skating:badidea: so I wonder how the rules will be in four years from now. If Mao starts to win again, they might change rules again before Sochi.
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics   Mon Mar 01, 2010 1:12 am

because i am new, i am curious to know where did you find this recent information about mao and how she wants to improve her jumps?
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics   Mon Mar 01, 2010 4:53 am

Batsuchan wrote:
Personally I would love to see Mao work with a Japanese choreographer and skate to some Japanese music, like Joe Hisaishi stuff! Very Happy
How about Miki Sakagami, choreographed "A Whole New World"?
She also did good job for Mai with "Aranjuez". I love it Love Hearts
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tR3NOtxSaHc
Oh, I have to add "LADY MARMALADE"!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nPhAGGpYO2U&feature=channel

And yes, I want to see Mao skate to Joe Hisaishi too! "The Valley Of The Wind" would suit to Mao.. Mushy Love
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YYh6KXYApzE


Last edited by mingming on Mon Mar 01, 2010 5:19 am; edited 2 times in total
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics   Mon Mar 01, 2010 5:03 am

darlingdaydream wrote:
because i am new, i am curious to know where did you find this recent information about mao and how she wants to improve her jumps?
Welcome to this forum, darlingdaydream! It's so nice we have many new registered users after Olympics! Very Happy
There are some articles that Mao will do quad, but I've not seen any info of her thought about jumps.
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics   Mon Mar 01, 2010 2:08 pm

This is a great strategy moving forward.
I really think quadruples should not be her goal now.
3-3, lutz, and salchow should be the goal for this season.
Actually...
3-3 this season
Lutz next
Salchow next
Final season before Olympic year= polishing/refining.
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics   Mon Mar 01, 2010 3:59 pm

I was intrigued by the idea of the quad initially, but after some thought (and reading all of your thoughtful comments), I admit that it may not be the best idea right now. I don't want it to take away from the rest of her training...and it surely would.

Regarding the jumps, I think 3-3 is clearly what she should work on next. I think the judges would look on her much more favorably if she had a solid 3-3 or two. Of course, I would just love it if one of those combos was the 3A-3T... Wink

Clearly she needs to get the Lutz back, and the Salchow as well, though the Lutz should have priority.

As for the choreography, I like the idea of her working with a Japanese choreographer and being able to communicate a little better, and maybe have more input in her programs. Lori Nichol would be okay too (though it irks me that every winning program these days has to be choreographed by either her or David Wilson).

I do want Mao to play to the CoP a little more, but I dislike the idea of milking the system for everything its got by sticking a bunch of double Axels in the program (for example). Also, I don't want her to do what Yu-Na does and pull a bunch of fake facial expressions and wiggle her shoulders at the judges. Unfair scoring or no, she should not give up who she is just to win points.
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics   Mon Mar 01, 2010 4:10 pm

illani wrote:
I was intrigued by the idea of the quad initially, but after some thought (and reading all of your thoughtful comments), I admit that it may not be the best idea right now. I don't want it to take away from the rest of her training...and it surely would.

Regarding the jumps, I think 3-3 is clearly what she should work on next. I think the judges would look on her much more favorably if she had a solid 3-3 or two. Of course, I would just love it if one of those combos was the 3A-3T... Wink

Clearly she needs to get the Lutz back, and the Salchow as well, though the Lutz should have priority.

As for the choreography, I like the idea of her working with a Japanese choreographer and being able to communicate a little better, and maybe have more input in her programs. Lori Nichol would be okay too (though it irks me that every winning program these days has to be choreographed by either her or David Wilson).

I do want Mao to play to the CoP a little more, but I dislike the idea of milking the system for everything its got by sticking a bunch of double Axels in the program (for example). Also, I don't want her to do what Yu-Na does and pull a bunch of fake facial expressions and wiggle her shoulders at the judges. Unfair scoring or no, she should not give up who she is just to win points.

Regarding artistry, I think Mao should perhaps learn from Michelle Kwan or Chen Lu. I am a fan of both of these skaters and I think their artistry is more personal and genuine than skaters like Yuna and Katarina Witt. Mao is always honest about her emotions, so I think if she showed this side of herself more in her programs, it will be wonderful to see.
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics   Mon Mar 01, 2010 4:52 pm

long interview taken place at the next day of the competition.
http://www.tokyo-np.co.jp/article/sports/news/CK2010030202000071.html

I'm not sure which thread I should post this, but this includes some information about her plan for next season.

-TAT tells Mao "Start practicing Lutz and salchow right now!"
-She can still land 3-3 during practice sessions, but just gave up to incorporate it in the program cause two 3A and 3-3 in one program is too tough and risky.
-She's not sure about her coaching situation for next season now, but still wants to take short term lesson from TAT
-Since she's skated to powerful music for two seasons, she wants to chose more calm, slow, and relaxed music for next season's program. (Please Liebesträume Mao!! )

The hype about quad is bit annoying. Like Batsuchan says, it didn't arise because Mao said so. I support it if Mao really wants, but all I can see are some anonymous person's comments and media hype. And it's kind of deja vu I see every off season.

As for the choreographer, I don't wanna see Lori-Wilson-Morozov program any more. There're lots of great choreographers around there, and I want something creative! And Mao is fully capable of it! I'm more than happy if Mao will work with, Miyamoto, Shae-Lynn, Dickson, or Salome Brunner!
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics   Mon Mar 01, 2010 5:12 pm

Quote :
She's not sure about her coaching situation for next season now, but still wants to take short term lesson from TAT
I'm not sure to understand..Does short term lesson means until Worlds? Or does it means for a year or so?

EdiT: by the way, thanks a lot for the translation Smile
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics   Mon Mar 01, 2010 5:30 pm

bibi wrote:
Quote :
She's not sure about her coaching situation for next season now, but still wants to take short term lesson from TAT
I'm not sure to understand..Does short term lesson means until Worlds? Or does it means for a year or so?

I mean...almost same as this season after all
Probably 1 or 2 weeks training with TAT during off season or something like that!
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics   Mon Mar 01, 2010 5:38 pm

mika wrote:
bibi wrote:
Quote :
She's not sure about her coaching situation for next season now, but still wants to take short term lesson from TAT
I'm not sure to understand..Does short term lesson means until Worlds? Or does it means for a year or so?

I mean...almost same as this season after all
Probably 1 or 2 weeks training with TAT during off season or something like that!

I think it means she will be looking for a new coach but meanwhile take some lessons from TAT? She's still an advisor after all. But I am also unsure about this. It seems there are a lot of reports coming out. scratch However, from interviews, it seems TAT is not really Mao's coach anymore. Could it be the JSF trying to pressure both sides to end this relationship?
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics   Mon Mar 01, 2010 5:45 pm

aoi88 wrote:
mika wrote:
bibi wrote:
Quote :
She's not sure about her coaching situation for next season now, but still wants to take short term lesson from TAT
I'm not sure to understand..Does short term lesson means until Worlds? Or does it means for a year or so?

I mean...almost same as this season after all
Probably 1 or 2 weeks training with TAT during off season or something like that!

I think it means she will be looking for a new coach but meanwhile take some lessons from TAT? She's still an advisor after all. But I am also unsure about this. It seems there are a lot of reports coming out. scratch
However, from interviews, it seems TAT is not really Mao's coach anymore. Could it be the JSF trying to pressure both sides to end this relationship?

Like Mao at 2007-2008, or Lysacek at 2008-2009 situation.
Never heard of JSF's interference, but I think both TAT and Mao are clever enough to figure out their current relationship won't work well.
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics   Mon Mar 01, 2010 5:53 pm

Batsuchan wrote:
The judging system is what it is

Totally agree. The system stinks. But there's nothing we can do about it, and it seems JSF either.

Batsuchan wrote:
So if things stay the way they are, I think that at some point, Mao will have to decide, do I want to be the strategizing skater that plays to the judges, or do I want to do what I want to do, even if it's less CoP/judge-friendly?

Now, I must disagree. Razz I don't think she should make such a choice. I guess she can balance her programs between challenging and playing according to CoP. The main problem IMO was her music choices and the lack of choreography. Honestly, her LP was much more preparation/jump than choreography.

She doesn't have to use music that make her look like a doll, however there are plenty of pieces that allow skates to develop better their programs than Masquerade and Bells.

Plus, if she intends to try again 3-3 or even a quad, she should reconsider the strategy of doing two 3As. She has already mastered it and proven everyone she can do it. Maybe now she can eliminate one of the 3As and invest on another high-level combination, like the good and old 3F-3Lo Love Hearts or even a 3A-3T (my dream). She could try some sequence with 2A, hers is wonderful.

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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics   Mon Mar 01, 2010 6:22 pm

mika wrote:
-TAT tells Mao "Start practicing Lutz and salchow right now!"
-She can still land 3-3 during practice sessions, but just gave up to incorporate it in the program cause two 3A and 3-3 in one program is too tough and risky.
-She's not sure about her coaching situation for next season now, but still wants to take short term lesson from TAT
-Since she's skated to powerful music for two seasons, she wants to chose more calm, slow, and relaxed music for next season's program. (Please Liebesträume Mao!! )

Yayyy! I love Mao for changing it up a bit! I would love to see something like Caprice for SP- hopefully she'll use it, and something lyrical for LP.

I don't even think it has to be soft, I would love if she used violin music- the perfect blend of lyricism and passion (like her ladies in lavender program). Tchaikovsky's violin concerto would also work, although I haven't really heard that in a while for skating.

illani wrote:
I do want Mao to play to the CoP a little more, but I dislike the idea of milking the system for everything its got by sticking a bunch of double Axels in the program (for example). Also, I don't want her to do what Yu-Na does and pull a bunch of fake facial expressions and wiggle her shoulders at the judges. Unfair scoring or no, she should not give up who she is just to win points.

I agree, I don't want Mao to think that she has to change the way she skates in order to appease the judges in what is a flawed system. She has to deal with it, but she should also be herself.

But I guess I agree with Batsuchan, she has to decide which is more important- challenging herself technically, challenging the conventional music choice (how many times did we hear repetitive, pretty music for ladies skating?) or she can decide to play the system and start "milking the points" in order to win. I think Mao isn't the type to play with the points to win though, I think she is more of the type that wants to do the best in her programs and reach her technical goals and would be more happy if she won that way.

And since we're talking about her next season's strategy, I'm not sure how glad I feel about Mao not really being with Tat anymore.
I know that some people in this forum don't agree with what Tat did with her, although I appreciate the improvements that she made, I think that a coach-athlete relationship should be long-term so that they can really get to know each other and develop full-hearted trust.
Mao switched from Arutunian to Tat, and now she's switching again. I don't really think that's the best for her. I know that it's kind of difficult for Mao and Tat to stay together, but it's quite sad really. They really loved each other and Mao also liked being with Shanetta, so it's hard to think that they'll be parting ways so soon.
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics   Mon Mar 01, 2010 6:59 pm

I dont' think anyone is saying Mao should do two 3/3s and no 3axel. I think people liked the one 3axel and 2 3/3s layout. Partly because that layout opened up jumping passes, and it showed that she mastered more than just one difficult jumping element. It was more impressive.

I think if Mao just added the 3lutz into her program, and then did lets say a double axel sequence, that it would help her points wise immensely. Or if the 3lutz never comes back, do a 3/3 then. (Although I think she can get the 3lutz back, Rochette fixed her flutz and did). Really focusing on getting her 3lutz back would be the best way for her to improve her scores, and would lead to a whole lot less injuries than a quad. A quad would be cool though.

As for the program, I don't think she has to do programs like Claire de Lune if she doesn't want to. Its good that she wants to stretch herself artistically. Its just Masquerade and Bells didn't really suit Mao's skating that well, and it was also really repetitive music. I think that Mao should aim for music that has highs and lows. (Dramatic parts and then softer parts).
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics   Mon Mar 01, 2010 8:32 pm

alyssa wrote:
Now, I must disagree. Razz I don't think she should make such a choice. I guess she can balance her programs between challenging and playing according to CoP. The main problem IMO was her music choices and the lack of choreography. Honestly, her LP was much more preparation/jump than choreography.

alyssa, I totally agree that it would be so easy for Mao to find some nice but not overused music that she likes that suits her style, like "Fantasy for Violin and Orchestra," which Mao liked immediately on the first listen, and then she could balance the CoP and doing what she wants. Yep!

But my worry is that Mao will latch onto some unusual piece of music, or an unusual concept, and then insist on doing it because it's a challenge and she wants to see if she can do it. Like the Allegretto from Beethoven's Symphony No. 7, which I absolutely adore but can't imagine anyone skating to. It's not so hard for me to imagine Mao finding a piece that she really likes and wants to skate to no matter how much it doesn't fit her style, and in that case, I think it'll mean she has to decide between winning and personal challenge.

My real wish for Mao is to use some light, airy music so that her light, airy jumps don't seem "small in comparison to XXX"; they will be so appropriate to the music. (As well as her style.)

And recently I've been thinking that Mao should completely embrace her lightness by taking it to the limit and playing a ghost or spirit; something otherworldly. Like Giselle as Wili, or one of the Shades from 'La Bayadare,' and well, you all know I'd die to see Mao as a Swan, with the feathery headdress and white costume. Swoon But these are all fairly conventional choices. So maybe the thing to do then, is to try to convince Mao that these are UNCONVENTIONAL and CHALLENGING choices. Like, "you know what Mao? It would be really hard to play a dead person, or a spirit, don't you think? That would be really CHALLENGING. And something you've NEVER DONE BEFORE." Hell, no!

***
As for the jumps, Mao definitely needs the full set of triples and some 3-3s. But I think she already knows that. Now that the Olympic season is (almost) over, it'll be all about nailing down those jumps. Yep!

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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics   Mon Mar 01, 2010 8:46 pm

does mao still have wrong edge problems? maybe she should also work on her jump length.
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics   Mon Mar 01, 2010 8:59 pm

darlingdaydream wrote:
does mao still have wrong edge problems? maybe she should also work on her jump length.

I think she has largely fixed the lutz, meaning that in practice she can do the jump from the correct edge most of the time. However, because it's still new to her, she's not confident about it, so that was really throwing her off when she got nervous at the competitions. She said stuff like, "in my SP, all I could think about was the lutz." Plus, in the SP, she has to do it from steps, which probably makes the takeoff even more difficult for her.

So my guess is that Mao stays with the 3A-2T in the short (or potentially 3A-3T? Very Happy ), and uses the 3Lz in the long...

(Welcome to the forum, darlingdaydream! flower )

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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics   Tue Mar 02, 2010 1:09 am

Batsuchan wrote:
And recently I've been thinking that Mao should completely embrace her lightness by taking it to the limit and playing a ghost or spirit; something otherworldly. Like Giselle as Wili, or one of the Shades from 'La Bayadare,' and well, you all know I'd die to see Mao as a Swan, with the feathery headdress and white costume. Swoon But these are all fairly conventional choices. So maybe the thing to do then, is to try to convince Mao that these are UNCONVENTIONAL and CHALLENGING choices. Like, "you know what Mao? It would be really hard to play a dead person, or a spirit, don't you think? That would be really CHALLENGING. And something you've NEVER DONE BEFORE." Hell, no!

I was rereading some of the older threads the other day and what you and Star85 said about Mao skating to Swan Lake must have stayed in my mind, because I totally had this image of Mao in a gorgeous white dress with silver detailing and wearing the feathered headdress like the ones worn by ballerinas!

I get the feeling that if Mao somehow does choose to skate to Swan Lake, the program will be entirely unconventional and absolutely breathtaking because, well, it's skated by MAO ASADA - the No. 1 'ballerina on ice' Razz.

lol! at Mao playing a spirit. It better be a benevolent spirit, because I can't guarantee I'll be convinced by Mao playing a vengeful one ROTFLMAO. I keep thinking back to that Olympus CM where she had to pretend to look angry but just ended up looking even cuter than usual Wub.
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics   Tue Mar 02, 2010 5:07 am

Good thread subject Batsuchan. I have been thinking a lot about what Mao will do in the future (and have already been posting about it, so I will be repeating myself a bit. You'll have to excuse me.)

mika wrote:

-Since she's skated to powerful music for two seasons, she wants to chose more calm, slow, and relaxed music for next season's program.
Happy dance YES, YES, YES!!!! Thank you! Thank you God! We're already on the right track if she's going to be choosing music that suits her better. Although music isn't supposed to count points wise, it still makes a difference. It just does. I loved Clair de Lune, but was not crazy about Masquerade, and Bells was my least favorite program of her's ever. So if this means we get to have more of Mao's old style of music back, then cheers Confetti. I really, really was not fond of seeing Yuna, and Joannie skate up to the podium to pretty, happy music, then seeing Mao skate up there to dark, scary, villan-type music. Same goes for every time they showed a clip of her LP on tv.

Hmm, I like your spirit theme idea Batsuchan! Mao already has that light, airiness to her skating. I think she could pull that off really great, and it would be something very beautiful, and entertaining Thumbs up!

Quote of mine from other thread: I'm really excited to hear Mao's jumping plans for the future! I think the fact that she will be bringing back a 3-3 is awesome! Not only will this help make her better, but it will really help her points wise. I also couldn't help but feel excited at first when I heard that she is going to be working on her quad again, but then I had to stop myself. I thought, "first off, Mao really needs to start doing at least one of her currenetly absent jumps, and fix her little problems that the judges keep dinging her on. I think that would be a great goal for her for next season. As for the season after that: the 3-3. And after that, maybe the quad." Although I want to be rational, I can't help but think of how exciting it would be if she did master the quad Exclamation

Also, I really don't know what will happen, but maybe she'll be able to learn/relearn an absent jump, clean up her little problems that she keeps getting points dinged for, and get her 3-3 back all next season.

As I have said before, I'm glad that Mao will be getting a new coach. Especially one who will work with her more on the technical things Very Happy. That was the absolute, best decsision she could have made IMO. While Mao, and Tat did make some progress, I never really was happy with the way things were going the past two seasons. Maybe it was because Tat was only able to coach her part time? She needs a more full time coach with more availability.

A few days ago, I said something like, "Yuna practically kisses the Gop's butt, and designs her programs around points, points, points." While I think Mao honestly needs to give into what the judges are looking for a little more, I don't want her to devote herself to that, as Yuna has done. I know that pushing herself into new challenges, and becoming the best skater she can be is Mao's priority. However, I know that winning is also very important to her. I'm sure she's very aware on what she has to work on to be more Gop friendly, and I also sure that she intends to work on those things. I am very confident that she will exceed in this while continuing to push herself towards her own personal, high goals. I know she will be looking for a coach who can help her with all of this.

And lastly, I really hope she goes in a whole new direction with her dresses! Smile
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics   Tue Mar 02, 2010 7:18 am

I don't want Mao to come back to her old style. Because it seems like she doesn't enjoy this type of music anymore. But something like Caprice will be gorgeous! sunny Or maybe even more fierce!
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics   Tue Mar 02, 2010 7:32 am

Quote :
alyssa wrote:
Now, I must disagree. Razz I don't think she should make such a choice. I guess she can balance her programs between challenging and playing according to CoP. The main problem IMO was her music choices and the lack of choreography. Honestly, her LP was much more preparation/jump than choreography.

alyssa, I totally agree that it would be so easy for Mao to find some nice but not overused music that she likes that suits her style, like "Fantasy for Violin and Orchestra," which Mao liked immediately on the first listen, and then she could balance the CoP and doing what she wants. Yep!

But my worry is that Mao will latch onto some unusual piece of music, or an unusual concept, and then insist on doing it because it's a challenge and she wants to see if she can do it. Like the Allegretto from Beethoven's Symphony No. 7, which I absolutely adore but can't imagine anyone skating to. It's not so hard for me to imagine Mao finding a piece that she really likes and wants to skate to no matter how much it doesn't fit her style, and in that case, I think it'll mean she has to decide between winning and personal challenge.

I understand your point and have the same concern myself. That's why a good team is important. And that's where Tat failed. She clearly had a dream of an LP with Bells and got Mao to do it for her. Instead of picking music that fit Mao's style, she did just the opposite, and tried to fit Mao to the music, which is nonsense IMO. A good coach/choreographer balances what's better for the skater, forgetting personal emotionals and even some goals that could be nice in theory, but not in real life. I believe that with the right coach and choreographer she can reach that balance. But Tat clearly failed in that aspect IMHO.

Quote :
As for the program, I don't think she has to do programs like Claire de Lune if she doesn't want to. Its good that she wants to stretch herself artistically. Its just Masquerade and Bells didn't really suit Mao's skating that well, and it was also really repetitive music. I think that Mao should aim for music that has highs and lows. (Dramatic parts and then softer parts).

Perfectly said. I personally believe Tat is a good choreographer though (Fantasy confirms that), but she's really stubborn and seems to refuse to adapt to the new system.

Again, I'd hate to see Mao playing to the system (Like Yuna and Evan), for me, it's cowardliness. But playing against it (like she's been doing) is nonsense. A balance is essential. I personally liked her much more up to 2008, when her lightness and grace were highlighted, however, she does seem to want a change. However Bells is a bit to much for her. But I'll go with her till the very end, and may God bless us. Razz

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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on Mao's strategy post-Olympics   Tue Mar 02, 2010 7:53 am

alyssa wrote:
I understand your point and have the same concern myself. That's why a good team is important. And that's where Tat failed. She clearly had a dream of an LP with Bells and got Mao to do it for her. Instead of picking music that fit Mao's style, she did just the opposite, and tried to fit Mao to the music, which is nonsense IMO. A good coach/choreographer balances what's better for the skater, forgetting personal emotionals and even some goals that could be nice in theory, but not in real life. I believe that with the right coach and choreographer she can reach that balance. But Tat clearly failed in that aspect IMHO.
Correct me if I'm wrong, but wasn't it Mao who chose Bells? I remember reading somewhere that she had a chance to choose between Bells and another music (much brighter type, but she didn't mention what it was). So, I don't think TAT forced her. She even asked Mao (after Cup of Russia was it??) if she wanted to change the music, but Mao said "No". So I guess it was Mao's decision to skate to Bells Smile
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