Nina Mozer: Decency rules should exist for skaters transitions
Nina Mozer about contracts between coaches and skaters, development of figure skating, she also expressed the idea that the bar set by the Russians is currently unattainable for Europeans.
by Dmitri Kuznetsov for sport-express.ru dd.2d September 2020
Nina Mikhailovna, I can’t help but ask you about Evgenia Tarasova – Vladimir Morozov. Do they want to be in time for the Russian Cup and the Grand Prix?
Nina Mozer: As far as I know, two options are currently being considered. They are in America now, but they should probably come. It was talked about September 11, but there are difficulties with flights, and perhaps they will return even earlier, on September 7. But I’m not their personal coach, Marina Zueva and Maxim Trankov write their plans. I am a senior coach of the Vorobyovy Gory school, and my functions are more extensive now.
Against this background, news comes from St. Petersburg that the Tamara Moskvina’s pairs are very ready, judging by the test skates.
Nina Mozer: Well, thank God, I’m happy for them. They did not leave the rink, they are almost the only ones in the country. Who if not they would be ready! There were also several skating rinks in Moscow that worked during quarantine, but there were no athletes. Now you don’t even know what to expect from pairs. That’s why I came to the junior championship in Moscow, to look at the youth of our school. People have not skated for four months, and at that age it is a serious test. But they come back and try to restore the elements at breakneck speed. Several promising guys for the 2026 Olympics are performing here.
It’s a pity that none of those who for the 2022 came. If only 14-year-olds will suddenly be allowed.
Nina Mozer: What for? We have a very strange perception of figure skating, a completely different view compared to other countries. If we want to evaluate skating itself, then older people should compete. And now everything has turned into children’s skating. Rich but childish.
Can the division into artistic and technical programs help? With the division of medals in perspective.
Nina Mozer: I do not presume to define such global things. Of course, I have thoughts, but I’m not sure if they should be voiced now.
How the things are going with youth now? I have heard that in some schools there are no pairs at all. Is the popularity of pair skating really falling?
Nina Mozer: In principle, there are fewer athletes who can go to pair skating. In Russia, a tradition has taken root – in single skating, the smallest and most nimble stays, the larger ones go dances, and there is no one to take in pairs. There are a lot of short partners now, including because of this. Or you have to bring people from other cities. I have 15 pairs at school, there are new good ones, I look at their development. We work all day with four groups.
If you look at other countries, Europe, they dream of such “problems”.
Nina Mozer: In Europe, the things are really bad with figure skating. Because the bar set by the Russians is currently unattainable for them. They have no choice, no opportunity. One or two single skaters can skate in the country, claiming for major competitions, and the rest it cannot be called a sport of the highest achievements. These are the realities.
Is it real to change?
Nina Mozer: So are the rules. I spoke with the members of the technical committee about the need to diversify the format of the competitions. On competitions for those who can compete at the highest level, others for weaker athletes where they could fight for medals. Because no country will be interested in funding athletes who takes 25th place. For them, at least some kind of award is important. But for now it remains my exclamations.
But the Olympic medal is still one in discipline.
Nina Mozer: Of course, it cannot be divided. But in European countries, many do figure skating not for the Olympic medal, but for pleasure. Maybe there should be different technical requirements.
In pair skating, in this sense, everything is quite monotonous.
Nina Mozer: Yes, the requirements of the technical committee are such that people follow the easiest path. Everyone is trying to do level four to raise the technical mark. And it leads to what you see now – the same spins, entries on death spirals, lifts positions. Things are really getting corny. And the winner is the one who is more consistent or stronger from a choreographic point of view.
Can we say that ISU has forgotten about pair skating? In the technical committee for a long time there was no one from this discipline before Fedor Klimov.
Nina Mozer: No, why? This is not related to the number of committee members. All specialists and coaches are sent offers in advance before the new season. Someone is simply lazy, someone does not think about the importance of this process. One is listened to, the other is not accepted. Everything is so trite that it is not even interesting.
The Russian Cup has got a unique status this year. Was it real to expand its program to other cities?
Nina Mozer: You know, we would still have to held what planned. God blesses that no one canceled the stages. We still live in times of a pandemic and do not understand what will happen tomorrow. I should say “thank you” that it exists at least in this form and the guys have the opportunity to compete.
The main topic of this summer is transfers, and after the transfer of Alena Kostornaia, contracts are actively discussed. Do you support their idea?
Nina Mozer: For me, it’s a philosophical question. On the one hand, I would like to see some kind of rules. The rules of decency first of all, when it comes to transfers. On the other hand, it’s scary to depend on things that may be too difficult to work with.
That is, if there was a vote on the coaching council, would you abstain?
Nina Mozer: I would first read a sample of such contract. In order to have a discussion, one must understand what we are discussing.