What’s a Triple Lutz Salchow Triple Spin Toe Loop Camel?

I’ve been watching, and enjoying, Olympic figure skating since I was a kid. But I’m here to admit that I don’t know what all those terms mean. I only get exposed to them every four years, and none of the announcers ever explain them. They just talk about them as if you, the casual viewer, know what the maneuver is.

Like the salchow. What’s that? It always sounds like “sow-cow,” which is what you get when you mate Mrs. Porky with Mr. Bessie. I couldn’t tell the difference between a salchow and a lutz, or a triple toe-loop, for that matter. Or an axel. Or a camel. What makes an axel different from a salchow? What’s easier, a double toe-loop or a double lutz?

Then there are different types of spins, lifts, jumps, flips, and spirals.  My favorite term is the death spiral (a move which I think I recognize). 

Right now, they’re showing pairs figure skating. And the announcers are throwing all these terms around at us amateurs, as if we’re thoroughly familiar with this insider lingo. I think they’re on a power trip. They enjoy making us commoners think we’re uncultured hicks.

Well, I’ve watched figure skating enough years without understanding these terms. No sense in learning now. Just enjoy the show.

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