during the last Unicon I saw different groups of people discussing about the rules and criteria for judging some competitions, specially the freestyle.
So today I was looking for a video on youtube and I started comparing some of the presentations from this Unicon and the past ones. It’s quite shocking to see that they all look the same!!!
Of course the sport is evolving, that’s natural. New riders are taking it to a hole new level, but the presentations are all the same. In montreal the only guy who did it different was Michael, from switzerland, and he only got 5th at the final!!!?? What’s going on with the sport???
Freestyle shouldn’t be named freestyle, but it’s been like that for so long that it won’t change.
See page 71 of the rulebook to check how it’s judged
Maybe “figure riding” would be more appropriate, just like figure skating.
I remember watching a couple videos from Unicon and seeing a new category called x style that seems to stem from freestyle except seemingly allowing more diverse styles. I’d recommend checking it out.
Hello Cafi, I think that freestyle unicyclists are very skilled and generally quite boring to watch. The rules allow for props but the contestants seldomly use interesting props like rails for grinding etc., Also, the costumes are ghastly in my opinion.
I suspect that the limits you’ve witnessed, are set, more by tradition than by rules.
Having said all that, the current format with the costumes possibly makes for good family entertainment and what’s wrong with that.
I think some riders refer to ‘street’ as free style but even street has it’s limits.
As a member of the IUF Freestyle rulebook committee I can assure you we have been furiously debating the future of competition. Is it like figure skating, is it like dance, is it dead? These are all questions that have been discussed, with opinions all over the board.
If you have input please don’t hesitate to let the committee know (here in this thread is fine). The overwhelming theme seems to be modifying the rules to emphasize the “art” of each routine. I quote “art” because it is difficult to define - perhaps impossible.
The current rules score half for technical skills and half for performance skills. Unfortunately (IMHO) the performance side has been lacking in recent years, so that nearly every routine looks like Standard Skills set to music. I’d like to see some high quality routines that focus on presentation ("art) instead of technical. Of course, the best routines will have high presentation values coupled with mad skills.