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Overview of the required elements in Synchro Programs, from the 2017 World Championships booklet.
A block is an element in which skaters are arranged in parallel lines. A block can be pivoting or linear and must contain a minimum of three lines. The lines of skaters should be straight and all of the skaters should be spaced evenly. A block can move diagonally down the ice, across the ice, in a circular pattern, or pivot around a certain point. Features that make a block increase in difficulty are pivoting, change of configuration, change of axis, change of position and step sequences.
A line can have several variations including one straight line, parallel lines, or diagonal lines. A line can be linear or pivoting and can go down the ice, across the ice or pivot around a certain point. Features that increase the difficulty include different configurations, change of holds, change of axis, pivoting and change of position.
A circle shape should be round and spacing between skaters should be even with no tugging or pulling between skaters. The circle element can be rotating or traveling and should have at least four skaters in the circle. Skaters may travel, weave, interlock, change rotational direction, change configuration and change places/positions with another skater.
A wheel is an element during which all skaters rotate around a common center point. It can be performed in many different formations including two-spoke, three-spoke and parallel lines. A wheel can be rotating or traveling and must have at least three skaters in a spoke. Features to increase the difficulty include change rotational direction, change of positions, and change of configuration, interlocking, traveling and change of holds.
An intersection includes four phases: preparation, approach, point of intersection and exit. An intersection can be done in multiple ways including a two line, combined, angled, collapsing shape or whip. The point of intersection (pi), where the skaters actually pass by each other, can be done with a rotational turn, glide or free skating move. The intersection can be skated without a pi and encourages creativity.
The group lift involves a skater being lifted by two or more skaters. A team will perform one to four group lifts that may rotate and glide down the ice. Some features that increase the difficulty of the element include the lifted skaters' position in the air (flexible, balanced), change of position of the lifted skaters, difficulty or creative entry and exit of the lift, and the lifts rotating in both rotational directions, as well as other creative moves.
The move element is a sequence of movements that include free skating moves such as spirals, spread eagles and Ina Bauers. A team can perform one to four different field moves, and the team can elect which skaters do which move to enhance creativity.
The pair element occurs when pairs of skaters perform free skating elements, free skating moves or other skating movements. The pairs must act as a unit and perform the same movement at the same time. An example of a pair element would be a pair spin or pair pivot.
The combined element begins when at least two different synchronized skating elements are recognized. These elements include a circle, intersection, line, wheel and pair element, and must interact with each other in order to be considered combined.
A synchronized spin is a freestyle spin done in unison. A spin as simple as a scratch spin or as difficult as a layback may be performed, however all skaters must rotate at least three revolutions on one foot. The spin must be executed in a closed block formation with the focus on unison throughout the entry, rise up' from the knee, rotation and exit of the spin.
NO HOLD ELEMENT
A no hold element is similar to a block, however the skaters are not connected to one another. The no hold element is performed in four lines that travel on the diagonal, long or short axis of the ice surface. The skaters must perform a step sequence including turns, free skating moves, field moves and body movements, while maintaining their spacing and unison. Features that increase the difficulty include pivoting and the skaters changing places with another skater.
The creative element is a presentation of one or more creative and innovative movements such as but not limited to: free skating elements and/or moves made in an interesting manner that reflect the music. Synchronized skating program elements may be incorporated into the creative element.