Changing your style for competition

Does anyone else feel like they have to manipulate their style just so they can score higher in competition, or is it only me?

I’m debating on whether to do a prelim of just stuff I want to do or to do a prelim of stuff that will score high, because I don’t care what place I get in finals it’s just getting passed prelims. I’ve already competed twice by the way and been in finals both times, but I’ve changed my style since then.

Just curious on what you guys think.

The judging system for most yoyo contests these days kind of sucks. They don’t account for alot of things and those who have smooth, slow and flowy styles are left in the dust by everyone else who tries to get the most string hits into their freestyle.

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What to do then?

That’s the old system though. I heard they have brought up a new judging system focusing more on professionalism and technique than how many strings you hit and speed, as you can see in Zach’s winning freestyle of 2012 nationals and other contests and most recently Janos 1A freestyle of EYYC

Most contests and all the contests in years past have used this crappy system, luckily as of late they’ve been trying to accommodate for all styles. Competitive YoYoing shouldn’t just be about speed or the most string hits possible in a set amount of time but it should accommodate the other styles that are present in the yoyo community. That’s why I’m glad to see contests moving away from the crappy system… there should be more contests like the DXL battle, etc.

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Off Topic: I think a good way to judge would be having five judges all together, and watch an entire freestyle. At the end each judge give a number from 1-10 and explain why. That seems like a more fair way to go then the current “you get this many points for this trick” type of judging.

That would kind of suck for the serious contenders.

It’s a good thing to have a general idea about what is high scoring and what isn’t when competition is your focus. Not only does it help you to organize your own performance, but it allows you to compare yourself to others. You can think things like “wow, I saw him doing X to Y last week and that’s a big combo, so I need to include Y to Z at the next comp if I want to beat that”.

Obviously the downside is that it’s also very limiting. But, when you’re in competitions, I don’t think one should really expect there to be a lot of value placed on personal style. It’s a sport and people are ultimately there to win by any means that they can. If you just want to express yourself, no one is stopping you at any other time.

I’m just going to have some fun and play the way that’s most comfortable to me. I don’t expect to place well, just to enjoy the experience. That’s what yoyoing is about, right?

I did this at my first comp and pretty much goofed up. Just perform some nice tricks that you are comfortable with.

Judging flow and artistic performance is a very subjective thing. Even though it is limiting, the judging system has tried to remove as much of the subjectivity as possible. Judging still requires a panel because even when judges are looking for exactly the same things, they still can see things somewhat differently.

In my opinion the judging system is less of an attempt to limit people and more of an attempt in establishing a standardized format for judging as fairly as possible. Whether the end result is successful, is up for debate.

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I think contests should have two styles of voting: some judges judge the way it’s done now, and other judges would judge style, flow, etc.
Each freestyle would get a score for both judging styles.

I just do my tricks. I’m not going to change my style just so I can look better on youtube. As long as I’m not dead last I’m cool.

Besides my tricks are sweet.

This is essentially how the current judging system works.

Thanks for your advice guys, I hope judging will get better in the future.
Last year at Indy States I asked how the contest was judged and the answer was “tech only” I hope it’s not the same this year.
It kind of upsets me because you have to do 2 prelims at Indy if you make it in the top 16 because of the bracket system, I wish Takeshi would just set the format to prelim then freestyle. I had to do the same prelim twice just to be knocked out of finals by the guy that got 2nd in the first round prelims.