4. Execution and Breaks in Flow

Add ‘break-in-flow’ aspect to Execution judging

Some players advocated for Execution deductions according to ‘breaks-in-flow’ instead of rigidly deducting .1 for bobbles, .2 for ‘the’ catches and .3 for all drops. Committee members agreed that this is a favorable approach, since a nicely choreographed, well-flowing routine with a couple of minor drops is advancing the sport of Freestyle disc and appears more attractive for an audience than a safety routine.

The problem, however, is that the interpretation of ‘break-in-flow’ is more complex than just counting bobbles and drops, and adds to the subjectivity of Freestyle judging within the Execution category. An explanatory manual with detailed rules and examples would have to be created. Overall, there are strong doubts if a ‘break-in-flow’ approach could be applied in reality with a reasonable degree of precision and consistency among judges.

As a compromise, the committee decided to leave the Execution deduction categories as they are and give greater emphasis to the possibilities of reducing execution penalties if an error does not influence the flow of play drastically. However, it would also result in more .1 and .2 penalties given for long breaks in between combos and flow interruptions within combos that are clearly unintended by the player(s). This will require adding more comprehensive explanations to the judging manual.


Examples of how to add language to the judging manual:

–      Only drops that are a clear interruption to the flow in play result in a .3 deduction. Drops that are merely minor interruptions to the flow should result in only a .2 deduction (e.g. dropping and then instantly picking up the disc without a clear change of body movement)

–      The same idea applies to ‘The’ catches: if a player does a ‘The’ catch and instantly brings the disc back into play without an interruption to the flow of play, it should be penalized with a deduction of .1 only instead of .2.

–      Conversely, brushing up the disc as in order to save a combo should be penalized with a deduction of .1 as it breaks the flow and are clearly added movements in order to avoid a drop.

–      If breaks-in-flow happen that are intended and not a result of execution mistakes, no deductions should be made. E.g. an extended behind the back hold with the intention to impress the crowd shall not be punished. The same is true for a brush run around the gym to fire up spectators.

So the intention of a break-in-flow is decisive. I.e. if a player breaks the flow to correct a mistake, a deduction should be made. But if a player breaks the flow intentionally, e.g. to impress the crowd, it should not be punished. What sounds complicated here is usually quite obvious to judges in tournament situations.

13 Replies to “4. Execution and Breaks in Flow”

  1. giving a .2 for small drops that do not interrupt the flow is a good idea.

    reducing THE-catches from .2 to .1 is not a good idea. In a critical situation (when there is the choice between a THE-catch and a drop that does not interrupt the flow) this will encourage players to go for the THE-catch instead of going for a restricted catch.

  2. Good to have that in the rules – that the Judges have more liberties to penalize errors in Execution!
    But also here the same comment than in the other categories: We have to educate our Judges better! It is not possible to explain judging Ex in 3 sentences!

  3. The concern here for me is that stricter judges might inadvertently (or consciously) penalize a style of play vs a break in flow. Unless we submit routines, where we can state in advance exactly when and where a break is planned, this idea could divert us from the objectivity that we have come to expect from our execution judging results. I like the direction this proposal goes, but unless we can firmly quantify what constitutes a break in flow, we run the risk of making our most objective category less precise.
    I do support, however, lessening the amount of the deductions. I’d like to see all drops be a .2 and everything else be a .1 deduction, be it a brain-fart stall, a fumble/save, a root-up, or a “the” catch. They’re all unintended mistakes, so why penalize more for one type of mistake than the other? You can always give multiple deductions for extended crumbville, like an embarrassing throw-away, but you can’t diminish single deductions once they are recorded (or at least you shouldn’t). It’s better to have the other 2 categories be as influential as possible in determining results. This suggestion for the diminishment of penalty in execution, I feel, is right on point for encouraging more risky and unique styles of play as well. Good job, committee

  4. first: i don´t like to count all drops the same..
    there are drops and drops!
    i treaded it like
    .1 for hard wobblers and easy rescue manouvers
    .2 for catches that slipped out of the hand(this is no clear drop for me) and hard rescue manouvers( like spin was gone completely((not planned))
    .3 for CLEAR drops( i.e.missing a brush to drop or brushpass to drop) or catches that did NOT touched the hand.
    .5 for hitting judges or audeince and hurting someone ( this does not include a roller off the field or below the judgingtable

    till now i NEVER gave penalty for breaks in flow on exicution…this CLEARLY belongs to AI for me.

    aloha from berlin

  5. I agree with Anton,
    That All Drops are not the same. Just as mistakes and bobbles and “THE’s” are not the same. Judge it how you see it.
    A drop after a huge move that hits you in the hand, falls to the ground and is quickly picked up and the routine is continued with little to no break in flow, is not the same as a drop that is not even close to being caught, rolls away with a big break in the routine.
    I say let the judge’s choose the deduction from .1 to .5, that they feel appropriate for the error.
    Some errors will be scored differently on each judges sheet. That is OK. Let the judge decide how criticle the error was.

  6. I think that Toddy’s suggestion shows the following: Objectivity in any catrgory comes to the price of appropriateness.
    On the one hand, everybody wants to increase objectivity (which seems to be easier to do in execution than in the other categories), but that means more standardization and less flexibility. Both objectivity and flexibility have their advantages.
    I Guess what it boils down to, is that an experienced judge (given that he is not biased) can do a better job when given the freedom to judge more subjectively (or “let the judge decide how critical the error was”) – after all, we are judging an art form – but for those who are not as educated yet but still must sit at the judging table, an objective set of rules by which to go might be more useful.

    I just noticed that in many comments, there is a wish for more objectivity and transperence, and it has the advantage of making judging easier and less prone to intentional or unintentional bias, but I am just throwing in the question, if more objectivity is ALWAYS an improvement and leads to the right results.

  7. I think the execusion is an very important categorie because of its objectively! Its should be also in the future. This categorie could be generally easier to judge if the players have a better education. So the main goal should be to coach the players.
    The Difference should remain, i mean the difference beween clears drops, small and strong errors and slight or strong corrections. And with its gradation (Abstufung in german) “The catch” is for me .2 i agree with Schreck.

  8. I also agree with Anton. we need these nuances and need a “the” catch to be .2 deduction.
    please do not implement “Flow” in execution”… this should be AI-judging.

  9. I very much like the idea of a “catch-drop-ratio” or “exchange-drop-ratio”, as Peter mentioned. That would put the number of execution errors in proportion to the risk taken which seems to be more fair than the current system.
    Breaks in flow (e.g. when a team drops a lot) would anyway be punished in AI, so teams would still try to execute well.

  10. While I like the intent, as the committee mentions this would be a nightmare to implement. Already in the discussion, we’re hearing vast disagreements about what should be a deduction. Players should have some understanding of the expectations before walking onto the field.

    I’m not sure break in flow is the best guiding force for execution. It seems more like an example of a moment where the judge needs to make a decision. Further, the fact that a behind the back hold was used as an example of break in flow is troubling and indicates a misunderstanding that flow can involve varying the rhythm of play intentionally.

    Examples like this are kind of shocking and frankly undermine my trust in the committee’s consideration of this issue. Someone doing a hold is not an execution situation. Someone doing a move like Around the World that takes a lot of time is not an execution situation. Someone doing a combination that involves intentional THE’s (for instance, because the player’s skill level doesn’t include consecutivity) is not an execution situation. None of these things are breaks in perfection.

    It seems Execution is about mistakes. If my team intentionally catches all THE’s, we have made no mistakes. A large part of me says we should not be penalized in Execution. AI and Diff should take care of that.

    Maybe circling back to the core proposal is needed: giving judges more discretion to measure the intensity of a mistake, while holding them accountable for the deductions they take.

  11. I do have both of this in my proposal (see general comments 1-3). Execution is a part of technic and should be taken care of technical judge .Every 15 sec he puts down a mark for diff and also for execution. The perfect 15 seconds have no deduction, but for any problem, there is a 0.1/0.2/0.3 deduction like we know it.
    Beaks in Flow belong to AI. The perfect routine has no breaks in Flow. Every break should result in a deduction.

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