Should kinetics be part of Lasering?

Discussion in 'Laser Talk' started by drLaser, Sep 18, 2002.

  1. drLaser

    drLaser Guest

    In the ISAF newsletter "MAKING WAVES", No. 114, issued on 16 Sept. 2002, President Paul Henderson gives his thoughts on "Kinetics" and the likely outcomes for sailing (and Lasering).

    drLaser

    ------------------------------------

    KINETICS FREE FOR ALL?
    Police it or allow unlimited kinetics?



    Rule 42 Revisited:

    Over thirty years ago I wrote a paper on "Kinetics" which initiated Rule 42.

    During the last year, after attending several Olympic Class and Youth Regattas, it became apparent that anarchy has taken over, and the ISAF Judges do not have the proper tools to keep Kinetics under control. It was with those observations that ISAF reopened the debate on Rule 42.

    Observations:

    The following are some of the situations observed:
    - Top Laser medal winners writing books instructing young sailors how to bend the rules and not get caught.
    - Opti coaches having training lessons to teach their sailors how to use Kinetics clandestinely.
    - ISAF Classes, lobbied by aggressive coaches, changing their rules to make Rule 42 more liberal.
    - Judges leaving the race course because of the extent of the cheating.
    - Top Finn sailors demanding ISAF get more militant on policing Kinetics and then when they are apprehended getting very upset with the Judges for going too far.
    - Very abusive letters in the Sailing press by sailors demanding Kinetics be part of the sport.
    - Sailors will not protest because of peer group pressure.
    - Judges do not want to be policemen or give yellow cards removing sailors from regattas.

    There are many more observations that can be made on this issue.

    Recommendation:

    A submission has been put in for November by the Spanish (RFEV) to delete Rule 42 for all the Olympic Classes.

    I feel ISAF should have a one year trial of this proposal even though personally I am opposed as "Air Rowing" is not Sailing.

    ISAF should allow these classes to do anything they want to propel their boats around the race course. Total Kinetics allowed. No Judges and No Rules.

    "If it feels good Mate, do it."

    Pumping, Rocking, Repetitive Roll Tacking, Bouncing, Sculling, Paddling, Kicking, Ooching all would be legal and uncontrolled. Welcome to the World of Windsurfing!! (By the way, Windsurfing racing has dramatically reduced over the last decade since they allowed unlimited pumping.)

    Result:

    Two results could emerge out of this one year trial.

    1. All the sailors and coaches who believed that ISAF was legislating improperly against the physical aspects of Sailing will be proven right, and that unlimited Kinetics is more fun, and their classes will prosper.

    OR

    2. Sailors who believe that Sailing and "Air Rowing" are different sports and they want to "Sail" will leave these classes and be driven to Skiffs and Cats where Kinetics do not work as you must sail them.

    Conclusion:

    A wiseman once said that "The only lessons learned in Sailing are through the Eyes of Disaster".

    It is only by allowing possible disaster to strike with unlimited
    Kinetics that any lessons can be learned.

    Hopefully after a year trial, the anarchists will ask ISAF to again endeavor to ensure that sailing is a sport driven by the "natural action of the wind on the sails and sea on the hulls" and that Kinetics are not part of Sailing.

    Paul Henderson
    President ISAF

    -----------------------

    If you would like to be added to the ISAF distribution list for 'Making Waves', please subscribe via ISAF Sailor at www.sailing.org/isafsailor
     
  2. kwilson

    kwilson New Member

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    I feel that as Laser sailers we already use kinetics in our sailing....at least I have from day one. I always question the negative effects of to much kinetic energy and its impact on the competitive side of lasering.

    I agree that the ISAF needs to make a decision about how its going to deal with extreme kinetics at the pro level but to disallow it altogether would be changing the way the laser is sailed causing reprocussions throughout the class.

    Step softly with a heavy foot. :wink:
     
  3. Eric Sullivan

    Eric Sullivan New Member

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    "disallow it all together"

    I think you missed the point. It already is not allowed. The problem is that it is one of the hardest areas to police. Coming from cat racing into Lasers (so my kids can start sailing), It is a major area of concern. How much do I teach them to roll tack? Don't you think it would be a little rediculous in a light air race to see people tacking up the course to maintain speed? Is that racing? I think not. Coming from a guy who may be racing masters soon, I really don't want to get into the kind of shape I would need to get into for the 400 tacks to the windward mark, to stay competitive. Self-policing of the rules?? would be nice wouldnt it?
     
  4. kwilson

    kwilson New Member

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    Re: "disallow it all together"

    [quote:5c322a29c1="Eric Sullivan"]I think you missed the point. It already is not allowed. The problem is that it is one of the hardest areas to police. Coming from cat racing into Lasers (so my kids can start sailing), It is a major area of concern. How much do I teach them to roll tack? Don't you think it would be a little rediculous in a light air race to see people tacking up the course to maintain speed? Is that racing? I think not. Coming from a guy who may be racing masters soon, I really don't want to get into the kind of shape I would need to get into for the 400 tacks to the windward mark, to stay competitive. Self-policing of the rules?? would be nice wouldnt it?[/quote:5c322a29c1]

    Let me clarify my point. I doubt that Robert Scheidt, our most recent Laser world champ, and Karl Suneson are going to totally change there sailing because someone said that they can't shift their weight on the boat anymore. I don't know about you but I can't turn my head on the boat without it reacting in some way.

    Compromise is the best solution. If the decision to legislate against the use of kinetics is imposed, seriously, there must be some qualification. Otherwise the resulting effect can be disastrous on the class. I feel that [u:5c322a29c1]blatent abuse[/u:5c322a29c1] of kinetic force during a competition should be policed by qualified, educated judges; that follow the letter of the law.

    I understand that it is already not allowed and that it is hard to police but that is because there is to many grey areas. The sport is at the crossroads of its own evolution only time will tell. :wink:
     
  5. planing away

    planing away New Member

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    If the sailors think kinetics are being abused now, then tighten up the rules and enforcement a little bit. When the sailors think the rules are too strict, loosen them [i:804607dbee]a little bit.[/i:804607dbee] Changing the rules to anything goes is not the answer, just like preventing all body movements is absurd.

    Just like in basketball, where the players always push the rules of what is or isn't a foul, pushing a little to find out what you are aloud to do is part of the game. If you pump a little more aggresively, expect to gain sometimes and get caught other times. Taking risks about how the rules are enforced is part of the game.

    Ben
     
  6. Eric Sullivan

    Eric Sullivan New Member

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    in response to kwilson

    I must admit to being out of touch with the current rules and appeals, but when I was racing seriously the rule was something to the extent that kinetics could not be used to propel the boat faster than it would be going under the current wind conditions. Therefore moving around the boat to get it to top speed is allowed. Roll tacks to accelerate to top speed are allowed. Pumping to accelerate to top speed is allowed. If the wind is not strong enough to plane, then pumping to bump yourself up onto a plane would not be allowed. The same for roll tacking in light air to gain a speed advantage. Heeling and Hiking hard to accelerate, the same goes. The question becomes 1) What are the stated rules. 2) How are those rules currently applied.

    My personal preference is to enforce the rules. As far as stretching the boundaries goes, there is no stretching here. Either you are using kinetics within the framework of the rules, or you are not. Just because you are not getting called on it does not mean you are sailing by the rules.
     
  7. planing away

    planing away New Member

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    When I say that sailors should push what is allowed, I don't mean that they should try pumping when the judges aren't looking, or do things if they think they can get away with it. What I mean, is that the rules about what is or isn't allowed are not totally black and white. The interpretation has to be "worked out" by sailors trying things on the water and the judges deciding to call some actions and let others be allowed. The rules of the game progress that way, just as in many sports. For example if a basketball referee from 1965 were to officiate a game today, he would never stop blowing his whistle. Even though the rules are mostly the same as 1965, the interpretation and current practices have changed.

    Ben
     
  8. kwilson

    kwilson New Member

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    [quote:050c8ed222="planing away"]When I say that sailors should push what is allowed, I don't mean that they should try pumping when the judges aren't looking, or do things if they think they can get away with it. What I mean, is that the rules about what is or isn't allowed are not totally black and white. The interpretation has to be "worked out" by sailors trying things on the water and the judges deciding to call some actions and let others be allowed. The rules of the game progress that way, just as in many sports. For example if a basketball referee from 1965 were to officiate a game today, he would never stop blowing his whistle. Even though the rules are mostly the same as 1965, the interpretation and current practices have changed.

    Ben[/quote:050c8ed222]


    Point well made. :)
     
  9. Eric Sullivan

    Eric Sullivan New Member

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    point well made

    Yes point well made, it is a perfect example of how to mess up a sport. I no longer watch basketball except maybe a few games in the playoffs and finals. I am a big believer in changing the rules if you want them changed, if not, play by the written rule. That way everyone knows what exactly is allowed.
     
  10. macwas16

    macwas16 New Member

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    ummm...k

    yes i believe you all have very stong and good points. i play soccer and i ALWAYS push the rules just to see how much i can get from the ref. and too, i get cards for a bunch of stuff such as kicking the ball a long time after the whistle was blown to give my guys some extra rest. but when i sail? when i sail i cut the crap. it is an extreme sport but if we let people nearly broach their boats then fling them upright again and excellerate 5 knts, then whats next we all have brawls like in baseball and beat the crap out of the guy next to you. see the whole philosophy behind lasers and other one design boats is that it is the SAILOR that wins, not the boat, nor kinetics. to tell the truth i admire a person who can pull of an awesome roll tack or roll gybe. and yes sometimes it is fun to "beat the system." but if you do that crap the whole time your only defying the rules, the philosophy of one design boats, and most importantly yourself.
     
  11. drLaser

    drLaser Guest

    Eric Sullivan's blanket statement that "Kinetics is already disallowed" should be interpreted with caution. Kinetic movements are NOT disallowed. Only SOME kinetic movements are, and they are clearly spelled out in the RRS.

    Eric's later statement that "moving around the boat to get it to top speed is allowed" is also wrong if interpreted literally. The rules do not differentiate between a period when the boat is accellerating versus a period when the boat is already sailing at "top speed".

    So, forget ever hearing that "roll tacks to accelerate to top speed are allowed". Just read the rules.

    With respect to Ken Willson's claim, I personally am sure that "Robert Scheidt, our most recent Laser world champ, and Karl Suneson WOULD totally change there sailing because someone said that they can't do something", just the way they changed the way they sailed (as we all did) when the new ISAF Racing Rules for 2001-2004 were published.

    I also somewhat disagree with Ben that "the rules about what is or isn't allowed are not totally black and white." They are black and white. What is fuzzy is the the sailors' interpretations of the rules, or a sailor's or judge's OTW ("On The Water") observations and decisions.

    For the actual text of RRS 42 (the propulsion rule), see the ISAF website:
    http://www.sailing.org/rrs2001/part4.html

    For details, including "interpretations", ILCA Members (only) can see:

    Interpreting Rule 42 (Propulsion)
    http://www.drlaser.org/ILCA/plfRC_rrs42.html

    1999 & 2000 Laser Worlds interpretations of Rule 42
    http://www.drlaser.org/ILCA/rrs42W00.html
    2000 Olympic Regatta Interpretations of Rule 42
    http://www.drlaser.org/ILCA/rrs42OL00.html

    Enforcing Rule 42 (Propulsion)
    http://www.drlaser.org/ILCA/plfRC_OTW.html

    Shevy Gunter
    Editor, drLaser
     
  12. drLaser

    drLaser Guest

    Kinetics Free For All? Henderson considers reactions

    The following was posted on the Laser Mailing List on Sept. 24. Maybe it should appear here, too.

    Duplicated below with their permission, from ISAF publication "MAKING WAVES", #115, 23 September 2002 Issue. Also available on-line at the URL:
    http://www.sailing.org/Article_content.asp?ArticleID=3127

    Shevy Gunter
    --------------------------------------

    KINETICS FREE FOR ALL?
    Paul Henderson considers your reactions


    The almost unanimous reaction to getting rid of Kinetics for a trial period has been what I had hoped. NO! NO! NO!

    There is an old joke that relates to my strategy to get everyone to wake up regarding Rule 42:

    Ad in newspaper stated the following:
    "WANTED: Kind Donkey Trainer required to discipline family pet!"

    A man, saying he was an animal trainer, showed up at the farm and the farmer asked him if he was kind and that the donkey was over by the barn.

    The kind animal trainer went over to the barn and picked up a big board and immediately hit the donkey between the eyes with the piece of wood.

    The farmer went ballistic shouting:
    "This is the family pet and you said you were kind??"

    "Yes" replied the trainer "But I had to get his attention first."


    Now that I have everyone's attention maybe we can get something done with regard to Rule 42.

    The response has been almost unanimous as follows:

    - Kinetics must be controlled and consistently applied with understandable rules.

    - The Judges must talk to the sailors and put the line in the sand over which they cannot go.

    - There must be a special group of IJ's who fully understand the class and are respected by the sailors.

    - The Judges must be tough and fair.

    - The only way to influence the sport is to ensure that the top sailors are controlled and that it filters down.

    - ISAF must be proactive.

    The challenge is to ISAF to make the necessary adjustments or Sailing, as we know it, suffers.

    Regards,

    Paul Henderson
    President, ISAF

    -----------

    For the sailor feedback referred to by Henderson, see:
    - http://sailing.org/Article_content.asp?ArticleID=3102
    - http://sailing.org/Article_content.asp?ArticleID=3105
    - http://www.sailing.org/Article_content.asp?ArticleID=3114
     
  13. will162878

    will162878 New Member

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    Much like our own class rules, we obviously need clarification and official interpretations coming from the authority (in this case ISAF) that communicated to all Judges, and made available to sailors. I agree that the rules are black and white, and that it's the sailors' interpretation that isn't. We should remember that it is a small proportion of [all] events that are umpired so the rules have to be able to be regulated on the water by the fleet itself using our current protest procedures but at the same time also be able to be judged effectively by OTW umpires. This places restrictions on the rules meaning that it is hard to set interpretations in stone.
     
  14. phantomdarkness

    phantomdarkness New Member

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    very true, on LIS, with JSA (The Junior Sailing Association), there is only protesting by the sailor, although there are judge boats at the marks
     
  15. laseranimal

    laseranimal New Member

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    kinetics

    Kinetics are a tough subject to deal with in every fleet. We can look at olympic windsurfing if we want an example of what happens when you go to an "everything goes" rule. If we legalize all forms of kinetics then the athletic sailors will benifit more then the skilled sailors who read the shifts better or simply sail smarter then everyone else. That being said, there is a place for kinetics in laser sailing, I challenge anyone to go out for a sail in a laser and NOT have their leech flap, or come out of a really good roll gybe faster then you went in: its impossible! I think the course of action that needs to be taken by the ISAF is to have a system where the kinetic rules can be turned on and off depending on the breeze wave conditions. No one wants to have a rocking, skulling, pumping derby in light air, it sucks and its NOT really sailing. But when the breeze picks up and there are some nice waves lets let people pump/ooch/rock to get on waves, its athletic and its REAL sailing.
     
  16. will162878

    will162878 New Member

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    I helped run a coached racing week for out beginner junior racers last summer. They started with basic understanding of RRS so we put up the lists from RRS42 on the notice board and one safety boat acted as judge boat. Talking to many regular fleet racers, many did not fully appreciate what RRS 42 means its implications for laser sailing. We most certainly need 42 to keep sailing a sport for everyone. Also, the ILCA have posted page about it at:

    www.laserinternational.org/rule42.html
     

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