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Why the triple axel is such a big deal
   Vox
  Published: 1 week ago

3,040,739 Views

Triple axels can turn skaters into legends. This is why.
Want to see Tonya' Harding's routine? You can find one version here:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MdC5G7CDvbI

Note: The video states Mirai Nagasu was the second American to land a triple axel in competition (this was recorded before her Olympic success). In 2005, American Kimmy Miessner completed a triple axel in national competition, though not world competition. You can read about it here: http://www.espn.com/olympics/news/story?id=1967992

Follow Vox's full 2018 Winter Olympics coverage here: http://bit.ly/2nVUSz2

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In this episode of Vox Almanac, Phil Edwards explores the triple axel and why it's such a big deal. The figure skating jump is legendary among ice skaters, from Tonya Harding's 1991 triple axel to modern icon Mirai Nagasu's attempts in competition. It turns out that the physics of the triple axel makes it a uniquely difficult jump — and one worth learning about.

As a forward-edge jump, the mechanics of a triple axel requires technical acumen from skaters while they still try to maintain an artistically interesting performance. Pioneers like Midori Ito and Tonya Harding had to jump, ramp up rotation speed, and then land all while trying to look good. This effort set them apart from competitors like Nancy Kerrigan, but it wasn't easy to land a triple axel in competition.

And that difficulty might be why the triple axel endures as the pinnacle of figure skating performance — and why it's sure to light up the 2018 Winter Olympics as well.

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Comments Directly on YouTube

4 hours ago
watch this made me so dizzy simply because the shots changed every .4 seconds


4 hours ago
The video is unnecessarily long.


5 hours ago
Where is the SavedYouAClick guy from Reddit to quickly tell me why and not have to watch all this useless fluff


6 hours ago
I wish you would show the full jump


7 hours ago
why did i watch this???


8 hours ago
This video is so frustrating to watch.


9 hours ago
You never just show the move in normal speed. This video is so all over the place and could’ve been way shorter.


10 hours ago
Still confused what it is and why its a big deal lol to me they just spin in the air and look beautiful 😂😍😌


12 hours ago
Is triple supposed to be hard(er) for women than for men? Because men, more or less routinely, do quadruple axels. Is it just mass/jump height thing or is there more?


12 hours ago
Her name "Mirai" means "future" in Japanese. How appropriate! She is the future of US figure skating.


14 hours ago
skating videos are so satisfying to watch


18 hours ago
One of the worst video edits I have ever seen. Soooooo annoying...


20 hours ago
Triple cork is harder


20 hours ago
Too much editing and i dont like your face


24 hours ago
i know nothing about figure skating but now i have a favorite. Mirai seems like a very cool person. love her smile : )


1 day ago
This has got to be the absolute worst, most insipid and asinine video I have ever seen, blathering on an on about the triple axel for close to 5 minutes and showing less than 10 seconds of actual triple axels footage performed by skaters in real life! The director of this video is a total idiot who caused me to waste 5 minutes of my time.


1 day ago
most boring sport of them all...


1 day ago
Didnt tonya try to have someone break nancy's legs or something


1 day ago
hey Vox, I know you're trying to make a hip and interesting video all that, but you're jumpy editing is fricken distracting, man. it's okay if you tone it down a bit, you don't have to be lit af 24/7 yanno.


1 day ago
you training all life for a triple axel and in the competition fail? damn!


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