Why the triple axel is such a big deal

  • Published on Feb 12, 2018
  • Triple axels can turn skaters into legends. This is why.
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    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: www.espn.com/olympics/news/story?id=1967992
    Want to see Tonya' Harding's routine? You can find one version here:
    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.
    Vox.com is a news website that helps you cut through the noise and understand what's really driving the events in the headlines. Check out www.vox.com.
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Comments • 2 885

  • Annika S
    Annika S 3 days ago

    Right now I’m working on my single axel, it’s sooooo difficult

  • P
    P 7 days ago

    This video is absolutely stupid. What did u learn from this ? ... me, nothing.

  • SamTHK YT
    SamTHK YT 10 days ago

    Wait wait that was 58 frames but how many frames per second is real life 🤔🤔🤔

  • give this weeb some oxiJIN

    i came here after YURI ON ICE

  • рагк мiуоuиg
    рагк мiуоuиg 11 days ago

    I went to the toy store a whiel ago and saw a new Made to Move Barbie doll and the one in the video is the same one i saw (except for the skating outfit tho)

  • beached crab
    beached crab 13 days ago

    Don’t know why but the music in this video made it feel like a horror film.

    RENEE RICEVUTO 13 days ago

    "A triple axel turns physics into poetry." Love that quote

  • Anna 5678
    Anna 5678 14 days ago

    Sad, people only gonna remember her for attacking Nancy instead her achievement.
    Do good, no one cares, do bad forever remember it.

  • Coconut ScienceGirl92
    Coconut ScienceGirl92 15 days ago

    I have seen people doing a quadruple. So this isn’t anything anymore

  • Kannibal Kitten
    Kannibal Kitten 15 days ago

    Quite informative, I definitely know more than I did prior to watching this....the editing didn't bother me. I've seen the triple axel in many other videos on this platform.

  • bubblegumboobs
    bubblegumboobs 17 days ago

    I love Tonya forever ❣

  • Mia Kim
    Mia Kim 18 days ago +1

    Technically, every jump rotates forward
    You face forward and jump, but I only found out after I started doing doubles.
    Also, for anyone doing axels, I found it easier to rotate it you think of jumping onto a platform backwards, if that makes sense. Imagine going to a competition and going to get your medal for 1st place. Now pretend your going towards the platform forwards, and jump, landing backwards. Since its a competition, stand tall, use your core. 😊

  • foodank_atr
    foodank_atr 21 day ago

    What type of world would we live in today if Reagan was cognizant enough of pop culture and video games to say "Gorbachev, Hadouken this wall..."

  • Olivia Hsin
    Olivia Hsin 22 days ago

    Now there’s Alysa Liu

  • Kri MD
    Kri MD 24 days ago

    Stop with all the pointless editing omg

  • Cody Hill
    Cody Hill 26 days ago

    Am I the only one that know about Triple Axel from that disney movie Ice Angle ?

  • Kayla Ye
    Kayla Ye Month ago

    I love how he uses a barbie to demonstrate XDDDD

  • Madigan1984
    Madigan1984 Month ago

    Wow that‘s boring

  • Jeffrey Cruz
    Jeffrey Cruz Month ago

    I can't even do 3 turns when i skate.

  • Jashak
    Jashak Month ago

    1:32 there you go

  • fizziestix
    fizziestix Month ago

    bc it's hard

  • Diana Day
    Diana Day Month ago +1

    I tried that and I died.

  • Doll Face
    Doll Face Month ago

    Triple axel sounds like a finishing move in a fighting game. "Finish him!" *triple axels opponent* "FATALITY"

  • atikah rostam
    atikah rostam Month ago

    Why am I here? I don't even skate.

  • Shogun Z
    Shogun Z Month ago

    I can do a teabagging


  • Ahmed Al Hijji
    Ahmed Al Hijji Month ago

    Watching the movie I' Tonya made me watch this

  • Makisu
    Makisu Month ago

    Ya know, I was going to take my first ice skating lesson ((at 14)) tomorrow....*throws skates out the window* I’ve never been good at science. Or is this math? Ya know what...I think I’m just going to stick with watching anime characters doing this stuff.

  • Hannahxx
    Hannahxx Month ago

    All these people talking about Mari's triple axel but no one is talking about Anna Shcherbakova's quad lutz... hmmm

  • proluca
    proluca Month ago

    Correction: Kimmie Meisner was the 2nd American to land a Triple Axel in competition.

  • Mietta R
    Mietta R 2 months ago

    so ur telling me that a doll flying in the air is apparently a triple axel??😂

  • JJ Kern
    JJ Kern 2 months ago +3

    How come women are less able to do a triple axel? I’ve seen more men land a triple axel in competition, and only a handful of women have done it

  • househansa
    househansa 2 months ago +44

    I know less about the triple axel after watching this.

  • MadamKilay
    MadamKilay 2 months ago +3

    Good thing I watched Yuri On Ice

    QUARTERMASTEREMI6 2 months ago

    Triple axle - _Historical._ It brilliantly is!

  • A 1
    A 1 2 months ago

    Still underwhelming compared to men’s figure skating

    DR ROME 2 months ago

    Kimmie Meissner landed a triple axle and was the 2nd woman figure skater in the US that successfully did it in competetion after Tanya Harding. Mirai Nagasu was the 3rd.

    • lsr asr
      lsr asr 2 months ago

      Dr ROME - you are correct. However, Kimmie's 3A was not landed in international competition so if you search ladies triple axels on youtube, she is not included with the ladies who have landed the 3A in international competition. In addition, I have read that her 3A in 2005 at US nationals was under rotated and would not have passed ISU review and would have been downgraded to a double axel.

  • Tien
    Tien 3 months ago +4


  • Glen Coco
    Glen Coco 3 months ago +2

    nathan chen, rolling up to the party: not anymore bish

  • Gloria Castro
    Gloria Castro 3 months ago

    No then what about the girl in the move see did it at least 30 times

  • Andi Irmayanti
    Andi Irmayanti 3 months ago

    The editing is so annoying

  • George Calm
    George Calm 3 months ago +2

    Jesus, montage of this video is so split and almost hurtful to watch

  • Eduardo Louis
    Eduardo Louis 3 months ago

    in case you liked classical music the song in the intro of the video is called Gymnopedie N#1 by Satie

  • juuzou shuzoya
    juuzou shuzoya 3 months ago +1

    Wtf was with the Barbie😂😂😂😂😂

  • clickbait-
    clickbait- 3 months ago

    _i’m_ batman

  • Mae Eliz
    Mae Eliz 3 months ago

    This editing is so bad

  • Jesse H
    Jesse H 4 months ago

    I'm trying to learn more about skating and here I am having a stroke watching this vid

  • Eliza Gaskell
    Eliza Gaskell 4 months ago

    Whatever is said about Tanya Harding - at the end of the day Harding did a triple axel (to the soundtrack of Batman)

  • jerome2022
    jerome2022 4 months ago

    She didnt attack anybody blame the criminals please!

  • down boy
    down boy 4 months ago

    I used to ice skate and let me tell you it takes ALOT of work. Yes it’s fun and graceful and it looks fantastic but one wrong move and your head is bashed against the ice or maybe your ankle snaps because you couldn’t land the jump properly. Forgetting the risks, the prices were also too much. It’s an expensive sport to be in. In my opinion atleast . I applaud these people who are able to do these things.

  • Breydon Nelson
    Breydon Nelson 4 months ago

    I can do a triple axle upside-down 🙃

  • CrrdHrz
    CrrdHrz 4 months ago

    Wait. Let me get this straight...
    @ 4:27
    You are telling me Bruce Wayne & Batman are the same person??? 🤯😱

  • sonichuizcool
    sonichuizcool 5 months ago

    because only the best of the best of the best (with honors) can do it. Some can technically do it, but do it with grace and smoothness takes immense talent.

  • John citizen
    John citizen 5 months ago

    saw her 2 days ago, 9-7-2018, still looks great....

  • Madie ferr
    Madie ferr 5 months ago

    Physics to poetry

  • Not Emma
    Not Emma 5 months ago

    why did they keep cutting off the full clip of tonya harding landing the triple axel?
    annoying editing

  • amethyst_scent
    amethyst_scent 5 months ago

    Tf is this editing

  • Genna Lotza
    Genna Lotza 5 months ago


    ᎶᎾLDᎽ 5 months ago +1


  • Richard Hawkins
    Richard Hawkins 5 months ago

    Bruce Wayne is Batman?! I need to sit down!

  • Lubid
    Lubid 5 months ago


  • Matthew S Halim
    Matthew S Halim 5 months ago

    I. Tonya

  • JiTiAr35
    JiTiAr35 5 months ago

    The iron lotus is more difficult.

  • Fernando Ramoa
    Fernando Ramoa 5 months ago

    tonya was the baddest. l was blown away by her story and her unparallelled raw skills

  • Steven Sitzman
    Steven Sitzman 6 months ago +1

    Just show the dang move.

  • h2olover 9118
    h2olover 9118 6 months ago

    What is the music used in this video? in the background

  • Al Fa
    Al Fa 6 months ago

    The editing is giving me a headache

    • Tien
      Tien 3 months ago


  • saura
    saura 6 months ago

    Whoever edited this video is retarded

  • Liam H
    Liam H 6 months ago +1

    You're Welcome.

  • Scientific Humanist
    Scientific Humanist 6 months ago +1

    If Yuna Kim did a 3A she would have won the Olympics in Sochi. Why didn’t she? It should’ve been easy for her. 😢

  • Just a cat and a dog
    Just a cat and a dog 6 months ago

    At the end Tonya looked so happy when she landed and it made me happy lol

  • The Last and One
    The Last and One 6 months ago

    Poor Tonya, fooking court....

  • Emma G
    Emma G 6 months ago

    Who else is trying to do an axel? Evil evil axel

  • brih Mendiola
    brih Mendiola 6 months ago

    If you think about it, Tonya Harding was a great skater not just because she landed a Triple Axel, but what she went through to land it.

  • Electro Fan
    Electro Fan 6 months ago

    Lol now she is on world's dumbest. 😂. Still a cool chick though.

  • You're A Hypocrite
    You're A Hypocrite 6 months ago

    In my opinion Victor is a batter ice skater than Tanya...

    • Tien
      Tien 3 months ago

      I was looking for this comment lol

    • Sydney M
      Sydney M 6 months ago

      Nc Demon clearly you know nothing about figure skating ...

  • You're A Hypocrite
    You're A Hypocrite 6 months ago

    Yuri on ice...

  • Lisa Mari Arellanes
    Lisa Mari Arellanes 6 months ago

    A triple axel is no longer a big deal if you have to unfairly, and brutally, try to take down your opponent. I'm sorry it is very hard to stomach anything about Tonya at this point. Full of lies and trying to make herself out to be innocent! It is pathetic so much attention is given to her. If she overheard a conversation of people taking down her opponent........and yet, continued on with that knowledge.....my opinion,....incredibly guilty. That triple axel is very hard to even view! A Hollywood movie on how innocent she is, is pathetic!

  • Van Helsing
    Van Helsing 6 months ago

    It's way easier than The "Iron Lotus"! Mad props to Jimmy McElroy and Chaz Michael Michaels for sticking it in competition back in '07!

  • alicenlucy
    alicenlucy 6 months ago

    Who edited this? It's so good

  • LAZ Z
    LAZ Z 6 months ago

    Annoying video.

  • AvatarTTfan
    AvatarTTfan 6 months ago

    ok but triple axel is pretty normal in male ice skating so, is it a womans thing that its more difficult because of size?

  • Alexandrina Phénix dit Dauphinais

    Consider the following: Quadruple axle

  • Dazie Diamond
    Dazie Diamond 6 months ago

    I'm just gonna go with singing it's easier

  • maya q
    maya q 7 months ago

    It took 3:15 to show the complete triple axel, before that just babbling details about what wasn’t yet shown, making it hard to get, and that’s the typical TVclip need for attention syndrome

  • Aymaan .T
    Aymaan .T 7 months ago +1

    Guys I need to know something. In the movie or in real life, why did everyone know(in the competition) that Tonya was going to attempt the Triple Axel? Why did everyone know she was gonna do it?

  • Dan Monson
    Dan Monson 7 months ago

    Kimmie Meissner, also, landed a triple axel in competition. So, that makes 3 American women, not 2, who have landed this jump.

    • lsr asr
      lsr asr 5 months ago

      Dan Monson - you are correct that there is an error in the video. Kimmie's was not a great 3A but she did get credit for it at US Nationals.

    • Dan Monson
      Dan Monson 7 months ago

      The video stated at 1:02 that, "Mirai Nagasu's the only other American woman to land a triple axel in competition." It did not state international competitions. You are correct about international competitions, though.

    • lsr asr
      lsr asr 7 months ago

      Dan Monson - Kimmie landed hers at US Nationals, not international competition. Only 2 american women Tonya and Mirai have landed the triple axel in international competition, Tonya at 1991 Worlds and Mirai 2018 Olympics.

  • 時岡さなえ
    時岡さなえ 7 months ago

    Oh is that machine called zamboni? Never heard of it called that before

  • NS
    NS 7 months ago

    Would have liked to hear from Tonya and Midori Ito.

  • Park Jimin is my light
    Park Jimin is my light 7 months ago

    You didn't land this edit.

  • Alejandro Gil Hernandez

    I need the soundtrack used in this video, please.

  • Rachel Wharton
    Rachel Wharton 7 months ago

    That editing drove me bonkers 😒 The whole time I was trying to understand the move so I could appreciate it and they would start to show the move and I would think, "Ah yes, here it is," and then they WOULD CUT AWAY. Then I was just annoyed with whatever they would show or say afterwards. Not even sure how many times that exact thought sequence happened during the whole thing. I'm definitely not watching again to count.

  • Queen Mao Asada
    Queen Mao Asada 7 months ago

    Kimmie Meisner

    • lsr asr
      lsr asr 4 months ago

      Queen Mao Asada - Kimmie landed her 3A in 2005 at US nationals, not international competition. I think the video meant to say international competition. Kimmie's 3A was not great but she did get credit for it.

  • Anthony Yannuzzi
    Anthony Yannuzzi 7 months ago

    Tonya Harding turned it and deserves more credit.

  • Pepins Spot
    Pepins Spot 7 months ago

    This poor woman. Her life was truly awful. That movie should've come out immediately after the Olympics. I really hope she is happy now, she deserves it.

  • Helen Lim
    Helen Lim 7 months ago +1

    A video of 3A without any mention of mao asada?? This is unacceptable

    • lsr asr
      lsr asr 4 months ago

      Actually Helen LIm, a video of the triple axel without mentioning Midori Ito is unacceptable since Midori was the 1st in 1988 to land it in international competition and the 1st to land it at the Olympics at Albertville in 1992. In any video on the net featuring ladies triple axels, Midori's are always rated the best.

  • anindita sarkar
    anindita sarkar 7 months ago

    Tanya is far better than her rival. I don't think she hurt her.

  • Rajiv Jadhav
    Rajiv Jadhav 7 months ago

    Me: it's 3 am i should sleep (know nothing about figure skating)
    Brain: watch Why the triple axel is such a big deal

  • Fanny Moring
    Fanny Moring 7 months ago

    Why does this look like a serious video edited by a shitposter

  • fb1993
    fb1993 7 months ago

    1:36 to speed all those things we don't care about 🌝

    GOD CREATES 8 months ago

    I couldn't skate, even if I were riding on Tonya's back. Is there anything Tonya Harding cannot do? Seriously, I am so amazed by her. All her life, she has overcome every problem/ obstacle like the true Champion she is. Not WAS ... IS. She is an amazing woman. Don't bother replying with an insult, I see the truth. And if you will look at this woman's life with new glasses, you will see the truth as well. If you look up the words, "fortitude, amazing, phenomenal, hero and champion, you will recognize these traits in Tonya Harding. God loves you Tonya, you are worthy.