Why the triple axel is such a big deal

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  • Published on Feb 12, 2018
  • Triple axels can turn skaters into legends. This is why.
    Watch the rest of Skate Week, and our other sports explainers, here: bit.ly/2FfxM17
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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:
    tvclip.biz/video/MdC5G7CDvbI/video.html
    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 • 2 806

  • sally smith
    sally smith 18 hours ago

    Wow. Interesting. I always thought it was so difficult cause of the third spin...that it was near impossible to get three in the short amount of time you're in the air....hmmmm....shows you how much I DON'T KNOW.

  • Liam H
    Liam H 19 hours ago +1

    You're Welcome.
    /watch?v=x-pXToYyeZQ

  • Scientific Humanist

    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

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

  • The Last Mohikan
    The Last Mohikan 13 days ago

    Poor Tonya, fooking court....

  • Emma G
    Emma G 14 days ago

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

  • brih Mendiola
    brih Mendiola 14 days 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 17 days ago

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

  • Nc Demon
    Nc Demon 19 days ago

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

    • Syrmi Plays
      Syrmi Plays 17 days ago

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

  • Nc Demon
    Nc Demon 19 days ago

    Yuri on ice...

  • Lisa Mari Arellanes
    Lisa Mari Arellanes 22 days 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!

  • Casey Miller
    Casey Miller 22 days 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 22 days ago

    Who edited this? It's so good

  • Luis Zhu
    Luis Zhu 23 days ago

    Annoying video.

  • AvatarTTfan
    AvatarTTfan 24 days 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 de Phénix-Dauphinais

    Consider the following: Quadruple axle

  • Dazie Diamond
    Dazie Diamond 26 days ago

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

  • maya q
    maya q 27 days 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 29 days 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 Month ago

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

    • Dan Monson
      Dan Monson Month 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 Month 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 Month ago

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

  • NS
    NS Month ago

    Would have liked to hear from Tonya and Midori Ito.

  • Park Jimin is my light

    You didn't land this edit.

  • Alejandro Gil Hernandez

    I need the soundtrack used in this video, please.

  • Rachel Wharton
    Rachel Wharton Month 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 Month ago

    Kimmie Meisner

  • Anthony Yannuzzi
    Anthony Yannuzzi Month ago

    Tonya Harding turned it and deserves more credit.

  • Pepins Spot
    Pepins Spot Month 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 Month ago

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

  • anindita sarkar
    anindita sarkar Month ago

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

  • Rajiv Jadhav
    Rajiv Jadhav Month 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 Month ago

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

  • fb1993
    fb1993 Month ago

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

  • GOD CREATES
    GOD CREATES Month 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.

  • Quintin Garvin
    Quintin Garvin Month ago

    She had batman

  • Ivan Najakov
    Ivan Najakov 2 months ago

    Simple, If she has a nice butt, the centrifugal force causes her skirt to rise, the beauty of this act is added to the beauty of what is usually hidden beneath her skirt.
    Is this magic or what?

  • Sup ItzKittie_
    Sup ItzKittie_ 2 months ago

    Freakin a single Axel kills me. I look up to ppl who can do a triple axel.

  • saturnfan32x
    saturnfan32x 2 months ago

    I found the production of this clip infuriating. . . . and I don't know why.

  • Taylor Jean
    Taylor Jean 2 months ago

    0:21 gymnopedie omg ❤️❤️

  • Alisha L
    Alisha L 2 months ago

    It’s not “The Target Center.” It’s just “Target Center.” At least this was better than Vox’s stupid gun control videos and lecturing to us like we are children.

  • kittie pride
    kittie pride 2 months ago

    I disliked because of that dumb ending

  • Professional Icecream!
    Professional Icecream! 2 months ago

    MOMENT OF TRUTH

  • Rebecca Patch
    Rebecca Patch 2 months ago

    Mirai 💓💓💓💓💓💓💓

  • 1besieged
    1besieged 2 months ago

    Triple Threat TONYA Harding Triple Axel!!!!! #1 BEST on EARTH!!

  • Gregory Rose III
    Gregory Rose III 2 months ago

    Nice job tonya!

  • Cepherneeze 157
    Cepherneeze 157 2 months ago

    Gee, really love watching a 5 minute video with terrible editing that doesnt even allow a clear watch of the source material until 4 minutes into the video...

  • Daylin Richardson
    Daylin Richardson 3 months ago

    1:22 I’m confused

  • Selena Books
    Selena Books 3 months ago

    I can do a triple visit to the fridge.

  • alexander bakulin
    alexander bakulin 3 months ago

    can they just say that unlike other triples, triple axel is not actually a triple, but a 3.5 rotations jump.

  • KK R
    KK R 3 months ago

    What?

  • yuzuru hanyu
    yuzuru hanyu 3 months ago

    quad are like 10times harder

  • small footprint
    small footprint 3 months ago +1

    It was an epic moment. I still remember it to this day and can feel the emotions of watching her make that jump.

    • Margo Jannuzi
      Margo Jannuzi 2 months ago

      Yes, Tonya Harding rocked that triple axle like a champ. What a skater!

  • sportsocks
    sportsocks 3 months ago +1

    show me triple axel please

  • health
    health 3 months ago +1

    where the triple axel

  • luisqsk
    luisqsk 3 months ago +1

    Your stupid video just doesn't let me see anything of the diagram, what are you? some type of silly magazine?

  • eizhowa
    eizhowa 3 months ago +4

    The expression she makes when she realizes she will be able to fully complete the jump without falling is pure gold.

  • lsr asr
    lsr asr 3 months ago +6

    If you are going to do a feature on ladies performing the triple axel, Midori Ito comes first. Not only as the 1st woman to complete the triple axel in world competition, but also the 1st woman to complete the triple axel at the Olympics. Her triple axels are always rated the best. Tonya only learned to do the triple axel because she saw Midori do it at the NHK competition in Japan in 1990. If you want to see a perfect triple axel watch Midori's long program skate at the 1990 Worlds at Halifax. In all 3 broadcasts of the competition, U.S., Canada and U.K. the commentators said it was the most incredible jump ever performed in world competition by a female competitor. Toller Cranston, the famous Canadian figure skater who was doing the Canadian broadcast said it was probably the best triple axel done at the competition including the men.

  • Forrest Taylor
    Forrest Taylor 3 months ago +2

    Why was this video edited like someone with epilepsy wanted to hurt themselves

  • mano fiske
    mano fiske 3 months ago

    The Asian chick is very quirky.

  • The Piper Report
    The Piper Report 3 months ago

    Yeah.. I have no idea what any of this but I just finished the movie I, Tonya and figured I would check out her famous Triple-Axel

  • Zach Schultz
    Zach Schultz 3 months ago

    Kimmie Meissner is shook by Vox's error.

  • Winnie Cho
    Winnie Cho 3 months ago

    the background totally completes this video,so pleasing

  • Minna Christal
    Minna Christal 3 months ago

    Sponsord by barbie

  • Myat Htoo
    Myat Htoo 3 months ago

    it's like you got to be on the right side of the tracks! Yay for Tonya technical only or not, it was a "historical" accomplishment!

  • alex8matt
    alex8matt 3 months ago +1

    Girls are landing quad lutzes, those are harder.

    • Qiqi Chia
      Qiqi Chia Month ago +1

      alex8matt 3A is hard because its takeoff is totally different from other jumps. Many men can land quads easily but fail to land 3A consistently. Ask Nathan Chen or Patrick chan.

    • Qiqi Chia
      Qiqi Chia Month ago +1

      alex8matt No girls have landed quad lutz in competition. Trusova's quad lutz is underrotated. So is the quad lutz of another eteri girl (cant recall her name), which is in fact a flutz.

  • Have An Ice Day
    Have An Ice Day 3 months ago

    Physics into poetry

  • isa bel
    isa bel 3 months ago +1

    ugh this guy annoys me, midori ito was the first women to land the triple axel EVER not just in world competition and why is he so focused on tonyas triple when midori did it first??

    • gwirith14
      gwirith14 Month ago

      Because Tonya was an American. Who also became the subject of a huge scandal.

  • Jackson Wald
    Jackson Wald 3 months ago

    The triple axel is the dark souls of skating

  • metalperslfx
    metalperslfx 3 months ago

    i always do a triple axle every time i step into the ring

  • Alice li
    Alice li 4 months ago

    I can do a tripple fart 💩

  • Tirion
    Tirion 4 months ago +3

    i first read it as " why triple axe is such a big deal"

  • StewNWT
    StewNWT 4 months ago

    Wrong. Kimmie Meissner also landed a triple axel in competition

    • lsr asr
      lsr asr 3 months ago +1

      Kimmie landed it in competition, but not internationally. As of today's date May 11, 2018 only 8 women have landed the triple axel in international competition, only 3 women to do it at the Olympic games.

  • please somebody find ja rule

    this is the worst explanation of anything. so many distractions

  • The Tiller Willer!!!
    The Tiller Willer!!! 4 months ago

    1:23 I have that Barbie ououtfitthe skates 😂

  • Mahmoud El Arch
    Mahmoud El Arch 4 months ago

    4:18 "Historical" look at her creepy teeth... !

  • ama deus
    ama deus 4 months ago

    The editing on this is really obnoxious

  • GoddessZUnique
    GoddessZUnique 4 months ago

    For anyone lookin for the song at 1:20 it can be found in this list www.emipm.com/en/browse/labels/JM/156. The song is titled Jump, #16.

  • Anne C
    Anne C 4 months ago

    No. One must skate with a combination of such speed and with a powerful lift and thrust . One must have strong, muscular legs.

  • CHECK ENGINE
    CHECK ENGINE 4 months ago

    I still don't get it

  • thewitchking84
    thewitchking84 4 months ago

    god this video is a mess to watch.
    stop with this unneeded cuts.

  • Isabella Williams
    Isabella Williams 4 months ago

    Wth!! Why Barbie!!

  • j lee
    j lee 4 months ago

    Too bad Harding didn't get the gold for that. True champion.

  • souviendra
    souviendra 4 months ago

    Kimmie Meissner landed the triple axel in competition as well (2005 U.S. Nationals)

  • Hannah Clarissa Masilang

    Then you’re gonna think about if one triple axel is historical, what should be 3 or 4 triple axel be? That’s what Asada Mao did in the Vancouver Olympics.

  • Ranjan Patra
    Ranjan Patra 4 months ago

    America ruined her carrier

  • Maeve O'Neill
    Maeve O'Neill 4 months ago

    Now that a man has explained it I understand

  • Chase Lapierre
    Chase Lapierre 4 months ago

    Vox. With the world's hard hitting issues.

  • Mabel Pines
    Mabel Pines 5 months ago

    I watched Yuri on Ice so I know

  • Lps Productions
    Lps Productions 5 months ago

    One word fickle

  • Weles Inc
    Weles Inc 5 months ago

    Alexandra Trusova made two quads in one skating program about one week ago.

  • Dizzle
    Dizzle 5 months ago

    I've never seen anyone do it quite like Tonya. The strength, speed, execution, her form and even the landing were phenomenal. When you slow motion other skaters even Mirai Nagasu, you can point out several flaws and the landing looks rough with trying to keep their ankle straight, but not with Tonya. She made it look effortless, but I know it's not Lol

    • gwirith14
      gwirith14 Month ago

      Effortless? Midori Ito made it effortless, Tonya was always so off axis that you could wonder if she makes it or not.

  • zonkster909
    zonkster909 5 months ago

    There's only one way to consider Harding... The only badass woman's figure skating champion in history.

  • Rosie Chubsie
    Rosie Chubsie 5 months ago

    Also yuju from gfriend just kidding but she can also do it😂

  • Benjamín Gómez
    Benjamín Gómez 5 months ago +1

    It bugs me very much the fact that they never show the actual jump completely or uncut. Why!!! It's incredibly unsatisfying!!!

  • Isis Penafort
    Isis Penafort 5 months ago

    This gave chills! Crazy

  • heyras
    heyras 5 months ago

    name of the song at 2:45, anyone?

  • Gabriela Torres
    Gabriela Torres 5 months ago

    I can do a cartwheel

  • Fanny's LoA
    Fanny's LoA 5 months ago

    What's with all these videos that try to be fancy with flashing images and mixing clips from different events, while NEVER getting to the point of the title?

  • Dee Ca.
    Dee Ca. 5 months ago

    And here I am and I can barely jump. And not even with skates- I mean a normal jump.