The short dance (SD) is the first segment in an ice dancing competition. Approved by the June 2010 congress of the International Skating Union, it was introduced in the 2010–11 figure skating season. It merges the original dance (OD) and compulsory dance (CD), which were both discontinued.
The short dance merges the set pattern of a compulsory dance (renamed at the same time of this ruling to the pattern dance), and the previous rules of the original dance, i.e. requiring a set rhythm but allowing choreographic freedom within the constraints of required elements. In addition to skating two patterns, dancers also must include a step sequence, a set of twizzles, and a lift. Competitors are allowed to choose their own music, so long as it fits the required rhythm/theme.
With this change, ice dancing was shortened to two segments per competition: the short dance and the free dance. This mirrored the short program and free skating segments of single skating and pair skating.
Limited spectator interest in compulsory dances resulted in pressure from the International Olympic Committee to eliminate the compulsories so that the ice dancing competition would consist of two segments, like the other three skating disciplines. However, many in the ice dancing community were opposed to completely eliminating them, seeing them as an essential technical basis and point of comparison, so the short dance was created as a compromise.
|Season||Required pattern dance||Rhythms||Details|
|2010–11||Golden Waltz||One or two of: Waltz, Foxtrot, Quickstep, or Tango|||
|2011–12||Rhumba||One to three of: Cha Cha, Rhumba, Samba, Mambo, Merengue|||
|2012–13||Yankee Polka||Polka, March, Waltz|||
|2013–14||Finnstep||Quickstep or Quickstep + one or two of: Foxtrot, Charleston, Swing|||
|2014–15||Paso Doble||Spanish dance rhythms: Jota, Fandango, Flamenco, Paso Doble, Bolero, Sevillanas|||
|2015–16||Ravensburger Waltz||Waltz + one of Foxtrot, March, Polka|||
|2016–17||Midnight Blues||Blues + either or both: Swing, Hip Hop|||
|2017–18||Rhumba||One to three of: Cha Cha, Rhumba, Samba, Mambo, Merengue|||
|Season||Required pattern dance||Rhythms||Details|
|2010–11||Viennese Waltz||Waltz, Foxtrot, Quickstep, or Tango|||
|2011–12||Cha Cha Congelado||Cha Cha or Cha Cha + one of Rhumba, Samba, Mambo, Merengue|||
|2013–14||Quickstep||Quickstep or Quickstep + one of Foxtrot, Charleston|||
|2014–15||Silver Samba||Samba or Samba + one or two of: Rhumba, Cha Cha, Mambo, Merengue, Salsa|||
|2015–16||Starlight Waltz||Waltz + one of Foxtrot, March, Polka|||
|2016–17||Blues||Blues + either or both: Swing, Hip Hop|||
In April 2011, the ISU published the rules for the 2011–12 season. Senior-level ice dancers were required to skate two sequences of the Rhumba anywhere in the program, not necessarily one after another. Skaters were allowed to choose one to three rhythms from: Cha Cha, Rhumba, Samba, Mambo, Merengue. The range of tempo was 43 to 45 measures of four beats per minute (172-180 beats per minute) and had to be constant.
Junior-level skaters were required to perform two sequences of the Cha Cha Congelado, skated anywhere in the program, one after the other. The pattern dance had to be skated on the Cha Cha rhythm, with the range of tempo from 28 to 30 measures of four beats per minute (112-120 beats per minute). The tempo had to be constant.
Skaters were required to perform the sequences in strict time to the music, with step #1 of each sequence on a different side of the ice surface. Required elements included:
- short lift
- not touching circular step sequence (senior); not touching midline step sequence (junior)
- one set of sequential twizzles
One transitional dance lift (up to 6 seconds) and a dance spin were permitted as part of choreography but not required. The ISU stated: "The concept and choreography must produce the feeling of a unified dance." Dancers were allowed a maximum of two full stops, not exceeding 5 seconds each, or one full stop, not exceeding 10 seconds. A separation may not be more than two arms length apart.
In 2012–13, senior-level short dances included the Yankee Polka pattern dance, with Polka, March or Waltz rhythms. Junior-level short dances included the Blues pattern dance, with Blues and Swing rhythms. Juniors were allowed to use hip hop if the music had a clear rhythm and contained no obscenities.
In April 2014, the ISU announced a major change to the short dance. Unlike previous seasons, seniors performed only one section of the required pattern dance and added a creative section scored according to key points. For 2014–15, the required pattern dance was the Paso Doble and the creative section was to the Paso Doble rhythm. Junior-level dancers were required to perform two sections of the Silver Samba pattern dance.
- Kany, Klaus-Reinhold (July 9, 2011). "The Short Dance Debate". IFS Magazine. Retrieved July 29, 2011.
- Rutherford, Lynn (January 26, 2012). "Rink notes: Marley, Brubaker 'different team now'; Roll out the barrels". Ice Network.
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- "Communication No. 1621: Ice Dance" (PDF). International Skating Union. June 24, 2010. Archived (PDF) from the original on April 2, 2014.
- "Communication No. 1670: Ice Dance – Requirements for Technical Rules – season 2011/12" (PDF). International Skating Union. April 5, 2011. Archived (PDF) from the original on April 2, 2014.
- "Communication No. 1721: Ice Dance – Requirements for Technical Rules season 2012/13" (PDF). International Skating Union. March 30, 2012. Archived (PDF) from the original on April 2, 2014.
- "Communication No. 1782: Ice Dance – Requirements for Technical Rules season 2013/14" (PDF). International Skating Union. March 5, 2013. Archived (PDF) from the original on April 2, 2014.
- "Communication No. 1857: Ice Dance – Requirements for Technical Rules season 2014/15" (PDF). International Skating Union. April 1, 2014. Archived (PDF) from the original on April 2, 2014.
- Kany, Klaus-Reinhold (March 14, 2014). "New rules will change the look of ice dance next season". IceNetwork.
- "Communication No. 1932: ICE DANCE Requirements for Technical Rules season 2015/16" (PDF). International Skating Union. March 18, 2015.
- "Communication No. 1998: ICE DANCE Requirements for Technical Rules season 2016/17" (PDF). International Skating Union. April 6, 2016. Archived (PDF) from the original on April 6, 2016.
- "ISU COMMUNICATION 2086" (PDF). isu.org. Retrieved 29 April 2017.
- Kany, Klaus-Reinhold; Rutherford, Lynn (February 29, 2012). "ISU bringing 'clean' hip hop to ice dancing". Ice Network.
- International Skating Union
- ISU Judging System: Ice Dance at the International Skating Union
- "ISU Judging System Handbook for Technical Panel: Ice Dance" (PDF). International Skating Union. 15 July 2011.
- Ice-dance.com Pattern & Short Dance History: Short dances by year
- Pattern Dance Descriptions & Patterns