The International Skating Union’s 54th Ordinary Congress concluded on 15 June 2012 in Kuala Lumpur (MAS). Over 200 Delegates from 76 ISU Member federations were present to vote on over 340 proposals. The Congress was officially opened by ISU President Mr. Ottavio Cinquanta, who made a special acknowledgement of thanks to the ISU’s Malaysian Member, Ice Skating Association of Malaysia, presided by Ms. Laila Abdullah, for their organization of the Congress and their emerging role in the development of skating. It was the second time that the ISU Congress was held in Asia, the first one was held in 2002 in Kyoto (JPN).
It was announced that the 55th Ordinary Congress will be held in Dublin (IRL) in June 2014 and Mr Volker Waldeck was unanimously elected as Chair of the Disciplinary Commission.
Key decisions by the Congress:
General Regulations and Constitution
Provisional Members with the minimum requirements as well as good international activity can become a full Member more swiftly.
The Congress has voted on the restructuring of the Sports Directorate. Effective after the Congress 2014, the Sports Directorate as a body will be discontinued and the Council will appoint individuals as Directors for Sports and for competitions related functions.
Final decisions of the Disciplinary Commission and the CAS will be published in full on the ISU website.
Congress has agreed to amend the format of the ISU Ordinary Congress cycle with a Forum to take place in 2014 and the next Ordinary Congress with elections to take place in 2016.
The ISU Congress also unanimously voted in favor of a resolution whereas National Member Associations are firmly requested to adopt in their Rules a provision already part of the ISU Code of Ethics in relation to betting in sports. The ISU Code of Ethics states that participants in ISU competitions/ activities agree to refrain from participating in all forms of betting or support for betting or gambling related to any event/activity under the jurisdiction of the ISU.
Mass starts will be included in the World Single Distances Championships as of the season 2015/16.
At the ISU World Allround Speed Skating Championships only 8 competitors shall start in the 5,000m Ladies and 10,000m Men.
Various changes have been adopted to clarify the crossing of the line during races.
Entries for the ISU European and World Short Track Championships have been reduced to 1 Competitor per Member in each category. However if a Member had one Skater amongst the best 32 Competitors in the final classification of the same preceding Championships that Member may enter 2 Competitors in total in the respective category.
A minimum qualifying time is required for entry for the ISU European and World Short Track Championships which will be announced in an ISU Communication.
In case of a second false start or if a skater intentionally delays the start of the race, the concerned skater shall be disqualified.
Single and Pair Skating and Ice Dance
The minimum age requirement in the Figure Branch has been changed to 15 which now includes all Senior International Competitions and not only ISU Championships and Olympic Winter Games. This change is effective starting in the season 2014/15. Minor adjustments have also been made in the Novice and Junior age categories.
The Single and Pair Skating and Ice Dance Technical Committees proposed several changes to make the Special Regulations and Technical Rules consistent across the disciplines, this harmonization of the rules were unanimously approved by Congress.
An additional Base Value has been introduced, the Base Value now ranges from level 0 to 4.
As of the season 2014/15, vocal music can be used in Single and Pair Skating.
Congress passed a change to remove the preliminary rounds at ISU Figure Skating Championships which will impact the time schedule starting with next season’s ISU Championships.
In line with ISU Championships 16 Pair Skaters and 20 Ice Dance Couples will qualify for the Free Program at the Olympic Winter Games.
The introduction of an examination for ISU Referees and International Judges and Referees was voted in by Congress.
Congress has voted to hold the ISU World Junior Synchronized Skating Championships every 2nd year, beginning in 2013 in Helsinki (FIN).
More freedom is introduced in Synchronized Skating elements in order to increase the entertainment value of the sport.
The minimum age requirement in Synchronized Skating has been changed to 15 for the Seniors. This change is effective starting in the season 2014/15. Minor adjustments have also been made in the Novice and Junior age categories.