Sk8-Strong Judging Method and System
The Sk8-Strong judging system was developed with partner organizations by skateboarders for skateboarding. The development team was comprised of professional skateboarders, top Amateur skateboarders, professional skateboarding judges and event organizers. The goal of the team was to develop an affordable, easy to use judging system.
How does the system and application actually work?
After you’ve downloaded the App, press the Sk8-Strong icon button, the intro “Splash” screen will appear briefly while the application loads.
As soon as the application loads, which should only be a couple of seconds, it will automatically go to the first judging page – the Trick page. The trick page calculates in real time the number of tricks and their difficulty level. The concept behind the trick page is “every trick counts.” With skaters working so hard to learn new tricks and progress, the development team felt that this page was the backbone to judging any skateboarding contest. The challenge was finding a method and mechanism that would let judges keep their eyes on the skater so nothing was missed.
And while there are numerous methods and opinions on how skateboarding tricks can be judged, after testing a variety of methods and scoring scales it was determined by the development team most tricks could be put into one of five (5) categories: 1 = Basic, 2 = Intermediate, 3 = Advanced, 4 = Professional, and then for that rare NBD (Never Been Done) trick, or something that’s challenging for even the best professional there would be a category 5.
The layout of the Trick page has the easier trick categories on the left side and the harder trick categories on the right side. Through our testing phase we found that this layout was helpful to the judges. Tricks being judged in categories 1 through 4 are scored by tapping once that category. A category 5 tricked is scored by tapping the 4 and then the 1. Pretty simple and basic!
In the corners facing the center of each category number you’ll see a small box with grey numbers. This box shows the number of tricks that have been scored in that particular category. This is helpful for judges to double check that they didn’t miss a trick, or add too many.
A quick double-tap on a category number will subtract one trick from that category.
When the skater is done with their run and the judge has scored each trick, the judge presses and holds the Sk8-Strong logo to turn the page to the "Additional Criteria" scoring page.
The second page allows judges to quickly score up to four additional criteria/elements of the skaters run, such as Style, Height, Use of the Venue, Flow/Speed, Trick Combinations, etc.
Given that there are so many elements that could be incorporated into any competitions score and that these elements change across the disciplines (Street, Bowl, Vert and Park) it is extremely important for the event organizers to define the additional elements that will be judged, as well as how those additional elements will be weighed in the overall score.
After defining what the additional elements will be and how they will be weighed (scale for judging) then it’s just applying that method and scale to the second page.
For example: box A represents style and the scale is 1-10; Box B represents Amplitude/Height and the scale is 1-5.
Tapping the “+” will increase the score by 0.50 each time it is tapped.
Tapping the “-” will decrease the score by 0.25 every time it is tapped.
At the top of the center column are score summary boxes, one showing the “Trick Score” from the previous page, which can no longer be changed; and, the other calculating in real time the “Additional Score”. Below the two summary score boxes is a blue box which calculates and shows the “Total Score” in real time.
After the judge has scored the additional elements/criteria he/she notes on the paper scoring sheet the total scores for the skater and then presses the “Next Run” button.
A confirm action box will appear asking if you want to erase the scores, if OK is pressed it will go to a new "Trick" page. If cancel is pressed it will remain on the "Additional Scores Summary" page.
Skateboarding is evolving every day and there are countless ways a competition can be run and judged. Our goals in developing this system were to bring continuity in judging to a competition series, give clarity to skateboarding athletes on how they will be judged, and provide judges with an easy to use application that calculates those elements being judged.
To download the judging application, with your i-phone, or i-pod go to Apple App store and search for “Sk8-Strong Judging”