# 1.13 Turns. What's a counter, rocker, bracket, 3-turn?

## Description

This article is from the Recreational Figure Skating FAQ, by Karen Bryden with numerous contributions by others.

# 1.13 Turns. What's a counter, rocker, bracket, 3-turn?

Three. A 3-turn is a change of direction (eg. forward to backward)
while skating on an arc of a circle (lobe). It is done without a
change of skating foot and always involves a change of edge (eg.
forward outside to backward inside edge). As it changes direction, the
skate traces the digit "3" in the ice; hence the term. The center of
the 3 always points to the center of the circle. There are eight
3-turns, depending on which edge you enter with, which is your skating
foot, and whether you enter the turn going forward or backward. The
turns are named according to their entry position, hence a LFO 3-turn
is a turn done on the Left foot starting from a Forward direction on
an Outside edge.

Bracket. A turn made on one foot from forward to backward (or backward
to forward) from one edge of one character to an edge of another
character, i.e. outside to inside or inside to outside, where the body
rotation is counter to the natural direction of progress causing the
cusp to print outward from the center of the lobe curvature. The edge
before and after the turn is on the same lobe.

Rocker. A turn made on one foot from a forward to backward (or
backward to forward) edge maintaining the same character, i.e. inside
to inside or outside to outside, where the body rotation is in the
same direction as the natural progress causing the cusp to point
toward the center of curvature of the first lobe. The edge before and
after the turn is on different lobes having opposite directional
curvature.

Counter. A turn made on one foot from a forward to backward (or
backward to forward) edge maintaining the same character, i.e. inside
to inside or outside to outside, where the body rotation is counter to
the natural direction of progress causing the cusp to point outward
from the center of curvature of the first lobe. The edge before and
after the turn is on different lobes having opposite directional
curvature.

Here is some ASCII art to help.

A bracket is also on the same circle, but the pointy part of the turn
is on the outside of the circle, like a bracket }

```          ___/\___                  ___  ___
/        \        vs      /   \/   \
/          \              /          \
bracket                   3-turn
```

Counters and rockers, on the other hand, are at a change of circles.
In both cases, although you change direction, you do not change edge.
(assume you are traveling up the page...)

```                 2.                          2.
/                           /
___/\___/                   ___  ___/
/                           /   \/
/                           /
1.                          1.

counter                     rocker
```

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