When one is dealing with the wave structures, one must first break them into pieces or segments. Ask the question:
how many segments have we got here?
Many will thank me for sharing this today.
For example one is analysing a zigzag pattern, one will clearly notice that it has three main segments. Well, you already know that. Don't you? Alright.
The zigzag, flat correction, wxy, triple zigzag are formed of three segments.
What one must check is the number of mini segments of each segment.
Usually, the first segment of a zigzag will have five mini segment or minor waves like the third one. The second segment will exhibit three components or minor waves. Every time, one sees three segments, one will think of a correction. Right?
Ask the next question: what is it correcting.
On the other hand if it has five, one will think of an impulse wave. Right? It is crucial that one begins to ask those questions from the start. Those questions will help one to put each segment at the right place, and ultimately decipher its function. The advantage of those questions and breaking down into pieces each segment is to understand the most complex wave structures and interpret them.
If one comes across a structure that has three segments but the last segment has four mini segments (internal waves), one will expect another segment to makes the last segment a five-segment stucture.
That is why when one spots the formation of the last segment in its fourth mini segment, one will expect another mini segment to make it five unless there is a distortion or price structure deformation.
So, the first segment of a zigzag is A minor wave (subdivided into 5 mini segments) then the second one is B (subdivided into three mini segments).
Now if the last segment (C minor wave) is underway and it starts 1, 2, 3, and 4.
Ops, what is going here? For a wave structure trader, it must click fast. Something is not adding up here because we think in three and five.
Please allow me to underline that point one more time.
An Elliott wave trader thinks in three and five at every level.
When one counts one, two and three after an impulse wave (or in general), one will draw a line. If it prints another segment, then we will argue that we do not work with four but three and five. Please give us another segment to make it five.
Now, I need to remind wave traders that I am trying my best to simplify this subject.
Do not worry if it has not yet sank in.
Slowly but surely, you will get it.
Things can become a bit messier than normal if the mini segments are extended. For example, one count 1, 2, 3, 4 during a correction. Let say during the formation of the minor B wave of a zigzag pattern. Naturally, one will be expecting a fifth mini segment (internal wave). Right?
However, that expectation may not be fulfilled in this case. Why? That is a very good question.
The reason is because in normal conditions, a corrective wave pattern comes in three. So that 4th mini segment of that B minor wave of the zigzag may be the first segment of the start of an impulse wave (reversal after three) or an extension.
Please stay focused.
Alright, if it is a bit complex to you, go over it few times until you get it or visit 24Elliottwaves YouTube channel to ask more relevant questions.