December 2007

Gymnastics and Gymnastics Ramblings31 Dec 2007 02:40 pm

I am spending a few days in Canada for a mini vacation but couldn’t resist bringing the laptop so I could write an end of the year post. I decided to write about the top ten things I think should have happened in 2007 but didn’t. As usual I am focused on the women’s side of the sport. It would be great to hear what you think should be on the men’s list.

Just to clarify…by “should have” I do not mean deserved.  I just mean things that I wish had happened but for one reason or another did not.  In no particular order…

  1. Hollie Dykes should have made more of a world impact. I was expecting to see her in the hunt for several medals in Stuttgart but she was nowhere to be found. Photo courtesy of (more…)
Competitions and Gymnastics27 Dec 2007 04:51 pm

Update: All the tapes listed are now gone. 

I decided that it is time to clean out some of my gymnastics VHS collection. I thought that before I recycled these tapes, I would list them here in case anyone is interested in them. If you would like one (or multiple), let me know. The tapes are free. You can paypal me a flat rate for shipping and I’ll mail them to you.

All the tapes were recorded from television over the years and there are no guarantees on the quality, etc. Let me know if you have any questions regarding a particular tape. Most are women unless otherwise noted. American Cups have both men and women. (more…)

Gymnastics21 Dec 2007 07:48 pm

I just came across this video on youtube and wanted to share it. It’s of Nelli Kim (USSR) at the 1979 World Championships in Fort Worth. Nelli Kim was a phenomenal gymnast in the 70s and last I checked, she’s now a senior elite judge.

Nellie Kim bookcover

I really like the amplitude she gets after her no-handed back hip on the low bar. She really pops off the bar. Beautiful. But then… what on earth is going on?! She does a back hip hecht over the high bar to land on the low bar! We’ve definitely come a long way.

Click here to watch it on youtube if this doesn’t play.

Gymnastics and Gymnastics Ramblings and Gymnasts20 Dec 2007 12:57 pm

So I know that I admitted in an earlier post that Rick over at Gymnastics Coaching has been slowly persuading me that the event specialist is not a bad thing. And while I confess that I am starting to agree with him, I still can’t help advocating for All Arounders.

Sacramone at the 2005 US Nationals

With Cheng Fei dashing my hopes last month, my thoughts have recently turned to Alicia Sacramone. I’m guessing that she’ll be on the US Olympic Team barring any major injuries or problems. She’s a former World Champion on Floor, multiple World medalist on Vault and she has recently enjoyed a resurgence on the Beam. All that leaves is Bars. And honestly she’s not that bad on the Bars. Check out this youtube video of her from last year’s nationals.

I’m not saying she’s Svetlana Khorkina or anything but she’s got a respectable routine. And since she was still training Bars as of last Spring (2007 season for Brown University), it wouldn’t be that difficult to start up again. It certainly seems like it would be worth a shot.

What do you think? Should Sacramone dust off her grips?

Gymnastics and Gymnasts and Photo of the Week19 Dec 2007 04:17 pm

From the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich. One of the first release moves on the women’s uneven parallel bars.

Olga Korbut

Gymnastics and Other Sites18 Dec 2007 10:38 am

I recently added a blog to my Google Reader that I thought I would highlight here. It’s called The Gymblog and it’s written by a woman named Blythe Lawrence. It offers “news and analysis of men’s and women’s artistic gymnastics.” Check it out when you get a chance.

Blythe also just recently reported for International Gymnast on the Elite Canada competition and her coverage was excellent. I don’t know how she got the gig but you can read her coverage on her site or on the International Gymnast website.

And even better, she lives in Seattle. Who knows, Seattle might just turn out to be a gymnastics hub yet…

Gymnastics and Gymnastics Ramblings07 Dec 2007 02:09 pm

December is usually one of the busiest months for me at work so I am anticipating that I will not be able to post as much in the next couple of weeks. But I do want to weigh in on the discussion about the international age limit.

Bruno Grandi, president of the international gymnastics governing body (FIG), has been quoted as saying that he would like to raise the minimum age limit once again for international competition. In 1997, the age limit was raised from 15 to 16. Grandi has said in the past that he thinks the age limit should be 18 and just recently announced that he believes there should be no international competitions for juniors whatsoever.

There are many things to consider with regard to age limit but by and large, I am tempted to agree with Grandi – though not entirely.

Here are a few of my thoughts on the subject…

  • Making the age limit higher will encourage athletes to stay in the sport longer. Athletes, especially on the women’s side, will see that it’s not necessary to stop the sport at 18. Gymnasts like Chusovitina, Khorkina, Bhardwaj, & Hatch have made it abundantly clear and I believe the FIG should encourage that. With Rick over at Gymnastics Coaching slowing changing my mind about event specialists, I believe that the rise of the event specialist will also encourage longevity in the sport.

Annia Hatch after winning Vault Silver at the 2000 Olympics (more…)

Gymnastics and Gymnasts and Photo of the Week05 Dec 2007 11:43 am

Nastia on Beam during the 2007 World Championships

This one speaks for itself.