Gymnastics News #21 - Tumbling on to Tokyo

Cleo1782

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FiveRinger

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Yes. If I was reading it accurately she named Vitaly Scherbo when she was 15. Did I read that correctly?

ETA Read the article now. I only read her FB post before WoW! Just Wow!
I literally dropped my phone reading the headline and subsequent article. Jesus... unbelievable....I am speechless. And I am angry because I know that she isn't alone. How many more children are we going to hear about that were abused and taken advantage of?
 

Cleo1782

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I literally dropped my phone reading the headline and subsequent article. Jesus... unbelievable....I am speechless. And I am angry because I know that she isn't alone. How many more children are we going to hear about that were abused and taken advantage of?
I am speechless as well and it's getting very little media attention as of now. This is a man who won numerous golds as did she and it's barely making any news at all. If this is true, I am sure she is not the only victim. She is just the first one to speak out. I have never been a fan of hers because of that blah, blah Olympic substitution, but all I can say is I admire her now for having such courage to speak out and name names.

What's even more disturbing is that he has a gymnastics studio literally down the street from me in Vegas.
 

OnyxRose81

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It's just awful. My heart breaks for her but she is so brave to break her silence after all these years. At least with the mess of everything going on, people have found strength to share their own harrowing stories.
 

Erin

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Wow. In many ways I'm not surprised, as there appears to be no limits to what that man will do and it also helps explain some of the struggles McKayla has had post-gymnastics. It did seem like his MO was to go after girls who weren't the "star", but he also picks his victims early (McKayla was 13) and maybe she didn't always seem like she was going to be a star. And once he has started, I'm sure in his twisted mind, he isn't going to stop since he already knows she will go along with it.
 
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rhapsody

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Wow. In many ways I'm not surprised, as there appears to be no limits to what that man will do and it also helps explain some of the struggles McKayla has had post-gymnastics. It did seem like his MO was to go after girls who weren't the "star", but he also picks his victims early (McKayla was 13) and maybe she didn't always seem like she was going to be a star. And once he has started, I'm sure in his twisted mind, he isn't going to stop since he already knows she will go along with it.
I don't think that's true. McKayla was a very talented junior and was already vaulting the best Amanar in the world at age 13. If you listen to her Gymcastic interview, it's very easy to tell why Nassar chose to abuse her... she was always taught by her coaches to be silent and pretend everything was fine even if it clearly wasn't. Nassar is a disgusting piece of trash and like all predators, he knows how to select his victims... the ones who are not taught to stand up for themselves is the biggest draw. It's one of the reasons why there are so many predators in the sport; it's such a common coaching tactic to tell your gymnasts to shut up and keep doing what they're doing even if something is wrong.

Glad Maroney came forward. It was very obvious when "some parents" filed a lawsuit against Nassar some months ago that indicated their victim was a London Olympian who competed until 2013. So, so powerful that someone so prominent spoke out in the wake of the trashy MLR debacle and I'm assuming that USAG is losing its shit at the moment (as it should). Hopefully something good comes of this.
 

Erin

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I don't think that's true. McKayla was a very talented junior and was already vaulting the best Amanar in the world at age 13.
I was kind of rambling, I guess I meant that in some ways I'm not surprised but in other ways I am surprised because Maroney breaks what appeared to be his pattern of not picking the star gymnasts (I'd forgotten about the lawsuit). Until she came forward, the only other Olympian was Dantzscher, who was generally in Vanessa Atler's shadow. Perhaps it's just that the higher profile gymnasts have yet to come forward and there could be more. But it seemed to me like an attempt to prey on the underdog who was even more powerless. Maroney was a talented vaulter at 13 but not an all-around star like Jordyn Wieber or Kyla Ross. The year Maroney was 13, Maroney finished 27th in Juniors at Nationals, Ross won it and Wieber couldn't compete but earlier that year won the American Cup (which wasn't a World Cup event back then).
 

rhapsody

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I was kind of rambling, I guess I meant that in some ways I'm not surprised but in other ways I am surprised because Maroney breaks what appeared to be his pattern of not picking the star gymnasts (I'd forgotten about the lawsuit). Until she came forward, the only other Olympian was Dantzscher, who was generally in Vanessa Atler's shadow. Perhaps it's just that the higher profile gymnasts have yet to come forward and there could be more. But it seemed to me like an attempt to prey on the underdog who was even more powerless. Maroney was a talented vaulter at 13 but not an all-around star like Jordyn Wieber or Kyla Ross. The year Maroney was 13, Maroney finished 27th in Juniors at Nationals, Ross won it and Wieber couldn't compete but earlier that year won the American Cup (which wasn't a World Cup event back then).
I get what you're saying for sure about preying on lesser known gymnasts--it can be easier for predators.

Hopefully the fact that Maroney was such a huge star and is garnering a ton of negative press for USAG at the moment will force them to actually move their asses to do something instead of just paying lip service to the press about how they're changing things up while their actions clearly state the opposite is happening. I'm still pissed at how they handled the Steven Penny "resignation" and the fact that they advocated against an abuse prevention bill earlier this year. What a disgusting organization.
 

UMBS Go Blue

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I don't really follow gymnastics unless it's on during the Olympics, and I haven't been following this scandal closely, but wouldn't the fact that at least some of Maroney's abuse happened at the Karolyi Ranch implicate the Karolyis themselves, at least in tangential ways? Maybe they looked the other way, or enabled an atmosphere in which this abuse occurred? It sounds like it's not just a problem with Nassar himself, but a systemic one at that.
 

Choupette

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OK....someone took many great leotards from Worlds and Olympics in the past and made t-shirts out of them.

Heaven!!!

https://leotees.myshopify.com/collections/all?page=1
And then you wear one of them and fellow fans can immediately identify you as one. :D

I miss old leotards. I don't really like the flashy and complex designs nowadays, not to mention that I don't think high cut suits everyone. The idea of spending thousands of dollars on a leotard, even if only for the Olympic Games, seems ridiculous to me. However, I must admit that I made a discovery while attending Worlds: I found leotards looked much better in person. Many don't work at all for me on TV, but looked much better from a distance.
 
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Have ya'll seen ana padurariu on beam? she's amazing and has a lot of potential. She's a Canadian Junior gymnast and has beaten big 4 countries gymnasts on beam. I could totally see her medalling in Tokyo.
 

MacMadame

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Gabby does realize that she was dressed exactly the same as every other girl on those Olympic teams, right?
This is what is particularly stupid about her comments. Female gymnasts train and compete in freaking leotards which are skin tight and barely cover the butt. But, somehow, it's immodest to wear a short skirt when not in uniform. :rolleyes:

I think what bugs the most is the word "responsibility". Once again that puts everything on women. No, people have a responsibility not to force themselves on unwilling people. How we dress is a personal choice, not a responsibility.
 

Erin

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I read Aly Raisman's book last week and thought it was really well done. I didn't particularly notice that it was aimed at a YA audience or find that it was dumbed down for older readers. A couple of things I really appreciated was how some of the myths of Aly's career were dispelled. One is that there is this impression out there that Aly was never injured, but Aly has had plenty of injuries and pain to work through, she has just been able to manage through them well enough to not miss any major competitions. Another is the impression of her as a rock solid competitor, when she shares a lot of times when she was quite nervous.

The insight as to what was going on in her mind in late 2015 and early 2016 was probably most interesting. The private investigator hired by USAG had visited her in the summer of 2015 and that's when she had the realization of what had really happened to her with Nassar and was still processing what was happening. She doesn't make excuses but it explains a lot about her performance at 2015 Worlds. In retrospect, it's amazing that the sex abuse scandal breaking right before the Rio games started didn't have an effect on her performance there.

Outside of that, I liked her sharing insights as to the inner workings of the ranch and USAG politics (generally not a positive impression formed of these) and of the friendships she has developed with various other gymnasts. I don't bother with a lot of gymnasts' books but I would recommend this one.
 

Choupette

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Another.... :(

L’entraîneur de gymnastique Michel Arsenault visé par des allégations d'agressions sexuelles
Translation: Sexual abuse allegations against gymnastics coach Michel Arsenault

He coached in Montreal at the FlipGym club, but was fired in 1993 for being verbally abusive and violent. He then left for Alberta with his star gymnast, and eventually opened his own gym in Edmonton in 2002.

At the end of the broadcast, about half an hour ago, a press release from co-owner Valérie Oudin said he was not to be around or in the club. IIRC, I think she is (or was?) his wife.
 

danafan

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I just read the english version of the article.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/montreal/michel-arsenault-gymnasts-accusations-sexual-abuse-1.4434385

I am just.....I don't know what to say.

I believe the victims - it's so important to. I'm just sick. I first met Michel over 20 years ago and have interacted with him many times first as a fan and later as a judge. One of his gymnasts, Marleen Lavoie (1995 Pan Am and world team member) moved from Montreal to Edmonton to continue to train with him and Valerie in 1994. Natasha Hallett was the alternate on the 1992 Olympic team.

I'm literally shaking after reading that and when I saw the article on my twitter feed....
 

Choupette

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I can see why, if you interacted with him. Ouch. :(

It goes without saying that I believe the victims too. I don't know if you watched the news on Radio-Canada, or the video on the website... not that I needed to actually hear anything to believe them, but I don't know how anyone could have any doubts after hearing that. :(

In any case, I don't believe in yelling and being verbally abusive towards athletes, especially not children or teenager. I could never get it completely out of my mind whenever I recalled him, or rather his former gymnasts (as in "where are they now?" once every few years). I could never have imagined anything like this though.

Nansy Damianova said that Gymnastics Canada, as well as her university, had policies so that a coach would never be alone in a room with an athlete or if he was, the door would remain open. The allegations go back to the 80s and 90s. Can I hope that these policies may have helped reduce the number of victims? I hope, I hope...
 

danafan

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It just doesn't end....Todd Gardiner, former coach of US national team members Betty Okino, Liz Tricase, and Kristina Comforte has been banned by USA Gymnastics.

https://www.nbcchicago.com/investig...ach-Banned-From-USA-Gymnastics-463513963.html

According to the USA Gymnastics governing board, Gardiner was cited with violating provisions concerning sexual misconduct and a sexual relationship with an athlete. On Dec. 7, Gardiner was placed on the list of coaches permanently ineligible to coach in USA Gymnastics.
 

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