Gymnastics News #21 - Tumbling on to Tokyo

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essence_of_soy

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Back to 2005 Worlds, who should have won AA? Chellsie or Nastia? They were only 0.001 apart. I sort of loves that Worlds because it was sort of a reprieve from the 2004 games with Cheng Fei getting her due somewhat (though she missed out on FX finals as she underperformed there).
I attended that event, and there was so little to separate Memmel and Liukin. Chellsie was a powerhouse and Natasia was a ballerina. They were both wonderful. The stand-out memory for me was seeing Australia grab its first individual all-around medal, when Monette Russo won bronze. It was an electrifying moment.
 

tripleflutz

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Svetlana Khorkina's FX at 2003 Worlds looked messy as hell with bad and incomplete (and uncontrolled) landings on her dance skills and fake stuck landings (or controlled luges) but scores like a 9.65+ but at 2004 can only score like a 9.45+ with more controlled dance skills (I also don't really understand how she won FX silver at the 2000 Olympics where I felt other gymnasts had better tumbling and more dance but that's another topic).
She won silver on floor at the 2000 Games mostly since there were a ton of mistakes. Amanar won bronze even with an out of bounds which says it all, as that rarely ever happened back in that period in an event final. The same reason Zamo won gold on floor which never would have happened in an all hit competition. The only one possibly robbed was Esther Moya who had a clean set but was placed 4th, probably should have been bronze or even silver given the other performances that day.

Khorkina alleges there was some politics against her at the 2004 Games. I am not sure on that, but for whatever reason Carly Patterson was sure way overscored, not only relative to Khorkina but even moreso relative to some others in the field like Pavlova and Sofronie. At the 2003 worlds Khorkina was probably considered the only big name after all the retirements so was held up even though already visibly past her prime and not performing her best in the AA, but by 2004 there were others besides her (Ponor, Patterson, Pavlova, Nan) now established as noteable names after various 2003 and 2004 meets, and with NBC so powerful and putting so much money into the Olympics the scoring of Olympics will always favor U.S gymnasts now that they are strong contenders and interested in gymnastics again. Just look at Paul Hamm's ridiculous win.
 

VGThuy

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It's amazing how much I disagree with the above post. I acknowledge Carly Patterson's gymnastics is boring as heck and other than the double arabian dismount on beam, was pretty basic, and Khorkina's vault should have scored higher, but Patterson deserved her win based on having much cleaner gymnastics overall. Both had pretty bad dancing but Khorkina's "charisma" gave her an advantage on that front. I think Pavlova was probably more robbed by Khorkina than Khorkina was robbed by Patterson.

As for the scoring now, well most of the World looks unconditioned and lacking in strength compared to how strong and conditioned the U.S. gymnasts come to their meets overall. Russia is struggling, Romania barely exists as a full team anymore, and the other countries are still developing to keep up. I think it would be a lot more competitive if Simone Biles wasn't there who is just doing difficulty far surpassing everyone else. If they want to score as well as her, they need to compete with her ever increasing D scores and execution. I mean was scoring really better under 10.00 when countries like Bulgaria would routinely be robbed because they were not a big country and people joked that in the mid 90s to early 2000s that all Romanians received a 0.3 bonus? Every era, someone's complaining about scoring and coming up with some theories about the favoritism on display.
 
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tripleflutz

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Perhaps you are unable to read clearly, but I never said Khorkina should have won. I do think Patterson was easily the most overmarked of all the top gymnasts including Khorkina, with Khorkina a distant but clear 2nd in that regard. So in that sense I think Khorkina had a point on her controversial statements of the time. However both Patterson and Khorkina were overscored relative to everyone else in the top 5 plus Kupets, especialy Pavlova who was glaringly robbed as usual and should have atleast been on the podium that year. Patterson was overscored on every single event except beam where her score was correct.
 

VGThuy

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I was reacting to your conspiracy theory regarding NBC and American overscoring and only stating Patterson was overscored. You never explicitly stated you still think Patterson deserves to win so combining all your points and equating her win with your explicit disgust over Paul Hamm’s win, your post sounded some kind of way. I still think if someone without Khorkina’s name did that FX the same way with the way FX had been scored all competition, Khorkina would have been closer to 9.300. Patterson’s 9.7+ was ridiculous considering how tough FX scoring was those games.
 

tripleflutz

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Well Paul Hamm's win was totally ridiculous. I think we both would agree on that, and we dont I will be mildly amazed considering I have not talked to one person in real life yet who agreed with Paul Hamm's win. The only thing that annoyed me is everyone ignores the guy who was really robbed, the Korean who was 2nd by 0.012, and instead focuses on the crybaby bronze medalist who technically lost gold due to the wrong P-bars start value, but both he and Paul were overscored. With their mistakes (Paul's fall on vault, Yang's high bar errors which were almost a falls worth) neither should have even medaled, and the real wuzrobbed guy is ignored for his undeserving teammate, but that is another topic.

Carly's win was not ridiculous like Paul's and she might have deserved to win, but she was still the most overscored of everyone, including Khorkina who was the 2nd most overscored. If they were not overscored might Carly still have finished 1st and Svetlana still finished 2nd behind Carly but ahead of the others? Possible, but the top 5 would have all finished a lot closer in points. I was not explicably saying Khorkina should have won, I was saying I kind of understood where she was coming from when Carly was the most overscored gymnast of all that night, including Khorkina. So I had no problems at all with her gripes, it is not like I disagreed one bit about her insinuation Carly was lucky to be American and the favorite of Marta and the powerful people in the U.S. And U.S gymnasts since becoming contenders again have in general been on the overscored side, again I dont think that is some grand secret. Think of a lot of people who still dispute if Liukin deserved 5 medals in Beijing, whether Weiber and Douglas deserved their major AA titles over Komova or not, whether Kiocan's being part of the big tie for bars gold with those others was kind of a joke or not, etc...at the very least they are given the benefit of doubt more than any other country. Which is to be expected when you think about it as the U.S pays the most money into the Olympics so everyone involved is wise to keep them and their fans happy now that they are finally a superforce in the sport. Most of the traditional powers sucking and dying off has helped them too, but that is only in the last 5-6 years where it really hit. I am not really talking about the extreme cases of superiority like Biles which is a pointless discussion, but she is an aberration.

Pavlova imparticular was ridiculously undermarked on every single event compared to Patterson and Khorkina. Her vault which was higher, cleaner, had a better landing, and didnt incur .1 for going out of bounds only scoring 0.05 more than Carly, ROTFL, please. Her bars had a low start value but got a lower execution mark (well got less out of her start value) than Carly and her fugly bars work, and Khorkina who had mistakes that day in her set. Her beam and floor were just as good as Carly's IMO, particularly her floor where her only slightly disadvantage is slightly lower but still equally solid tumbling, and she more than compensates with far superior choreography and dance to anything Carly could dream of. Both scored over a tenth lower though, and her beam lower than Nan who had mistakes in her routine that day. She should have atleast been on the podium, possibly even with silver. Sofronie was harshly scored in places, even her beam while shaky was certainly not worse than Khorkina's mess that night, but of course scored lower. Nan was both overscored- overscored relative to Pavlova and Kupets bigtime, but underscored compared to gifts Patterson and Khorkina got most of the night.
 

ilovepaydays

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Anyone else watching The American Cup? It just started live on the Olympic Channel and (I think) NBC will be airing it at 1:00PM EST.
 

ilovepaydays

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Well, Sam’s off to a great start.....

So, let me get this straight: Didn’t the FIG just pass a new rule banning “distracting makeup”? But this Dutch guy can have a (probably) world record number of tattoos and that’s not considered too distracting? :confused:

Yul also looked great on floor. I hope his back is fully healed.

Side rant: Maybe it’s just me, but the Olympic Channel’s promo commercial on Nathan Chen is a bit lacking. And it has and will air 293,263 more times.

They showed a short interview with the new USA Gymnastics CEO Leung. Showed flattering statement about her from NBA Commissioner Adam Silver.
 
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skipaway

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It’s been awhile since I attended a meet, but this crowd is rude and loud. Too much talking and moving around during competition routines.
 

ilovepaydays

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WAIT. Is that Lion King music that they are playing in the arena? :confused:

I’m calling it now: the live action remake that’s coming out this summer won’t touch the original. Just sayin’!
 

ilovepaydays

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Women’s AA has started. I will admit that I have a soft spot for Mai Murakami (JPN).

Men’s third rotation: Rings. I get the strength and skill required, but unless the guy is from Greece, these routines are :yawn:.

Andrea Joyce attempted a Level 4 promo of Sam Mikulak and him (finally!) getting an individual world medal. My GOE: +1.
 

ilovepaydays

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Yul’s vault = :swoon:. But I’m don’t think his PB and HB has a chance against Mikulak being clean.

WHOA! Leanne Wong and Grace McCallum are now tied after the 2nd rotation. Elsabeth Black is a close 3rd.
 

ilovepaydays

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Well, the men’s HB has now turned more :watch:.......I don’t get how Mikulak slipped on UB. Don’t they get to check the caulk before their routine? Or is it just during the warmups?
 

Lucy25

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Can someone explain why so many gymnasts do the wolf turns? I used to think they got extra points, but today Nastia said they receive the same credit as a full turn on the beam. Very few, if any, gymnast make that move like halfway attractive, and most can’t seem to keep their balance it all. What is the allure?
 

ilovepaydays

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I wish that Kim Bui (Germany) had a bit more dance and expression in her FX. If you’re going to be 30 and be this awesome at gymnastics, why not? Bui won uneven bars today, which is AWESOME.

Sam Mikulak’s HB = :wall:

OMG. Yul won by .001 over Sam today. I have no words.

Leanne Wong was great today! This year is going to be :watch:
 

danafan

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The wolf turn with full an full and a half turns are worth one letter more than a regular turn,but the double and triple versions are worth the same. I think gymnasts must find the multiple turns in wolf position easier since we see dozens of triple wolf turns but I could probably count on one hand the gymnasts who have competed a regular triple turn on beam.
 

VGThuy

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I didn't get to watch it, but were Americans overscored again or were the scores more-or-less on point this time?
 

VGThuy

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The wolf turn with full an full and a half turns are worth one letter more than a regular turn,but the double and triple versions are worth the same. I think gymnasts must find the multiple turns in wolf position easier since we see dozens of triple wolf turns but I could probably count on one hand the gymnasts who have competed a regular triple turn on beam.
I wonder if it's because the rotation is slower and allows them to control it better. I remember once floors got springier, many gymnasts had so many issues with turns. Turns with more than two rotations never looked organic, had long set ups, and often times they were short of rotation/had a messy exit/or huge step to stop the rotation. With the wolf turn, it may still have the set up (but it seems forgivable), but it seems the gymnasts are able to control them better and exit out of them with more ease into the next thing. They seemed to have replaced L turns or the I-Turns or "scorpions" that were coming out as alternatives to the normal turns.
 

ilovepaydays

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I didn't get to watch it, but were Americans overscored again or were the scores more-or-less on point this time?
I thought it was pretty much on point - despite Sam’s mistakes, he, Yul, Leanne, and Grace were a bit above the non-U.S. gymnasts.

It’ll be interesting to see how Riley, Simone, and Morgan do at their respective World Cups this spring.
 

rhapsody

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Can someone explain why so many gymnasts do the wolf turns? I used to think they got extra points, but today Nastia said they receive the same credit as a full turn on the beam. Very few, if any, gymnast make that move like halfway attractive, and most can’t seem to keep their balance it all. What is the allure?
They're indeed difficult to balance but hard to deduct from; mistakes can also easily be hidden because they're so low to the ground. I can't tell you how many gymnasts have fallen out of a wolf turn on floor only to disguise it as choreography. I would either increase deductions for them or lower their value.
 

Aceon6

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^This. The free leg position and quality of exit need to be updated for this to count. I still see why they’re popular, especially on floor, as the 21st century floor surfaces almost prevent someone from doing a proper standing turn.
 

Erin

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Interesting article about Simone Biles in The Guardian: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2019/mar/16/simone-biles-therapy-times-didnt-want-set-foot-gym

The article talks about youth being an advantage in women's gymnastics and says: "... While 16 is the official peak age, in reality many female gymnasts are considered to peak at 12." Is that true?? :eek:
12 might be extreme but the reality is that a lot of elite gymnasts hit their peak while they are still juniors and never even make it to seniors. As a recent example, two time junior national champion Maile O’Keefe spent her first senior year injured after American Cup and has recently made the decision to drop down to Level 10. I like this decision, as she is also going to Utah early and it sounds like she took into account what was best for her mental and physical health but her best gymnastics days were when she was 14/15. Looking at some other talented top juniors like Norah Flatley, Nia Dennis, Katelyn Ohashi, they either didn’t make it to seniors or only minimally competed as seniors and did their best gymnastics when they were 13-14. But they are all having good NCAA careers even if they aren’t doing the same difficulty they were doing at that age and are still enjoyable to watch. The unfortunate ones are the ones who end up too injured to even do NCAA, like (so far) Bailie Key for example, although we don’t know what could happen next year.
 

tylersf

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When will they ever allow lyrics to music on FX like figure skating? I would love to see men get FX music as well.
 

millyskate

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Interesting article about Simone Biles in The Guardian: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2019/mar/16/simone-biles-therapy-times-didnt-want-set-foot-gym

The article talks about youth being an advantage in women's gymnastics and says: "... While 16 is the official peak age, in reality many female gymnasts are considered to peak at 12." Is that true?? :eek:
It really depends on the shape of the national training program, and other variables.

The programs in the US and Russia, due to the competition to get invited to the national training squad, encourage early development of difficulty. It's far from being the same everywhere.

For example, in the Netherlands, many gymnasts peak in their mid twenties. Some even win Olympic Gold medals :shuffle:
If you take the Belgian gymnast Nina Derwael, she was always talented but her difficulty is peaking about 3 years into her senior career.

In the UK, there's a marked difference where the juniors have very significantly lower difficulty than the seniors. The gymnasts in the UK tend to peak in their late teens. For example, first year senior and Olympic youth medallist Amelie Morgan is still very much building her difficulty at the moment and will probably reach competitive peak in 2 or 3 years. There's a deliberate attempt to pace the gymnasts, but also a physiological difference from region to region.
If you watch junior Euros, comparing the Russian gymnasts to the British ones is incredibly striking. The British gymnasts tend to grow much earlier, so they tend to build their difficulty after.
 
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