The Balance Beam Situation

Because gymnastics is a comedy, not a drama

Things Are Happening – July 6, 2020

A. Abuse News

You know, a stellar note to get started on.

British gymnasts—including Catherine Lyons and Lisa Mason in this report, and anonymous athletes in this report—are speaking out about specific abuses they experienced from their coaches and the culture of fear throughout British gymnastics.

Now…where have I heard that before? Oh right, it’s everywhere, all the time because the coaching culture in all of gymnastics, regardless of country, is rotten from the inside. Whenever we talk about abusive coaching there seems to be this need to clarify, “Now, of course, most coaches are wonderful and this doesn’t reflect blah blah blah blah,” but…clearly that’s not true. How many times do we have to hear these stories? Catherine’s horrific experience should be some shocking tale, but it’s not because it’s all part of a pattern.

Imagine how good Catherine Lyons could have been if she hadn’t been treated like garbage. I think about that eight times a week.

Meanwhile, in further gross news, Thierry Pellerin—Canadian pommel horse specialist who is a mainstay of the world cup circuit—has been arrested for sexual offenses against minors.

I searched back through the times I’ve mentioned Pellerin on the site hoping to find some time when I was all critical and annoyed by him so that I could be like, “I have good judgement of things!” but alas no. Just comments about how much I like him and his toe point. So score another one for me.

Shawn Johnson also talked about how she was prescribed Adderal by That Guy so that she could lose weight and AHHHHHHHHlksdjlakjashd. End of analysis.

B. Everyone’s Coming Out

OK, now that we’re done with that, we get to do the good part. The fun one. The happy one. Basically, everyone’s LGBT, and it’s excellent. So get on it.

We had Ella Douglas at MSU, and then Florida made a video about Savannah Schoenherr, and UCLA made a video about Kalyany Steele coming out as bi.

Remember 30 seconds ago when there were no out women currently in gymnastics? This is better. Last year at NCAA nationals we spent a dinner trying to count lesbians (Lesbian Counting, the game sweeping the nation), and it didn’t go great.

C. NCAA Developments

LIU announced its full coaching staff, with Randy Lane joined by Cale Robinson and Hallie Mossett as assistant coaches and Lauren Marinez as volunteer assistant. LIU also announced its signing of former Dutch elite Mara Titarsolej.

So that’s that.

In other news of UCLA’s colonization of college gymnastics, Felicia Hano will join the Wieber administration at Arkansas as a volunteer assistant. UCLA also got some good news with the announcement that Ana Padurariu is going to try the Canadian Special—elite and NCAA at the same time—and is not planning to defer the 2021 NCAA season. If there is one.

D. Elite Developments

The Doha World Cup—the final apparatus world cup still to be conducted for the purposes of Olympic qualification—has been rescheduled (this is the third rescheduling of that event, if you’re keeping track), now slated for March 10-13, 2021. That will be the week before the Stuttgart all-around world cup, which is the weekend of March 20.

E. GymCastic

If you need a little detour to a time when gymnastics was a sport that happened, last week we went back to 2003 for a recap of the first time the US women won a world team title.

There was a special guest at the women's national team camp this week. How do we feel about this? And what do we hope was said? Morgan Hurd discussed her potentially misdiagnosed knee injury in the run up to the Tokyo Olympics. Bart Deurloo announced his retirement. We pay tribute. NCAA Week 5 Friday featured the most 10s given out in a single day in college gymnastics in 19 years. Spencer is……going to be fine. We discuss which 10s might have been the realest, the problem with going stick-blind, and bring Correct or Corrupt to a possible 10 that wasn't. Plus, feedback on how judges get assigned to meets, how receipts would change everything, the judging of Suni Lee's vault, and when/why handstands became the be-all, end-all of bars Jessica has some awards of the week, an ode to Jordan Chiles, a score protest to honor, and some ideas for future post-routine celebrations SURVEY We want your opinion! Tell us what you think here. EXTRA CLUB CONTENT Club Gym Nerd members can watch the video version of the show, join us for live podcasts once a week, get extended and early releases of interviews, and have early access to live show tickets. Please login to your Club Gym Nerd account to watch this episode. Not a member? Join here. JOIN CLUB GYM NERD Join Club Gym Nerd (or give it as a gift!) for access to weekly Behind the Scenes episodes. Club Gym Nerd members can watch the podcast being recorded and see some of the gymnastics we discuss, plus get access to all of our exclusive interviews and Behind The Scenes episodes. Week One of College & Cocktails: The Friday Night NCAA Gymnastics Post-Meet Show is available to sample (even if you aren't a Club Gym Nerd member yet). Watch or listen here. Buy our awesome clothing and gifts here. We have a Ukraine Fundraiser design, all proceeds go to the CARE Ukraine Crisis fund. RELATED EPISODES & RESOURCES College & Cocktails: UCLA at Utah What Happens in the Air, Stays in the Air NCAA Gymnastics with Vanessa Atler College & Cocktails: Minnesota at Iowa with Evan Heiter Can You Count to 3? College & Cocktails: Arkansas at Auburn College & Cocktails: Dial 1-800-Kazakhstan College Gymnastics Is Back College & Cocktails: Auburn at Florida Project K Episode 2 Project K Episode 1 Sitting in Pits Made of Mattresses Gymnastics History and Code of Points Archive from Uncle Tim MORE WAYS TO LISTEN HERE  
  1. 10-A-PALOOZA
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  3. NCAA Gymnastics with Vanessa Atler
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