The Balance Beam Situation

Because gymnastics is a comedy, not a drama

Things Are Happening – January 27, 2021

A. Aunt Flo

You know that thing where you’re watching the YouTube stream of junior Classic and think, “I wish this were expensive and worse.”

Well, USAG is here for you, signing a five-year deal with FLO to broadcast its non-NBC events in the US—and all the events internationally. Moving major gymnastics events from free YouTube streams to a service that charges $150/year, just so FLO can lob a buffering potato at your computer screen and then blame it on your internet speed, all while filing copyright claims over someone’s unrelated 15-year-old video of Shantessa Pama’s beam warmup, is going over super great. We’re so very happy. Access achieved!

The first elite event on the FLO slate will be Winter Cup, where the big sessions are already scheduled for NBC Networks but broadcast of the junior competitions and senior men’s event finals was previously undetermined. Presumably that will go to FLO, and per USAG they’ll be showing podium training as well. National team selection camps are also currently on the FLO schedule. It’s good content! But our collective history with FLO, the historical quality of its broadcasts, its expense, and the McKayla Maroney incident—to name a few—precludes any excitement there.

B. No One Saw It Coming

Turns out, trying to hold a college gymnastics season amidst COVID isn’t going fully awesome!

Yesterday, LSU had to withdraw from this weekend’s meet against Auburn because of “the contact tracing” and “the protocols.” Whatever that means. Jay professed that they haven’t had a major outbreak on the team, though I imagine they’ll have to wait for further test results to know where this falls on the nothing or something spectrum. If the tests are clear, they’re hoping to reschedule the meet for the following weekend, which would have been the SEC midseason break.

Other things that make you go huh: “’The girls wear these monitors that measure the amount of time they have been around each other in a 24-hour period,’ Clark said.” Uh oh, who let Jay read 1984 again…

Us: Can you guys please wear masks more?
LSU: OK, now if you spend too much time around Bridget Dean you explode.

Michigan’s athletic department, meanwhile, has shuttered competition and training for two weeks, meaning Michigan’s upcoming meets against Ohio State this weekend and Illinois next weekend have been postponed. As per the current schedule, Michigan’s next meet would be February 15.

Ohio State will join Michigan State’s meet on Saturday, as Michigan State is now ready to get started after scrapping its previous meet over lack of preparation. Cal, George Washington, and Illinois State are also expected to start their seasons this weekend, while SEMO is slated to resume competition after canceling last Sunday’s meet, and Bowling Green will continue competing and hoping for fuller lineups than last week.

C. Who’s Canceling Me Now

The FIG’s latest cancellation belongs to the Baku Apparatus World Cup, previously scheduled for March. This event was not going to count for Olympic qualification since the FIG decided to count the half-results from last year’s competition that was canceled midway through (not over it). We’re seeing that the FIG has been very willing to cancel the events that have no Olympic implications (Baku, Cottbus) but is still clinging to other pipe dreams, like the idea that the Stuttgart qualifier can be moved to a different city in Germany and held as planned.

The Pan American Championships, another Olympic qualifier, have mutated again, and the new plan is to hold the event in Brazil in June. Qualifiers have until June 29th to be completed, and I wouldn’t be surprised if we see a lot more qualifiers “move to late June” in the hope that they can squeeze themselves in.

D. GymCastic

In the latest episode, we discuss whether the Olympics are secretly canceled and the gympocalypse that was week 3 in college gymnastics.

Carly Patterson's Album Interpreted and Dr. Dave Tilley PT Gymnastics Myth Busters GymCastic: The Gymnastics Podcast

CARLY PATTERSON'S ALBUM: BACK TO THE BEGINNING This episode has been commissioned by "Just an Ordinary Girl Putting Up a Fight to Get Out of This Temporary Life," who requested an episode analyzing the music of 2004 Olympic Champion, Carly Rae Patterson and her 2009 album, Back to the Beginning. We answer important questions like, which song is a metaphor for WOGA? And which one is really about Khorkina? Gymnastics Science Myth Busters with Dr. Dave Tilley PT, NCSA The internal work; therapy and/or self reflection, necessary to be healthy in our jobs and relationships Learning to have a healthy relationship with exercise after gymnastics The actual force impact of landings and falls and a yurchenko double back on the body The science behind back pain in gymnasts during puberty. Red S Syndrome (formerly Female Athlete Triad) and the damaging garbage nutrition fads hurting gymnasts. Gymnastics Myth Busted with an Dr. Dave Tilley PhD: You have to be short, young, and under-developed to be good at gymnastics and all skills have to be learned before puberty. False! We discuss the physical and psychological advantages of hormones and puberty for female gymnasts. Gymnasts and children should never weight train. False! The original study was based on children laborers and not safe, supervised weightlifting. Back pain, during puberty especially, is just a normal part of gymnastics and can't be prevented. False! We discuss the effect hormones have on ligaments and bones during healthy puberty and how coaches can help their gymnasts safely navigate this growth period. If you are overweight you will tear your achilles. False! BMI is not a factor in gymnasts achilles tears. Read the study here. Resources & References: SHIFT Movement Science and Gymnastics Education SHIFT Free Resource Lab  SHIFT Hero Lab: international online gymnastics education community Developing Powerful Athletes Pt 1  Developing Powerful Athletes Pt 2   Long Term Athletic Development Natalie Yurchenko Olympic Channel interview on yurchenko double back. Factors Associated With Achilles Tendon Rupture in Women's Collegiate Gymnastics Weight Training Safety & Performance in children and adolescents: The effectiveness of exercise interventions to prevent sports injuries (BJSM)  Youth Resistance Training International Consensus Position Statement (BJSM)  Resistance training for children and adolescents (Translational Pediatrics)  Youth Resistance Training Position Statement Paper (JSCR) Plyometric training performance in elite-oriented prepubertal female gymnasts  Effects if Resistance Training in Youth Athletes  The effects of eccentric training on lower limb flexibility: a systematic review (BJSM)  Increasing muscle extensibility: a matter of increasing length or modifying sensation? (Phys Ther)  Regular stretch does not increase muscle extensibility (Scan J Med Sci Sports) Red S Syndrome and Disordered Eating in Gymnastics: Understanding Eating Disorders in Elite Gymnastics (Clin Sports Med) Disordered Eating in Women’s Gymnastics (JASP) The IOC consensus statement on RED-S (BJSM) Interaction among skeletal muscle metabolic energy systems during intense exercise (J Nutr Metab) JOIN CLUB GYM NERD  Join Club Gym Nerd for access to Behind the Scenes episodes. Buy our awesome clothing and gifts here. We have masks too! RELATED EPISODES Project K Project K: Decoding Romanian Secret Police Files on The Karolyis with Dr. Simona Petracovsch 368: No-No-Nunnoisms (Commissioned) 367: Shawn and Nastia: From Feud to Friendship (Commissioned) 365: 1988 Olympics Team Competition (Commissioned) 364: 80s Fight! (Commissioned) 327: 1993 NCAA Nationals (Commissioned) 325: Olympics of Difference Makers (Commissioned) 313: Best Floor Routines EVAH! (Commissioned) 312: 4th Is the New 1st (Commissioned) 309: Perfect Form – The O’Beirne Code (Commissioned) 308: 2004 Olympic All-Around Final (Commissioned) 306: Gymnastics Fails (Commissioned) 304: The GymCastic Olympics (Commissioned) 281: Myths, Legends, and Unexpected Moments PART 2 (Commissioned) 279: A Diva Is Magical: The Svetlana Khorkina Episode (Commissioned) 278: 2000 Sydney All-Around Final (Commissioned) 262: 1996 Olympic Event Finals (Commissioned) 258: The Fluff Cast (Commissioned) 256: 1996 Olympic All-Around Final (Commissioned) 255: 1996 Olympic Team Final (Commissioned) 252: Myths, Legends and Unexpected Moments in Gymnastics History (Commissioned) 228: Leotards (Commissioned) 225: 1992 Olympics Recap with Wendy Bruce (Commissioned) 185: 2008 Olympic All-Around Finals (Commissioned)
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  2. Tenths Don't Matter
  3. Nadia: The Movie (Commission)
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  5. 2021 World Championships, Event Finals Day 2

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