Category Archives: Great Moments in Gymnastics

The Amanar Rankings

All the gymnasts who have successfully landed an Amanar in an actual competition, evaluated on execution, consistency, longevity, success, historical influence, and flute recital.

32. Kyla Ross

Every trend reaches its breaking point.

The United States of Amanar had become such a rage in 2012 that it was all, “Kyla Ross NEEDS an Amanar otherwise BOOOOO!”

But like pierced belly buttons, we look back on it now and say, “………Why?” Why would you make poor Kyla chuck this vault?

31. Simona Amanar

I mean, you got it named after yourself.

30. Jay Jay Marshall

Randomly showing an Amanar at JO Nationals and then not again after that is a badass move, but it’s rotated around based solely on prayers and loses points for infrequency.

29. Anna Pavlova

Well you got it around kind of.

28. Jiang Yuyuan

Jiang gets a couple extra points for landing the vault pretty well on this one single occasion, though by the time the Olympics rolled around it was not happening. She had to be pulled from vault in the TF so as not to risk the gold.

27. Tatiana Nabieva

Sweetie… Continue reading The Amanar Rankings

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Gymnastics First Pitches — A GIFstory

We have one hallowed tradition in American gymnastics, valued above all others. It goes as so: When you achieve some degree of success, you are rewarded for this accomplishment by being carted off to a local baseball establishment so that you may embarrass yourself for all eternity by revealing to the world that your willowy gymnastics bird arms have never actually done a ball-throwings even once before.

It’s never remotely close, and we all enjoy the crap out of it. At which point, some four-year writes a video headline like “FLIPPING OUT: Gymnast does AMAZING cartwheel first pitch,” but it was actually an aerial walkover, and it was only OK, so we have no choice but to frame them for murder.

Lather, rinse, repeat.

Anyway, the latest run of first pitches has come from our new national champion UCLA team, which went to Dodger Stadium and made the smart choice of deferring first-pitch duties to Fish Hano, who received this honor because of important qualities like having seen a baseball before.

Not bad. Good use of one-armed walkover. Ideally, we’re bringing that pitch down into the strike zone, but given the state of affairs historically, I’ll take it.

Now Katelyn, we need to talk…

Exactly sideways.

See me after class. Continue reading Gymnastics First Pitches — A GIFstory

1998 Reese’s Cup: Eat A Butt

Welcome to the 1998 Reese’s Cup.

Or, sorry, the Reese’s International Gymnastics Cup.

SO MANY NATIONS. I CAN BARELY COUNT THEM ALL.

1 – USA

And I’m done. REAL SHAME THE SENEGALESE TEAM DIDN’T MAKE THE TV EDIT.


The Magnificent Seven (left) receive flowers from the Polygamy Tragedy Six (right).

Dearest Dominique,

You look like you probably wear a XXL.

Yours always,
The 1990s

OMG THEY’RE BOTH NAMED DOMINIQUE SO WE SHOULD PUT THEM ON A TEAM TOGETHER AND CALL IT “THE UNIQUES” BECAUSE DOMINIQUE ENDS IN -NIQUE JUST LIKE UNIQUE.

Elfi: Dominique, how did you decide on the name “The Uniques”?
Dom: This is the first I’m learning of it, Cheryl

“It’ll be fun,” she said miserably.

Kim Zmeskal: Stolen

AMANDA STOP THROWING COCAINE AT EVERYONE.

Shannon: I got the best team
Everyone: You know this is just a weird exhibition, so it doesn’t, like…
Shannon: I GOT THE BEST TEAM

And a rhythmic for Kristie Phillips, bye.

We begin on beam with Dominique Celine Moceanu 90s, who has selected “My Heart Will Go On” because of…that’s like a thing right now and you have to. Continue reading 1998 Reese’s Cup: Eat A Butt

We Need to Talk about Aliya’s Comeback

You guys.

Aliya’s back.

And basically has already been named to the Russian worlds team.

Aliya: [Yawn] [Cough]
Valentina: You’re hired! My footstool is named Varvara Zubova.

Aliya Mustafina gave birth to a human(?) child 30 seconds ago and apparently immediately began using the umbilical cord for resistance training because she’s already back to competition, returning at last weekend’s Russian Championship to finish 4th all-around and join hands with Komova as they joyously dashed the dream of every other Russian who thought she might make another team ever.

Ilyankova: I finished 3rd at Jesolo! I am on the ris—
Aliya: [SMACK] NO. Back in your box.

Mustafina is certainly not yet at full strength or endurance (though this was not altogether dissimilar to a typical Aliya podium training performance), but I was impressed to see how close she already is to being back at international-competition level, and by seeing her go for a DTY and some real floor tumbling like the double arabian. I more expected this to be a UB/BB-focused return to competition with maybe a courtesy layout on the leggier events, but she did much more than a courtesy layout, enough to get a competitive all-around score on the first day.  Continue reading We Need to Talk about Aliya’s Comeback

Simone Biles: Courage To Sour — The Trailer

Last week, we were teased with a trailer for the Simone movie—Courage To Soar. And like a fool, I didn’t even do a shot-by-shot recap of this minute-long wilderness experience. Let this be an opportunity to make amends. I have the courage to sour. I mean soar. Yeah that.

We open with Betty Gossip-Pajamas, who has come to Simone’s room to ask Simone about Simone maybe possibly wanting to go to “the actual Olympics QUESTION MARK?????”

Simone wants to go to the actual Olympics???

No.

She wants to go to the fake Olympics.

Like a fake gymnast.

Pull your ass together.

She’s good enough, too. Because Jocelyn Shoulder-Angle is vaulting a U-shaped something-or-other—cut together with obvious floor tumbling—which will inevitably be whoosh-whooshed into a perfect Amanar.

Immediate 16.300.

Simone’s Whoosh-manar is perfect enough to get her an invite to the prestigious Karolyi Ranch If It Were Nice, where no chalk has ever been.

This is what gyms look like.

Simone sees Kytra Tricase-Raisman perform this *gasp* DOUBLE PIKE and immediately quits gymnastics forever out of intimidation. Continue reading Simone Biles: Courage To Sour — The Trailer

When NCAA Coaches Were Gymnasts

In just two days, the 2018 season will finally begin, but for now, let’s talk about what’s most important: the 80s. A time when all your dearest NCAA coaches were gymnasts.

See, you thought you left those makeup choices back in the first Bush administration. But you didn’t. The magic of the internet.

Some coaches got lucky because archaeologists have not yet discovered any extant video of them in situ, but that doesn’t mean we stop trying.

Jenny (Ester) Rowland – Head Coach, University of Florida

“Still very young but has quite a lot of charm.”

 

Dana (Dobransky) Duckworth – Head coach, University of Alabama

RIBBBBBBONNNNNNSSSSSSSS.

 

Megan (McCunniff) Marsden – Head coach, University of Utah

Continue reading When NCAA Coaches Were Gymnasts