The Balance Beam Situation

Because gymnastics is a comedy, not a drama

Li Li II

Uneven Bars

Skill type
Same-bar release

Known as
Li Li
Li Li II
German giant Tkatchev

Named after
Li Li (CHN)

Oh, the tragic tale of the Li Li II.

When most people see this skill, they think it’s a German giant connected to a Tkatchev, but it’s actually not a Tkatchev, nor is it a connection. It’s a single skill named after Li Li that includes counter straddle over the high bar.

Most famously in “recent” years, the Li Li II was attempted by Ivana Hong in her 2007 routine, a routine that we were informed was destroyed by the judges at worlds. It wasn’t really actually destroyed, but she was not given her full intended difficulty for that routine, the best bet as to the reason being that the judges were not impressed by her straddle cut backward over the bar. That’s the big challenge of the Li Li II, getting the amplitude expected of a Tkatchev (even though it’s not a Tkatchev) out of a German giant. Also doing a German giant. And everything else about it.

It’s a shame because it’s so cool looking.


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