Friday, April 2, 2010

Today's Moment of Zen

Because, on a day like today, I need a moment of Zen.

And ever since the new Code, I appreciate the Chinese 10x more than I ever did.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Getting a little sick of the Bross haters

There's been a lot of negativity toward Rebecca Bross, and I'm a little sick of it.


Look at this site, where the author says
"Ms. Bross has one of the worst bodies for gymnastics imaginable."

I'm sorry, but I just don't think that's true! Not trying to be a hater, but remember Kristen Maloney? I would make the argument that SHE has one of the worst bodies for gymnastics: not very muscular, slim from the side (esp. in 2000) but from straight on she had hips that prevented her from having a nice line and made her look, well, just kind of awkward.

Bross, on the other hand is petite, straight, compact and muscular. She is very boyish, which in turn makes her a strong gymnast. No, her ankles don't stick together, but that is not a form error, it is her BODY SHAPE. Case in point, Semenova has the same shape and won bars at the '07 Worlds.

This blogger goes on to say " While she is a hard worker and a technical gymnast, everything LOOKS like work." Again, I don't agree and I'll refer you to Maloney. Nothing against her, but to me, she is the definition of a gymnast who was NOT light on her feet. (Esp. if you look at a beam routine from '98, or look at her Geinger on bars, or her many pirouetting and toe-on skills on bars, and most especially her full-in layout dismount off of bars, in which she always looks like she just barely pulled it around and kinda of "plops" down on the map). Bross gets good height, especially on her back layout step-out on beam, Arabian on beam, Tchatchev and Jaeger on bars and have you SEEN her double-twisting front on floor?! HUGE!

I also read where someone on the IG Forum said that he/she didn't think Bross belonged at WOGA but again, I disagree. I think she's well-suited for WOGA -- she is serious about her gymnastics and she understands that work that is required to be great. She wants the sternness and structure of WOGA and doesn't need a sugar-coated coach like Mary Lee Tracy (not that I don't like MLT!!).

Now could Bross use some polishing? Sure. I think that, overall, she could stand to loosen up in competition and trust her training. I also think that her hands and finger positions could be improved. And some more dance training would benefit her. I think her choreography is terrific, but I don't think she's 100% comfortable performing it. But she hits 180 degree splits, points her toes and keeps her legs straight.


But please, not everyone (in fact, hardly anyone) has the body of Nastia Liukin. Who can you think of in the last 30 years who had a body like that and was successful in more than just one or two World Championships? And if the gymnast did at one point have that body type, how did she look after puberty? Please, let's not be mean to Bross because of her genetics. No, she does not have straight, hyper-extended legs, but what she does have is a lot of muscle, and I believe, heart.

P.S. I also don't really appreciate this blogger's remarks on Bross's father. Please? Can we leave the girl alone? Thanks.

Bross -- I love ya!

I'd also like to note that even though I am using Maloney as an example here, I really admire her for surviving the first year of Karolyi camps and all the politics, grinning & bearing it through multiple injuries and also having a tremendously successful collegiate career.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Nastia's big announcement

She now has a clothing line for girls.

Not exactly the announcement I was hoping for, but not bad either...

Thursday, February 4, 2010

2010 American Cup lineup announced

Ariella Kaeslin -- Switzerland

Rebecca Bross --U.S.

Dominique Pegg -- Canada

Elsa Garcia -- Mexico

Yuko Shintake -- Japan

Claudia Voicu -- Romania

Elisabeth Seitz -- Germany

A second U.S. gymnast will be added to the lineup between now and March 6.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

She might drive me insane...

I just read this interview with new mom, Shannon Miller.


Is it just me, or is she a total control freak? I think she might drive me nuts if she was my mom, or even roommate.


Nothing against her gymnastics though. Wonderful. In my top 10. :)

Tuesday, February 2, 2010


The more I've been watching gymnastics lately, the more I'm kind of getting miffed that things (i.e. rules) are not more standardized. I mean, gymnasts basically give up their entire youth to dedicate it to their sport. And it seems like, depending on what era it has been throughout history, results could have been drastically different than they are.

Let's take the '89-'92 Quad. Well, you didn't have to nail two vaults in the all-around because you got to drop your lowest score. Good thing, since gymnasts like Onodi fell on one of them in the '92 Olympic AA (I know she wasn't going to win an AA medal, but still...). And, by the same token, good thing in the '06-08 Quad, Nastia didn't need two different vaults like gymnasts did in the '97-'00 Quad, or she might have been screwed.

And in the '89-'92 Quad, even if your difficulty hypothetically went over a 10.0, if you made a big enough mistake, it didn't matter. Risk did not necessarily = reward. Look at Kim Gwang Suk's uneven bar routine in event finals. (Why this didn't at least get a bronze, btw, is beyond me). (The fact that she was prob. underage aside).

And, I mean, technically, it's always been the rule that pirouettes on uneven bars should end in handstand. But this was never enforced until '06. Well, gee, that sure did come in handy for the 5 previous years for the Romanians. In fact, form in general was conveniently ignored for a good while, at least as compared to the degree to which it's considered important now.

And what about ties? In '92 they were allowed, and there were several. If memory serves me, wasn't there a 3-way tie for bronze on FX. WTF? Now, we go to obscure tie-breaking means, as in Beijing with Nastia & He Kexin. But had that been 16 years earlier, a tie would have been no big deal! And why is it that when there's a tie for say, second place (back in the day when ties were allowed), there's no bronze medal given? There's still technically someone whose score was third-best and it's not her fault that the 2 of the 3 people above her tied. Someone is getting screwed out of receiving a medal. And remember the days when falling meant losing the chance of winning a medal? Well, no more since Shanshan won a medal at the '07 Worlds and Cheng Fei won bronze on vault in Beijing. But, if the rules had allowed such things in the past, then who knows, Mo Huilan may have won a medal in the AA in Sabae at the '95 Worlds! Even minuscule obscure rules like I think in '95 at National level competition, gymnasts got .1 bonus for doing 2 different vaults. And what about the Phelps vault, the thing I abhor more than any other skill... no one really enforced the layout position (deducting for pike), nor did anyone pay attention to the twisting direction! IG had a good write up on this in '97 or '98, in which they concluded that, depending on the direction in which the gymnast twists, it could be considered two different vaults, and that technically, Amanar was the only one performing it correctly! Did no one care about rules?!

Arg, it's just frustrating how arbitrary some things can be.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Just throwing this out there...

As I re-watched the 2008 Olympic team finals, it might be easy to throw the bulk of the blame on A-Sac that the U.S. lost the gold.



At second glance, look at the 2007 Worlds. We won the gold here without Shawn's Amanar, and with two mishaps on beam, one from Shawn and one from Nastia. When you look at things in that light, I think you have to forgive A-Sac. She hit as well as Nastia and Shawn in prelims in '08, and hit in '07 when both of them didn't. It's amazing we won the gold in '07. As a whole, we looked better in '08. We got really lucky, and the Chinese were not as good in '07. Just sayin'....

And would someone please, please explain to me how Emilie LePennec not only won the gold on UB in '04, but how she even had a 10.0 SV. BS!!!


Not cool, Em.