GYMN-L Digest - 4 Jul 1996 to 5 Jul 1996
There are 14 messages totalling 530 lines in this issue.
Topics of the day:
1. Karolyi's gyms sold et al
2. Dawes Photo in Toronto Star (2)
3. photos in "American Photo"
4. The Olympic Trials @ Bostons Fleet Center (2)
5. Congress RSG report
6. Bill Foster & reality
7. .Re: Olympic Trials Question
8. self censorship on the list (2)
10. Trivia Questions Needed: COMPULSORIES
11. Bill Foster and reality
Date: Thu, 4 Jul 1996 15:29:18 -0700
Subject: Re: Karolyi's gyms sold et al
I understand that the gym sold for around $400,000. In addition, as
last I heard the Karolyi's took about 1/4 of the equipment to their
ranch. The replacement cost of the equipment is around $75,000 and
depending on the standards of the new owner there is as much as
$100,000 in renovation work needed to turn the gymn into a top
This is the capital cost. One must also remember their are a lot of
other costs once you own it. Such as: utilities (big space = big
heating and air conditioning bills), insurance, salaries for coaches,
return on investment for owners (remember that $500,000 or so that you
put in could be earning 10 to 15% annual return on investment in a safe
Date: Fri, 28 Jun 1996 11:09:31 -0400
Subject: Dawes Photo in Toronto Star
Well I got a pleasant surprise reading the Toronto Star newspaper
this morning to find a picture of Dominique Dawes in the sports section.
She is shown, in b&w, putting on her grips, with the following caption:
TAPE PROTECTION: U.S. gymnast Dominique Dawes tapes up her wrists
yesterday in preparation for practice on the uneven bars at the U.S.
Olympic trials in Boston, where she is the favorite.
There was no article accompanying this, but I was pleasantly
surprised to see this. I assume that since it says she's the "favourite"
that "they" know that DomM and Shannon are out? (although I'd say she's
the USA's best regardless of who's in the field).
Can't wait to watch the meet tomorrow and Sunday!
Date: Thu, 4 Jul 1996 18:39:22 -0400
Subject: Re: Dawes Photo in Toronto Star
Speaking of pleasant surprises, I opened up the Milwaukee Journal/
Sentennal (sp) last Saturday, and what am I greated with? The main
photo on page one is an absolutely GORGEOUS photo of Jaycie Phelps
during her compulsory beam set, caught mid-spilt leap, showing off
toe point, straight legs and height. It was followed by a caption
that led to the story on page three. On page three, there was a small
photo of Dom. Dawes during her comp beam set, too.
And on Monday, there was another (smaller) photo of Kerri Strug
and Bela on page one, where the story began. It jumped inside. The
men also received a front-page photo of John Roethlisberger, I
believe on Sunday.
Nice to see gymnastics getting front page coverage.
On the other side, another local newspaper, the Racine Journal, gave
the women's final results a 2 by 4 inch article. Which basically said
nothing. The Racine journal is a smaller more local paper, but I really
would have liked to have known the reasoning behind that, given that
they normally give good coverage to smaller sports...
Date: Thu, 4 Jul 1996 17:50:36 -0400
Subject: photos in "American Photo"
In the special collector's edition of "American Photo", there are some
beautiful colour shots. Shown on a double-page is Nadia and friends at
the 1980 Moscow Olympic Games, one full page photo of Olga on FX at
Munich, a b & w shot of Istvan Pelle of Hungary on pommel horse taken at
the 1932 LA Games, full page photo of MRL's compulsory vault in LA and,
from the back, the three Soviet all-around men's medallists from Seoul,
Date: Thu, 4 Jul 1996 20:32:00 -0400
Subject: The Olympic Trials @ Bostons Fleet Center
I had the pleasure of attending all four days of the gymnastics Olympic
Trials at the fleet center in Boston and I have a few comments. First of all,
it was so incredible seeing everyone live, I think that gymnasts look soooo
much smaller in real life than they do on tv :-) First of all, I think that
the whole compulsary thing counting 60% is absolutely rediculous! I mean they
are all watered down fairly simple routines, and obviously the athletes can
all do them in there sleep. The judges give the high scores to the athletes
that are the most known and popular, it is soooo obvious. Did you see
Dominique Dawes bar routine in compulsaries ? ? She got the highest score in
the world and she like didn't even hit the handstands. Amy Chow on the other
hand had an absolutely flawless compulsary bar routine, and they gave her a
much lower score (?) go figure. Sometimes I wonder just what goes through the
minds of the judges. Second of all, I am sooo sick of reading some of gym-L
members ripping Amy Chow apart. First of all, she is absolutely AWESOME. Who
the hell cares about how she dances, her tumbling passes rocked the house. I
would like to see how many of the 14 that made it to the trials do a front
through to a tripple full on floor, a standing full and rulfova on beam, and
a double double off bars! Sorry, but I cant believe these comments comparing
her beam routine to Jayce and Amanda Borden ? ? ? ? Their routines are
NOTHING compared to Amy's, sorry. I cant deal with these cheap front tucks on
beam, and they all do them to get a D value skill, I bet that that move is
going to be one of the first to be downgraded in the new code after Atlanta.
If you think about it, the people that made the team arent really the BEST
athletes in the US, they just happen to have a lucky day that day. I mean
Amanda Borden is the most inconsistent gymnast I have ever seen. Her beam
routine at the trials was amazing, however I felt it was totally a lucky one.
She ALWAYS manages to fail on some event at major competitions. Also,
Dominique failed at the 92 olympics, at the 93 worlds, then AGAIN at the 94
worlds on the EXACT SAME MOVE! I will say that Dominique has gotten much more
consistent and confident over the past few years and she will be a great
addition to the US team, as will Shannon Miller. Kerri Strug has come a long
way, and it was great to see her back and on top of the world, but those
layouts on beam.....she HAS GOT TO STRaiten her legs!!!!!!!!!!!! she is in
desperate need of form on beam. Also, her vault, you cant tell from the side,
but I saw it from a different angle when I was there, when she does the
backhandspring onto the horse, her legs are a foot apart! I was psyched to
see Dominique Dawes do a double layout on floor! Great tumbling from her! I
like that she does more back tumbling than front. I also think that Kristy
Powell is absolutely AWESOME. Her difficulty was amazing, double layout on
floor, rulfova on beam, one and a half twist yurchenko vault. She is
definately WAY BETTER than Amanda Borden and Jayce for petes sake!!!!!! She
just happen to have some uncharacteristic falls, lets not forget that she WON
the American cup. I mean I admit that failures have won before like Betty and
Kim, but she is really good. The point is I totally dont think that they
should base our olympic team on one meet, they should take the average scores
of like nationals, and other major competitions. Anyone can have a bad day.
Okay, now for the men. Although they were somewhat
humiliating, they were exciting to watch, but I still say that they will
definately be blown away by Russia, Belarus and China. Blaine, John R. ,
absolutely AWESOME, John Macready, Mihai, pretty good, Chris Waller, Scott,
humiliating comes to mind. I couldn't believe Chris, I watched him in
warmups, he was like swearing "F*ck" if he took a step on a landing and
throwing his shoes across the room, he struck me as a very vein and
disturbed, angry athlete. I thought his attitude was hurrendously
unacceptable, especially when young children were there looking up to him as
a hero and role model. Although truthfully I dont think the US men have a
chance at a team medal because most are inconsistent and the difficulty level
in their routines is not nearly enough to compete with several other
countries previously mentioned, however I think that John and Blaine have a
chance at the all around, and event finals.
Is anyone else absolutely in LOVE with Elfi Shlegal? I absolutely love her as
a comentator, I think she absolutely rules! I love when she's mean, shes a
riot! Did anyone hear her voice immitation of Bela? I died laughing when I
heard it. Tim is the most annoying bastard ever, he is definately ugglier
than my ass and his voice is sooooooo annoying! Well, thats all for now *
Date: Thu, 4 Jul 1996 14:39:11 +0000
Subject: Congress RSG report
Here are some RSG highlights during the USA Congress and Olympic
1. RE: Dr. Andrea Schmid's RSG Congress Session on RSG Trends for
Year 2000. Sorry folks, believe me I had planned to attend this
session but was unaware that it was held Wednesday 6/26. I did not
arrive in Boston until the 27th. If anyone attended that session,
please provide highlights to enlighten those that were not able to
2. RE: International RSG Symposium report by Dr.'s Balague and
Bernardot. Both doctors are involved in monitoring the health and
well-being of the national team RSG gymnasts-both individual and
group. During the 1996 Budapest Worlds, Dr. Bernardot reported that
the US team(group) was the happiest, healthiest, and most well adjusted of all
the groups in competition there. BTW, the first day of group
competition(3 balls 2 hoops) the US group fell apart towards the end
of their exercise and finished 21st(if I remember correctly) out of
25 groups. The second day however, they surprised everyone in
attendance by doing well in their 5 hoops exercise finishing 10th!
They managed to beat China and France(2 Olympic qualifiers).
Overall, the US group finished 16th-not bad for a relatively new
group with very little international experience.
The reputation of RSG and its link with the disorder anorexia nervosa
was brought up during this session. In Budapest for example, 2
Russian group gymnasts had to wear T-shirts underneath their leotards
to keep their ribs from showing. A French gymnast also was reported
to show the classic signs of the disorder.
To quote Dr. Bernardot in his report: "It is upsetting to see women
destroying a sport they created in order to live up to an unrealistic
and unhealthy ideal". He was even amazed that after the US group
performed their hoops exercise Maria Guigova-head of Bulgaria's RSG
program came up to the US delegation and commented that she was
surprised at how the US group was so good.
3. Anyone catch ESPN's coverage of the RSG trials held at the Wang
Center for the Performing Arts in Boston. What a venue!!! RSG
performed on a stage in a theater environment-how very dramatic.
Jessica Davis performed very well during the final day to win the
only spot for Atlanta/Athens. Not that she had much competition.
With her main rival Natalie Lacuesta out with a stress fracture
injury, Davis had to contend with Lauri Illy, Tina Tharp, Liriel
Higa, and Alicia Albe. The biggest treat of the day was Tina Tharp
who evoked Mila Marinova flashbacks--no surprise here since she is
coached by the great Marinova herself. She even used the same bluesy
music for her rope routine that Marinova used for her hoop. Tharp
also benefited from the other Bulgarian tradition of passing down
skills--inheriting Marinova's signature ribbon flick by bending the
ribbon stick and using the reflex action to toss it off her head.
Unfortunately she finished this exercise not in contact with her
apparatus and was deducted accordingly.
No doubt Tharp's goal was to make the alternate spot. Her final
score however could not beat Lacuesta's petitioned score so Lacuesta
got the coveted 2nd place.
3. Another highlight of RSG Congress was the Get Up and Going
Sessions created to encourage the development and growth of RSG
programs at the club level. The number of participants during these
sessions was very encouraging showing the continued growth of
interest in the sport. Hopefully the increased coverage of RSG in
the Olympics as promised by NBC will serve to fuel this interest and
educate the public about the viability of the sport.
See you all in Atlanta!
Date: Thu, 4 Jul 1996 21:49:13 +0000
Subject: Re: The Olympic Trials @ Bostons Fleet Center
John Sullivan <ACROKID473@AOL.COM> wrote:
(but could have just written his last sentence:
Well, thats all for now *
for all his rantings are worth!
I can't say how long you have been in this sport, but your
description sounds like you might have better spent your time during
ther men's competition and the racetrack, the ball field, or maybe
even just stuck in traffic. To say that any of these wonderful
athletes are humiliating bespeaks your ignorance of their hard work
and sacrifice and desire to be among the best in the country, if not
It's been said that the pressure at the Trials by far surpasses that
at the Games themselves. In fact, one could feel it, just being in
the arena. Those of us keeping score (the scoreboard was a whole
rotation behind), could see the pressure building on those athletes
who were dropping out of contention. To make the Olympic Team is a
dream only a few will ever complete, and to attack any athlete with
such negatives as "humiliating" is to demean yourself by broadcasting
your lack of understanding of the meaning of such a goal, rather than
to deman that athlete. And why is it vane to be upset with
yourself for taking a step and giving up a tenth in the battle of your
athletic life? Just what gives you the right to call any of
these men "humilitating?" What have you contributed to the USA's
Maybe you should stick to making evaluations of the quality of our TV
commentators. And while you're at it, there are young people reading
and writing on this list, so you ought to watch your speech,
especially when you are in an unpressured situation like sitting at
home where you can comfortably choose your words.
As for me, I applaud all fourteen of the athletes who qualified and
competed in the Olympic Trials, as well as those who competed at the
USA Championships in Knoxville, TN and did not make the cut off. I am
not at all embarassed by any of them, in fact I think they all did a
great job, better than I could have done at any time in my gymnastics
And when our Men's team competes in Atlanta, I'll be there watching
for them to win a medal, and hoping we hit every routine.
> Okay, now for the men. Although they were somewhat
> humiliating, they were exciting to watch, but I still say that they will
> definately be blown away by Russia, Belarus and China. Blaine, John R. ,
> absolutely AWESOME, John Macready, Mihai, pretty good, Chris Waller, Scott,
> humiliating comes to mind. I couldn't believe Chris, I watched him in
> warmups, he was like swearing "F*ck" if he took a step on a landing and
> throwing his shoes across the room, he struck me as a very vein and
> disturbed, angry athlete. I thought his attitude was hurrendously
> unacceptable, especially when young children were there looking up to him as
> a hero and role model. Although truthfully I dont think the US men have a
> chance at a team medal because most are inconsistent and the difficulty level
> in their routines is not nearly enough to compete with several other
> countries previously mentioned, however I think that John and Blaine have a
> chance at the all around, and event finals.
> Is anyone else absolutely in LOVE with Elfi Shlegal? I absolutely love her as
> a comentator, I think she absolutely rules! I love when she's mean, shes a
> riot! Did anyone hear her voice immitation of Bela? I died laughing when I
> heard it. Tim is the most annoying bastard ever, he is definately ugglier
> than my ass and his voice is sooooooo annoying! Well, thats all for now *
Date: Thu, 4 Jul 1996 23:15:02 -0400
Subject: Re: Bill Foster & reality
One thing that cannot be ignored is that Lori Forster is the beam
coach and she was there to greet and comfort Theresa after her routine.
Date: Thu, 4 Jul 1996 23:50:43 -0400
Subject: .Re: Olympic Trials Question
In response to Jennifer's question as to how Kristy Powell's floor
score could be so low (8.35), the problem lies in her Start Value.
Her counting difficulty for her value parts are her Double Layout(E), Full
in(D), Wolf Jump Full(C), Front Full (D) and turn and a half (B or C
depending on leg height). She needs all these skills to count as her value
parts. Value Parts in Competition III are 2 B's, 1C and 2D's. Since she fell
on her front handspring full (which she had already done previously in the
routine) the last pass does not count.
She therefore has no D or E Bonus. She also has no combination bonus since
the last pass was suppose to include a front full/front layout. This pass
would have had .3 in bonus however, the fall after the front fulll eliminated
this possibility. She is then missing some special requirements. One is a 2
salto pass. The deduction for this is .1. She also does not have 3
different saltos in an acrobatic series. Remember an acrobatic series is
defined as three fast flight elements including a salto. This deduction is
also .1. Lastly she does not have a D dismount. This requirement must be in
a series. Her last series (because of the fall) becomes her acro gym
series.This was a round off, jump half turn into a flyspring. This series
does not include a D which also is a .1 penalty. Her Start Value is
therefore 9.4 minus .3 in Special requirements which is a 9.1. When you
include the fall her score now an 8.6. Since her score was an 8.35 this
means only 2.5 was taken in other execution, rhythm and compositional errors.
MD State Judging Director
Date: Fri, 5 Jul 1996 03:54:36 GMT
Subject: self censorship on the list
concerning R's comments on 'positive thoughts'-
No, I'm not offended, but I do think asking strangers to limit their
comments to 'positive thoughts' on a public listing is not just
inappropriate, but also somewhat insulting. I have no responsibility to
anyone to present any particular image, as long as the listings I make are
not hurtful or maliciously offensive. IMHO, turning this list into a
gung-ho, jingoistic, America 1st at all costs diatribe is exactly what the
world of gymnastic discussion and critisism does NOT need. You never
encourage the solving of problems by trying to side step them or cover them
up. I would never suggest you self-censor, please allow me the same
I do find it interesting that so many people would writeoff Miller in
exchange for Moceanu in the team line-up. One of them is a 2 TIME WORLD ALL
AROUND CHAMPION, FORMER WORLD BARS, BEAM, AND FLOOR CHAMPION, AND A 5 TIME
OLYMPIC MEDALIST. The other hasn't competed in a year, and has never won an
international competition of any kind. A find it a very weak comparison.
Date: Fri, 5 Jul 1996 00:51:38 -0400
Subject: Re: self censorship on the list
I happen to have been in the same session that Robin was referring to in her
comments. I must completely agree with her. In our open society we open
ourselves up to all sorts of scrutiny that other countries are not obligated
to deal with. I have not read of many people on here from the former Soviet
countries, Roumania or China singing the praises or passages of their
countries athletes. Why can't we, as Americans, only speak of the excellent
teams that we are sending to Atlanta rather than speak of ANYTHING negative?
Why can't we inform the world that we are looking great and intend to win
>No, I'm not offended, but I do think asking strangers to limit their
>comments to 'positive thoughts' on a public listing is not just
>inappropriate, but also somewhat insulting. I have no responsibility to
>anyone to present any particular image, as long as the listings I make are
>not hurtful or maliciously offensive. IMHO, turning this list into a
>gung-ho, jingoistic, America 1st at all costs diatribe is exactly what the
>world of gymnastic discussion and critisism does NOT need. You never
>encourage the solving of problems by trying to side step them or cover them
>up. I would never suggest you self-censor, please allow me the same
Date: Fri, 5 Jul 1996 01:19:11 -0400
I really don't understand why anyone truly believes Dominique Moceanu is not
an asset on the US team in Atlanta or should not qualify for AA. Her results
speak for themselves guys. She was 3ed at US Nationals in the AA (Remember
the top 3 per country will qualify to AA), less than a year ago she was THE
BEST IN THE COUNTRY, and putting he nationals scores in at trials she is
ranked second in the US (even with her problems on bars).Most importantly
though, she is currently ranked 5th in the world. FIFTH!!!! She was better
than 31 of the other AA performers in Sabae, most of who will be the same AA
competitors in Atlanta.. Also, someone said they didn't think Moceanu should
compete Beam or Floor. Ok, recall again Sabae (World Championships host the
SAME gymnasts that will be in the Olympics) she qualified to the Event Finals
on BB and FX and earned a silver on BB. What is that then? I mean, are u
guys just saying this cause you hate her or why? What justifies it? One more
thing, Moceanu's quote "I've been training my whole life for this" is true,
She has. And I think these are the words of a kid who has very high
expectations of herself, and is speaking in her own words, about the way she
actually feels. If u were the best in the US less than a year ago, and this
unfortunate injury, came at the most unforgiving time, can u actually say you
wouldn't feel the same way this she is. After you're the best, anything less
is a dissappointment.Shannon Miller can tell you that. Any 14 year old would
feek that way. She's only human. And, though sad 1996 may be her only shot.
Her coach is retiring (sold his gym). Maybe she will not work with another
coach. The way she sees it this is "her olympics". Finally, how can anyone
even think this is a sceme she and Bela worked up. Why is everyone trying to
make Dominique and Bela such bad people in this. From what Bela said, and
his emotions towards Dom in the NBC piece at trials, this is BREAKING HIS
HEART. I don't know how he can look at the emptiness in this little girl,
who as he said "always thinks there's sunshine at the top of the mountain",
and tell her it'll all be all right. She's not stupid. What have Bela and
Dominique done that makes them the enemy? I truly believe at this time we
should be supporting all our US gymnasts for our common goal, not go out to
hurt them. Why would we try to ruin our own athletes? Why would we kill one
of our own soldiers at war?
I really stress that I am not criticizing anyone or directing this at anyone.
I do not want to start an uproar. I just don't understand. Any comments are
HURRY BACK DOMINIQUE!
Date: Fri, 5 Jul 1996 01:35:09 -0400
Subject: Trivia Questions Needed: COMPULSORIES
Love 'em or hate 'em, it will soon be time to say goodbye to our old buddies,
the Compulsories (at least at the elite/world level). I thought it would be
nice to send them off in honor with their very own Trivia Quiz For Prizes.
So, Gymners one and all (yes, YOU!) send me your questions today (or Saturday
at the latest).
Remember, via private e-mail to ***@aol.com.
Date: Fri, 5 Jul 1996 01:55:51 -0400
Subject: Bill Foster and reality
On July 4, Jeff writes:
<<<Well, I for one am happy to finally find out that a reality is defined>>>
<<<as being only one's own opinion. Although I offered up the possibility>>>
<<<that Tom Forster had his head down out of disappointment FOR his girls,>>>
<<<I would like to point out, yet again, that we spectators are free to>>>
<<<form opinions on coaches as we would on politicians, movie stars et
<<<and that if I were a parent (which would make me one of those worthless>>>
<<<spectators) that I would be disgusted if my daughter had just had her>>>
<<<heart broken in the trials but her coach wasn't there to comfort her>>>
<<<because he was having a hissy fit.>>>
While I appreciate that you accept my opinion as reality, I would caution
against accepting ANY opinion as reality.
I will try to reiterate the point. The mechanics of what goes on between a
coach and an athlete are very complex. Every athlete has a different reaction
to the stress of competition; most just want to be left alone to sort out
their own feelings after they have had a big miss. They are ready to listen
to you later. If you intrude upon that need, then YOU ARE DOING WHAT MAKES
YOU FEEL GOOD, not what is best for the gymnast. Its very hard, as a coach,
to come to the realization that there is NOTHING that you can do for the
gymnast at the competition. When things go wrong, it is the most
frustrating, helpless feeling that I have ever had. The emotional reaction
of the coach is the disappointment FOR an athlete who has done everything
within his/her power to succeed and has come up short, combined with
disappointment in his/her own inability to "fix" things for this very special
I don't care about your opinions or deny your right to hold opinions that I,
personally, believe are totally unfounded. However, I do care about the
publicly posted mean-spirited and viscious attacks upon Tom Forster, or any
other coach. These attacks unnecessarily defame people based upon unfounded
opinions drawn from outside observations and gossip, not fact. These coaches
End of GYMN-L Digest - 4 Jul 1996 to 5 Jul 1996