The No. 1 Gymnastics Podcast in the Galaxy

166: Aliya was like Nu-uh Rodionenkos!

Daria Spiridonova shapash
2015 Russian Cup All-Around Champion, Daria Spiridonova (RUS, 57.1)


WHAT: Elevate of The Stage:  Xcel, J.O., with Auburn vs. Alabama dual meet finale
WHEN: January 16-17, 2016
WHERE: Legacy Arena at the BJCC in Birmingham, Alabama
SPECIALNESS: It’s on podium and the college coaches will watch the top levels on Saturday night.

  • $250 off of a gym’s registration (20 or more gymnasts) to compete in the JO meet and no team Fees.
  • Four VIP passes to watch the college meet on the floor, access to hospitality and four free t-shirts.
    ***With this the winner will have to be someone 18 or older because recruitable gymnasts can’t be on the floor during college meet competition (blame the NCAA rules).


  1. Like us on Facebook
  2. Send us an email with the subject line “Elevate the Stage” to

DEADLINE: Sunday, October 18th
More details on the Elevate the Stage podium meet here.

In the News

In the news, Lauren Hopkins, Uncle Tim, and Jessica chat about:

  • The Russian Cup
    • Maria Paseka’s Cheng is getting better and better! We think she’ll be on the podium in Glasgow. 
    • Alla Sosnitskaya won bars but it was actually Viktoria Komova who had the highest bars score of the meet!
    • Ksenia Afanasyeva did choreography that was so lazy, it rivaled the epic Zero-F*^*s-Given floor routine from Tatiana Nabieva last year.
    • The provisional world team and Aliya Mustafa putting Valentina Rodionenko in her place by saying”I will decide if I complete on the basis of my health.”
    • Denis Ablyzian put Ri Se Gwan on notice with the most insane tsuk-full-in of all time. 
  • Osijek World Cup
    • Manrique did not do well and it’s a world-wide tragedy.
    • Paula Mejias, Danell Leyva’s teammate at Universal in Miami, triumphed from her vault disaster at the Pan Am Games. 
    • Jade Barbosa, grandmother of Brazilian gymnastics, did an absolutely, stunningly solid, wonderful beam routine.
    • Ruby Harold burned the bars to the ground with her sheer awesomeness!
    • Igor Radivilov’s neck tattoo continues to slightly inhibit his landing ability on vault.
    • We discuss the need for , pommel horse winner, Louis Smith to harness the power of his D.
  • Chinese World Team
    • Bai Yawen is not on the team and Jessica refuses to talk about it.
    • As of this recording it was Fan Yilin, Huang Huidan, Mao Yi, Shang Chunsong, Tan Jiaxin, Wang Yan with alternate Chen Siyi. 
    • Tan Jiaxin did an Amanar that terrified the world
    • Mao Yi fell on a Moors and was knocked unconscious during her routine. 
    • Shang Chunsong won the all-around and why we think she has a good shot at the podium in Scotland.
    • Defending bars silver medalist, Huang Huidan, struggled on her best event. 
  • German National Championships
    • Head coach Koch is calling aa champ Elisabet Seitz, Pauline Schäfer and Sophie Scheder, “The Hambüchens” and we don’t know how we feel about that. 
    • Pauline Tratz wore a technicolor dream coat leotard that either thrilled and/or burned our eyes out.


Our weekly roundup of the latest news stories from around the gymternet include:

  • Marvin Sharp died in jail, initial reports say it was suicide.
    • Is Coach Rick right — if female coaches take more leadership roles in gymnastics, will less men mean fewer incidents of sexual abuse?
    • Is a massive lawsuit like the one faced by the Catholic Church force gyms and USA Gymnastics to make Safe4Athletes mandatory for every club?
  • You can help Lisa Mason continue to train.  Lisa currently travels over 600 miles a week! That’s an average of $200/week in gasHELP LISA HERE
  • Simone Biles gave the world a full camp update with scores and gave such an epic Snapchat that it skipped meme-dome and became a t-shirt.
  • The Cure of Wolf Turn-Itis: Please take note, there are now two official GymCastic approved ways to acceptable exit from a wolf turn:
    1. The Melnikova –Step up into an immedate double turn
    2. The Chayse Capps — drop into pron position like a python about to devour the beam

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Contest Winners

The Gymnasi-Cat Naming Contest

WINNER! Rainey gets to choose one of these two fabulous, adult small, P&G Championship prizes.

Cat Name Prizes


Runner Up
Screen Shot 2015-09-21 at 3.59.03 PM

The now legendary, Lil’ Kim-Z MouseKill
Kim Z Mouse Kill

Pauline Tratz rainbow leotard
Pauline Tratz (GER) and her Technicolor Dream Leo

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Alix Slatter
Alix Slatter
8 years ago

This episode is unlistenable. You don’t need to do a course in BBC Received Pronunciation to be understandable but it would help people hear if you could hold back on the catty sniggering and contain your need to slip in the bitchy comments.
Your canning of Afanasyeva and the usual character assassinations of the Russians was over the top when you consider that they are a team that usually takes medals at Worlds It’s all a bit unprofessional really; I know it’s supposed to be fun, but couldn’t you do it so that your listeners can enjoy it too?

Alix Slatter
Alix Slatter
8 years ago
Reply to  GymCasticCrew

You can be funny without disrespecting someone’s efforts. You need to learn some respect. Afan and Nabs are World Champions. This episode was rude.
Effort isn’t factored into the CoP. Ask Ksyusha was she making an effort. Effort isn’t a sporting argument, it’s a moral one. The Russians are not the Americans. Thank the Lord. One day America will crash and burn. Russia or Romania or China will rise. People will ask, why the hell Biles should win with bent legs stiff shoulders and enthusiasm. Gym is not tumbling. Tumblers compete in acro. americans see things one way, their own. You are sooooo parochial.

Jack Matheson
Jack Matheson
8 years ago

Hearing American commentators ridicule Russian choreography is laughable. I’ve heard these same commentators praise Simone’s dance. Your credibility is lost.

Nick Mann
Nick Mann
8 years ago

Does anyone know if Bridget Sloan or Sam Peszek have said anything about Marvin Sharp?

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