The No. 1 Gymnastics Podcast in the Galaxy

280: Comeback Season!




  • Check out the behind the scenes video from a unicorn of gymnastics, concurrent elite and college gymnast, New Zealand/Boise State’s Courtney McGregor.
  • It’s comeback season!
  • NCAA news
    • Bailie Key is back and beaming for Alabama
    • Madison Kocian had successful labrum surgery
    • Sabrina Schwab has medically retired
    • Maggie Nichols and Kyla Ross are still pulling out new tricks because of badassdom
  • Mixed gender gymnastics
    • Is mixed-gender team competition the future of gymnastics? We discuss the merits of the mixed team format at the Swiss Cup.
    • Kenzo is the greatest uneven bars worker of our day
    • The #manbeamwar is in full swing!
  • Trigger warning section
    • Larry Nassar’s trial will not be moved. Plus, his child porn charges cannot be used in the assault trial. Is this horrible or normal law things?
    • Tatiana Gutsu went on a Russian TV show, spoke about her rape in detail, and was treated horribly. She is the bravest ever.


  • What really happened with the redo vaults in 2000
  • The truth about Raducan and Amanar’s positive tests in 2000, and what we’re going to do about it!
  • Other gymnasts who could potentially “Ray” (perform three eponymous skills in the same routine)
  • Thoughts for making floor exercise less sexist
  • More ideas for how to fix worlds
  • Why we’re wrong for wanting to move worlds out of Doha


This week’s show is brought to you by RxBar. For 25% off your first order, visit and enter promo code gymcastic at checkout.


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Todd Seval
Todd Seval
6 years ago

About Kyla Ross: Are there limits on how high you can raise the bar in elite? I know you can only spread them so wide. Maybe they didn\’t raise the bar for her because they couldn\’t. Also, what interview did they say why she stopped doing the double layout? The last one she did before switching to the double front didn\’t look bad at all. I always wondered if they only switched it because they were anticipating that she would start having problems with it vs. her actually having problems with it.

6 years ago
Reply to  Todd Seval

There is a special allowance for raising the bar in elite. If when hanging on the high bar, the coach can pull the gymnasts down (thereby bending the high bar like you would when tapping) and their toes touch the mat, the bar can be raised. It’s very simple. No one knows why Kyla’s coaches or Marta didn’t do this when she was an elite.

6 years ago
Reply to  GymCasticCrew

I thought if you raised the bar in elite, you must also raise the low bar the same amount. It\’s possible that her coaches didn\’t raise the bar because her feet weren\’t touching the floor and it would have made no difference. I think what really happened at UCLA is that they spread the bars further apart. In elite, there is a limit to how far apart the bars can be spread but in NCAA and JO, they are allowed to be spread further apart. Here is an instagram post where her coach congratulates Kyla on her transition to the \”far\” setting. They might not have changed the height of the bar at all but they did move them further apart.

Todd Seval
Todd Seval
6 years ago

Ninety-six artistic gymnasts compete in the Olympics so worlds is already only for or five times as big as the Olympics. How tiny do people want worlds to be? Running a competition for four to five hundred athletes isn\’t stretching anyone\’s planning capabilities. You want a world championships with two or three hundred gymnasts or something? Why does that level of participation deserve 96 spots in the Olympics?

6 years ago

Another issue with having worlds in Qatar is their use of the forced labour of migrant workers (i.e. slavery).

Qatar has denied human rights to thousands of workers building the (ironically named) Aspire Zone in Doha, where FIG has chosen to host Worlds. Qatar has very recently made some reforms after international outcry, but that doesn’t change the years of abuses that have already happened (including some workers’ deaths).

Even if Qatar liberalizes laws and attitudes towards LGBTQ people in advance of the games (which seems unlikely), there are other compelling reasons not to go there.

6 years ago

I just had to see that Khorkina video – wow, that was odd. And so Khorkina 🙂

It’s horrible that Gutsu got treated so poorly on that show, but given how misogynistic Russian culture is towards women it’s hardly surprising, sad to say. I think she’s amazingly brave to come forward, and I applaud her courage to stand up for herself. Arkaev should be ashamed of himself for his reaction to her statement.

I love the idea of more fluidity when it comes to the apparatus and mixed genders. I’d also love an extra event at the Olympics for mixed pairs or a mixed team. I think there still should be a men’s team/individual competition and a women’s team/individual competition. Some countries either have a really strong men’s team but not a strong women’s team and vice versa, so if these were combined it would be detrimental to a strong program if their opposite gender counterparts weren’t as accomplished. But if they had an extra event for a mixed group it would also give some gymnasts who can’t make the artistic teams a chance to compete, especially now with the teams shrinking to only 4 athletes.

It’ll be interesting when the first transgender gymnast competes at the Olympic or World level – or has there already been one that I’m not aware of? I’d love to see men doing events like bars & beam. If those had been possibilities when I was a kid maybe I would have been a gymnast myself, instead of just a couch-surfing fan 🙂 Heck at 6’3 I might have been the male Khorkina, lol!

Julia Sharpe
Julia Sharpe
6 years ago

Thanks for the shout out in this episode! I really hope we can get to a point soon where all gymnastics events are open to everyone, regardless of gender. I just want to set the record straight: I pretty much stopped all gymnastics when I was about 10 weeks pregnant, which is well before you start showing. I continued strength workouts until a little over halfway through the pregnancy, always following the advice of my physician. The only thing I did at the end was 1 handstand walk and a few dips, both incredibly safe (considering my skill level) and easy on the joints.

PS: The name we settled on for competing all events is Gymnastics Decathlon, and the first official competition happened at NAIGC Nationals 2017.

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