The No. 1 Gymnastics Podcast in the Galaxy

Episode 43: The First Ever Panel on LGBT Issues in Gymnastics

Alicia Sacramone straight athlete ally with gay gymnasts Josh Dixon, Evan Heiter and coach Randy Lane
The first ever panel on LGBT issues in gymnastics. With (L-R) Evan Heiter, Randy Lane, straight ally Alicia Sacramone, Josh Dixon and “Trey”

Josh DixonEvan Heiter“Trey”Randy Lane and straight ally, Alicia Sacramone discuss being out in a judged sport, intervening to stop harassment, pressure to stay closeted or, in Trey’s case, being advised not to come out, whether or not Peter Vidmar should represent athletes, the mental competitive advantage of being “out,” finding love, how to be supportive of a gay teammate, being mentors and what not to do if you want a gay friend to come out to you. Alicia tells us why this topic is so important to her, enough that she broke her year-long media silence. Oh, and since the show is all about love, Alicia shared the story of her recent engagement. 🙂

For just a little taste, Evan’s sage advice for every parent who’s afraid gymnastics isn’t butch enough for their son, “The basis of motor development that he gets from gymnastics will make him a better football player. So, suck it up, watch him do a cartwheel and then score a touchdown. Because those two things go hand in hand.”

Jessica and Uncle Tim talk about gay rights history in sports, violence in Russia leading up to the Sochi Olympics in 2014, plead with the gay community to show “Trey” love, invent a LGBT Salute of Solidarity, a hand sign for fans and gymnasts to throw up in support of gay athletes (see photo below), and Jess explains why there are no lesbians on the show.

Screen Shot 2013-08-07 at 12.44.25 AM

The Greek letter lambda. Thow up the triangle to show your love for LGBT gymnasts.

If you appreciate the heroes for this movement, please let them know! Tweet to them, Josh Dixon is @JoshNDixon , Evan Heiter is @yoEv, Randy Lane is @coachrandylane, Alicia Sacramone at @ASac3. You can tweet to “Trey” by tweeting to us @GymCastic with the hashtag, #Trey. He’ll get the message.

This  special episode features three gymnasts from the current generation. Josh Dixon is a California native who competed on the 2009 NCAA Championship-winning Stanford team. He was the U.S. floor national champion in 2010 and competing in last year’s Olympic Trials. In 2012 he was the first ever American elite gymnast to come out while actively competing. You know Evan Heiter, he has been on our show before. He was a gymnast at the University of Michigan until retiring in 2010. Evan and teammate Ben Strauss made an It Gets Better video that is an absolute must see (below). The final panelist is “Trey” (not his real name) who chose to remain anonymous. He is a current U.S. international elite gymnast and multiple NCAA champion.

Randy Lane was a member of the 1989 University of Illinois NCAA championship-winning gymnastics team. He currently coaches at UCLA and is an Athlete Ally. Alicia Sacramone is a 10-time World Medalist and could totally kick your ass.

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Archie
Archie
8 years ago

It is super disrespectful to have Alicia on as a guest and then in her introduction reducing her medal count because you don’t agree with her final medal. Check USAG/FIG whatever websites, she has 10 medals. She received that 10th medal and many of her fans believe that she deserved that medal. It happened and not acknowledging it comes off as extremely contemptuous, especially in relation to how much this podcast has showered Anna Li with love.

R
R
8 years ago
Reply to  Archie

This has absolutely nothing to do with the webcast or the issue at hand. People like you try to point out “mistakes” like this to stir up trouble because you disagree with the subject matter. Your discomfort is showing.

DocMarten
8 years ago
Reply to  R

THANK YOU, R. This mean spirited bullshit is just that. Bullshit. Same kinda crap GGMB got because it’s founder is a LESBIAN. Big deal.

Archie
Archie
8 years ago
Reply to  R

Not true R… and that’s a pretty large assumption to make based off my comment. I fully support the topic of this episode and the discourse that this podcast encourages and brings to the forefront. The gay rights movement is a civil rights issue and just like other civil rights issues, no one should be discriminated against based on their race, religion, gender, or sexual orientation. Gay athletes in the major professional sports have become an increasingly hot topic and its nice to see gymnastics, which many consider a “glamour” sport, joining the conversation.

Judging from the comments the gymcastic account posted on twitter, I am hardly the only one who corrected their mistake. I (apparently incorrectly) thought that the gymcastics crew was trying to make a statement about the merit of Alicia’s 10th medal when she was hurt in Tokyo.

DocMarten
8 years ago
Reply to  Archie

Well, thank you for that. I’m sure the spelling was a mistake. Some of us stumble over the keyboard every now and then.

Heather
Heather
8 years ago

Also, if you can’t spell “first” or at least spellcheck your post, you can’t expect people to respect what you have to say.

DocMarten
8 years ago
Reply to  Heather

So what? You just don’t like the subject matter, do you?

J
J
8 years ago

Proofreading is awesome, but these comments are pretty mean-spirited! I just wanted to say thanks for tackling this topic. It so rarely gets discussed in gymnastics, and I’m so glad to see someone bringing it to the fore. These shows of support and openness go a long way in making young LGBT gymnasts feel more comfortable and welcome in their sport.

DocMarten
8 years ago

Thanks so much for this episode, you guys. It’s really appreciated! And so what, they made a mistake. And? This topic RARELY gets discussed as J said, so let’s give them an ovation for this gutsy move! Way to go, you guys.

Heather, Queen of Scots
Heather, Queen of Scots
8 years ago

The lesser Heather who posted above gives all Heathers a bad name.

Ryno5656
Ryno5656
8 years ago

Thanks to Gymcastic for even broaching this subject. I’m sending Trey and Josh all my love and support for nationals. I hope Trey knows that people are ready and waiting to show him love if he ever decides to come out publicly.

Mr Yang
Mr Yang
8 years ago

Thanks a lot for the article. Ignore the hatred.

PoisonedPizza
PoisonedPizza
8 years ago

I bow to you guys as a sign of respect and gratitude.
Thank you for being there for us.
GymCastic, Shantay you STAY!

Balabanov11
Balabanov11
8 years ago

Thank you so much for this discussion – it’s publically long overdue, especially in a sport with such a strong LGTB fan base. It’s indicative of how backward the sport still is when “Trey” still feels he needs to be closeted, when the LGTB community has never been more positive and visable. I hope this discussion eventually helps him become more comfortable with himself as a gay man.

Balabanov11
Balabanov11
8 years ago

And ftr, sacramone’s final medal IS completely bogus.

DocMarten
8 years ago

OK, where’s this USAG statement? I’d like to see USAG being inclusive.

cpt.Hook
cpt.Hook
8 years ago

About Russian winter Olympics and anti gay law I wanna say, that there is a very popular Russian proverb: ” Severity of the Russian laws is compensated by the irresponsibility of their execution.”

N
N
6 years ago

Why is this episode not available on Stitcher? it is the only way I have to listen to it!
And thanks for everything, guys! I love your show!

Craig Cochrane
Craig Cochrane
5 years ago

Now that three years have passed, and LGBT acceptance has grown, I’m wondering if Trey has come out and if he’s comfortable revealing his identity on this podcast.

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