JESSICA: This week: Gabby leaves Chows, again; USA Championships; and a cry for help![EXPRESS YOURSELF INTRO MUSIC]
ALLISON TAYLOR: Hey, gymnasts. Elite Sportz Band is cutting edge compression back warmer that can protect your most valued asset: your back. Im Allison Taylor on behalf of Elite Sportz Band. Visit EliteSportzBand.com. Weve got your back.
JESSICA: This is episode 104 for July 23, 2014. Im Jessica, from Masters-Gymnastics.
UNCLE TIM: Im Uncle Tim, from Uncle Tim Talks Mens Gym.
ELIZABETH: And Im Elizabeth Grimsley. You can find me on Twitter @AllFlippedOut.
JESSICA: This is the best gymnastics podcast ever in the history of summers! Because its summertime right now, and its making me happy. Bringing you all the news from around the gymternet! So, first you guys, we have a very serious cry for help. I got a message from a listener who was like, I would, you know, Id donate or whatever it costs to get these done faster. But you know, its really expensive to hire like a full time, someone who does this, like, professionally. Its like, a dollar a minute. So, yeah, our shows pretty long and that would cost a lot a lot of money. So what I, what our cry for help is, and especially for the deaf population that enjoys this show but has to wait a long time for the transcripts, I would love to ask any of you out there who have a passion for typing and a passion for gymnastics and for Gymcastic; if you would like to volunteer to be on our transcription team and have your name mentioned at the end of the show. Or you can pick a pen name, a pseudonym to use at the end of the show, we would love, love, love to have you on our transcription team, and we would love to be able to serve this population more and get these done faster for them. So, e-mail me at Gymcastic@gmail.com if you want to be on the transcription team, and Ill hook you up with our transcription team captain, and its incredibly fun. Another was to contribute to the gymternet.
Lets discuss USA Championships. Scott Bregman was on last week to tell us about how you guys can watch this. Lots of people watched and tweeted us their favorite moments. And we have Elizabeth Grimsley here this week, were so excited. She was at the USA Championships, also known as the Everything-But-Artistic-Gymnastics Championshipsrhythmic, trampoline, acro, mini tramp. Mini tramp? Double mini, thats what its called. All those sports there in one place. Power tumbling. So, I want to ask you first, Elizabeth, what do you think, I mean the format of this meet is kind of cool, because everythings put together. And I think, like, there were no breaks. It was one sport, then another sport. What did you think of the format? The commentary, the overall? How did the meet work? What did you think of it?
ELIZABETH: I mean, personally I really liked it. I think it was cool to see all of the lesser known disciplines all in one place. I know a lot of the athletes enjoyed watching the other events that they didnt really get to see that often. I mean, one of the problems was that the JO competition was at the same time. So the people that came to watch would only come for the discipline they interested in, and then they would leave. So, had a little bit of a spectator problem with the stands not being filled. But overall I think it was a well-run meet and a great idea to have all three together. During the night sessions they had the senior elites, so you had trampoline and rhythmic kind of switching back and forth for the first two rotations. And then for the third rotation it was only acro, and got all the acro competitors out of the way, because theres only, like, seven pairs and groups competing. There werent very many senior elites for that. And then the final two rotations were trampoline and rhythmic alternating again. Double mini and tumbling were held at the convention center, which kind of sucked for those athletes, because they didnt get to be in the big arena in front of everyone. But there just wasnt enough space to fit all that equipment in there. So the for future
ELIZABETH: Yeah. So for the future theyre looking for a place that will fit all of the equipment in there.
JESSICA: Ooh! Thats good to hear. Wait, what happened with Elise Ray? Did anybody know who she was, or were they just, you know, Arthur Davis! Woo! And then Elise Ray everyones like, What sport is she from?
ELIZABETH: Yeah, there were huge cheers for Arthur Davis, and the rhythmic girl, and the trampoline national team member, and everything. And then they were like, 2000 Bronze Medalist at the Olympics, Elise Ray! And I mean, there was polite applause, but I dont think the people really know who they were [LAUGHTER], who she was, so I kind of felt bad for her. [LAUGHTER]
UNCLE TIM: I was going to say. I was listening to at home, and Elise Ray totally carried that broadcast. Peter Dodd. I dont even know how to put it. Like, how, in high school I had this chemistry teacher, and my lab mate lit his sweater on fire with a Bunsen burner, and [LAUGHTER] our chem teacher was like, Oh, Andy, your sweaters on fire. And just completely calm, just like [LAUGHTER] And that was Peter Dodd. If this stadium were on fire, hed get over the loudspeaker and say, [MONOTONE] Guys, I think we need to evacuate. Just very monotone. And Elise was just like, on it, fiery, she had all the NCAA experience, and then theres Peter, just very, very calm. [LAUGHS]
JESSICA: I was like, Wow. Shes really good at this. And, oh! And then when they showed Arthur Davis, who for everybody at home who doesnt know him, like, oh my God. Hes like a bazillion time world champ, and he does, like, tons of choreography. You should totally follow him on Instagramyou get little snidbits of his choreography. I love it. Im just like, Can we please move him to artistic, directly to the ranch, and get some performance quality out of everyone? Like, he draws you in. His choreography is so good. But anyway, hes a giant! I had no idea! I always thought he just looked that big, like seven feet tall and built like a Greek god, because he was next this diminutive woman, but hes like, oh my. How tall do you think he is? Was he, did he dwarf everyone in that place?
ELIZABETH: He was definitely over six feet. And more than the average six feet height. Hes very, very tall. And not, like, the lanky tall either. Hes big.
JESSICA: Yeah. I mean, I dont know if you saw a close up. He literally was ripping through his shirt. [UNCLE TIM LAUGHS] Which I appreciated very much. Okay, so, on to the important things. Lets talk about results. There were some first timers, there were some repeats, who were the surprises this year?
ELIZABETH: Well, I mean, to me, even though Jeff Gluckstein, for the senior trampoline men, won last year, I said, Hes always a sleeper. You hear about Steven Gluckstein, you hear about Logan Dooley, you, I mean, recently weve been hearing about Neil Gulati, but Jeff has just been consistent, flying under the radar. He does his thing, he does his routines, he gets down, and he wins. So I mean, hes just been solid. And then Charlotte Drury won her first senior trampoline title [JESSICA CHEERS], yes.
JESSICA: So excited for her!
ELIZABETH: [LAUGHS] And she pretty much was in a league of her own. A lot of the other girls didnt really have the difficulty to stay up with her. Shaylee Dunavin, whos also her synchro partner, was in second. And they were kind of really the two who pushed themselves out in front of the rest. They also, the both won the synchro title as well. Dakota Earnest, she messed up a little bit, so she finished third, but shes also one of those big names that people hear about all the time. For rhythmic, Rebecca Sereda won last year and she won again this year. She tied with Jazzy Kerber, who got silver last year.
JESSICA: [GASPS] A tie in rhythmic?
ELIZABETH: The first tie ever. They were actually tied after the third event as well, so they kept the tie. They both got 16.7s in the final event to finish it off.
JESSICA: Thats interesting. Mm hmm. You know I suspect a conspiracy, cause its rhythmic. [LAUGHTER]
ELIZABETH: And then of course the world bronze medalist from last week in acro, Kiley Boynton and Ryan Ward took that title as well. So it was a lot of back to back champions. And then on the double mini and tumbling side, that was at the convention center, so not as many people got to watch that. But you have Yulia Stankevich Brown, whose, I mean shes been around forever, shes 38 years old, so shes got a lot experience under her belt. She won her second title in row. And then on tumbling for the men Austin Nacey won. He was a world competitor last year. He won gold in the team competition, I think it was for double mini that they won that. But he won the tumbling title, and that was the first title in eight years, I think, that someone new had won? Since Kalon Ludvigson had won all those past years. But since hes hurt they needed to have a new champion. So.
JESSICA: It was interesting watchingoh wait! Did everybody hear that? 38 years old is the tumbling womens champion? Yes, 38. Thats right. Mm hmm. This is the sport for you. You know who should really do this sport, I think, is Alyssa Pritchett. Shes one of the gymnasts that was college gymnasts going for elite right now. She would totally be a national champion if she did this sport. Like, right now. Shed be going to Worlds, she could go to World Cups. Like, I totally want her to switch into this. And you know who else should do it? Is Kat
UNCLE TIM: Ding?
JESSICA: From Arkansas.
UNCLE TIM: Oh, Grable.
UNCLE TIM: Katherine Grable.
JESSICA: Yes. She should totally do it too, because she would also be winning all the things. So, yeah
JESSICA: Go ahead.
ELIZABETH: Alyssa Pritchett was actually there coaching her gymnasts at the junior competition, the Junior Olympic competition, because she, she coaches trampoline kids, I think. So I saw her there.
JESSICA: Halfway there. Right now. She should just move over. [ELIZABETH LAUGHS] Yes, okay.
UNCLE TIM: Have either of you tried, tried, have either of your tried double mini?
JESSICA: [LAUGHTER] Kind of.
ELIZABETH: I feel like I would kill myself.
JESSICA: Like, do you mean actually doing flips? Or just like, run and jump and see if you can jump on the next part of the trampoline?
UNCLE TIM: [LAUGHS] I guess that counts. I havent even tried that. I feel likecan we agree that theyre kind of the craziest people on earth, in the world of sports?
ELIZABETH: Yes. Yes. How do you even train for that? [UNCLE TIM LAUGHS] I have to, I mean, you cant go into the pit, because then your timings off and you wont land on the trampoline again. So, I mean, you just, you just chuck it.
JESSICA: Its terrifying. Theyre, seriously, its like a whole different world. That, its like, not even, I dont want to compare it to X-Games, because its even scarier than that because, I dont know why I think its scarier than that, but I do. [LAUGHS] Maybe because Ive flipped, but I havent ridden a motorcycle. But I would like to. But you, you run as fast as you can. And then you do that stuff. Its not like you, you know, control, stay as low to the ground as you can. Its like, ballistic. Thats the part thats so crazy. I told you guys about that thing I went to in Vancouver, that World Cup where the double mini guy fell. They had it on the vault runway on the podium, and the guy fell off the podium. [NERVOUS LAUGHTER]
UNCLE TIM: Oh my gosh.
JESSICA: Yeah, it was
UNCLE TIM: I can see that happening.
JESSICA: It was almost like a Daniel Purvis onto the judges, but no one was there. So he just like, Plop. And then he was gone, into darkness. You couldnt see anything.
ELIZABETH: I think its the worst idea to put something like that on a podium, considering the podium adds more bounce, and theyre already getting extreme height in the air. That just sounds like it would end in disaster.
JESSICA: Which it did, exactly. [LAUGHTER] Wise words, Elizabeth.
Okay, so we love our wipeouts and our crashes, and, because you know gymnastics is the best sport for wipeouts and crashes. But trampoline has a really good way to deal with this. How, can you describe for people how trampoline and double mini, kind of the safety precautions that they have, and how its different from gymnastics?
ELIZABETH: Yeah, so with trampoline, theres four spotters. Theres one kind of on each corner. And they have to be there, its not like, Oh, I think Ill be fine, you dont have to stand there. They have to be there. And then one of them, theres one on the side, and their job is to hold this little four inch mat so that if the gymnast goes off to the side, or looks like hes about to fly off the trampoline, you just slid the mat in and it stops the bounce so you dont have a Stick It moment where the coach just, like, flings off [LAUGHTER] onto the concrete.
UNCLE TIM: Did you hurt your weenis? [LAUGHTER]
JESSICA: You guys, this is totally my kind of sport, were you dont, its not like you ask the coach to stand there, they have to stand there at all times. Because I would always be the one like, Can you just stand there? I dont need a spot, but can you just stand there? But in this sport its required. I mean, ooh! What could be better? I love it!
ELIZABETH: Yeah, so, I mean, at one point one of the kids was way, way off and one of the spottersI mean, you have to be on. He caught this kid in midair so he wouldnt go crashing to the ground.
JESSICA: And what happened with the guy
ELIZABETH: Spenser Reed?
JESSICA: Yes, thank you!
JESSICA: What happened with him? [LAUGHS] Exactly.
ELIZABETH: I mean, it wasnt even his optional routine when he was doing all of the crazy difficult skills. He was doing his compulsory routine, I think he had just done a like double back or something, and he must have just been way off to the side. And he jumped where the springs were, and his foot went through that area and in between the springs. So once he pulled it out they had to replace it. And I dont know if it was just a precautionary thing or if he had messed up one of the springs or something.
JESSICA: Seriously, it looked like, from the video, which you guys can see on our website, because we always put the playlists up, you, it looks like he just goes through the bottom of the trampoline. I didnt realize it was springs until sort of afterwards. I mean, I actually thought his foot went through the bottom. [UNCLE TIM LAUGHS] I was like, How is that possible? Oh my God, its so funny, like seriously, Im so glad hes okay. Like, they have very good safety precautions I feel like in this sport.
ELIZABETH: Yeah, Im actually surprised that more people dont get hurt with some of the crashes that you see, but, because if youre sitting high enough up you can see exactly where theyre about to land and when theyre going to go awry. But it still scares you because, I mean, its crazy.
JESSICA: Because theyre like a hundred feet in the air? [LAUGHTER] Oh my God. So speaking of a hundred feet in the air, which routines or which skills totally blew your mind this weekend?
ELIZABETH: Id say most of the routines that just made my jaw drop were on double mini. Austin White did a triple pike half out onto the first part of the double mini and then a triple pike half or something like that off. It was just insane. I mean, you dont see that, ever, in artistic gymnastics. Its just, I mean, crazy. And then Austin Nacey, did basically same thing. He, I mean he, he might have done an arabian something with triples and halfs out, and its actually hard to tell what they all do because they twist so fast and they flip so fast. And Austin Nacey stuck his, so I mean, it was just insane. You have to do all those flips, and then you stick it? I mean, its crazy.
JESSICA: The amount of sticking was so impressive to me. The boys
ELIZABETH: Yeah, and I have to mention for tumbling, Jerrett Jensenthe first day of prelims, so theres no video of itbut he did all these, like, I think he did round off back handspring double layout, and then like five whips, and then he did a double twisting double back, and then he just stuck it. And the crowd went wild. That was one of the times when the crowd was like, really into it. I think he even was surprised that he had stuck that pass. [LAUGHTER]
UNCLE TIM: Did he do a huge smile? I was so impressed with how the boys smile. Like, its NCAA girls smiles at the end of their routines. I was just like, Wow. You guys are so smiley compared to the men, who are At least in NCAA mens are like, Grrr! Hulk Smash! [JESSICA LAUGHS]
ELIZABETH: Yeah, I think you could tell that these guys were just here to have fun. I mean, obviously they wanted to win, they wanted to make the national team. But it was way more relaxed than an artistic meet. There were, you could tell that the pressure wasnt as high. I mean, they were just joking around, they were having fun. People wolf whistled to Drew Collins, and he wolf whistled back, and [LAUGHTER] I mean, it was, it was just a fun atmosphere.
JESSICA: [LAUGHING] Speaking of whistling, why, whats with when the people are running down their ridiculously long runway to then hurl themselves into double layout, and then another double layout, and then like a triple back flip, in the tumbling sport, they, theres just like all this whistling going on in the middle! Like when their hurdling. Like, what, who, whos whistling? Whats happening?
ELIZABETH: Okay. So this is Alex Renkert. So at first I thought it was the equipment or something, when he was running it was squeaking, but I realized that its him when he runs. I think that he, its the way he holds his mouth, and when he breathes, because hes running so fast it just comes out as a whistle? [LAUGHTER]
JESSICA: That is the weirdest thing.
ELIZABETH: But I dont really know. Maybe its a thing that he does to calm him down, or, I dont even know. [LAUGHS]
JESSICA: People have, which I can totally understand, because as everyone knows Im a totally scaredy-cat of everything, People have like, the most elaborate preparations before they start their tumbling run. Like I have never seen before. Like, nothing compares to this. Can you describe Kristie Lowells preparation before she runs?
ELIZABETH: Yeah, hers is definitely the most unusual that Ive seen. She does, she puts her foot out like a normal person would do, preparing for vault or double mini, or whatever. And then she scoots back and forth like, three different times. And then she prepares again, and then she goes. And I mean, I guess it works because shes a world champion in the event, but its definitely a little bit strange.
JESSICA: Its like how the triple jump people do all, do their stuff in regular track and field; combined with a nervous level five; combined with the regular, oh my God, this sport is insane, like, pumping yourself up look on her face.[JESSICA and ELIZABETH LAUGH] I loved it. I loved it. Because Im like, Yes. Its that hard. Thats how you have to get ready, right there. Thats how scary this sport is. [LAUGHTER] So I always brag about how these sports are so great for adults because you can be, you can have a full time job and do one of these sports. You can kids and do one of these sports. You can be a regular adults and do these sports. They are, and as Charlotte Drury said when she was on the show, There is life after artistic gymnastics. And all of these sports represent all of the other great sports that you can compete in. Can you tell us about some of the older competitors that you saw there?
ELIZABETH: Yeah, so Yulia Steinkovich Brown is 38 years old. Shes in Chusovitina territory. Shes been going forever, I think shes Russian born, but she moved to the US. She got married, like, five-six years ago, and shes still going. In tumbling world. And its not like shes doing easy skills. Shes doing full in double layouts, shes doing double pikes and other fulls in, full ins, and I mean, its not easy stuff that shes doing.
JESSICA: And how about the different body shapes and sizes in these sports. I feel like you can have Beyoncé hip and Nicki Minaji legs and do these sports. There isnt there werent Like, in gymnastics, I feel like when you get to elite gymnastics, like everyone kind of has the body shape where they have zero hips. Theyre just, like, from shoulders to hips is just like the same width. And here there was so much variety.
ELIZABETH: Yeah. In rhythmic especially, the stereotype is stick skinny Russian girl, or Russian born who is able to bend her back into and touch the back of her legs. But there was one girl, Hannah Walter, who was normal sized. I mean, next to a stick skinny girl she would have looked bigger. But I mean, shes skinnier than me, shes normal. And she, I mean, shes obviously good, shes made it Nationals, shes an elite rhythmic gymnast. But she used that to her advantage. She did more dynamic skills, she did like, straddle jumps and those, like, butterfly kick things in her routines, rather than all of the flexibility moves. And I think she finished twelfth, so it obviously paid off.
JESSICA: There was another girl too who I was watching, who had, like, totally buff legs. Like, I know theyre, its kind of like the acrobatic ballet put together, and ballet totally has this type. But it was just great to see body types outside of what you see at the World Championships and Olympics, and that theyre being successful, and that theyre doing great. And just to see that variety. I thought it was really encouraging. So if youre someone out there who thinks you dont have the right body type for gymnastics, watch USA Championships and you will see every kind of type that there is. It was very inspiring, I thought, to watch.
So, very important question as we get deeper into rhythmic gymnastics territory. Rebecca Sereda used Happy by Leona Lewis for her ribbon routine; it was very dramatic. So, what do you guys think, because this has lyrics in it. So what do you guys think of using top 40 music, with lyrics, for rhythmic routines?
UNCLE TIM: I dont know. I feel like rhythmic is the summer Olympic version of figure skating. And so I just expect, like, big, dramatic from like operas. From Carmina Burana or something. And I dont know. I personally, it just doesnt really fit my image of rhythmic, and so it seems a little weird for me.
ELIZABETH: I liked Rebeccas routine. I mean, some of the other ones Like, someone used some Jennifer Lopez song, I dont remember what it was. But that just didnt fit. But with something like this, it was nice. It seemed to go with her routine, it was her ribbon routine. I think it fit well. At first I didnt realize that that was the song she was using, because they started to play the music before she was ready, so they had to start it over. And I was like, Oh, thats embarrassing, they used that pop music for her ribbon routine. [LAUGHTER] And then they played it again and she started going, and I was like, Oh, thats her actual music! But, I mean, I heard it like four different times while I was there, so it grew on me.
JESSICA: So, Im totally torn about this. On one hand, Im like, No! Tradition! Should never change it! But on the other hand, I think it can work. Because there were definitely moments in this where she was dancing to the lyrics, not the music, and it was really beautiful, and it went so well, and it was really powerful. And other times, I feel like it could be a disaster. Like, it could go so badly. So I just feel like, as long as Arthur Davis is in charge, it would be fine. So, and I know this is rhythmic. But he should choreograph everything, Ive already decided. So theres that.
Now, lets talk about fashion. Oh! So we talked a little bit about the acro last week, with the fashion and how the US also rocks some pink, and the men wear theirtheyre not tights, theyre not like the mens tights, theyre like pantsboot cut pants, they dont have the stirrups. Lets be clear. So, Catherine Gonzales in rhythmic, she wore a kind of like leo skirt, like I dont know what these are called. You know, like a leotard with a skirt. Like a skate.
ELIZABETH: Yeah, a lot of the rhythmic girls have it. I think Jazzy Kerber, one of hers was like a sheer skirt on it, so you could see through. It was weird. But I kind of liked it. I dont know.
JESSICA: Yeah, I
ELIZABETH: It was intriguing.
JESSICA: And this, this skirt on Catherine Gonzalez, her skirt was something Id never seen. Normally theyre very flat and they dont have any, like, lift in them. Theyre not, like, ballet-tutu at all, but this one, it was totally different. I dont know I dont have the right kind of vocabulary.
ELIZABETH: It kind of reminded me of a grass skirt.
JESSICA: Yes! Thank you! The thing that came to mind with me, because it looked like it moved in separate pieces, but also all at once, so it kind of reminded me of, like her music and her skirt reminded me of, oh. I had her name, right before. Uncle Tim, youre going to have to help me with this. Oh! Josefine Baker, and how she used to perform with the banana skirt. Thats what it reminded me. She had that sort of like jungley music. And I actually really liked it. At first I was like, This looks weird. But then it totally added something where normally I feel like the outfits are so over the top that they take away.
UNCLE TIM: I didnt necessarily like the colors of her outfit, I was more focused on the colors. So the top was this kind of pastel hot pink, and the bottom was this kind of neon sea foam green, and it just reminded me of the snap bracelets. The slap, pardon. Slap bracelets that I had as a child in the late 80s early 90s, whenever we had those. I was just kind of like, Eh. Im not really a fan of these colors. But I mean, its rhythmic. It always looks like a bax, box of Crayola crayons has thrown up [LAUGHTER] on the girls. So I really dont know what to say.
ELIZABETH: [JESSICA LAUGHS] I mean, what got me was that the pink underneath her skirt did not match the pink on the top part of her leotard.
JESSICA: It was like an umbra fade of a leotard, but then the skirt, it looked like it was a separate piece. And when you were talking about the kind of watermelon effect, I felt it did have, does have, it did have the watermelon colors.
UNCLE TIM: Yeah.
JESSICA: Like, from the rind to the inside. [ELIZABETH LAUGHS] I had delicious watermelon yesterday.
UNCLE TIM: She just needed some seeds. [LAUGHTER]
ELIZABETH: Well, I mean, with all the rhinestones you can just consider those the seeds.
UNCLE TIM: [LAUGHS] There you go!
JESSICA: So, Uncle Tim, there is a picture that you have been obsessing over on the USA Gymnastics Facebook page. Everyone should go to check out the greatthey put up so many pictures. So, describe this for us and tell us why youre obsessed with it. Because youre obsessed with acro now. Like out of control.
UNCLE TIM: I am. Im obsessed with all the acro photos on the USA Gym Facebook page. But this one in particular is of Diana Tatevossian and Donna Tatevossian and Alexandria Alaman. And I dont know whos who in this photo, but it doesnt really matter. The base is basically doing a lunge, and she has her arms stretched over her head, and shes holding up a girl in a handstand doing a straddle split. Thats kind of normal. But! And I was like, Oh, whatever, whatever. And then I look, and theres another girl on the back of the bases leg, so the leg stretched behind her. And she is doing a one armed handstand on this girls calf. So this girl is holding up two gymnasts. One in her hands and one on her calf. And Im like, How can you even so that? Like, what if you get, like, an itch or something? What are you going to do? I dont know, what
ELIZABETH: I think
UNCLE TIM: Yeah.
ELIZABETH: I think the girls other hand is on the shoulder of the base to kind of hold her up.
UNCLE TIM: I refuse to accept that. [LAUGHTER]
JESSICA: What, do you think this sport, acro just looks, like, so painful. Can you imagine having someones entire weight on your calf muscle for like, a minute? That would so hurt!
UNCLE TIM: Yeah. I couldnt do it.
JESSICA: I was noticing when we were watching that little comedy bit, which is hilarious, where John Macready tries to balance one of the girls. [LAUGHTER] Oh my God, you guys have to watch this, because his, hes so good at this. Like, his face, I was totally laughing. So hes trying to balance her, like, and then I was noticing in the picture their hands are at angle. So theyre, youre not holding your wrists flat when you balance someone, youre holding them at like, a forty-five degree angle. And Elizabeth, you were telling me that the way they practice is this way too.
ELIZABETH: Yeah, they, a lot of the girls had these, I guess theyre made out of wood. Its like a piece of 2×4 up straight and then theres a base to make it be able to stand on the ground. And then theres a square piece of wood thats tilted at an angle, kind of like the girls hand. And they have two of them. So I guess is emulates being held up, and I guess thats how they practice holding their handstands and their different balance elements.
JESSICA: Well, were going to have to get to the bottom of all of this next week when we talk to Kristin Allen and Michael Rodriguez, world champions. So
UNCLE TIM: You know what were going to have to ask them? How many times he got kicked in the man area doing this.
JESSICA: Right? And I want to ask her too, How do you get used to going to practice and just straddling some dudes face? Like, over and over and over and over again and getting thrown in the air? [ELIZABETH LAUGHS] Like, youre all sweaty, and like, if they just, like, we just come to know each other, and just
ELIZABETH: Especially since theres such a big age difference between most of the people. Like, Kiley Boynton is 15 and Ryan Ward is 24 or 25. I mean, it must have been awkward at first.
JESSICA: Right, and then I wonder, well, maybe its just really not like that. You actually are just like, it just looks like that but youre actually like, you just, like, duck your hips under and its more like a dance. I dont know. We have to get to the bottom of all of this. So many questions. So many inappropriate questions. We have to ask.
UNCLE TIM: So in MAJOR NCAA news, it was a big surprise for all of us. Alabama head coach Sarah Patterson has retired, and its kind of surprising given that she hasI dont even remember how many winsand how many seasons, over 30 seasons, and I think over 3,000
UNCLE TIM: 36, yeah, 36 seasons. I think over 3,000 wins or something. Its just kind of crazy. She has retired, and its largely due to her knees. And her physicians told her, Hey, you need to stop walking for a little while and get knee replacements. And David, her husband, will be retiring as well. Which means Dana Duckworth will be taking over. Dana competed for Alabama in the late 80s, and she was an NCAA beam champ, and shes been helping the team for quite some time now. And what did you guys think of this transition? Lets start with you, this time, Elizabeth. Because youre at Georgia, the longtime rival of Alabama, so tell me what you think.
ELIZABETH: Well, going to the video where Dana Duckworth gave that first interview, she was talking about how their situation is completely different, how theyre keeping basically the same staff as they had last year. And what Im thinking when Im watching this is that Georgia kept the same staff, the years after Suzanne Yoculan retired. They still had Jay, they still had Doug, they still had Julie. So nothing changed, and it went downhill. So Im not really sure where she was getting the whole, Our situation I mean, Im sure most of the situation is completely different, but in that aspect it seems pretty similar to me. So, I mean, I dont know if shell be able to hold the reins and kind of be a stronger head coach and lead them to more success, as opposed to what Jay Clark did. And he struggled and had to resign. But I mean, I just, I dont know how that will pan out.
UNCLE TIM: So, The Balance Beam Situation wrote a post about the difference between Suzanne and Sarah, and he basically said that there is a difference between the two. Suzanne was very much the cult of Suzanne and the fact that sheI dont think he said this, but its impliedthe fact that she would do almost anything to win in the whole, focus was on winning. Whereas with Sarah, its much more kind of a, Yes, theres winning. But theres more focus on the girls and the fact the girls are ladies and good southern belles kind of thing. And therefore he doesnt know that Dana will have as many problems, just because the focus wasnt as much on winning for Alabama. What do you think of that, Elizabeth?
ELIZABETH: I mean, from what Ive seen from a lot of the girls, theyre very open to the change. And they love Dana, and they love everything that shes about, and, I mean, shes been there for forever as well, so they know her coaching style. So, I do think its different. I dont think its the same as when Suzanne left. Suzanne kind of left on top, and she was like, Yeah, Im going to leave. And she took pretty much all of her best gymnasts with her because they were graduating. So, I mean agree with that.
UNCLE TIM: And what do you think, Jessica? I know you probably have many opinions. [LAUGHTER] But lets say, if you were a freshman committed to Alabama, would this change your mind about going there?
JESSICA: I think unless I was a student who was going to Alabama specifically because they had a major that I could not get at a gymnastics scholarship and get that major in the same place, if that were the case, then it probably would change my mind. Or if Id gone on my visit and Id loved the program except that I couldnt stand Duckworth, then that might change my mind. [LAUGHTER] But I really think, you know, its supposed to be about education so it shouldnt matter, but the head coach is the program. I mean, the head coach sets the tone. Its so important. And this, this is theyre losing two coaches. Basically, you know, two head coaches theyre losing, the technical coach and the head cheese. So its, I dont know, its even a bigger deal than I think of, exactly like Elizabeth said, then what happened at Georgia. Because there basically only one person was leaving and they were keeping the technical coach. This is like, all new. Oh, so maybe Dana is like the technical coach, I dont know actually. That might be not that much of a change. But
ELIZABETH: She does a lot of beam and choreography stuff. I mean, I dont know what else she does, but I know those were her main focuses.
JESSICA: Yeah. But I have to say, like, for me, if I just loved, loved, loved that head coach, and that was the reason I wanted to go there, then I might stay because I might feel that they were going to, that their legacy was going to be strong and it would be the same kind of place. But I dont know. I dont think it would be
UNCLE TIM: Where would you go?
JESSICA: Where would I go?
UNCLE TIM: Yeah.
JESSICA: Instead of Alabama?
UNCLE TIM: Yeah.
JESSICA: I mean, I guess if that was the kind of, I mean guess Georgia or Florida, I think, are kind of the programs that are like that. I feel like LSU is totally different. I feel like LSU is more like the California of the South. I dont know why I think that, but I think politically and otherwise its totally different from the rest of the South. I dont have any basis for that other than all the HBO shows I watch. So [LAUGHTER]
UNCLE TIM: What do you think, Elizabeth, as someone whos lived in the South? [LAUGHTER]
ELIZABETH: Oh, well, I mean, Id say Georgia and Alabama are more similar, but Florida is a lot different. If you were signed on to go to Alabama, I dont know if you would pick either of those. But I mean, it brings up the whole Simone Biles situation, where shes choosing between Alabama and UCLA. Im curious to see if this coaching change affects her decision.
JESSICA: And what do you think about the whole Georgia, what they talked about in this whole Suzanne and and and you know the SEC
UNCLE TIM: Sarah.
JESSICA: Sarah, yeah. You know, the SEC show when, where they cut out all the juicy stuff because they kept threatening to sue each other. So, when they talked about how it was the Southern Belles versus the Bad Girls, I was like, What?! Who thinks that? Thats like, I have never heard, I was like [LAUGHTER], somebody just make that up? Is that like something Suzanne just made up just to have a marketing pitch against Alabama? I was like, Southern belles? People still say that? I clearly am completely ignorant about this entire SEC situation. [ELIZABETH LAUGHS] So, is that a real thing, do people really talk about that?
ELIZABETH: No. I mean, I could see Georgia as the, like, the hard core team or whatever. But Alabama, in my opinion, are not the southern belles. I would not, that would not come to mind when thinking about Alabama.
JESSICA: Is there a school that has the southern belles?
JESSICA: Right? I was like
ELIZABETH: I dont think of gymnasts as being southern belles. I think of southern belles as being prim and proper and not hard core anything. And to be a gymnast you have to be tough, and I dont associate those two things together.
JESSICA: Right? I think of that bratty chick in the movie, thats like the longest movie ever about the South and the Civil War. [SIGHS] Its so theres like rape scene. And it made me laugh, which is terrible, [ELIZABETH LAUGHS] but apparently people didnt think it was a rape scene, but it totally is, because she likes it in the end. Gone with the Wind. [ELIZABETH LAUGHS] Thats it. Gone with the Wind. Thats how they define it, in like thats what all the review say. Thats what I think of southern belles. Like, a brat. A total brat. And I
UNCLE TIM: See, I think of pearls. Which gymnastics team would be more likely to show up in a pearl necklace? And I would say its Alabama still. I think that Sarah Patterson crafted the image of them as southern ladies, and I would say theyd be the most likely to show up in a pearl necklace.
JESSICA: Well, were going to have to compare the photos of what they, both teams wore when they went to the White House. And decide. [LAUGHTER]
UNCLE TIM: I, so, I think, going back to this whole, Would you leave to go, I dont know, to go to another program, and I think, I dont know, Id give it a shot. You know, one of Sarah Pattersons favorite stories about Dana Duckworth is the fact that she failed her first round of tests in every class at Alabama her freshman year. [LAUGHTER]
ELIZABETH: How did that even happen?
UNCLE TIM: [LAUGHS] I dont know. But, by the end of the semester she had all As. [LAUGHTER] So I dont know, I feel like Dana mightve had a party girl in her or something at the beginning of her freshman year, and she, she knew what college experience was like or something, I dont know. But I feel like theres a little something there to her. And I feel like there are a lot of similarities between Dana and Sarah, because if you listen to the interview with Dana, its very deliberate. Very, every word is very well chosen. And to use the French expression, shes looking for the mot jus, and she, thats very Sarah, if youve ever been in a press conference with her. She doesnt just kind of say whatevers on her mind and talk about random things and her female cycle helping her choreograph better, nothing like that. [LAUGHTER] Its much more
JESSICA: LACK of a cycle. The LACK of it.
UNCLE TIM: The lack of whatever. [LAUGHTER] And yeah, I think she, you know, shes very much in that same line, and just in general Ive enjoyed watching the Alabama girls kind of comment on it. And one of the interesting comments on Twitter was, Like the man who hired her, Sarah Patterson aint never been nothing but a winner. Well just ignore all those double negatives. [LAUGHTER] And, but Sarah Patterson aint never been nothing but a winner. And she did it in heels. And I dont know why I like that, its just kind of like, yeah. Yeah, she accomplished as much as the men in her athletic department, and she was a woman, and take that world. Because she came up in the South where things are a little different back then, Im assuming, in the 70s.
JESSICA: Yes. I would say her accomplishments are much more noteworthy than any white man in the South really, because, or anywhere, because for her in the 70s to build a program to what it is, its not even comparable to what a man would have to go through. Like, its, like, its a hundred times harder and more incredible that she built what she did. But I have to remind you, if you wanted to stay at that school and you wanted to try it out, the SEC has that two rule where you cant transfer. And if you do transfer without the head coach letting you out of your transfer, then you have to sit out for two years. Does that change your mind?
UNCLE TIM: Hmm. I dont know. I dont think so. I mean, if Im going to Alabama Im probably going there for reasons. It might be the culture, its probably, it might be the tradition. You know. I dont think that Sarah had the same, like, Were going to win at all costs attitude that Susan Yoculan. Yes, she has the tradition of winning, but I think it was a very different culture. You know. If I was in Simone Biles case, situation, Id be asking myself, Would I want a former ballet dancer as my coach? Because that brings a whole different level to your coaching and what it means for your body, and yeah. I dont know if I, as a human being, could handle that.
JESSICA: An interesting perspective. Which brings us to the next segment. We got tons of letters, and were going to answer a lot of them. And we got the weirdest voice mail we have ever, ever got. You guys, I could not stop laughing when I listened to this. Oh my God. So, one thing I wanted to let you guys know about our letters, we really read everything. And seriously, there are some letters that I keep thinking about, and I havent responded to yet, or none of us has had time to get back to yet. But like, theres this guy, Im talking to you, the guy whos the lawyer in Texas. Who wrote us, who did the backflip in court. I, [LAUGHS] we think about you all the time, and we talk to you, and we talk about you when were chatting. What do we say, what do we ask him for? How can we use him? Oh my God. So were thinking about you. Were thinking about you all the time. And everyone who writes us. Were just, you know. Its not like we have a giant staff here. So, you know, were going our best. And thank you, and we will get back to, you will hear from us. I promise you eventually. So anyway, before we get to the gymternet news and your letters, we got to pay some bills. So to remind you guys how you can help us pay our bills here at Gymcastic, you can donate, yes, just like five dollars a month. One dollar a month. A thousand dollars a month. Whatever youd like to give is okay with us. Which someone asked me to make it bigger and more prominent, and so I will be doing that. Thank you, to the person that asked me to do that. I felt like, I should make it really small, because you know But now its going to be gigantic and Im going to put it right at the top. So the donate button, you can do that. You can review us on iTunes or Stitcher, so just log in there and say, I love this show, I couldnt live without it, or give it five stars, or pass it on to your friends, and all that stuff. And of course you can shop through our Amazon link. And you can shop for whatever. You can buy a refrigerator or one sock in there, and a little portion of what you spend comes back to the show without any cost to your product. So, or you can buy the Louis Smith book. Because were doing our book club. You could buy the book there and send in your questions for Louis Smith, because he will be here in August. Have you bought your book yet? Elizabeth, are you in the club? Have you read the book?
ELIZABETH: I got the book for Christmas.
JESSICA: Awesome! Okay.
ELIZABETH: But I have not had a chance to read it yet. [LAUGHS]
JESSICA: Nows the time. Now is the perfect time.
JESSICA: In the gymternet news. The major, major, major news, of course, is that Gabby has left Chows once again. She went back for about three or four months. Went to camp, looked great, Marta was raving about her, we saw the video from USA Gymnastics. But as we were reported last week on the show, we had been hearing that she wasnt at practice for a while and that she had moved on, and unfortunately, that is the case. So Chow said that she was there for a trial period, and then they were going to reassess, and then she had to make a decision to train there or go somewhere else. And she well, he doesnt say she. He says, As I talked to her, I respect her opinion on her decision. Gabby didnt give any details, but she said, I am committed to Rio, Im not going to let anything get in the way of that. Theres a lot rumors going around about whats happening and what went on with this decision. So my question for you guys is: Number one, how do you think this, what do you think this means for Gabbys success this year? Do you think we will see her at Championships or at Worlds this year?
UNCLE TIM: Im going to say no. I dont think well see her at Championships this year. Its how I mean, its what? Roughly ten days away from the US Secret Classic, a couple more weeks after that is the P&G Championships. Im guessing that when youre switching your gyms this close, its not going to pan out for you this year. Thats just my guess though. You know, whether well see her next year, thats a different question. But Im going to say no. What about you, Elizabeth.
ELIZABETH: Yeah, Im going to have to agree, and on the off chance that we do see her, I think she would pull a Nastia and just compete one event, watered down routines. But I, I dont see it happening this year.
JESSICA: I dont know, Im thinking one event is, one or two is probably the most likely, I figure thats probably what shes most working on anyway. In my heart of hearts, because you know I like to tell people what to do, I would like for Nastia, Chellsie Memmel, and Dominque Moceanu to invite Gabby, Gabby alone, nobody elsenot her agent, not her lawyers, not her mom, not her sister, not her best friend, not any of her coaches. I would just like Nastia to invite all of them to her apartment in Manhattan. And with the glorious views that she always Instagrams, which I enjoy looking at. And I would like them to just chat, I would like them to have a moment to ask Gabby, So whats going on? How are you feeling? Nothing leaves this room. And I want them to just share how they became champions and what went wrong, and what went right. Because I think there is a very clear distinction in their lives about what led to their success and what led to their downfall in certain areas. I think they have a lot of wisdom to give on this. And I think they could really help her, and I think they know the right people that could help her. And I just feel like, and they also should hire an arbitrator if that doesnt work. Because you know theres people who just, this is what they do for a living. They get paid to go when two parties cant agree on something, they go in and hear both sides and help them come to an agreement. Like, Im sure USA Gymnastics has one on staff. Like, get an arbitrator and just go in there and solve this with Chow. Because Chow is your dream coach. Like, somehow you have to make it happen. Whatever the problem is, someone can solve this for you. Like, just get someone in there who can make it happen. Because, its Chow! You love him, you want to be there! Theres got to be a way! Theres always a way.
UNCLE TIM: [SIGHS] Yeah. I mean, none of us really know whats going on. Like you said, there are many rumors. I just wonder whats going on on the business level of Chows Gymnastics. We know that he was great for Gabby, helped him, helped, pardon, her get to the Olympics and everything. But we also know that earlier this year there was a noncompete issue. He makes his coaches sign a noncompete contract at their gym, and he actually took it to court, and you know, maybe its just the Des Moines Register, get, you know, making local news and everything. But you know, its kind of the first time I feel like we really heard about gymnastics coaches and their noncompete clauses in their contracts. And so, yeah, I dont know whats going on in terms of business at Chows.
ELIZABETH: I dont see her making any sort of worthwhile comeback without Chow. I just, I cant picture it happening. I just dont see her really having the drive or the ability to make that comeback without him, but I mean, prove me wrong. That would be great. [QUIET LAUGHTER]
UNCLE TIM: Plot twist: She goes back to Excalibur. [LAUGHTER] Could you imagine, like ?
JESSICA: Oh my God, no. She buys Excalibur. Changes out all the staff. [LAUGHTER] Yes. That would be awesome.
UNCLE TIM: How, I mean, what other gym would she go to? What do you guys think?
JESSICA: I would like her to go to Kelli Hill at this point. Someone whos just, like, totally neutral.
UNCLE TIM: Is she even still coaching, Kelli?
JESSICA: Yeah. She was in thedidnt you see her in the background of the videos? You were watching Mihai too much!
UNCLE TIM: [LAUGHS] I just felt like she kind of checked out, though, of coaching elite gymnasts. I dont know. I feel like shes not at the peak anymore of her career and is just kind of enjoying life and coasting until retirement. But I dont know! Ive never talked to Kelli. I dont know.
JESSICA: I dont understand how you could handle, just the schedule in gymnastics of being an elite coach for that many years. I mean, the burnout. I mean, your athlete gets up at six am and then works out, and then has a break, and then goes back and works out you know in the afternoon, the evening, and thats your schedule too. And all the travel, ugh, God. But then again, its not a nine to five, so it might be more life affirming. But I dont know. I could not do that schedule. Ugh. You know I need my sleep.
UNCLE TIM: Who do you think would be able coach her on bars, right? Because if shes making a comeback its definitely going to be very bars focused, and Chows probably one of the best elite bars coaches. I mean, yes, there are probably some problems. People dont like his technique at all times, but yeah. Hes one of the best. Kelli Hill is also one of the best bar coaches in the US of all time. I would say, and you know, Valeri, cant, I dont think, really take her on anymore because of his position on the junior national team. So who do you think would be a good coach? I mean, its hard. What about you, Elizabeth. What do you think?
ELIZABETH: I mean, my first thought is someone at WOGA. I mean, they all have good bars, it wasnt all just Valeri, could take her in. Or Nia Dennis gym. I mean, I, I just dont know. There arent very many that, number one, could help her bars and number two, could handle a world class athlete like that. I think thats one of the big problems as well.
JESSICA: I kind of feel like, for her bars, other great Chinese bar workers who made history recently would be to go to Legacy Elite. I mean, if you can coach an adult athlete back to that level, especially on bars, I mean Anna and Gabby were the main competition for each other on bars for that team. So I think they would be awesome coaches for her on bars.
UNCLE TIM: Yeah, and shed be in Chicago or close. I mean, close to an airport, a major airport. Which would be convenient for endorsements and stuff. Because being in Iowa is probably not the easiest place to get flights if you have to go fly to Portland or wherever for Nike stuff. Its probably a lot easier to fly out of Chicago.
JESSICA: [SIGHS] Well, Gabby, just call us and tell us whats happening. Chow, just keep us in the loop. Let us know. [LAUGHTER] [SUBJECT CHANGE MUSIC]
JESSICA: Time for mail call! First up, from Twitter. GtotheNtotheG asks: Do you think pro gymnasts delay retirement to milk endorsements, or are they just keeping their options open?
ELIZABETH: [SIGHS] This is tough one. I think some of them do delay their retirement to kind of keep that option out there. Like, Oh, I might be coming back. I mean, obviously the idea of a comeback is something that gets people talking, as we see with Gabby. I mean, I dont know if Anna Li is pro, but with someone like her, I think she really is. Because she isnt officially retired. I think she is someone who is keeping their options open. I could see her coming back at any time if she really wanted to. But I think it just depends on the person.
UNCLE TIM: I think that it does depend on the person, I agree. And so I dont want to say that there are gymnasts who just kind of are milking the options. I think they really do consider coming back. Because its a sport that you grew up, and its a huge part of your identity if you started doing it when you were four until youre 18, 19, 20. And once you walk away, youre kind of like, Who am I? And its hard to really just walk away officially. That said, Im just going to go ahead and say it. I did feel like Shawn Johnsons comeback was very orchestrated, and it felt like a giant marketing campaign. Im not going to say that it was, but to me as an outside observer, it just kind of felt like everything was very timed. And it was like, this happened, it was calculated, and then this happened this many months later her book came out, and then she announced her retirement. And I dont remember the order anymore of events, but it did feel like everything was very precise. It was like, marketing automation in real life. It was weird.
JESSICA: I think this [SIGHS] On the one hand, I think no one should ever announce their retirement because you should milk it as long as you can, because there are not the same kind of opportunities for gymnasts as there are in other sports. So good for you, just keep working out, look good in a leotard, so that you can keep selling whatever it is that youre selling. It is your identity, and its heartbreaking to admit that youre done with something. So to ever assume that someone is keeping, is not announcing their retirement because theyre milking an endorsement, its, you dont know how theyre feeling inside. Its just, its so hard. I mean, some people will never ever say theyre retired because you dont want to ever actually admit that. You want to think, Well, I could get back in shape, I could, you know. But on the other hand, I agree about Shawn Johnsons. I dont know what the intent was, but that definitely felt like that to me. Like, announcing the day of Nationals that she is retired when it was obvious that she was already retired. I dont think that it was an insincere comeback. I mean, she came, she looked amazing. She went Pan Am Championships, she looked great. But I, I think that was like, ugh. I didnt like how that was handled. On the other hand, I can understand it, because you have to milk the media when the media is there, and the media is interested. And Championships is when theyre there and interested. So, as far as I think her agent I think was brilliant for doing it that way. As a fan, Im kind of like, Mm. So. Yeah.
ELIZABETH: And even on the lowest level, its weird to say youre retired from something when youre 20 years old.
ELIZABETH: I mean, when I retired from gymnastics when I was 18 I mean, you think of 65 year old men being retired from their jobs, not retiring from a sport when youre 20 years old.
JESSICA: Totally. So, now its time for the part of the show where we talk about What mistake did Jessica make last week? So our first correction comes from our friend Emma Bailey in England, and she reminded me that the British gymnastics team was not in, wherever I said they were, but they were actually in Barcelona. Thank you, Emma. I will remember that. Correction number one. Correction number two, ooh, this good you guys. There was like a major Twitter debate going about how this today. Everyone wanted to know what was going on about this. So last week talked about what the age limit was for men, and we looked up the rules, and we saw that rules said 18, but we had heard that the rules had changed after London, but why was Kenzo allowed to compete when he was 17, and there was a lot of confusion, but w said the rules said 18. So, a fabulous listener wrote in with this explanation. Nico wrote on our website in the comments section. He said, I wanted to correct you guys on the mens age limits. Senior male gymnasts have to be 18, which is a change since London. Last year, however, they allowed a temporary transition period for 17 year olds. So guys like Kenzo Shirai, Mr. Quad, were able to compete at Antwerp Worlds. But they have to 18 now on the calendar year. So, you could be 18 after World Championships, but it Kenzo was 17 through the rest of the year, he wouldnt have been able to compete. So my question, for you guys is, first of all, Nico, thank you so so so so much for writing in with this explanation. And my question for you guys is, was, you know, its not all the time that we see the FIG be like, Oh, were changing the rules, so well allow a whole year to get used to these rules. Especially when it comes to the age limit thing, which is, you know, everyone has freaking different age. So, do you think that they made this exception with Mr. Quad in mind? Or it just was a nice thing to do?
UNCLE TIM: [LAUGHS] I think that its just that its kind of a nice thing to do. You know, you need to give people a one year grace period when you change the rules. I feel. Although, I mean, when you get a new code you dont really get a grace period, but I think they just were being nice. Although, I dont know. How do you feel about this discrepancy? Now for the women, I mean, it used to be even: the women had to be 16 and the men had to be 16. Now its 16 and 18. What do you guys think of that? Is it sexist?
JESSICA: Yeah, it should be the opposite.
ELIZABETH: I mean, wasnt there something with 2007 Worlds where they knew for the next year you had to be 16 for the Olympics, but you could be 15 to compete at the 2007 Worlds?
UNCLE TIM: Yes. Yes.
JESSICA: So theres a precedent.
ELIZABETH: So I mean, its kind of similar.
JESSICA: I would just like to point out that theres a precedent for this happening in the past, and a precedent for conspiracy. So anything possible. But yes, of course I think its sexist. Because I think that, and I have no foundation for this, but I think the reason for changing these rules is so that here is no abuse of children. And whatever form that abuse takes. And that children shouldnt be professional athletes. And so I think that women are more targeted, which I have no proof for, and I think that probably men are probably even more targeted, boys are more targeted or are victims of this, but they talk about it less. And Im probably sexist just for saying that, No, its girls. So, I dont know. I kind of think that it should be the same for both of them, and that it should be 18 for girls too. [GASPS] What do you think of that? 18 for girls too?
ELIZABETH: I think some people have been pushing for that for a while. I mean, most people you hear talk about the age limit want it to be lowered, but theres the other side of the spectrum as well.
UNCLE TIM: Right. I mean, its hard because Im looking at it through an Americanized, my American eyes, where Im like, if you can drive a car at 16, and be that responsible, and hold somebodys, I mean, hold your own life in your hands and other peoples lives in your hands while youre behind the wheel, part of me feels like you should be able to compete in the Olympics. I dont know. But we also dont allow you to vote until youre 18. So we dont really let you hold the nations future in your hands until youre 18. So, I dont know. I feel like 16, I feel like 16 is a good age. And I feel like it still prevents a lot from happening. That said, I feel like you know, I dont know that raising the age to 18 will suddenly just make sexual abuse or anything disappear, because if youre training for the Olympics, you start training when you are ten, and you start viewing your coach, not in all cases, but in some cases, right, you can start viewing your coach as a kind of God figure when youre very young. And so thats not just going to suddenly going to stop if you raise the age to 18.
JESSICA: True. Because you still have to start training as a little pup. Hm. Tell us what you guys think, listeners. Do you think, what if we raised the age limit, the womens age to 18 as well? Would that ruin the sport or would it make it awesome because everyone would just stay around for another ten years, of course. [LAUGHTER]
ELIZABETH: I think its hard as well, because a lot of the time you dont see men who are younger competing at the Olympics. I mean, I dont know the actual average ages, but theyre definitely older, versus the women, and you have to, and you have to be a little bit older, have a little more muscle mass. So, I think just for demograph and the different male and females slightly different as well.
JESSICA: The other thing we talked about last week was if Sydney, the Sydney all around finals were done all over again, right now, in 2014, with all of the Olympians in the finals at their current ages. Raducan, Khorkina, Elisa Ray. Then who would win? And I refused to acknowledge that certain people who I said would win werent actually even in the all-around finals. But a couple people pointed out to us, they were like, Hello! Chusovitina would have won. But was Chusovitina in the finals?
UNCLE TIM: I dont think so. I think she qualified like in 37th I want to say? So I dont think she qualified for finals.
JESSICA: Yeah, I dont think she, would have made it in those. Then someone else wrote in and said, Duh! Lisa Mason totally would have won. But I dont think Lisa Mason made it to all around finals either. Is there anyone else were missing? That we have completely overlooked who is still doing gymnastics today? Besides Chusovitina and Lisa Mason who were at those, at those games?
UNCLE TIM: [LAUGHS] Im looking up Lisa Mason. Where she qualified. Oh, Lisa Mason qualified in 22nd.
JESSICA: Hm! There you go!
UNCLE TIM: Yeah.
JESSICA: So Lisa Mason, probably be our current champ. I say we should hold those ceremonies for fun. [LAUGHTER] Okay, now we have the weirdest ever voice mail, that I could not stop laughing about. Let me play it up for you guys right now. [COMPUTER VOICE] Hi Gymcastic. I want to know, why is a sheep jump called sheep jump? And also, for the longest time, I really thought Princess Catherine of Europa name was really Princess Catherine. That is all. [LAUGHTER] And those are the kinds of voice mails that we get here at Gymcastic. Maybe the Korean news agency was listening to the show and created the voice mail message for us. Maybe its animated when they play it back on the news station. So you guys, anybody know, [LAUGHTER] anybody know why a sheep a jump is called a sheep jump?
ELIZABETH: Because it hurts yours BAAAAck. [LAUGHTER] Thats what they always told us. [LAUGHTER]
JESSICA: I love that! I mean, because sheep dont bend like that. I have no idea. And its called something different in, what was Princess Catherine calling it? She called it a We will to have to research this answer and get back to you. Perhaps our listeners will supply an answer. Maybe we can collect all the names that its called and decide on the right one for each skill.
UNCLE TIM: I just think that its kind of interesting though, that the sheep jump is kind of the reverse of the wolf jump, right? So the wolf jump youre jumping, youre bending forward, the sheep jump youre jump bending backwards. So there is some kind of logic to it. I just dont necessarily know why those two animals.
JESSICA: That was a
ELIZABETH: And then theres stag jump too. Thats an animal.
JESSICA: That was a very PhD answer. [LAUGTHER] Wolf and sheep. And then we have, like, I, we used to call the wolf jump a fish jump.
UNCLE TIM: Hmm. A fish jump?
JESSICA: A fish jump. Mm. Because its ugly?
UNCLE TIM: Did you call the roll where you rolled backwards and kind of arched down and splashed down a fish flop?
UNCLE TIM: Huh. I know that in cheerleading the names much more logical. Its the C-Jump in cheerleading. Which, just looks like a C. Its much more logical. I dont know.
JESSICA: It totally is. Maybe its a kind of connection ballet, where things are named after French deities, I dont know. Im making that up. Gymternet, please tell us why this is named this, because clearly we do not have an answer.
ALLISON TAYLOR: This episode is brought to you by Elite Sportz Band. EliteSportzBand.com. Weve got your back.
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UNCLE TIM: So, dear listeners, you can always contact us. We love reading your feedback! If you want us to review, discuss, watch something, or if we can solve some important gymnastics crisis for you, call or e-mail us. Were here for you, well do our best. Obviously we cant answer all your questions, like, Why is it called a sheep jump? We dont know. But, somebody, we have a very good network of dedicated gym nerds who always know the questions to all of our questions. So they will answer us. Anyways, so you can contact us at Gymcastic@gmail.com, you can leave us a voice mail by calling us at 415-800-3191, or to call us free from anywhere in the world, like, you know, lets say Korea, or lets say youre, I dont know, sitting on a bus waiting to go on a date with Kenzo Shirai, [JESSICA LAUGHS] you can call us using Skype. Our username is GymcasticPodcast. You can also follow us on Twitter. We are very chatty, and we post pretty much all the news going on all the time in gymnastics. So follow us @Gymcastic on Twitter.
JESSICA: That is going to do it for us this week. Thank you all for joining us, and Elizabeth, thank you so much for joining us. Weve enjoyed all your contributions to the gymternet and we love your voice. So please come back again sometime.
ELIZABETH: Thank you, I loved being here.
JESSICA: Yay! Remember to check our YouTube playlist, and of course we have transcripts up that you can check out on our website. Until next week, Im Jessica from Masters-Gymnastics.
UNCLE TIM: Im Uncle Tim, from Uncle Tim Talks Mens Gym.
ELIZABETH: And Im Elizabeth Grimsley. Find me on Twitter @AllFlippedOut.
JESSICA: Thanks for listening, see you guys next week!
JESSICA: Kenzo Shirai were able to compete God damn it! [SIGHS] Youre fired. Why is Skype always open on this damn computer!
JESSICAS HUSBAND: Because, [INAUDIBLE]
JESSICA: Oh my God, oh my God, you dont even have your updates done. Now I have to do the updates.
JESSICAs HUSBAND: No, no, no! Dont do the updates.
JESSICA: Aw, Jesus Christ.
JESSICAs HUSBAND: It works for me!
JESSICA: Im signing out of freaking all right. Let me just write that down on my little time stamp. [LAUGHTER] Dealing a Coop for ruining my podcast.
UNCLE TIM: Only the highest broadcasting standards on Gymcastic.