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Archive for June, 2008


Gymnastics Olympic Trials Day 1

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We just got back from the first day of the US Olympic Trials for the women and what an amazing meet! The finals are Sunday and I can’t wait to see it all again. The women put on a great show with very high quality gymnastics and plenty of interaction with the crowd.

My camera is pretty bad so I will take my husband’s camera on Sunday. I did get a few pictures to come out okay though.

Carly Patterson back stage at the Olympic Trials

2004 Olympic All Around Champion, Carly Patterson, performed some of her songs for the crowd outside of the arena in the Fan Zone. This is a picture we got of her looking out of the arena into her “backstage” area. We didn’t stay and listen to her sing – I wanted to see the gymnasts warm up instead.

Olympic Trials Philadelphia Shawn Johnson

The “Jumbotron” was an integral part of the entire experience. They used it to show videos of each of the gymnasts training (Shawn Johnson is shown here), show the scores, spotlight the faces in the crowd (this was fun!), show the routines as they happened and for replays.

Olympic Trials Bars warm up Shayla Worley

Mattie Larson, Shayla Worley, and some of the other competitors chalk up for bars during warm ups.

Olympic Trials shirts

And you can’t got to an event like this and not get a shirt!!

So after Day 1, Shawn Johnson leads the pack followed by the graceful Nastia Liukin, the powerful Chellsie Memmel, Samantha Peszek, Ivana Hong ( a very pleasant surprise – she looks like a contender), and Jana Bieger. Alicia Sacramone’s vault during warmups was HUGE, so was her vault. Ivana Hong was a nice surprise with great tumbling. Mattie Larson definitely looks like one to keep an eye on, too.

I’ll post more thoughts and photos as the weekend goes along.

More pictures and my thoughts coming later in the weekend! Time to get some sleep.


Categories : Gymnastics, Olympics
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My Olympic Gymnastics Team Predictions

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US Olympic Trials Gymnastics

These were my predictions for 2008, to see my Olympic Gymnastics Team Predictions for 2012, read – Who Will Make the US Olympic Gymnastics Team in 2012.

The girls and I are getting ready to head to Philadelphia to see the Olympic Trials for gymnastics. My daughter has a leotard packed and hopes to get lots of autographs while we are there. I plan on taking my camera and will hopefully post updates and photos from the events over the weekend.

My prediction for the USA Womens Gymnastics Olympic team (including alternate):

Shawn Johnson

Shawn Johnson

Nastia Liukin
Nastia Liukin

Chellsie Memmel
Chellsie Memmel

Alicia Sacramone
Alicia Sacramone

Shayla Worley
Shayla Worley

Jana Bieger
Jana Bieger

Samantha Sam Peszek
Samantha Peszek

The meet will be exciting no matter the outcome! Stay tuned for updates – and to see if my predictions were right or not!

Categories : Gymnastics, Olympics
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Great Group Game: Here, There, Everywhere

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One of my favorite things to do as a coach is disguise work as fun. My new favorite game is called “Here, There and Everywhere”. We played this with a group of 25 gymnasts on a standard gymnastics floor and not only did they break a sweat, they kept asking to play it over and over! Here’s the run down on how to play.

What you need:

  • A group of kids of any age – the game can be played with 1-100 kids
  • An adult or older child to act as the “caller”
  • A large enough area for kids to move – obviously the larger the group the larger the space you need. Can be played outdoors, on a sports court, gymnastics floor or even in the pool.

Here, there, and everywhere game

How to play:

  • Define your play space and then identify 3 landmarks (a tree, a cone, a tape line, or any other visual) – name them “Here”, “There” and “Everywhere”
  • Start all the kids on “Here”
  • Then the caller gets creative! Caller says “Go there” and all the kids go to the spot identified as “There” – anyone who goes to the wrong place is out. The next command gets called – “Skip everywhere” and anyone who goes to the wrong place is out. Keep repeating with new ways to get here, there and everywhere until you declare a winner or everyone has had enough.

Command ideas:

  • Go here
  • Skip there
  • Sit everywhere
  • Stand everywhere
  • Jump here
  • Hop there
  • Swim everywhere
  • Spin here
  • Bounce there
  • Crawl everywhere

This game is guaranteed to make kids move and have fun doing it. No Standing Around in My Gym

Rick at Gymnastics Coaching recently posted about a great resource for games like this one – the book, called No Standing Around in My Gym, is by J.D. Hughes and features more than 70 games plus variations that will keep even large groups of kids moving and having fun.

I have a few more games that are popular with the kids at our gym. I will try to write them up soon and share them here.


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