Special Event: Rio 2016 Olympics - Gymnastics
August 6, 2016 7:36 PM - Subscribe

Gymnastics, men's and women's, at the Olympics - that's what we're discussing in here.
posted by LobsterMitten (237 comments total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
 
Watching the American men on the pommel horse is agonizing.
posted by TwoStride at 7:46 PM on August 6, 2016 [4 favorites]


Yeah, it's painful.

I am excited (and nervous for my faves) about tomorrow's women's competition!
posted by missmerrymack at 7:56 PM on August 6, 2016


I am going to the gym tomorrow so I can watch it on the TV on the eliptical machine. I will have so many steps! I'm kind of bummed that I can't get the live feed, because you know the NBC commentary will be US-centric and stupid.
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 8:42 PM on August 6, 2016


I keep thinking the US guys have such pretty, pretty eyes. That Jake Dalton, man.

I feel sorry for all the nitpicking in gymnastics. You're watching such pretty, pretty, wowza movements from these guys with huge arms, and then they do a little hop at the end and it's like OH THE SHAME.
posted by jenfullmoon at 8:48 PM on August 6, 2016 [10 favorites]


Men's floor exercise really should have music. Men's figure skating has it, after all.
posted by Melismata at 8:53 PM on August 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


I'm watching the late night NBC coverage of the Men's Gymnastics before I go to sleep.

Please please please Lord don't let them show the guy breaking his leg. I saw a still shot from the video today and that's already haunting me. I don't need nightmares about it. My leg hurts just thinking about it.
posted by MultiFaceted at 9:56 PM on August 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


I saw a headline earlier today on Slate telling me that I shouldn't click on the video of a French gymnast breaking two leg bones on a vault dismount. I followed their advice but I spent all of my time watching NBC's coverage with tense shoulders because I was afraid they'd show it. Gymnastics injuries are just brutal.

I'm actually glad for the absence of music in men's gymnastics and I wish they'd remove the dance elements from women's gymnastics. It made a bit more sense back in the 40's and 50's when so many gymnasts started as ballet dancers, but imho the "dance" in women's floor just looks odd juxtaposed against the much stronger acrobatics of modern gymnastics.

I was a bit fascinated by the evidence of shoulder cupping on Team USA. I remember a ton of cupping marks on the Chinese swimmers during the last summer Olympics.

My heart broke a little for the gymnasts who lost their balance on the pommel. You could see from their body language that they were just sad and annoyed at themselves.

The rings are one of my favorite events. Those two second holds with flat hands and locked wrists are incredibly impressive to me.
posted by xyzzy at 10:01 PM on August 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


There's potential for the women's floor if fun routines that actually empahsize (more contemporary/nontraditional) dancing, but so often it's been flipflipfliptwist, then stick an arm out and cock a hip, then flipflipfliptwist that I also wished that it would be like the men's and just be about power and flipping on diagonal runs...

Ugh, HuffPo decided to do, like, a frame-by-frame photo gallery of the poor French gymnast. From what I saw earlier, NBC showed the German gymnast who blew out a knee--but they're clearly going to make him the Kerri Strug of these games if they run short on American sob stories. (On a side note: I liked the German men's uniforms!)
posted by TwoStride at 10:05 PM on August 6, 2016


Rhythmic Gymnastics is much more dance-like, and the moves they can do with the hoops, balls, and ribbons is incredibly impressive. Keep an eye out for it!
posted by clorox at 10:22 PM on August 6, 2016 [4 favorites]


Apparently the officials carrying Samir Ait Said out after he broke his leg managed to drop the stretcher (warning: may contain imagery of the broken leg, this embedded tweet is less graphic and only shows the leg wrapped) when they were loading it into the ambulance.
posted by zachlipton at 10:47 PM on August 6, 2016


According to that link the French gymnast had the same identical injury occur to his other leg in the weeks before the London Olympics. Zut alors!
posted by xyzzy at 10:50 PM on August 6, 2016


The rings always blow me away. My brother in law is one of these insanely fit powerfully strong covered with muscles Crossfit guys, and he started doing rings as part of his daily workout routine recently. I watched this guy struggle with very basic rings moves like crazy. It has given me so much more respect for these gymnasts who just DO these things as though they were things that humans could do.
posted by KathrynT at 11:03 PM on August 6, 2016 [8 favorites]


Are the women shrinking? All of the US women seem so tiny this year?
posted by Justinian at 1:31 AM on August 7, 2016


All of the gymnasts are between 4'9" and 5'2". Every single all-around gold medalist since the 80's has been within 3 inches of 5 feet tall on either side.
posted by xyzzy at 2:51 AM on August 7, 2016 [3 favorites]


Huh, I did not know that.
posted by Justinian at 3:16 AM on August 7, 2016


I keep looking at the Japanese star gymnast, Uchimara (who discovered Pokemon Go after arriving in Brazil to his financial dismay) and thinking about how much his hair would have driven the old Iron Curtain coaches nuts. It's so tousled and messy and relentlessly hip.

It's not surprising that people pushing their bodies to the limit, throwing them through the air, and moving/landing with precision and control results in big injuries, but yowch! I did some googling when I woke up so I was not forewarned.

I really like the appearance of the apparati this year - some years it's basic industrial, but this year they paid attention to the color and form of the bases. The pommel horse in particular looks much cooler.
posted by julen at 3:54 AM on August 7, 2016 [3 favorites]


I woke up extra early this morning so that I could get the NBC Sports app and my Chromecast all set up to watch gymnastics. And now it won't accept my cable log in and I am super annoyed. I hope a lot of y'all are watching and posting here so I can play along.
posted by tryniti at 5:51 AM on August 7, 2016 [1 favorite]


Here's the start list for today's qualifications. Results will be here.

If you are in the US, here are the NBC links to the main stream and streams for each apparatus

Belgium, China, Mixed Group 7 (Chile, Turkey, Croatia, Australia, Uzbekistan), Mixed Group 1 (Jamaica, Panama, South Korea, Ireland, North Korea) are in this subdivision.

Their composition is boring, but I do love watching the Chinese gymnasts on beam.
posted by missmerrymack at 5:54 AM on August 7, 2016 [1 favorite]


Wow - they just said that Svetlana Boginskaya is coaching Oksana Chusovitina! I loved watching Svetlana Boginskaya in the 1992 Olympics - I hope they show her!
posted by ChuraChura at 5:55 AM on August 7, 2016 [4 favorites]


They did! Wow! Cool! And nice vaults by Chusovitina.
posted by ChuraChura at 6:01 AM on August 7, 2016 [1 favorite]


... terrible choreography for this Irish floor exercise.
posted by ChuraChura at 6:02 AM on August 7, 2016


I'm so excited to see Hong's vaults. Do you think she'll go for the TTY?
posted by missmerrymack at 6:12 AM on August 7, 2016


Everyone seems to be playing their vaults a little safe so they're assured to get into the event finals, and then saving the fancy stuff for the event finals - so maybe not.
posted by ChuraChura at 6:14 AM on August 7, 2016


Yes, you are right. I hope she makes finals and then lands it. It would so exciting and it doesn't terrify me the way the Produnovas do.
posted by missmerrymack at 6:20 AM on August 7, 2016


Wow, Tutya Yimaz's beam is great!
posted by ChuraChura at 6:56 AM on August 7, 2016


The French vaulter has already been mentioned - I learned yesterday that was the downside of watching the live streaming coverage, because I saw it happen live. The landing was so fast that at first all I saw was him down on his butt, then he lifted the leg and I hid my face as fast as possible. Every vault I watch for the rest of the week is gonna scare me.
posted by dnash at 6:56 AM on August 7, 2016


Since podium training earlier in the week, the gymnasts have been commenting on the vault table. Apparently their experience of it is that it's not crisp—there's a kind of delay between when it goes down and when it sproings back up. The Americans have been talking about having to adapt to that, to a feeling of having to wait with your hands on the table for it to give you that push. So there's a sense that some of the problems people are having with being under-rotated on vault and landing badly is that if they don't wait for the vault table, they end up not getting the height they need.

Pommel is pretty much the reason Alex Naddour is on the US team. They needed somebody to keep them from eating a whole string of 13.x scores on pommel in team finals, and Naddour is very strong on pommel.

I keep looking at the Japanese star gymnast, Uchimara (who discovered Pokemon Go after arriving in Brazil to his financial dismay) and thinking about how much his hair would have driven the old Iron Curtain coaches nuts. It's so tousled and messy and relentlessly hip.

My partner and I were actually commenting that for once, Uchimura looked like he'd had a haircut in recent memory. All the other men always show up for international meets looking very freshly trimmed, and the Japanese guys are just messy. Keep an eye out for Ryohei Kato; the first time my partner and I saw him, we observed to each other that now we understood where the small-faced pointy-chinned wild-haired manga character came from.

FWIW, Uchimura's phone provider cut him a deal. They cancelled his $5000 data bill and are giving him data in Rio at his usual daily rate. So at least he doesn't have that hanging over his head.
posted by not that girl at 8:31 AM on August 7, 2016 [2 favorites]


tryniti, I signed up for the free version of ustvnow to get access to an nbc live stream, and it seems to be working pretty well so far (though I haven't tried watching during prime time yet).
posted by Vibrissa at 9:08 AM on August 7, 2016


Oksana Chusovitina is 41 and a fantastic gymnast. I wonder what it's like for her to compete against gymnasts younger than her son.
posted by Stonkle at 9:18 AM on August 7, 2016 [2 favorites]


Rooting for Oksana so hard.

Fact: her son is older than some of the gymnasts!
posted by AlexiaSky at 10:41 AM on August 7, 2016


To get coverage I called mom, the only person I know with a cable subscription. Thanks Ma!

At least the commentators in the qualification do such a good job. I'm pretty sure they aren't with nbc.
posted by AlexiaSky at 10:46 AM on August 7, 2016


It has been an exhausting day of gymnastics. I can't imagine what the judges feel like.

I'm excited to see how Gabby Douglas does today. There's been so much negativity put her way since 2012. I really hope she can bring it today.
posted by missmerrymack at 12:11 PM on August 7, 2016


For those of us stuck watching Olympics on nbc when they randomly decide to show events in their commercials, here's a neat thing. If you can disable the Center channel of your sound setup, you will completely eliminate the sound of the talking heads. It means you miss the sob stories and the interviews, and some of the commercials are surreal with only background music and no voice overs, but overall, it has improved my viewing experience tenfold to not have to listen to the sports hacks babbling nonstop.
posted by SecretAgentSockpuppet at 12:29 PM on August 7, 2016 [3 favorites]


I am so deeply sad I missed Svetlana and Oksana.
posted by ApathyGirl at 12:46 PM on August 7, 2016




Here's Oksana's 1992 Floor Exercise. 4-year-old Chura lusted after the unified team's leotards!
posted by ChuraChura at 1:13 PM on August 7, 2016 [1 favorite]


If you have nbc and paid subscription service(cable, satalite), you can watch the quals live through quals subdivsion 4 stream with different commentators. Or Just watch it in Spanish.
Still commerials though.
posted by AlexiaSky at 1:40 PM on August 7, 2016


US being Spectacular floor!
posted by AlexiaSky at 1:50 PM on August 7, 2016 [1 favorite]


I'm watching US women on floors, and I think I might be more nervous than any of the competitors. So far everyone is looking good, but more than anything, I'm just hoping they make it through the quals without any injuries.
posted by litera scripta manet at 1:53 PM on August 7, 2016


There's been one major injury since womens quals started this morning, but nothing like yesterday! thank goodness.
posted by AlexiaSky at 1:57 PM on August 7, 2016 [1 favorite]


Did the NBC stream skip the first two USA on the uneven bars?
posted by DanSachs at 2:28 PM on August 7, 2016


I think so.
posted by AlexiaSky at 2:36 PM on August 7, 2016


The OBS world feed did too, they were shown during the transition period. The BBC commentators had some snide remarks for the director for showing the gymnasts milling around while we could clearly hear that Simone Biles was doing the bars.
posted by clorox at 3:00 PM on August 7, 2016


NBC people can watch The Daily Dismount starting right now, which is supposed to be a recap of the day's gymnastics so far.
posted by zachlipton at 3:03 PM on August 7, 2016 [1 favorite]


How can nbc recap when there are still three nations left to go? !
posted by AlexiaSky at 3:07 PM on August 7, 2016


This NYT interactive piece on what makes Simone Biles such an exceptional athlete is absolutely worth your time. (The other pieces in this series look good too--I read the high jump one, and it was fascinating.)
posted by duffell at 4:28 PM on August 7, 2016 [5 favorites]


Aly Raisman was fantastic on the floor! Everyone's doing so well!
posted by CatastropheWaitress at 5:12 PM on August 7, 2016


Oh Miyakawa stumbling on the floor, argh. I just want to hug these kids, oh my god.
posted by LobsterMitten at 6:02 PM on August 7, 2016 [1 favorite]


I clearly haven't matured since 1992. I desperately want a bedazzled maple leaf leotard!!!
posted by ChuraChura at 6:08 PM on August 7, 2016 [2 favorites]


Are you guys hearing the Australian or NZ commentators? They seem good.
posted by LobsterMitten at 6:10 PM on August 7, 2016


Oh it says; the commentators are apparently Steve Robilliard and Liz Chetkovich.
posted by LobsterMitten at 6:13 PM on August 7, 2016


I'm loving this Brazilian on beam! She's so elegant.
posted by CatastropheWaitress at 8:22 PM on August 7, 2016 [1 favorite]


The American women caught on camera talking about how/where they all wanted to vomit from nerves as they started the day... It's actually really endearing.
posted by TwoStride at 8:47 PM on August 7, 2016


Shut UP, Trautwig.
posted by Stonkle at 8:47 PM on August 7, 2016 [2 favorites]


Also, coming back to that British gymnast who landed on her head... how on earth was she allowed to continue?
posted by TwoStride at 8:51 PM on August 7, 2016 [2 favorites]


Yeah, I have SUCH mixed feelings about that. I mean, yeah, it's the olympics, and yeah, it was a great comeback, but it just seems like SUCH an awful idea to let her continue. It's hard to believe she would have passed a concussion test coming off that crash. (Does gymnastics do that?) She looked completely glazed. And it's a terrible example to set.

Unrelatedly, did NBC seriously just explain gymnastics scores in terms of (American) football touchdowns??? WTF.
posted by telepanda at 9:00 PM on August 7, 2016 [3 favorites]


Yeah I get extra uncomfortable when the injured athlete is a teenager who makes the call to go back in.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 9:05 PM on August 7, 2016 [1 favorite]


Watching that 1992 routine makes me wonder who fired the first shot in the sparkly leotard arms race.
posted by emeiji at 9:07 PM on August 7, 2016


Now I'm imagining silos full of glitter missiles.
posted by telepanda at 9:11 PM on August 7, 2016


Watching that 1992 routine makes me wonder who fired the first shot in the sparkly leotard arms race.

The Bedazzling of The American Gymnast.

I'm amused that that article talks about sparkles helping people see the gymnasts in the big arena. Funny how male gymnasts don't need sparkles to be seen (though Danell Leyva has suggested now and again that he wouldn't mind it if the men's uniforms got more colorful and shiny).

At least the commentators in the qualification do such a good job. I'm pretty sure they aren't with nbc

I think you're talking about Jonathan Horton, Jim Watson, and Courtney Kupets, if you're listening to the same stream I am. They are in fact with NBC, and are also doing a daily online show called The Daily Dismount that you can find at the NBC Olympics website. I'm so impressed and happy with their commentary. They talk about gymnastics, and Horton is talented at giving viewers technical information without being overwhelming.

After listening to them, Al Trautwig & Tim Daggett are that much worse. Trautwig has been nobody's hero for a long time, but he's really letting his ugly show lately. He gave an interview last week (I think) in which he talked about how he doesn't bother to try to learn about gymnastics because "it's hard to find information on gymnastics" and how, if you're commenting on, say, baseball, you have to know a lot about it because the fans do, but with gymnastics, they don't know anything so you don't have to either. There's a Fire Al Trautwig petition online somewhere.

He also got called out on twitter on his habit of calling Simone Biles' parents her "grandfather and his wife." He doubled down by tweeting that they weren't her parents because she was adopted. This after he described Biles during Olympic Trials as "from a broken home" when she's been in a stable home since she was very small. He's such a slime ball.
posted by not that girl at 11:43 PM on August 7, 2016 [12 favorites]


Nastia Liukin is a breath of fresh air, though. She's good at explaining what's notable about particular moves or routines, what makes them difficult, and other technical info in an understandable way, and she has a surprisingly pleasant voice for broadcast!

NBC's model for less-frequent sports of a Sports Broadcasting Guy and two specialists in the sport who don't necessarily have a lot of announcing experience, and the announcer plays traffic cop and director and regular Joe asking questions for the viewers can work really well! It just ... doesn't with Trautwig. Partly because he's so self important he can't efface himself into just guiding and prodding the specialists, and he really can't ever humble himself to ask the Regular Joe questions on behalf of the home audience.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 12:13 AM on August 8, 2016 [2 favorites]


I was surprised to see Romania sent Ponor (whom I thought had retired) instead of Iordache, who'd done well at international matches, but according to this article, Iordache had a broken finger that required more surgeries and thus wasn't healthy until a month ago; she is going as the alternate to Ponor.

This article from International Gymnast talks about the decision more, and then seques into some really interesting stuff about how some athletes winning medals at worlds events automatically qualified for the Olympics (even if their country qualified only 1 gymnast to go, a world medal winner would get to go in addition to that 1 qualifier), and some didn't.
posted by julen at 4:12 AM on August 8, 2016


Yeah, I have SUCH mixed feelings about that. I mean, yeah, it's the olympics, and yeah, it was a great comeback, but it just seems like SUCH an awful idea to let her continue. It's hard to believe she would have passed a concussion test coming off that crash. (Does gymnastics do that?) She looked completely glazed. And it's a terrible example to set.

I'm not sure if you saw how the British delegation handled it when Ellie Downie fell on floor. At first she continued her routine, but then she stopped and walked off. Her coaches walked with her in case she passed out, stabilized her neck, and took her out of the arena to check her thoroughly. She returned to finish the competition after being checked out. That's how it's supposed to be done.
posted by not that girl at 4:25 AM on August 8, 2016


He doubled down by tweeting that they weren't her parents because she was adopted.

Yes, fire him.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 4:51 AM on August 8, 2016 [1 favorite]


Just watched my DVR of the late night gymnastics coverage; Russia and China are not doing well. I'm wondering if this will give an opening to the UK and Brazil or if the powerhouses were just having an off night. (Frankly, I'm for anything that gets Brazil on the podium.)
posted by CatastropheWaitress at 5:43 AM on August 8, 2016


I am so glad I missed the French gymnast breaking his leg. I tore my ACL on a jumping pillow (inflated rubber pillow, super springy more like a trampoline than a bounce house) last year just... jumping. One minute I'm jumping the next minute my knee makes a horrible popping noise. I'm sure the broken leg is a thousand times worse. I have such a hard time seeing injuries now... [And seeing the Dutch cyclist crash on the final descent in a horrifying way brought me to tears yesterday.]
posted by misskaz at 6:45 AM on August 8, 2016 [1 favorite]


Someone posted the video of the French gymnast on facebook and before I realized what I was looking at (it autoplayed), I saw the horrific injury. I have a pretty tough stomach but it made me queasy. I wish I hadn't seen it. And then watching the British woman land on her head and the Dutch cyclist (I'm bad with names) - too many terrible injuries so far. I hope the rest of the games are incident-free.
posted by tryniti at 7:10 AM on August 8, 2016


I'm amused that that article talks about sparkles helping people see the gymnasts in the big arena.

I actually find them distracting. At least on TV viewing, maybe it's different in person.
posted by dnash at 8:03 AM on August 8, 2016


I wss super disappointed for the Canadian women, missing team qualifying yesterday. That had been their major goal and to end up in 9th is super depressing.
posted by jacquilynne at 11:08 AM on August 8, 2016


(On a side note: I liked the German men's uniforms!)

I'm torn between wanting to like the U.S. men's uniforms (the top is nice!) and my seething hatred for those ugly baggy red pants.
posted by psoas at 11:12 AM on August 8, 2016 [1 favorite]


It was a pleasure watching the teams last night. And their very pretty leos. I approve of the sparkle.

That said, it was kind of shocking to watch that little girl from...Brazil, I think, the one who got last place at some point in some other competition. I say shocking because for once the commentators weren't nitpicking the crap out of every little bobble she did. I guess they don't care if she's not good enough for a medal?

I also watched this video on how scoring works and ...good lord, the real reason for why no perfect scores boils down to "now we can replay the video and nitpick EVERY TINY THING." Kinda like, oh noes, Simone's feet cross a little while she's in the air! The SHAME because she can never be 100% perfect!
posted by jenfullmoon at 12:30 PM on August 8, 2016


Argh, I want yesterday's commentators back.
posted by ChuraChura at 12:38 PM on August 8, 2016


So apparently Ukraine just went up, touched the high bars, and left? The commentators seemed a bit mystified. What happened?
posted by zachlipton at 1:04 PM on August 8, 2016


Seems like today's men's team finals are not playing out at all the way one would have expected based on the qualifying round Saturday.
posted by dnash at 2:00 PM on August 8, 2016


Trautwig apologizes. It was still really terrible and jarring hearing him talk about her family last night.
posted by purpleclover at 2:18 PM on August 8, 2016


Danell Leyva slipping off the bars :(
posted by zachlipton at 2:26 PM on August 8, 2016


I'm looking forward to J.K. Simmons playing the slightly more idiotic version of Al Trautwig in the movie.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 10:55 PM on August 8, 2016 [2 favorites]


I'm enjoying watching the women's gymnastics. I've only just started watching the qualification rounds so have a fair way to catch up. Love the Belgium team's leotards. They look like a box of Cadbury Favourites. I've been skipping over the routines with injuries so thanks for the warnings :).
posted by poxandplague at 4:19 AM on August 9, 2016


Wow. NBC did not show men's gymnastics in the prime time 4-hour show at all. Bumped it to the late night show, where I didn't see how much they showed cuz I needed to go to bed, but I assume it was abbreviated coverage.

No US medal means nobody's interested, huh. Ugh.
posted by dnash at 4:52 AM on August 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


I watched the Men's Team Final on CBC. It was fun—Japan was terrific and one of their (youngest) teammates did his signature quad twist on the floor.

All the other men always show up for international meets looking very freshly trimmed, and the Japanese guys are just messy.

I totally disagree on this (being Asian American myself). The Japanese guys' hairstyles look natural. You have to think the Japanese garden esthetic where manipulation is in service of nature, etc. The white guys are clones (Trinh being the one who influenced the whole undercut+hairgel trend with a single photo of him on the internet a few years back, just google it). This is very much about who gets to dictate standards, etc. Ragging on other cultures and especially developing countries such as China is problematic.

Anyways, the really depressing thing is the age of the participants. I hadn't watched the Olympics in years, and it shocks me these people are so young! I mean intellectually and emotionally; even the British commentator complained to his Australian colleague, that the Americans' posturing and show of attitude isn't that appropriate [by the standards of a previous era, maybe], some would think. All these little details led me to an old Guardian article about exploitation of athletes, how their inculcation starts almost before they are born really, and so now I'm looking up Emile Durkheim and thinking/worrying about how his sociological theories would apply to 21st century global human capital structures of this sort.
posted by polymodus at 5:52 AM on August 9, 2016


For folks in the US, NBC's Daily Dismount has really great coverage of the Men's final if you don't have time to watch all four hours of competition online. (Bonus: there's no Al Trautwig to be found)
posted by CatastropheWaitress at 6:10 AM on August 9, 2016


Did anyone ever find out what was up with the Ukrianian (?) athlete who refused to participate in any of the events last night?
posted by TwoStride at 6:33 AM on August 9, 2016


Looks like one of the Ukrainians was in the hospital?

Ukraine's Oleg Verniaiev explained the situation in a post on Instagram, and said that one of the team members had just made a trip to the hospital.

"I would like to personally apologize for the situation in today's team final competition. There was unpredictable circumstances. We found out that we won't be competing as a full team 15 minutes prior to start of the competition when one of our team members came back from the hospital. At that point we weren't able to change our line up.

I would like to personally apologize in front of Switzerland team as well. I'm sure they were disappointed to see this situation tonight."

Seeing Ukraine throw away their performances will be especially frustrating for Switzerland, which finished ninth in team qualifying, less than three points behind Ukraine in 7th. Viewers were understandably puzzled.

posted by everybody had matching towels at 7:28 AM on August 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


Wow. NBC did not show men's gymnastics in the prime time 4-hour show at all. Bumped it to the late night show, where I didn't see how much they showed cuz I needed to go to bed, but I assume it was abbreviated coverage.

Yeah, I really frustrated about this as well. As of 10 pm, they still hadn't gotten to the men, so I set up my DVR to tape the rest and figured I would watch in the morning, but then I wake up this morning to discover they didn't get it in before the prime time coverage ended at midnight. It's really obnoxious. Guess what, NBC, some of us in the US are interested in watching events whether or not the US is going to medal. If the replay is still up, I may go back in and watch it online. I'm going to try to catch the women's team final on the live stream today, although I imagine the prime time coverage will probably lead off with that.

Speaking of, does anyone know what the order is for the women's team final in terms of what teams are going to be on which apparatus's during each rotation? I checked the NBC Olympics site and thegymter.net and couldn't find it. I guess I'll just tune in at 3 pm ET and go from there.
posted by litera scripta manet at 9:59 AM on August 9, 2016


Speaking of, does anyone know what the order is for the women's team final in terms of what teams are going to be on which apparatus's during each rotation?

I have no idea how accurate this will turn out to be but according to the order on the tabs of this thing, it will be vault first, uneven bars, beam, and floor last.
posted by everybody had matching towels at 10:13 AM on August 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


er, that order is for the US team, but the link has full schedules by apparatus.
posted by everybody had matching towels at 10:23 AM on August 9, 2016


Thanks, everybody had matching towels!
posted by litera scripta manet at 11:51 AM on August 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


Ah, here we go, now that the livefeed is up and running, they included the order underneath for the US, which confirms the lineup the everybody had matching towels posted:

Vault: Laurie Hernandez, Aly Raisman, Simone Biles

Uneven bars: Biles, Gabby Douglas, Madison Kocian

Balance beam: Raisman, Hernandez, Biles

Floor exercise: Hernandez, Raisman, Biles
posted by litera scripta manet at 11:59 AM on August 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


The Gymternet posted their live blog, which has the order of go for each country.
posted by litera scripta manet at 12:03 PM on August 9, 2016


I think I like the flower design on the Japanese uniform, although that's also a huge mizuno logo. Very good tumbling from the Japanese gymnast, but a few deductions for stepping out of bounds. I think that was Sae Miyakawa.

We really are at peak sparkle with these uniforms.

I'm not a fan of the NBC livestream commentators. One convenient thing about watching the individual feeds (rather than the single, mixed feed) is that you can hear what's going on the stadium without listening to the commentators. Okay, mostly it's just Jim Watson who is really annoying me.

Ugh, Jim Watson just referred to watching the instant replay of the vaults as "eye candy."
posted by litera scripta manet at 12:27 PM on August 9, 2016


Ooh, I like Great Britain's leotards.
posted by Bunny Boneyology at 12:31 PM on August 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


Aliya Mustafina had a great bars routine. If she gets that high a score in the event finals, Madison Kocian will have to work very hard to beat Mustafina.

Okay, if I were doing a drinking game for the NBC livestream commentary, I would take a shot every time Jim Watson makes a comment about the US having a ten point lead after qualifications. I mean, it's not like that score matters at this point, since they start over from zero points for the finals.
posted by litera scripta manet at 12:34 PM on August 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


I would happily wear all these leotards, except maybe the neon 80s German leos.
posted by ChuraChura at 12:34 PM on August 9, 2016


Watching Flavia Saraiva on beam is amazing - she's 4 inches taller than the beam is!!!
posted by ChuraChura at 12:36 PM on August 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


Oh, I really like the Brazil leotard. And yes, very nice routine for Flavia Saraiva!
posted by litera scripta manet at 12:39 PM on August 9, 2016


A Brazilian gymnast, Rebeca Andrade I think, has a BEYONCÉ FLOOR ROUTINE
posted by everybody had matching towels at 1:01 PM on August 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


Yeah that was pretty cool, though I feel bad for her about what happened at the end.
posted by zachlipton at 1:06 PM on August 9, 2016


Those bars from Madison Kocian, a 15.933!
posted by zachlipton at 1:08 PM on August 9, 2016


Yes, a great bars routine from Madison!

I think she and Aliya Mustafina got the same scores on bars.
posted by litera scripta manet at 1:10 PM on August 9, 2016


I'm so nervous for balance beam for the US!
posted by litera scripta manet at 1:11 PM on August 9, 2016


Good beam routines from Aly and Laurie! Now it's just down to Simone.
posted by litera scripta manet at 1:17 PM on August 9, 2016


I hatelove fluff gymnastics commentary. Her parents sold cows for her to do gymnastics! I suppose it's better than the slow motion pans of crying babies in Romanian orphanages from 1992 and 1996.
posted by ChuraChura at 1:49 PM on August 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


Is Mao Yi from China wearing socks on the floor routine? That seems like it would almost make it harder to maintain your balance/grip the floor, but maybe they're special socks?
posted by litera scripta manet at 1:56 PM on August 9, 2016


The commentators have been talking about the socks because a couple of gymnasts are wearing them. There's some question about how special the socks are and how much grip they give, but the idea is apparently that they help them get all the way around on their spins.
posted by zachlipton at 1:58 PM on August 9, 2016


Okay, that's interesting about the socks. I guess I could see how that might help with spins, but unless they have something grippy on the bottom, I still feel like they could make it easier to slup. Well, if they're wearing them, then I'm sure it must be what works best for them.

Oh, Laurie looks nervous! She's about to get started on floor.
posted by litera scripta manet at 2:03 PM on August 9, 2016


Good floor routine from Laurie! Her floor is always so much fun to watch.
posted by litera scripta manet at 2:06 PM on August 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


I am late to this thread but have we discussed that the US women's gymnasts outfits are weirdly shaded and make them all look pregnant?

Lauren Hernandez's floor was amazing, regardless!
posted by DarlingBri at 2:07 PM on August 9, 2016


I know a lot can happen in 4 years, but I hope Laurie can hang around through 2020. I'd love to see her be able to make it to the Olympics again, especially without being in the shadow of Simone, Gabby, and Aly. Regardless, she's doing a great job as a first year senior.
posted by litera scripta manet at 2:08 PM on August 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


I like all the vault judges who are still sitting at their table where they're supposed to be but are all watching Aly Raisman on the floor over their shoulders.
posted by zachlipton at 2:10 PM on August 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


Damn, Raisman killed that floor routine.
posted by Bunny Boneyology at 2:11 PM on August 9, 2016


DarlingBri, I hadn't been paying that much attention to the shading on the US leotards (I was so distracted by all the sparkles), but yeah, it is kind of a weird effect.
posted by litera scripta manet at 2:12 PM on August 9, 2016


And yes, great floor from Aly! I'm looking forward to seeing her in the all around.
posted by litera scripta manet at 2:13 PM on August 9, 2016


YES SIMONE!!!
posted by litera scripta manet at 2:15 PM on August 9, 2016 [1 favorite]


Simone Biles has some real dance moves here! I mean the gymnastics is extraordinary, but she's also just having fun.
posted by zachlipton at 2:15 PM on August 9, 2016


zachlipton, I agree about Simone's routine! I think she does a good job of blending in dance with her tremendous tumbling.

I'm so happy for the US women's team!
posted by litera scripta manet at 2:18 PM on August 9, 2016


"We are the final five!"
posted by zachlipton at 2:19 PM on August 9, 2016


I didn't realize they were dropping it to four athletes for the 2020 Olympics. Yikes. Not a lot of room for specialists.
posted by ChuraChura at 2:21 PM on August 9, 2016


And didn't it used to be seven?
posted by Melismata at 2:23 PM on August 9, 2016


What are the items they're handing the medal winners?
posted by everybody had matching towels at 2:42 PM on August 9, 2016


They're apparently medal holders (it took several days to discover this). They traditionally give flowers, but not this time. A lot of the medalists seem to look at it all confused.
posted by zachlipton at 2:50 PM on August 9, 2016 [2 favorites]


Ahh! Logical. Thanks!
posted by everybody had matching towels at 2:53 PM on August 9, 2016


And didn't it used to be seven?

Seven in Atlanta in 1996 (I remember falling in love with the Olympics watching the Magnificent Seven win gold), Six in Sydney in 2000, and in London in 2012, it was cut to five.

A few of the current Team USA gymnastics athletes are quite upset about the reduction to 4; they wanted it to be brought back to 6.
posted by PearlRose at 2:56 PM on August 9, 2016


From 7 all the way down to 4? Huh. What's the rationale? It's not like NBC wants less TV coverage.
posted by Melismata at 3:48 PM on August 9, 2016


So, question, because in all my years of watching gymnastics I've never understood this: what are the rules around having a spotter present with you under the apparatus? Like some of the women had today at the uneven bars, and I sometimes see with men under the high bar. What is that person doing there? Is it somehow allowed for them to physically assist if needed? Is it just a safety thing, if so why don't others have them? Don't the judges kinda think "oh, hey, she needs a spotter, that's less than ideal..." thus possibly putting the judges in a frame of mind more likely to find fault?
posted by dnash at 7:00 PM on August 9, 2016


Did anyone ever find out what was up with the Ukrianian (?) athlete who refused to participate in any of the events last night?

Here is a terrific write up about the Ukrainian Team from reddit.
In Defense of the Ukrainian Men's Gymnastics Team
posted by futz at 7:02 PM on August 9, 2016 [6 favorites]


I didn't realize they were dropping it to four athletes for the 2020 Olympics. Yikes. Not a lot of room for specialists.

There is some kind of provision for countries to qualify up to two individuals in addition to their four-member team. These gymnasts could compete as individuals in the all-around or as event specialists. Only four gymnasts will be able compete in the team competition. The format for that will be four-up, three-count, meaning all four of the team members will compete on all apparatuses and the lowest score will be dropped.

Nobody really understands how selection is going to work, exactly. But it will certainly be even more complicated than the existing selection process that nobody understands!

This is Steve Butcher, president of the IOC, commenting on Facebook after he announced the change in May:
Okay everyone, the team format will be four gymnasts, four compete on each appataus, and three scores count. The best countries will be able to qualify up to two individual gymnasts also through World Cups, Challenge Cups, and Continental Championships. There are many other formulas for AA gymnasts to qualify outside of the teams. The final details are still to be worked out, but the format is now set. I am one of the few that did not support this major change.
The five-member team already sucks for US women gymnasts. It has been said, without hyperbole, that the US women's program is so deep that the US could have sent an A team and a B team, and they'd both have likely medaled.

I'm not sure what the justification is for the cut. Nobody I follow in gymnastics likes the idea at all, so I haven't really heard that discussed.
posted by not that girl at 7:14 PM on August 9, 2016 [4 favorites]


I don't like the white arm on the US women's leotard. It makes them look lopsided.
posted by TwoStride at 8:03 PM on August 9, 2016


One of the Chinese coaches has all of the pins.
posted by clorox at 8:52 PM on August 9, 2016


I salute the gymnasts for determining their own moniker and owning it. The Final 5 was a savvy selection that pays tribute to Marta, refers to the team size reduction in the future, and is something they can refer to themselves without feeling egotistical. Nice.

Among the many many things that stuck in my craw on today's NBC flagship coverage, this exchange really ticked me off.

Gymnasts: Marta is a Gymnastics God!
Costas: Goddess.

Instead of giving them an opening to talk about Karolyi, Costas had to "correct" them by highlighting Marta's gender (and then later tried to give Bela as much credit as Marta). He also didn't even bother to give lip service to the fact that Raisman could win all-around. Now we all know Biles is the odds-on and likely winner, but the competition hasn't been had yet.

There's a reason why the people in my house say "Costas!" like Seinfeld said "Newman!"

Gah!
posted by julen at 9:10 PM on August 9, 2016 [7 favorites]


Costas is such an asshole. Then he spent the rest of the interview trying to bait the women into being "catty," with what boiled down to a "Aren't any of you jealous of Simone? I mean, she's the greatest gymnast and you're not" line of questioning.
posted by TwoStride at 9:15 PM on August 9, 2016


If anyone is interested in knowing the exact order of go for today's women's gymnastics all around finals, you can find it here.

(On the livestream, I prefer watching the individual apparatuses so I can make sure I get to see the gymnasts I'm most interested in, and for the NBC livestream, there aren't any commentators on the apparatus feeds, so it's a win/win.)
posted by litera scripta manet at 6:37 AM on August 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


Simone Biles gets to finish the meet on FX again!
posted by ChuraChura at 7:00 AM on August 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


If anyone is curious about how the order of go is determined for these events, it's explained pretty comprehensively in this article.
posted by litera scripta manet at 8:35 AM on August 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


Wow, that was an excellent beam by Chunsong Shang!
posted by ChuraChura at 12:23 PM on August 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


THANK YOU litera scripta manet!! While the NBC web site has improved this year in other areas, it's still woefully difficult to find "101" stuff like this...
posted by Melismata at 12:47 PM on August 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


No problem, Melismata! The NBC site is kind of a nightmare. Just navigating to the live stream is a pain.
posted by litera scripta manet at 1:09 PM on August 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


Simone's beam looked great! I was so nervous watching her beam routine. I'm sure Simone is used to this kind of pressure, but still...I can't imagine how her parents or coach must feel watching this. Maybe they're used to it too? I'd probably be crying/hyperventilating/dying the whole time.
posted by litera scripta manet at 1:14 PM on August 11, 2016


Ugh, it seems like that scoring was pretty harsh on Aly's beam routine, but I'm about as far as you can get from an expert. It seemed great to me.
posted by litera scripta manet at 1:36 PM on August 11, 2016


I'm so glad we get to see this Beyonce floor exercise again.
posted by zachlipton at 1:54 PM on August 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


Ah, I feel bad for Seda Tutkhalyan. It seems like starting with that dismount on beam, things started to go down hill. Oh, she looks so sad.

I love Rebeca Andrade's Beyonce floor routine!
posted by litera scripta manet at 1:57 PM on August 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


Oh, Simone. You are amazing.
posted by minsies at 2:03 PM on August 11, 2016


YES ALY!!!

YES SIMONE!!!
posted by litera scripta manet at 2:05 PM on August 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


Oh, they both look so happy! I'm pretty sure Aly's coach might have been crying too at the end of Aly's routine. I can't blame him. They're crying, I'm crying. I'm so happy for them!

Shang Chungson came SO CLOSE to being on the podium. But I'm glad Aliya Mustafina was able to hold on to the bronze.
posted by litera scripta manet at 2:15 PM on August 11, 2016


I might actually strangle my advisor. He came in to go over data with me literally AS Simone Biles was starting her floor exercise, and I missed it.
posted by ChuraChura at 2:32 PM on August 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


I was just chatting with a friend about how Aly Raisman is such an incredible captain. During the team medal ceremony she took the lead with directing her teammates, like, now we bite the medals, now we hold up one finger to show we're #1, etc. It's clear that the team adores her (there have been a couple of adorable articles about how the other four call her 'grandma,' too, which is too cute). But she is so aware of all of the optics. It would be so easy for the media to spin the narrative of her being jealous/resentful of Simone Biles but she has masterfully sidestepped that entirely.
posted by everybody had matching towels at 2:38 PM on August 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


Watching the NBC coverage, my 4-yo asked me, Mommy, why don't she have any pants on? I don't know, son, I don't know. Now all I can think about is changing the rules so those poor girls can wear a nice boy short!
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 5:50 PM on August 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


I really wish commentators and everyone else would stop bringing up the fact that Simone could take home 5 gold medals. I mean, there's a very good chance that she will do this, but at the same time, it's not at all a foregone conclusion. The USA team was basically unbeatable in the all around. And even in the all around, Simone could possibly have had a fall and still eked out a gold.

But on the beam, anything can happen. If Laurie or Flavia or Sanne have a great routine, and Simone has a bad one, one of them could easily get the gold instead. If Simone falls, she could possibly not even get on the podium for beam.

And in the vault, if Simone has a bad landing or makes other costly mistakes, someone like Hong Un Jong could get gold instead.

I mean, even on floor nothing is guaranteed.

But seriously, balance beam. I get so nervous watching all of them! Even the best gymnast can mess up a beam routine.

Anyway, my point is that by focusing so much on Simone's 5 gold medal potential, I feel like it almost sets this expectation that if she doesn't get gold in all three apparatuses, then it will be a let down, even if she still medals. I mean, obviously what she's already accomplished is more than enough to make her a legend, but I just wish everyone hadn't made such a big deal about this 5 gold medal thing.

Although I guess talking about her getting 5 gold medals is better than this stupid crap that they say about her family, but still.
posted by litera scripta manet at 9:18 PM on August 11, 2016


Can anyone explain to me why the US men's gymnastics team isn't as spectacular as the US ladies's? Is it all down to a lack of a Karolyi? I'm just wondering.
posted by jenfullmoon at 11:10 PM on August 11, 2016


Oh heeeeey, that Beyonce routine was pretty damn cool.
posted by jenfullmoon at 11:43 PM on August 11, 2016


Can anyone explain to me why the US men's gymnastics team isn't as spectacular as the US ladies's? Is it all down to a lack of a Karolyi?

It's misogyny, pure and simple. The people who run gymnastics, and the Olympics, and NBC, are all men who prefer seeing women in underwear, and think everyone is like them. If it were anything else, the sheer athleticism of the men would make them as celebrated as the women. The women themselves would rather wear shorts, and do wear them when practicing, but shorts are prohibited when competing.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 5:01 AM on August 12, 2016


I think the question is about why US women are so dominant in international competition right now, while the the US men aren't particularly great. It has nothing to do with what anyone is wearing and everything to do with the quality of the gymnastics.
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious at 5:09 AM on August 12, 2016 [7 favorites]


Yes. Insufficient coffee.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 5:46 AM on August 12, 2016


I think part of it is the depth of the pool of talent. There are zillions of little girls doing gymnastics in gyms all around the country, but little boys with aptitude for sports and movement are more often put into martial arts or soccer or football or baseball.
posted by ChuraChura at 5:47 AM on August 12, 2016 [6 favorites]


(Though, of course, the men's team came in 5th in the Olympics! That's nothing to sneeze at! I have a former student who will probably be on the team for the Tokyo Olympics and he's very impressive. The US is still producing excellent male gymnasts.)
posted by ChuraChura at 6:25 AM on August 12, 2016 [3 favorites]


It certainly doesn't help when NBC relegates all coverage of the men's gymnastics to either the overnight show, or the very end of the prime time show, so few people are still up to watch it. It's kind of like the phrase that's used recently for things like Clinton's candidacy or movies with major women heroes, "you have to see it to know you can be it" - when the media barely covers the men, simply because they're not currently medaling, fewer boys are seeing something they might aspire to be.
posted by dnash at 7:35 AM on August 12, 2016 [1 favorite]


I don't know a lot about gymnastics, but watching Women's Floor last night I was blown away by two moves. These are my personal made-up names based on a little Googling last night, but the first one was Aly Raisman's half-in double-tuck at the end her first tumbling line (further research indicates this is a 'Double Arabian'?), and the other was Simone Biles' double layout with the half-out. Those half's absolutely kill me! Also, the double front layout is one of the most incredible things a human can do with their body.
posted by rhizome at 12:04 PM on August 12, 2016 [1 favorite]




I want video of Bryony Page crying when she found out she was medaling in trampoline. Please and thank you.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 4:03 PM on August 12, 2016


Watched the NBC stream, well worth it!
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 5:35 PM on August 12, 2016


The Biles. Apparenly I'm a noob!
posted by rhizome at 12:23 AM on August 13, 2016 [3 favorites]


Uladizslau Hancharou is wonderful! I love seeing the joy of the winners.
posted by epj at 12:18 PM on August 13, 2016


The whole Men's trampoline final was so much fun, especially since that one guy who "fell off" landed on the padded siding and on his feet. (We were glad to see his Chinese safety handler and the 4 regular safety handlers leaping into action even while he saved himself.)

The announcers kept saying it was a friendly, mutually supportive sport, which I (being a cynic) was doubting, but danged if Dong Dong (world champion, and this competition's silver medalist) didn't throw a thumbs up after Hancharou's routine beat his. It was such a nice moment.
posted by julen at 4:46 PM on August 13, 2016 [1 favorite]


I'm rooting so hard for these Brazilian men waiting to find out if they get medals in the floor exercise final
posted by Vibrissa at 10:30 AM on August 14, 2016


They got silver and bronze! And oh gosh; they're celebratorily sobbing
posted by Vibrissa at 10:32 AM on August 14, 2016 [2 favorites]


I'm not crying watching the Brazilians celebratorily sob - you are!
posted by ChuraChura at 10:49 AM on August 14, 2016 [4 favorites]


I'm so happy for these guys! Bronze and silver for Brazil! Arthur Mariano had such a huge smile on his face when he was stepping up onto the podium! And Diego Hypolito is in tears! And the crowd got so pumped up!

I do feel bad for Sam Mikulak.
posted by litera scripta manet at 10:51 AM on August 14, 2016


Seriously, though, I'm so happy for the Brazil Men's gymnastics team! A great start to the apparatus finals.

Also, I'm glad they actually showed the medal ceremony for this one.
posted by litera scripta manet at 10:53 AM on August 14, 2016


North Korea! India! Uzbekistan!
posted by ChuraChura at 10:58 AM on August 14, 2016


I feel kind of guilty about this, because I'm not usually so partisan about who I root for during the Olympics, but I have to admit that I really, really want to see Simone get gold on vault (and floor and beam).

Oh, but I'm still sad for Hong Un Jong. That was so gutsy to go for that new second vault.
posted by litera scripta manet at 11:06 AM on August 14, 2016


Ugh, poor Oksana! So close! I hope she didn't hurt herself. And she still has to do her second vault.
posted by litera scripta manet at 11:09 AM on August 14, 2016


I would love to see Oksana and Dipa medal.
posted by ChuraChura at 11:09 AM on August 14, 2016 [1 favorite]


Wow, first British gymnastics gold in 116 years of this competition apparently. Fingers were crossed for Whitlock for the pommel but this was pretty unexpected.
posted by biffa at 11:10 AM on August 14, 2016 [1 favorite]


Dipa's first vault looked good! I would definitely love to see her medal in this event.
posted by litera scripta manet at 11:20 AM on August 14, 2016


Oh, that was beautiful in the air! I hope Dipa still ends up getting a high enough score on the second vault, even with the landing.
posted by litera scripta manet at 11:22 AM on August 14, 2016 [1 favorite]


Oh, this is so tough. Dipa is third now, with only Simone left to go.

I'm so nervous I can't stand it!
posted by litera scripta manet at 11:27 AM on August 14, 2016


A hop back on the landing. Simone doesn't look very happy.

Oh, a 15.9! Yes, Simone!
posted by litera scripta manet at 11:28 AM on August 14, 2016


YES SIMONE!!!!!!!
posted by litera scripta manet at 11:29 AM on August 14, 2016 [1 favorite]


Wow, that was quite a vault. Well, I'm glad Giulia Steingruber won her medal - she's a beautiful gymnast! And Simone Biles is unreal.
posted by ChuraChura at 11:31 AM on August 14, 2016 [1 favorite]


16.033 on the second vault!

I'm glad that Giulia Steingruber was able to medal, but I'm so sad about Dipa. She came so, so close to being on the podium.
posted by litera scripta manet at 11:33 AM on August 14, 2016


That was incredible. I'm glad I decided to watch the whole event live. I too, was also hoping Dipa could hang onto a spot for a medal.
posted by PearlRose at 11:34 AM on August 14, 2016


These men all have ridiculously fancy, hip hair.
posted by ChuraChura at 11:58 AM on August 14, 2016 [3 favorites]


Nice start on the uneven bars for Jessica Lopez! I would have loved to see her get on the podium, but I'm guessing her score probably won't be enough to medal.
posted by litera scripta manet at 12:39 PM on August 14, 2016


I love watching Aliya Mustafina on bars!
posted by litera scripta manet at 12:44 PM on August 14, 2016


She looks so happy after that routine, with good reason. Oh, and she has such a cute little stuffed monkey.

A 15.9! What a great score for Aliya!
posted by litera scripta manet at 12:45 PM on August 14, 2016


Oh no, Daria! That's so sad.
posted by litera scripta manet at 12:56 PM on August 14, 2016


Yay Aliya!

Oh, and I'm very happy for Sophie Scheder! I do feel bad for Eli Seitz. I wonder if it feels better to miss out on a medal to your teammate or worse? I guess it's mixed feelings, probably.

Great job to Madison! It was quite close, as I figured it would be, although I'm happy they didn't need a tie breaker. I always hate when they have to do those. I wish they would just let them be co-medalists like they do in non-Olympics competitions.
posted by litera scripta manet at 1:08 PM on August 14, 2016


I was really rooting for Shang Chunsong to make it onto the podium in uneven bars, especially after she came so close in the all around.
posted by litera scripta manet at 1:15 PM on August 14, 2016 [1 favorite]


I wonder if it feels better to miss out on a medal to your teammate or worse? I guess it's mixed feelings, probably.

In retrospect, this was kind of a stupid question on my part. These women spend so much time training and competing together that I'm sure they'd rather lose out to a teammate than to lose to someone from another country.

I was probably just projecting since I'm obnoxiously hyper competitive and a terrible loser. Even when the game is Apples to Apples.
posted by litera scripta manet at 6:02 PM on August 14, 2016


The Brazilian Men's wins are so great!
posted by rhizome at 10:14 PM on August 14, 2016


So it looks like Oksana is the last contestant who ever competed as a Soviet?
posted by rhizome at 10:26 PM on August 14, 2016


For anyone still interested in some more Gymnastics 101 articles, thegymter.net is a great resource, although it's focused on women's gymnastics pretty exclusively. Today is beam, so you might want to check out Four Year Fan Guide for Beam. They also have one for vault and uneven bars.

Also, a four year fan guide glossary and a more in depth piece on some of the technical aspects of gymnastics. Of course, all of this is aimed at people, like me, with no prior experience in gymnastics aside from casually watching it during Olympics season.

I know we're getting close to the end of the Olympics gymnastics coverage, but I'm still going to link these in case anyone else has been inspired to learn more about the sport.
posted by litera scripta manet at 7:47 AM on August 15, 2016 [7 favorites]


Although I can understand the reflexive temptation of a headline-writer to match a name like "Biles" with the word "rises", I was very surprised and disappointed that the NYT approved this headline: As Biles Soars, a Tiny Country Rises With Her. While the two words are not paired directly, it was a pretty obvious and gross connection.

Thankfully they changed the headline for the digital edition: Simone Biles Soars, Lifting Another Country With Her.
posted by Kabanos at 8:35 AM on August 15, 2016


Some of these rings specialists have shoulders and deltoids that are so large, their heads barely fit between their arms!
posted by ChuraChura at 10:29 AM on August 15, 2016


Illustration
posted by rhizome at 10:32 AM on August 15, 2016 [6 favorites]


I'm so nervous about women's balance beam that I've hardly been able to focus on men's vault and rings.

I very much want Simone to get gold, but I'd also love to see Laurie and Flavia medal. I know Brazil's team has made it onto the podium for men's gymnastics, but I don't think Brazil has gotten any medals in women's gymnastics, and I think beam is their last chance since it doesn't look like they have anyone in floor finals tomorrow. Also, I just really like Flavia. (I can't believe she's only 4'4"!)

But I also want Laurie to medal, because first of all, she is just one of my favorite current gymnasts. Also, I feel bad about her not even getting a chance to qualify for all around, and she got two per team-ed out of being in the floors final. She had a decent chance of getting bronze in that event, so that had to have been a disappointment, although not a surprise, considering that Aly and Simone were basically shoe ins for that event. Although she may not be able to match Aly and Simone's tumbling on the floor*, she brings so much charisma and artistry to her floor routine, that I would have loved to see her compete in the final, although not at the expense of Simone and Aly being on floor. And of course, I can understand why they wouldn't want to allow for a possible 1/2/3 finish for the US on floor.

*Well, not yet. She's only a first year senior, so hopefully she can stick around for another quad.
posted by litera scripta manet at 11:42 AM on August 15, 2016 [1 favorite]




Also stupid Jim Watson mispronounced Flavia's first name. Unless Flavia is pronounced "Flavinia". Although I don't think it is, because Courtney did a correction without explicitly correcting him by repeating Flavia's name the way I believe it should actually be pronounced.
posted by litera scripta manet at 11:49 AM on August 15, 2016


Oh no, poor Isabela!
posted by litera scripta manet at 11:50 AM on August 15, 2016


She seemed to recover well, which is not easy to do. A lot of gymnasts seem to get pretty rattled after a fall on beam, understandably.

Simone is up next. Ugh, I'm so nervous I can't stand it.
posted by litera scripta manet at 11:53 AM on August 15, 2016


Oh no, the start of her routine was so beautiful! She was so solid at the beginning and then...she might not even medal now.

Oh, Simone. I don't know if I can even watch the rest of this.
posted by litera scripta manet at 11:59 AM on August 15, 2016


Yeah I'm cringing here.
posted by zachlipton at 12:01 PM on August 15, 2016


Sonne did a great beam. I love her pirouettes.

There's no shame in Simone Biles completing so far 9 practically perfect routines, and then having a misstep in her 10th. She's done an amazing job, that was an excellent beam (14.77 is nothing to be disappointed in, really), and I hope that she doesn't feel like she's let herself or anyone else down.
posted by ChuraChura at 12:07 PM on August 15, 2016 [3 favorites]


Laurie's beam was fantastic!
posted by ellieBOA at 12:09 PM on August 15, 2016


I strongly second everything that ChuraChura just said.

Also, before the Olympics, Simone already set a record by being the 3 time all around world champion, and she's already gotten gold on beam in 2014 and 2015 at the World Championships (among other things). She has already proven herself over and over again.

I just worry about commentators and journalists who have made such a thing out of "5 golds" and I'm afraid they'll latch on to this and make a big deal about it.
posted by litera scripta manet at 12:21 PM on August 15, 2016


What does it mean when 'enquiry: rejected' appears onscreen?
posted by ellieBOA at 12:25 PM on August 15, 2016


They asked for the difficulty scores on Lauren Hernandez and the French gymnast's routines to be re-evaluated and increased, but the judges did not increase either difficulty score.
posted by ChuraChura at 12:26 PM on August 15, 2016 [1 favorite]


Thanks!
posted by ellieBOA at 12:27 PM on August 15, 2016


Oh, I feel bad for Flavia, but I'm happy for Sanne, Laurie, and Simone. I really was hoping to see Flavia up on the podium, but I was feeling a lot more conflicted about it when I realized that would mean Simone didn't end up on the podium.

They all have done a great job. I'm looking forward to floor tomorrow. It's always been my favorite to watch, and I really hope Simone kills it like she usually does.
posted by litera scripta manet at 12:32 PM on August 15, 2016


The French announcer just introduced the bronze medalist, Simone Biles from the Netherlands!
posted by ellieBOA at 12:34 PM on August 15, 2016


Someone made a comment over on thegymter.net about the leo Simone is wearing being cursed, since Gabby wore the same one yesterday when she had her not so great bar routine. I'm not usually superstitious, but I hope Aly isn't planning on wearing that one tomorrow.
posted by litera scripta manet at 12:34 PM on August 15, 2016


Sanne Wevers is the first Dutch woman to win a medal in an olympic gymnastic event!
posted by Pendragon at 12:35 PM on August 15, 2016 [2 favorites]


Sanne looks so happy! She really did a great job.
posted by litera scripta manet at 12:36 PM on August 15, 2016


And she's 24!
posted by ellieBOA at 12:43 PM on August 15, 2016


Oh, I didn't realize that grabbing the beam counts as a fall. I guess that makes sense. So that's a full point deduction, rather than a .5 deduction that you would get for the most severe balance check. I thought Simone's score seemed lower than I expected if it had only been a .5 deduction. (This was probably covered already in the commentary, but I just couldn't handle listening to them.)

Well, I guess that makes it even more impressive that Simone still ended up on the podium.
posted by litera scripta manet at 12:48 PM on August 15, 2016


Although actually, with Sanne and Laurie getting such high scores, if the rest of Simone's score had been the same, the .5 deduction (instead of 1 point) would have still kept her in third.
posted by litera scripta manet at 12:50 PM on August 15, 2016


Yay Laurie! Sad for Simone, but I guess even perfect people gotta wobble sometime.

But seriously, Laurie is adorable. I wish I could see her floor again.
posted by jenfullmoon at 11:41 PM on August 15, 2016 [1 favorite]


jenfullmoon, I'm embarrassed to admit how many times I've re-watched some of these routines. They haven't been posting full routines from the Olympics to youtube, but at least for the US gymnastics, you can find most of their routines from previous competitions. (Most of them don't really change their routines much.)

I hadn't been following gymnastics that closely recently, but I happened to catch the 2016 P&G championship on TV. Seeing Simone's floor routine was what really re-inspired by passion for gymnastics. I didn't even know anything about Simone or any one else (aside from the 2012 returning team members), but it's basically impossible not to be blown away by Simone. And then, when I saw Laurie's floor routine, that's when I fell in love with Laurie. Also, everyone should check out Laurie's beam routine from Day 2 of the 2016 Olympic trials.

I still wish we could see Laurie in the floor final, but I'm really routing for Simone and Aly to take the two top spots today.
posted by litera scripta manet at 11:05 AM on August 16, 2016


YES Simone!!! 15.966!
posted by litera scripta manet at 11:11 AM on August 16, 2016


Great floor routine, as always. I'm so glad she had a chance to end the Olympics with her strongest event. Well, score wise she does some times score higher on the vault, but floor is just so much where she shines.

I do think she is (understandably) tired. She's competed in every possible event except the uneven bars apparatus finals. There were a couple of moments in the floor routine where I've seen her hit landings slightly better on previous routines, but it really was such an amazing routine, just like it always is. She is already such a legend.

I'd love to see Simone continue to compete after this. Although hopefully she'll find time for a much deserved recovery period first.
posted by litera scripta manet at 11:15 AM on August 16, 2016


Rough routine for Giulia Steingruber. She powered through, but I felt so bad for her. I just hope she didn't injure herself.

And an AMAZING routine for Aly! Yay Aly!
posted by litera scripta manet at 11:18 AM on August 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


Yes GB bronze!!!!
posted by ellieBOA at 11:23 AM on August 16, 2016 [3 favorites]


Are Simone and Aly wearing the same leotard? If so, that's really cute. I love seeing how close these guys are as a team.

Ah, I would have liked to see Vanessa Ferrari pull off a bronze, but I'm also really happy for Amy Tinkler.

And of course, so happy for Simone and Aly!
posted by litera scripta manet at 11:24 AM on August 16, 2016


Also, can we just talk about how awesome Aly is? It's pretty amazing to come back just as strong if not stronger than she was in the 2012 Olympics. Although Simone won the all around by nearly two points, which is insane, Aly was ahead of Aliya Mustafina by about 1.5 points, which is also such a huge margin. She's also such a hard worker and such a great team captain. I really love Aly.

Oh, and big smile from Simone on the podium! I'm so happy she was able to finish up on top.
posted by litera scripta manet at 11:37 AM on August 16, 2016


Ouch men's bar - Dutch Epke just fell face first pretty hard, but carried on!
posted by ellieBOA at 11:51 AM on August 16, 2016


Oh jeez, You Hao's parallel bar routine was so nice until the dismount :(
posted by Vibrissa at 2:12 PM on August 16, 2016


Li Donghua, a Swiss gymnast who won pommel horse gold in 1996, just did a routine in the gala! It was a pommel horse apparatus on the balance beam and he was dressed like an old man, I am going to have to find out more about that because it was awesome but a little baffling.
posted by everybody had matching towels at 8:00 AM on August 17, 2016 [1 favorite]


Not from the Olympics, but sooo adorable:
Simone Biles vs. a bumble bee
posted by Atom Eyes at 10:20 AM on August 17, 2016 [6 favorites]


Adorable!!
posted by ellieBOA at 12:15 PM on August 17, 2016


This is the first time I've seen the rhythmic gymnastics with the ball rather than the ribbon and it's very cool. They handle it in a way that gives it weight one minute the effortlessly fling it up in the air the next.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 12:22 PM on August 20, 2016 [1 favorite]


I love the outfits in rhythmic gymnastics (go Team Russia's). Why isn't this more popular? It's pretty sweet to watch.
posted by jenfullmoon at 8:11 AM on August 21, 2016


Belarus looked so dramatic with the music they chose!
posted by marienbad at 8:19 AM on August 21, 2016


Bulgaria were amazing! Can they do it?
posted by marienbad at 8:28 AM on August 21, 2016


I'm watching the rhythmic gymnastics group all-around finals from the top, and the ribbons from the first group don't actually even appear real. Something about the colours make them look look like they are just squiggly lines drawn onto the video in post.
posted by jacquilynne at 8:48 AM on August 21, 2016


How on earth do you choreograph these routines? Where do you even start? They are so amazingly timed and orchestrated.
posted by marienbad at 8:53 AM on August 21, 2016 [1 favorite]


Went back to check out what jacquilynne said about the ribbons and am now watching this. Amazing stuff, how on earth they spot mistakes with so much going on is beyond me. Spain, for me, had the best routine, the part where she put the ribbon down and ran over the other two ribbons and they bounced it up and into her hand was way cool.

And I keep thinking "please don't drop it, please don't drop it" with every damn throw.
posted by marienbad at 9:37 AM on August 21, 2016


Okay Russia, that was unreal in the hoops and clubs.
posted by marienbad at 10:05 AM on August 21, 2016


Russia used the Rite of Spring! One of my favorites!
posted by LizBoBiz at 10:50 AM on August 21, 2016


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