Karen Louise Hollis Gymnastics books

Karen has a number of Gymnastics books.

Her latest is Classic Gymnastics – Issue 2.

… articles on the 1983 World Championships, Natalia Karamushka (and cover), Joanna Sime (GB), Nailya Gabassova (USSR) and more, plus posters of Nadia Comaneci, Inessa Lisovskaya, Maria Filatova, Zdenka Dornakova and more.

Photographing Gymnastics

Photographing Gymnastics: Technical and Artistic Perspectives Paperback

This book was published December 2019.

Author David W Pasho. Grace Chiu Introduction.

If you use a smart phone, point and shoot (P & S) or digital single reflex (DSLR) camera to photograph at your club parents day, a seasonal show or a gymnastics competition, Photographing Gymnastics is written for you. …

Photographing moving gymnastics in low light settings where flash is not permitted is a photographic challenge no matter what camera lens you have. …

Amazon Canada

new book – Women’s Artistic Gymnastics

 Socio-cultural Perspectives

Published April 22, 2020

Edited by Roslyn Kerr, Natalie Barker-Ruchti, Carly Stewart, and Gretchen Kerr.

This book lifts the lid on the high pressured, complex world of women’s artistic gymnastics. By adopting a socio-cultural lens incorporating historical, sociological and psychological perspectives, it takes the reader through the story and workings of women’s artistic gymnastics.

Beginning with its early history as a ‘feminine appropriate’ sport, the book follows the sport through its transition to a modern sports form. Including global cases and innovative narrative methods, it explores the way gymnasts have experienced its intense challenges, the complexities of the coach-athlete relationship, and how others involved in the sport, such as parents and medical personnel, have contributed to the reproduction of a highly demanding and potentially abusive sporting culture.

With the focus on a unique women’s sport, the book is an important read for researchers and students studying sport sociology, sport coaching, and physical education, but it is also a valuable resource for anyone interested in the development of sporting talent.



It’s available through Amazon.com.

Professor Barker-Ruchti contends that coaches should plan for Gymnastics peak performance as adults, rather than trying to teach as much difficulty as possible when girls are small:

Gym is not child’s play: study

Athlete A – now on Netflix

June 24th.

Netflix now has the documentary on the USA Gymnastics criminal doctor

Athlete A is Maggie Nichols.

First, we all need thank Maggie, Sarah Jantzi and Maggie’s parents.

And we all need thank Rachael Denhollander and Jamie Dantzscher.

Now that the criminal doctor is in prison for up to 175 years, it’s easy to forget how difficult were those early accusations.

It’s easy to forget how many very smart people were fooled by the conman. Jamie — at the time — felt he was the only nice adult associated with USA Gymnastics.

The documentary is well done.  Recommend it to your non-Gymnastics friends. We can reduce medical malpractice and abuse in future. Protect athletes.

Revisit, too, the selection process for the Rio Olympic team. Certainly Maggie should have been one of the alternates.

An August 2016 article in the Indianapolis Star about USA Gymnastics protecting coaches accused of abuse leads to the explosive revelation that the USAG women’s team doctor, Larry Nassar, had been abusing athletes for over two decades.

This film follows the IndyStar reporters as they reveal the extensive cover-up that allowed abuse to thrive within elite-level gymnastics for more than two decades, the attorney who is fighting the institutions that failed these athletes, and most importantly, the brave whistle-blowers who refuse to be silenced.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

In addition to watching the documentary, be sure to listen to an excellent interview with Jennifer Sey on Gymnastic.

Sey is the producer.

Jennifer’s 2008 book Chalked Up is available in digital format with a new forward.

Kyle Shewfelt book delayed until 2021

The 2004 Olympic Floor Champion is a fan favourite. And a very popular public speaker.

MAKE IT HAPPEN: My Story of Gymnastics, the Olympics, and the Positive Power of Sport.

Kyle worked with Blythe Lawrence on the new book but,  with everything that’s happening now, decided to delay publication until Spring 2021.

If you just can’t wait, Kyle will be reading a chapter a day on his Instagram Live during the month of May.

View this post on Instagram

MAKE IT HAPPEN: My Story of Gymnastics, the Olympics, and the Positive Power of Sport. This is my book and I am so proud of it. I held a freshly printed copy in my hands a couple of weeks ago and it felt so damn good. Writing this book has been a goal of mine for years and with the help of a talented team, including my co-writer @roseblythelawrence, we got it across the finish line. What a feeling! Today, I wanted to announce that I will be postponing the official release until Spring 2021. Waiting another year feels like an eternity, but considering the current circumstances, it also feels right and so I’m rolling with it. I’m too excited about this project, however, to have it sit entirely on a shelf until the launch next year. I’ve decided to read the book, one chapter a day, on my Instagram Live during the month of May. Story time with Kyle – this is going to be FUN!! Please join me starting tonight, May 1, at 8:30 p.m. (Mountain time) for the Prologue – it’s titled ‘The Landing’ and we’ll go back to that day in Stuttgart when I broke both of my legs. I’ll also post it to my IG story if you would like to listen, but can’t join in live. This project is so important to me and I’m feeling a great sense of accomplishment. Thank you all for your love and support! #makeithappenbook #storytimewithkyle #gymnastics #olympics #author #newbook #author #authorsofinstagram

A post shared by Kyle Shewfelt (@kyleshew) on

Click PLAY or watch an artistic Artistic Gymnastics routine on YouTube.

Verona van de Leur autobiography

Simply Verona: Breaking All the Rules

Published in hard cover March 19, 2020.

Verona was an excellent gymnast, named Dutch Sportswoman of the Year in 2002 after winning the all-around silver medal at that year’s European championships and the silver medal on floor exercise at the world championships.

After early retirement she had life threatening personal problems. Fell out with her family. Lived in a car with her boyfriend.

Eventually she had a conviction for blackmail and a prison sentence. She began performing in adult webcam shows and then in adult films.

Read a Guardian interview detailing her chaotic life story:

Verona van de Leur: ‘When you have no food you do anything to survive

Break the Fall – a book review

Break the Fall by Jennifer Iacopelli was released Feb 18th.

I finished it in less than 24 hours.

That’s surprising since I’m decidedly NOT the target audience for Young Adult / Teen romance.

This novel is heavy on Gymnastics, light on the typical YA cliché teen crushes and rivalries.

Jennifer: For me, when writing sports fiction, the sport itself is what the plot will stem from, so it’s almost impossible for me to write a book about sports that doesn’t heavily include the competition, practices and training that would be a major part of any athlete’s life.

Often we’ll see books about an athlete that’s injured or an athlete that had to give up their sport as an exploration of their identity away from the thing they love, but that’s been done so much, I’m more interested in what it takes to strive to compete at the highest levels, to try to win and what happens when you do (or don’t).  …

And the Gymnastics is well informed.

I assumed Jennifer was an ex-gymnast or coach, but she’s actually a kick-butt librarian.  Her sports were tennis and softball.

Jennifer: “… what I worked on the most was making sure the gymnasts were portrayed as realistically as possible, in and out of the gym. …”

The American National Team Director is lead away in handcuffs, accused of tampering with drug test results. Later charged with sexual assault.

When the rest of the Federation supports him, the equivalent of the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee suspends the equivalent of USAG and delivers the U.S. Olympic team to a new coach only weeks before the Tokyo Olympics.

That’s a good plot device.

Jennifer loosely based the new Olympic coach on Kim Zmeskal.

She was inspired to write a Gymnastics novel after following the Nassar / USAG scandal: “… people in a position of power abusing athletes or failing to protect athletes from abuse …”

The story starts at Olympic trials 2020. Ends on the last day of Apparatus Finals in Tokyo.

If you are wondering whether your gymnasts should read this book it does have a lot of profanity. And there is discussion of sexual abuse though none of that is graphic.

The audio version is available on Scribd and Audible.


Break the Fall by Jennifer Iacopelli

New book published February 18, 2020. Available in audio, as well.

Audrey Lee is going to the Olympics.

A year ago, she could barely do a push up as she recovered from a spine surgery, one that could have paralyzed her. And now? She’s made the United States’ gymnastics team with her best friend, Emma, just like they both dreamed about since they were kids. She’s on top of the world.

The pressure for perfection is higher than ever when horrifying news rips the team apart. Audrey is desperate to advocate for her teammate who has been hurt by the one person they trusted most–but not all the gymnasts are as supportive. …


It includes discussions about sexual assault.

Read some reviews on GoodReads.