beware the “cult” of Gymnastics

Over and over again people keep asking how Larry Nassar got away with what he did for so long.

Many elite gymnasts are irrationally dedicated.  They are literally brainwashed.

Recall Goldman’s dilemma? Athletes were asked if they were willing to die in 5 years for sporting success NOW. Many said yes.

1992 Olympian Wendy Bruce Martin (who never worked with Nassar) reflects back on what she was willing to do for Olympic qualification:

I was willing to give anything to gymnastics and I was willing to give everything. …

As long as I could perform my skills, I was willing to ignore the advice from my Doctor. When my Doctors told me to take time off of gymnastics to heal, I didn’t. …

There wasn’t much I wouldn’t do to make the Olympics. When I needed to lose a little weight, I took the cheap and easy way out. Bulimia was my little secret. I was Bulimic for about a year and a half before the Olympics. …

The Cult Culture of Gymnastics

Parents and coaches need be aware that dedication can be psychosis. Mental health is as important as physical health.

on “Fear of Failure”

Coaches should review this article with their athletes.

Sport Psychologist Rebecca Smith posted an excellent, detailed breakdown of ways to overcome fear of failure.

Examples of Controllables:
Effort
Attitude
Focus
Confidence
Commitment
Composure
Diet
Rest
Preparation
Reactions

Examples of Let-go-ables:
Opponents
Officials
Crowd
Coaches
Teammates
Parents
Friends
Playing time/competition order
Injuries
Travel days
Scheduling
Weather
Equipment
Academic demands

3 Steps to Overcome Fear of Failure

via Tony Smith

Beam music in College

Many teams use personalized music in training and at home meets.

When Hayley Sanders steps up to the balance beam and the booming beat of Lil Mama’s 2007 hit “Lip Gloss” resonates through Stegeman Coliseum, the crowd knows it’s in for a treat.

As a spark of energy quickly spreads through the arena, Sanders begins her routine. She sees it as her moment to contribute to a successful team performance.

“I only hear it for like the first, maybe, 15 seconds, and then I block everything out,” Sanders said. …

Red & Black – Music helps Georgia gymnasts conquer the beam

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube. You can hear Lip Gloss in the background.

Sydney McGlone – Vault

I would have headed for the ice bath. Sydney got back up and competed. #respect

Click PLAY or watch it on Twitter.

Many gyms don’t pad the pillar of the vault horse. Here’s a good example of why it’s important.