weight lifters are amazing jumpers

As a young coach, I recall hearing this factoid. That at the Mexico City Olympic Games Dr. Yessis did a field test where the Olympic lifters had higher vertical jumps than Track and Field athletes.

Finally, some visual evidence:


Shi Zhiyong reacts to successfully clean and jerking 170 kg.

larger original – flickr

OK, maybe not this guy:

larger original – flickr

They are part of a huge collection of Chinese weight lifting photos posted by dehwang.

Weightlifting – Wikipedia

history of the Santa Monica Gymnastics Center

Carol Luber posted some historical photos of herself, her sister Karen, her father Al and much, much more.


Al Luber, owner of Santa Monica Gymnastics Center in his early years competing for UCLA. I believe they are from around 1967.


Maya Kato and on a wooden balance beam competing at the Santa Monica Beach Gymfest …

I still remember Maya from photos in International Gymnast magazine.

Larger versions of these photos on Carol’s blog – Sparklehaus: Santa Monica Gymnastics Center

Santa Monica Gymnastics Center – home page

(via Gymnast Crossing) – History of Santa Monica Gymnastics Center

what do you think of an air pit?

JBS runs the Chalk Bucket forum. He posted a thread on this intriguing photo:



  • very clean
  • far less expensive than foam
  • somewhat force absorbent
  • easy to add mats to floor level and higher
  • Problems:

  • somewhat force elastic (risk of injury?)
  • could be punctured
  • risk of vandalism
  • durability?
  • At first glance I’d say no go. But I would need to to see it in action before I could render a final decision.

    If you have seen an air pit or know more about the concept, head over to
    The Chalk Bucket – Air Pits page and leave a comment.

    The same website that posted the air pit photo — Sport Loisirs Creation — from France has this illustration of an air filled vaulting “table” mat.:


    Great idea!

    I LOVE air matting in general, especially those made by Gordons, distributed by TumblTrak.


    But an air pit?

    Call me skeptical.

    Foam suspended on a net is still the safest.

    build your own handstand parallettes

    There could be no simpler instructions than the ones posted on DrillsAndSkills.com:


    Gymnastics Parallettes – DrillsAndSkills

    Need more detail?


    Parallettes are a gymnastics tool that simulate parallel bars — which are similar to dip bars. You can use a pair of parallettes to do wallstands, handstands, dips, ab exercises, and tons of other weird, gymnast stunts. The following tutorial explains the process of making your own parallettes. The entire process shouldn’t take more than an afternoon, and is quite inexpensive because it uses PVC pipe.

    complete instructions – Celtic Kane Online

    The best tutorial on how to use them is on American Gymnast: gymnastics – parallette training – free membership required.

    best Rhythmic photos anywhere

    I hung out with James Glader, a California based Rhythmic photographer, at USA Championships 2007. And immediately became a big fan of his work.

    Just a hint of James’ style from his US_NATIONALS_IMPRESSIONS collection:



    Even those who know nothing about Rhythmic gymnastics appreciate his photos. Check out: US_NATIONALS_IMPRESSIONS

    We added links to James’ Rhythmics photography site — RhythmicGymnastics1 — under Gymnastics Photos and Rhythmic on the right hand navigation.

    Of course he shoots much more than Rhythmic:


    bloggers to get media credentials

    It’s inevitable.

    At every major gymnastics competition people are live blogging. And posting to Facebook.

    How long can it be before bloggers will be issued press credentials? Access to the media areas?

    Here’s another nice development on the community front: For the first time, Oracle is issuing blogger credentials for Oracle OpenWorld. A group of “A-listers” (as Scoble calls them) will soon receive (if they haven’t already) invitations to accept full conference passes carte blanche, and to enjoy the same type of access that the mainstream press typically does (including a designated blogger area in the press room).

    This may seem like a little thing, but for Oracle, it’s far from it. It’s active acknowledgment that the world has changed (no small feat for a huge corporation), and I applaud everyone involved for making it happen!

    OTN TechBlog :

    I will make some requests to competition organizers this year on behalf of Gymnastics Coaching. If approved, we may even be looking for guest bloggers.

    want to be half-human, half-robot?

    And set a “personal best” in your bicep curls?


    Engineers in Japan are perfecting a wearable power suit that amplifies human strength to help lift hospital patients or heavy objects.

    Driven by portable batteries, micro air pumps and small body sensors that pick up even the slightest muscle twitch, the Stand-Alone Wearable Power Assist Suit is designed to help nursing home workers lift patients of up to 180 pounds while cutting the amount of strength required in half, project researcher Hirokazu Noborisaka told LiveScience today.

    At Wired Magazine’s NextFest new-technology forum here, researchers demonstrated walking and lifting weights in the 66-pound suit, which was developed at the High-Tech Research Center of Japan’s Kanawaga Institute of Technology.

    New Power Suit Amplifies Human Strength | LiveScience

    These have to evolve into the mechanized Mobile Infantry suits of the Robert Heinlein novel Starship Troopers. (Not the lame movie of the same name which did not do justice to the fantastic book.)

    (via Gadling)