Noël van Klaveren (NED) - Amanar

8:25 AM Arabian Punch Front 0 Comments

Credit: ANP for

Noël van Klaveren is a promising gymnast from the Netherlands who was named the 2013 European Vault Silver medalist. At the recent 2013 Dutch Nationals, van Klaveren came in 4th in the all-around after some trouble on uneven bars and came in 2nd on vault after a fall on her double twisting Yurchenko. Her second vault is a very clean Tsuk full. She only recently started competing the double twisting Yurchenko but there is footage of her training an Amanar. I don't think we'll see it this year considering her DTY is still new. Thank you, @gymnasticsNL.


On The Rise: Mexico - A Look at Ana Lago

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Ana Lago
Source: Unknown

Ana is the 2011 Pan American Champion on floor exercise (embedded below) and was a member of the 2011 World Championship team. She attended the 2012 Test Event with countrywoman Elsa Garcia but did not get to advance to the Olympics since she was 2nd amongst the 2 gymnasts. Lago was recently named National Olympiad Champion after 4 very strong routines. The routines below are from both National Championships and National Olympiad.

UB - Gienger, Hindorff, pak
BB - Ana Lago was the first Mexican gymnast to compete a standing arabian on beam
FX - double layout, double L turn and some nice choreography

Floor Exercise at 2011 Pan American Games

Lago is definitely one to watch in the future but, unfortunately, she was recently injured while performing a double twisting Yurchenko. "It was in the Olympiad in a training after the all around competition that I got the injury in the knee. The doctors made some tests and told me it was necessary to realize a surgery." She has already had surgery and is looking at at least four months of rehabilitation. A news segment on the injury can be found here. Lago is looking at Olympic Champion Aliya Mustafina as inspiration since Aliya tore her ACL in 2011 and had a very strong return in 2012 as the most decorated gymnast at the London Olympics. (Thank you @Kleon01 of Doble en Plancha for your help with the translation!)

There has also been recent footage of Ana training some very exciting skills. It's unfortunate that she's out for the season but I am very much looking forward to her return.

"I think in a future I will be realizing the double double and to perform two vaults. About the triple, I never considered to actually perform it in my floor routine. I was actually just having fun!"

VT - working on a Rudi (tucked)

Double Double

Triple Back!

We wish you a healthy and speedy recovery!

Check out other parts in the On The Rise series:
Canada Part 1
Canada Part 2
Canada Part 3


On the Rise: Mexico

1:27 PM Arabian Punch Front 0 Comments

Elsa Garcia
Source: Record Mexico

A new series looking at countries and athletes that can challenge for medals in major competitions this quadrennium.

If there's one team that I am rooting for to break into the top 12 and qualify a full team to the Olympics rather than an individual, it is Mexico. How can one pick just 1 athlete between Elsa Garcia, Ana Lago and Alexa Moreno? The 2011 Worlds team finished in 17th place and all 6 of the gymnasts are still competing. Both Ana Lago and Elsa Garcia went to the 2012 Test Event and Garcia won the spot for the Olympics after finishing in 17th. Although many were excited for Elsa to compete in the all around and hopefully make the all around final, an injury hampered her Olympic experience and she was only able to compete on balance beam and floor exercise.

Recent Results at Worlds
2008 Olympics - Marisela Cantu 56th AA, 11th VT
2009 - Elsa Garcia 12th AA
2010 - 21st place TF
Yessenia Estrada 10th VT
2011 - 17th place TF
Alexa Moreno 7th VT Rudi and Tsuk full
Elsa Garcia 15th FX
2012 - Elsa Garcia 35th FX

Elsa Garcia
At the 2009 World Championships, Elsa placed 12th in the All-Around Final and won the Prize for Elegance. She's had a career riddled with injuries but has come back time after time. Elsa's a good all arounder but excels on balance beam and floor exercise where she can really show off her great line and performance ability. She recently told I Flip 4 Gymnastics that, "she is currently studying fashion design, and plans to release her own line of leotards." Watch Elsa's FX below. From more recent videos, the routine has stayed the same but she dismounts with a double pike. EDIT 7/1 At a control meet in preparation for the University Games, Garcia showed this floor routine - double layout, full twisting double back, 2.5 punch front layout, and double arabian.
VT - Y1.5 ; UB

Alexa Moreno
Moreno was a member of the 2010 and 2011 World Championship team. She's a great vaulter and finished in 7th at the 2011 World Championships. She's capable of a very nice Rudi (handspring 1.5 - 6.2D) and has upgraded her other vault to a Tsuk 2/1 (6.0D) which should definitely put her in contention for a spot in the vault event finals this year. Moreno has competed a few times on the World Cup circuit and I just enjoy watching her vault each and every time.
VT1: Tsuk double VT2: Rudi UB: Shaposh 1/2, Deltchev (here)
Watch her FX below (13.650 I think)


Montage Monday: Family Matters

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I was trying to come up with a title for this week's Montage Monday and "Family Matters" seemed most appropriate since we've now celebrated both Mother's and Father's Day and most of the montages have a family theme to them.

One gymnastics journey
I got an email about this montage and I'm glad I did. A mother made a montage of her daughter's journey through gymnastics. "This is my daughter, one of the kids who had average scores, who was cautious & moved slowly, but had a passion & a belief that she could achieve her goals. And against the odds she achieved her goals, doing D3 NCAA gymnastics at Hamline University, competing all 4 years & having the time of her life. Don't give up if you have a passion... I want those kids out there who don't think they stand a chance, but love the sport, to know there is a place for them to live their dreams." [There is also another montage of the 2013 season for the Hamline Piper gymnasts here.]

Dominique Pegg - Wonder
Chris Saccullo put this video together with the help of some footage from Nick Pegg, Dominique's older brother. Dominique may be headed to the USA this fall to compete NCAA although nothing has been confirmed. Dominique was part of Canada's history-making Olympic team and was the only Canadian gymnast to compete in the all around event final where she finished in 17th place.

Nick made this video on National Sibling Day ... which didn't end as I expected here. Brothers! Check out his channel for some London VLogs here.


Montage Monday: Beyonce

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This week, there's a playlist for you to enjoy! They're not really in order other than the first one. It includes different montage makers other than usual ones so make sure to check them out. The last video also includes a song by Beyonce, I Was Here.

June Montage Monday Playlist

McKayla & Jordyn - 1+1
Emma Fischer/@EmmsDream made this great montage to Beyonce's 1+1 using some of the footage from Beyonce's music video and the recent video that McKayla Maroney and Jordyn Wieber did for 30 Seconds to Mars. I think it came out really well and I like that it's different - I like the effects that are used and I like the overlay between the 2 videos. McKayla enjoyed this video too and favorited it on twitter. Congrats, Emma!

I have a few more videos that I didn't get to watch last week so look out for them next week. If you tweeted, tumblr-ed or emailed me, they'll likely be included next week. As usual, feel free to contact me if you have a video you'd like me to include.


Some European Gymnastics to Enjoy

1:04 PM Arabian Punch Front 3 Comments

Giorgia Campana (ITA)
Credit: Filippo Tomasi via Ginnastica Artistica IT

Here are a few videos from recent competitions that I think you should watch - includes British Teams, German and Italian National Championships, and a Spanish gymnast at European Championships.

British Teams (results)
This took place a little over 2 weeks ago now but I wanted to bring your attention to both Danusia Francis and Ruby Harrold. Danusia Francis travelled all the way from California for a weekend to help participate in the British Teams and did exceptionally well. She placed 1st on beam, 2nd on bars, and 3rd on floor exercise with scores all in the 13s. I find this extremely impressive for someone who just finished a grueling NCAA season. Although "Nush" has always been a great beam worker, it was nice to see her doing elite level skills but with that extra air of confidence. I also enjoyed that she kept her side choreography in where she looks the judges right in the eye as she moves her arms across her body (at 0:39). Take that judges! I dare you to tell me you're not enjoying this routine!
BB - 13.050 below. Make sure to watch her bars as well (here)

Ruby Harrold has some very unique transitions in her bar routine that you can't help but root for her because of the variety she brings to the sport. As quickly as she debuted it, however, she also had trouble with it. It seemed that we alternated every competition as to whether or not she could hit. This time, Harrold was all in and nearly washed away all my doubts! You could tell that she was attacking this routine and things turned out just fine. Hopefully, she continues to hit and we'll get to see this routine on a large international stage.
UB - 14.2

Shaking Things Up in Germany (results)
When you think of current German gymnasts, who do you think of? Most likely Elizabeth Seitz and Kim Bui. They're both good all-arounders, have made the World Cup circuit and have also attended World Championships and the 2012 Olympic Games. In my head, I often associate them both as good bar workers. But, there are some new kids in town. Seitz and Bui finished 3rd and 4th, respectively, on UB at the recent German Nationals with 2012 Olympic Alternate Lisa Katharina Hill in 2nd and Sophie Scheder, a new senior, in 1st. If you remember, Sophie just missed getting a medal at the recent European Championships by just .134. (If you watch Mustafina and Paseka celebrate, you see the German coaches consoling Scheder just behind the Russians.)

I'm very curious to see what happens in Germany. Hill and Scheder seem to have that "newer" style of bar work - lots of stalder work and Shaposhnikova transitions - while Bui and definitely Seitz seem to rely more on releases to get their D-score but which may hurt their execution. It is nice to see things being moved around and, who knows, maybe we'll have 2 Germans in uneven bar event finals at Worlds.
Sophie Scheder UB EF - 6.2/14.933


#gymfan Night 2

7:21 PM Arabian Punch Front 1 Comments

POSTPONED! Sorry. We'll reschedule soon.

It's time for another #gymfan night!

On Wednesday, June 5 at 6:00pm ET, we'll be doing #gymfan night. I'll pose a question here and if you have a twitter, use "#gymfan Qx" (#gymfan Q3, #gymfan Q4, etc.) when you answer the question.

The hope is that you can search #gymfan on twitter (here) and find other people who think like you and follow them or find people you disagree with and have a discussion. I'll post the questions on facebook so you can comment directly. If twitter and facebook don't work for you, feel free to leave your answers in the comment box below.

I'll retweet some of them and will also post a few of my favorites here - keep in mind, these opinions are NOT my own. So, check back here Wed, June 5 at 6:00pm ET for the questions. The questions will be posted ~10 minutes apart. Feel free to ask any questions or suggest questions for next time.

Not sure if we can trend #gymfan but, hey, you never know.

There will be trivia beforehand at 5:30 on twitter - birthday edition!


Montage Monday: NCAA Montages

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These are a bit belated because I was working on this post, waiting for more montages, and then had exams. Sorry about that. Hope these let you relive a little of the NCAA season!

The list includes Florida, Utah, SUU, and UCLA.

Florida Gators Gymnastics - War of Inches
Chris Saccullo made a great edit to Al Pacino's Inch by Inch speech from the movie Any Given Sunday. Full quote can be found here. Coach Rhonda Faehn and the Gator gymnasts loved the montage so much, they even played it at their banquet.

"You find out that life is just a game of inches. Because in the game of life, the margin for error is so small. I mean one half step too late or too early you don't quite make it. One half second too slow or too fast and you don't quite catch it. The inches we need are everywhere around us. On this team, we fight for that inch. On this team, we tear ourselves, and everyone around us to pieces for that inch. We CLAW with our finger nails for that inch. Cause we know when we add up all those inches that's going to make the difference between WINNING and LOSING between LIVING and DYING."

2013 Utah Gymnastics Highlights
I really enjoyed this one because of the music and how they mixed some serious team moments with clips of just showing teammates having fun. Everything was so creatively done including the brief pauses, going to black and white, and zooming in on the "picture." It almost seems like a trailer - here's to a great next season!

Pursue Your Passion - Life of a Gymnast - Michaela Chernoch
This video was made for Michaela, a senior at Southern Utah University. I don't even know her and this video brought me close to tears! It's another video by Parker Walbeck who made the other videos for SUU during the season so make sure to check out the channel.

UCLA State of Mind (link)
Sometimes people ask the question, "if you were a collegiate gymnast and could compete at any school, which school would it be?" My answer is usually UCLA. It's not just because of the beautiful gymnastics but also because they seem like a group of girls that I could easily get along with. This video embodies that. Miss Val's talks about her philosophy and the video also includes thoughts from Vanessa Zamarippa and Samantha Peszek. There are also a few priceless Mattie Larson moments which always help.

Which one is your favorite? Any other montages you would include?