Montage Monday: Fate is Coming

8:55 PM Arabian Punch Front 0 Comments

Hugs on hugs

2013 World Championships Antwerp - Do Or Die
by dominiquemoceanufan
This is a lovely recap of Worlds and a feel good montage. My favorite part is the segment at 3:10 to the end with lots of smiles and hugs. Nothing like watching a coach and gymnast breathe that sigh of relief together. The music is by 30 Seconds to Mars - the same group that featured Jordyn Wieber and McKayla Maroney in a music video for a different song.
"Fate is coming, that I know... I will never forget the moment."

Elite Gymnastics- Why do we fall?
by @annaburnsy/Anna Burns
This is a spoken word montage with quotes from a bunch of different places. My favorite quote is included as a clip from the movie Coach Carter: "Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure." If you're someone who likes motivational quotes, you'll like this montage.

There are a few more montages - 3 Aliya Mustafina and 1 Kyla Ross. You can find them in the playlist, October Montage Monday. These are not in any particular order though these 2 are my favorite for this week.

I won't be posting for the next 1.5 weeks so no Montage Monday next week! I'll add any additional videos to that playlist. Feel free to tumblr, email, or tweet me any recommendations!


Montage Monday: Maroney & Mustafina

9:28 PM Arabian Punch Front 0 Comments

We're a little bit further from Worlds and now the montages are coming out. Hope you enjoy this week's Montage Monday!

WAG ANTWERP 2013- Combat
Anna Burns/@AnnaBurnsy
Stunning montage with high quality footage of all the women's event finals. It's a nice montage to appreciate the beauty that is gymnastics and the routines we got to enjoy at Antwerp 2013.

Aliya Mustafina || Radium
SG made 2 lovely montages since Worlds. This Aliya montage is a commentary montage and is beautiful. Everything was combined so perfectly; it's like poetry.


World Championships 2013: Sit Back and Relax Edition

2:22 AM Arabian Punch Front 1 Comments

saratre3 edit on tumblr

Here are some of my favorite videos from the World Championships 2013 help in Antwerp, Belgium this past week.

Cintia Rodriguez - she came highly recommended by Rick at If you're one who gets angry at every floor finalist who isn't trained in ballet, this is for you. If you want to be amazed by good toe point and body position and carriage, this is for you. I love routines that make me forget about the tumbling and this is one of them.

Karla Amaranta Torres - after injury kept Alexa Moreno out of Worlds and coaching drama kept ladies like Elsa Garcia out, Karla Torres came to save the day. Blythe said that she is what we've come to expect from Mexico - it may not be the most difficult but it is beautiful and enjoyable to watch. Here she is on beam. Her construction isn't difficult but you can start to appreciate her lines.


I'm Sad

9:40 PM Arabian Punch Front 5 Comments

And I wish I had something eloquent to say that would encourage conversation or make anyone who's sad feel a little less sad. Unfortunately, I don't have those words.

A lot of crap has gone down on the gymternet because of Carlotta Ferlito's comments and the Italian Gymnastics federation as well. A recap can be found here. Ferlito made some inappropriate comments and later apologized. IGF tried to make a statement too but basically failed miserably and made matters worse.

I'm sorry but what did you mean by saying that some people "may not have some of the necessities to be, let’s say, a field manager or a general manager." Is this a baseball position or are we talking about jobs? No way are we still having this conversation in TWO THOUSAND THIRTEEN!

So, I'm sad. As a gym fan, I'm sad. As a swimmer, I'm sad. As a black female, I'm sad. As a human being, I'm sad.

I wish I had some great retort for this, but I don't. What I do have is a video for you all to watch if you haven't seen it already. I've debated posting this on here or tumblr and figured it's "just" a gymnastics blog but then the Trayvon Martin verdict came out, the 50 year anniversary of the I Have a Dream Speech passed, and now this.

I hope this helps if anyone else is feeling a little down.

Watch here or below (seriously, watch the whole thing):

Thoughts? Hugs through the internet?


Montage Monday: Worlds and... Aly Raisman

10:00 PM Arabian Punch Front 0 Comments

A quick Montage Monday. I'm sure more montages will come with time and I can't wait to watch them.

Aliya Mustafina - The Queen
Lovely montage of Aliya Mustafina with a techno beat. What surprised me the most with this montage is the realization of just how much Aliya Mustafina upgraded since the Olympics despite injury, illness, and Valentina Rodionenko.

The American Dream - 2013 Artistic Worlds
The FIG has put together a number of amazing montages to get us excited for event finals but also as recaps of the events that took place. This montage covers the top 8 in the Women's All Around Final with clips of everyone's performance. The shot of Simone's family at the end gave me chills. There are tons of videos on the FIGchannel so make sure to go check it out - both montages and footage from World Championships.

Aly Raisman//Fire and Rain
BravoExpressions made this montage of Aly Raisman. The timing is off but it's a nice montage of Aly through the years. Considering it was Worlds where Aly continued to earn her title as the Rock Raisman (mainly in team competition), maybe the timing is appropriate. Fun fact: If you listen to the event final footage, it is likely Aly Raisman that you hear cheering on the American men and women all the way across the arena.

Which was your favorite montage?


The Scary State of Vaulting

1:07 PM Arabian Punch Front 5 Comments

I just don't know what to think anymore.

As most of you know, I love some good vaulting. I was most excited for the vault finals this year. Quite a few things didn't pan out - Alexa Moreno missed Worlds due to injury, Ellie Black just missed qualifications landing in 9th, and Noel van Klaveren had landing errors that caused her a spot in the finals despite upgrades. The pleasant surprise was Chantysha Netteb qualifying to VT finals after upgrading to a double twisting Yurchenko, something she attempted unsuccessfully at the European Championships.

The finals itself had some expected components. Yamilet Pena fell on her Produnova. Phan Thi Ha Thanh's Rudi was questionable. McKayla Maroney and Simone Biles hit both of their vaults.

There were lots of downsides too. After qualifying with her DTY, Netteb attempted the same vault but quickly fell to the grown grabbing her knee. The slow motion replay looked horribly reminiscent of Aliya Mustafina's ACL tear at Euros 2013. Yamilet Pena attempted her Produnova and did a "better" job by not rolling out of it but still landed on her backside, albeit feet first so she was awarded more than a 0. What disturbed me the most was seeing the 6.3 next to Phan Thi Ha Thanh as she ran to do what is usually a DTY. The problem was that it was a DTY with an attempt to continue twisting when she had already landed. She fell to the ground without any visible injury.

We were lucky that Hong Un Jong did not attempt the triple twisting Yurchenko. Her Amanar can be all over the place but I will say that when it's clean, it's actually pretty nice. Her Cheng is another story. She was deducted enough that this placed her behind Biles who had an easier 2nd vault. Appropriate, I'd say.

What about Giulia Steingruber who probably executed 2 of the nicest vaults of the entire final?

Steingruber's E scores were 9.3 and 9.166. Hong's were 9.266 and 9.0. Steingruber was up first which is always a tough position to be in since scores typically escalate throughout the competition. Her Rudi was beautiful. The deductions I see are the pike coming off the horse and lack of distance. On the DTY, again there was a pike for the landing and perhaps a low chest deduction too. Hong's Amanar, from what I could see, had the landing deductions. Her second vault, however, was a hot mess in the air. Pike throughout the vault (with some tucking at the knees too), crossed legs, low chest on landing, and step back.

I think it's near impossible for the judges not to reward difficulty of the vault in the execution score. I feel like things are missed or benefit of the doubt is given when it shouldn't be. I do think Steingruber was unlucky by going first, however, I can't explain the above 9 execution on Hong's Cheng.

Scarier than this was Phan Thi Ha Thanh attempting the Amanar. What in the world?! Phan and Steingruber have the same vaults. (Honestly, I think Phan typically does a piked Rudi but just puts up a laid out Rudi and gets credit for it but that's a story for another time.) Her only way of surpassing Giulia who has cleaner execution on the Rudi but typically comparable on the DTY is to do the Amanar. Phan has not been one of those girls that you wonder when she will upgrade because of the height she gets or room she has for landing. Instead, the Amanar she did was a DTY where she continued turning and hoped she didn't fall. It was a dangerous hot mess.

With the triple twisting Yurchenko on it's way, I worry for the state of vaulting. We have gymnasts landing Produnovas to their heads (or to forward roll would be the nice way of saying it). We have gymnasts competing underrotated Amanars (think Shawn Johnson to Maria Paseka). We have gymnasts getting credit for laid out Podkopayeva's (Yurchenko 1/2 on pike half off) when they are indeed piked. And now, joining the group of not-yet-ready-to-land Produnovas, we have gymnasts creating a new group of not-yet-ready-to-land Amanars. The same way Pena seems safer than Mahmoud, we're entering a world where Paseka seems safer than Phan. Yay?

I'm not a fan of banning things. My proposal is that these difficult vaults, like triple twisting Yurchenkos and Produnovas need to be submitted before competition to the FIG showing readiness. What would that mean? Take a video of you doing this vault successfully on competition mats to the FIG and then you can perform it at an actual meet. These vaults are so dangerous that we shouldn't hope that the podium helps you finally land it. We shouldn't count butt-slamming rebounds as a proper landing (Pena at Zibo). I don't know what the best solution is but something needs to be done.

We can start by taking proper execution scores and properly downgrading vaults. The latter has already been done at this World Championships - both Tatiana Nabieva and Maegan Chant had vaults downgraded due to body position and under-rotation, respectively.

I guess Pena has already "passed" but neither Hong nor Maroney nor Biles should be allowed to compete the TTY without showing that they can walk afterwards too.

The entire vault final can be watched here (TVR). Results can be found here.

What do you think of Steingruber vs. Hong? What do you think of the state of vaulting?