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Turn the World Upside Down TOMORROW!
September 21, 2012
Celebrate National Gymnastics Day
By Evan Heiter

The big day is nearly here! Tomorrow, September 22nd at 1:00PM ET, gymnastics fans from coast to coast will celebrate the sport of gymnastics by turning their worlds upside down. It's National Gymnastics Day and that means athletes, coaches, parents and fans alike will all partake in gymnastics fun. 

USA Gymnastics is encouraging everyone who can to 'Turn the World Upside Down' by capturing a handstand, somersaults, flips or poses that involves being upside down. Then, post the photo on USA Gymnastics' Facebook page HERE. Check out hundreds of photos of people who love gymnastics on their wall, as well!

This year, USA Gymnastics is encouraging local clubs to raise money via National Gymnastics Day for The Children's Miracle Network. This organization helps to benefit children battling illness. Also, National Gymnastics Day is a perfect opportunity to encourage and bolster the 'Let's Move' initiative sponsored by First Lady Michelle Obama. This initiative strives to create a healthy generation of American kids! 

So, spend your Saturday having fun with friends who love gymnastics by celebrating National Gymnastics Day and Turning the World Upside down at 1:00PM ET. If you have an outstanding photo from tomorrow's festivities, send it to for a chance to be included in an upcoming issue! Can't wait to see how much America loves gymnastics! 

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Remember to always participate and perform gymnastics under the supervision of trained professionals and with appropriate safety equipment, as well. Be safe and have fun!
2012 U.S. Olympic Trials- Sam Mikulak Update
June 30, 2012

By Evan Heiter

When Sam Mikulak landed a tumbling pass at the 2011 Puerto Rico Cup something happened. Well, actually a couple things—his ankles simultaneously fracturing.

 The gutsy Mikulak had taken some rough landings throughout his career, but this one was obviously a bit more significant. In the life of a gymnast, the good pair of ankles stays atop the body functionality priority list. Mikulak returned to the University of Michigan and began down the rehab path.

 Mikulak’s injury that he sustained in Puerto Rico actually helped bolster his Olympic dream for 2012, though. Staying away from floor and vault, Mikulak was able to focus on pommel horse—a glaring weakness for the U.S. men. Scoring over 15.000 in NCAA competition and consistently mid-14.000 on the USA scene, Sam Mikulak was stronger than ever—in the all around!

 In his final event on Day 1 of competition at the U.S. Olympic Trials, something happened. This time only one of Mikulak’s ankles decided to act a fool. However, fueled by adrenaline and his six-for-six performance, Mikulak didn’t show any visible signs of pain or discomfort. As is usually the case, though, the next  day told the story. He awoke on Friday morning with some bruising and added discomfort to his ankle - not the type of morning you want to have with another day of competition and the Olympics looming.

 Mikulak immediately consulted and sought the guidance from a trio of key people: his coach Kurt Golder, National Team Coordinator Kevin Mazeika and his father Stephen—an orthopedic surgeon. In training on Friday, Mikulak was present but did not train and was wearing a boot. When he arrived at the arena today, however he was suited up an no boot in sight. A “game day decision” will be made with Scenario A: competing only four events (no floor or vault) or Scenario B : competing only on pommel horse which appeared to be the plan in today's warm up or Scenario C: petitioning for consideration for a spot directly on the team.

As opposed to the women’s Olympic selection procedures, the men are permitted to petition directly onto the Olympic team if the need presents itself.

Petitions directly to the 2012 Olympic Team will be considered for approval by the Selection Committee. In order to be considered by the Selection Committee, petitions onto the 2012 Olympic Team must be submitted in writing to USA Gymnastics’ national office as soon as practical after the athlete becomes aware of his inability to participate in the applicable competition and no later than the conclusion of competition at the 2012 Olympic Team Trials – Gymnastics. 

Mikulak was seen as a likely lock for the team prior to the injury and the shake up likely has the selection committee running all kinds of new potential scenarios.

With a sprained ankle, many gymnast recover completely within the span of a week, so this could be just a minor hiccup on the road to London or it could be a major development in the painting of the picture of Team USA. How will it all play our? We’ll know more in hours – stay tuned…

Update at 11:00 am: Coach Kurt Golder says Mikulak will only compete on the pommel horse in today's competition.

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This Week’s Inside Buzz: Friday 5!
March 23, 2012

This Week’s Inside Buzz: Friday 5! Insiders, join us for our new Inside Buzz: Friday 5 weekly highlights! Every Friday at 10 a.m. sharp we will highlight our top 5 gymnastics moments of the week! Let’s see who made the cut this week!

  1. USA Takes All. At last weekend’s Kellogg’s Pacific Rim Championships, both the Men’s and Women’s US Teams came away with the team gold. With just over four months remaining, this event sparked a new level of excitement for the upcoming Olympics. What are your predictions for who will make the cut to represent the US?
  2. Wieber Fever. 2011 World Champion Jordyn Wieber made the spotlight on a new front this week. Wieber was a top contender for the 2011 James E. Sullivan Award, the Amateur Athletic Union award that honors the nation's outstanding amateur athlete. Andrew Rodriquez, who plays football for the U.S. Military Academy, was named the winner in an awards ceremony at the New York Athletic Club.
  3. International Front. John Orozco and Jesse Silverstein are currently representing the US in Germany, at the 2012 Cottbus World Cup. They both competed on the pommel horse, again posting matching scores with 13.275 points. They missed the final, finishing in a tie for 26th place. Teammate Paul Ruggeri also competed on the floor, scoring a 12.875 for 33rd place.
  4. You’ve Got Mail. The Inside Team is proud to announce that our 50 Most Photogenic issue has hit the mailboxes this week! As one of our favorite annual issues, we love spotlighting some of the most stylish gymnastics, national and international. What do you think of this issue?
  5. Collegiate Corner. Last weekend, the No. 6 Nebraska women's gymnastics team came from behind in an impressive victory over the Iowa State Cyclones, 196.175-195.700. Tonight in Brockport, NY, the nation’s top Division 3 gymnastics teams will battle it out for the national title. Will defending champs UW-La Crosse reclaim the crown, or will last year’s second-place finishers UW-Whitewater capture their first national title?

What other things do you think were hot topics this week? Join the discussion on our Facebook page & see what others think, too!

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