Around the Gymternet: (Just Like) Starting Over


“Should we all try to do a big thing we’re scared of in 2020?” – Why yes, Joanna. We should.

Wut happened

Russia will appeal. Russia will for sure appeal the decision to ban the country from four years of major competition due to doping-related allegations. The case will move to court next, though some worry that there isn’t much hope of the appeal succeeding and that it could actually lead to harsher penalties.

  • Simone Biles was named AP’s 2019 Female Athlete of the Year.
  • The 2020 Russian national team was named, as well as a new WAG senior coach.
  • Lauren made a nation database! Go check it out. Also, here are your national champions from 2019.

Star status

Upgrades. MyKayla Skinner’s giving the people what they want, which is more and more upgrade videos. 

Retirements. Nikolai Kuksenkov announced his retirement. We wish Nikolai the best of luck in his future on-the-ground endeavors.

Staying social

At least Aly’s happy. Aly Raisman looks like she had an excellent Christmas before very rudely passing my friend in the Boston airport without saying hi, we’re about 85% sure. She also clearly has a future in golfing and I can’t wait.

New year, new me. Can this guy choreograph my 2020, please?

We’re hiring. The Gymternet has a job opening. Which brings us to…

Last last words

I’m sad to announce my retirement from non-competitive gymnastics newslettering. I’ve decided to call it quits in order to focus more on my (at the moment barely existent) freelancing career. 

Thank you so much for reading. I don’t know when the next author will pick this up, but when they do, please keep reading. It’s up to you to stay informed, fight for the athletes, and protect this beautiful sport. Because it deserves protecting. 


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17 thoughts on “Around the Gymternet: (Just Like) Starting Over

  1. MyKayla is an incredible athlete. If the US sent her, she would win medals in vault, floor and probably the all around too. The problem is her teammates. What worries me most is how taxed her stamina gets when she competes and how quickly she can adapt to the equipment. I hope she’s working on methods to calm herself between routines to preserve energy, her leaps and form as much as upgrades; maybe even more so. If they pick the team based on top team score, MyKayla is on it; although, I doubt that’ll be the method with the lead the US with a four person team.


    • Leanne has a stellar amanar now.

      With just 4, it makes you wonder how they’ll cover all apparatuses and have all the medal worthy routines in Tokyo and sustain the just send the top AA methodology.

      Simone must be there, but Suni for UB, Kara for BB, Jade for VT too. Nearly the entire national team would medal on FX.

      Right now, what I’ve seen of upgrades, I’d guess a team of Simone, Suni, Leanne and Mykayla for highest team score. Jade and whoever wins highest AA off the team spots.

      The Olympic trials for the US will be better than the actual Olympics in WAG. And the decision of who goes will cause more drama than we’ve seen in a very long time.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I would bet on a team of Simone, Riley, MyKayla, and another A+ AAer (maybe Suni, maybe someone else, but probably someone with a great vault). Riley brings in such huge E scores on bars and beam that I don’t think she can be left behind if she’s healthy and in competition shape. They could always have her vault last in quals, and if the other three hit she could scratch if need be.


        • I’d bet Simone and Suni (because they’ll probably be top 2). The rest of the team depends on who lands top 3 and 4. If Kara fixes her beam, then she could for sure be 3. Maybe some dark horse for spot 4? Leanne, Jordan Chiles (at full upgrades), maaaybe Kayla DiCello, or Grace (if her upgrades don’t burn her out)?

          Additionally, the team situation gets jumbled if Jade finishes off the World Cup route because the two-per country rule still applies to event finals so bringing McKayla would become redundant.

          I honestly just don’t see Riley coming through. She’s great and beautiful as a gymnast but I really worry about her health and the Olympic training regime wearing her out

          Liked by 2 people

      • If they want as many medals as possible, it’s Simone, Jade, Suni and Kara. Anyone else is a backup and team filler. Jade’s off the team on her own. Kara only brings a huge BB and Suni only brings a huge UB, so I could see either of them on or off the team but definitely going. I agree high difficulty vaults are an edge that can’t be passed up, so MyKayla or Leanne should be on the team.

        These upgrades we’re seeing may never hit routines, but if I had to put my money on anyone in the bubble picks of Grace, Riley, Leanne, MyKayla, Kayla and Morgan, I’d put MyKayla at the front of the pack. She’s the most likely to medal and can see her neck and neck or surpassing Jade. Whoever among them with the highest AA will get the last spot, but I think Simone, Suni, Jade, Kara and MyKayla will be in Tokyo.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Except Eaker is no longer a BB threat. She was out of the EF leaving the US with Biles and got lucky that Black was injured. Then Eaker with a hit routine was 4th and missed 3rd by a lot .3 (.4 w/o ND). she kind of pointless to bring now. Suni Lee can be in the BB medal hunt with a hit set, as demonstrated by her scores with falls and mistakes at Worlds.
          Biles and Lee are pretty much locks at this point. Biles for being Biles and Lee for her AA prowess and in addition won two medals at Worlds on UB and FX, so she is a medal threat there as well. With Carey in through World Cup, the only slot needed for EF is UB, and even that is iffy as Biles can secure an EF bid.
          The two athletes going will be solid AAers that can go in the 1-2 spot on the four events with Lee anchoring UB and going 3rd on BB and FX. Eaker’s VT and UB are useless. Skinner’s UB/BB/FX are useless and she would be 2 per’d on VT anyway.

          Eaker and Skinner are redundant at this point.

          DiCello, Wong, Hurd, McCallum, McCusker are the best shots for the last two spots on the team as well as the +1.

          Liked by 1 person

        • “Suni only brings in a huge UB”….
          That’s a false statement. She’s reigning FX silver medalist at Worlds. LOL.
          She fell off UB during the AA, but had she not she would have the bronze medal in the AA and possibly silver based on her TQ, TF and EF UB routines.

          She won 3 medals in Stuttgart, what are you talking about only brings in a huge UB?

          Liked by 1 person

      • @Sherry i totally agree with you that WAG trials this year will be even more exciting than the Olympics. The only other team I see as such a toss up as the US is China, who keeps sending so many different athletes to world cups and worlds that you just never know who they’ll pick in the end. And if they also gain 6 spots for the Olympics like the US most likely will, they could have a similar problem with deciding how to maximize their team total while also securing some individual medals as well. This year will be so intense I can’t wait, I live only 4 hours away from where they’ll be holding the Pan American Championships so I’m seriously considering going 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • Curious where this stellar amanar is? Link and receipt please? Al Fong her coach posted a video of her doing one 11 weeks ago, and she fell, but the caption read it’s a lot different doing the amanar in a pit then other surfaces etc…. So where are you seeing a stellar amanar? Has there been a competition I have yet to see where she did it? If so, Im sure the gymnerds would post it asap. SO????


  2. So how do the two upgrades that skinner show fit into the routines that she has right now to increase the D score?

    I am still hoping to see the triple double from both her and carey soon. Make it the United States of Triple Doubles… USTD…lol.. a little more mouthful than US of Amanars

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Does that mean this blog won’t be updated unless it’s for Worlds (competitive gymnastics)??

    I don’t get it sorry I’m slow 🤦


  4. Quadruple olympic champion in Melbourne (aged 35!), five-time olympic champion in total, the world’s oldest olympic champion Ágnes Keleti turned 99 years old on 9th January.

    Picture at the Gymternet:

    Recent articles, on the occasion of her 99th birthday (The New York Times, AP and NBC):


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