Every four years, the summer Olympics come back and it is a time for excitement. This year, the greatest athletes in the world will compete in Tokyo, Japan for the opportunity to stand alone on top of the podium with a gold medal around their neck.
Personally, there are two questions I always ask about the summer Olympics schedule.
“What day does basketball start?” and “What day does women’s gymnastics start?”
I have been fascinated with gymnastics ever since I was a little kid. Watching Olympians McKayla Maroney, Aly Raisman, Gabby Douglas and Simone Biles dominate in recent years has been incredible. I appreciate their talent and greatness as athletes, able to do something that few people can do.
What’s unfortunate is that once the Olympics end, I must wait four years before I can watch gymnastics again. At least that is what I used to think.
Since my time here at the University of Arizona, I have had the pleasure of watching and writing about the gymnastics team, or as they are known as the GymCats.
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Watching Sirena Linton on the balance beam, Malia Hargrove on the floor exercise, Zaza Brovendani on the uneven bars and Jessica Castles on the vault has been a great experience. Each of these ladies brings their own personality to each routine, which is much different from the Olympics.
Olympic routines are so serious and there is so much pressure because the whole world is watching. In college gymnastics, you can feel the energy and excitement it brings. Everybody always looks like they are having fun, screaming and cheering their teammates on the whole meet.
This is obvious during the floor exercise. Sometimes, it’s hard to figure out who’s performing because all the ladies are dancing to the music. It is refreshing to see such team spirit, especially since so many athletes these days want the spotlight for themselves.
I think it is so much fun to watch and I wish that everyone would watch it. It is unlike any other sport out there.
Even if you have never taken an interest in sports, I recommend giving women’s gymnastics a chance. All the hard work the GymCats put in for themselves, their teammates and the university should not go unrecognized.
I look forward to my continued coverage of this amazing team. Thank you for not making me have to wait four years to watch a sport I love, ladies.
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Sean (he/him) is a business administration major from California. He enjoys playing video games and watching Disney+ in his free time.