Thursday, September 26, 2013

Antwerp by the MAG Eponyms: Part 1

OMFG! Have you heard? Victoria Moors is going to perform a double-double layout–a skill that received a preliminary ranking of an "I." OMFG!

All the gymternet buzz this morning got me thinking. On the men's side, a handful of gymnasts every year have skills named after them, but gymnastics nerds rarely fanboy (or fangirl) to the max over the new additions to the MAG Code. This makes it harder to remember all the eponymous skills.

So, during my daily commute, I decided to give myself a test. I tried to list all the eponymous skills in the Code in 10 minutes or less.

Yeah, FAIL. I couldn't do it. Which gave me a momentary identity crisis. If I'm not a diehard gymnastics nerd, what am I?

Trying to salvage my self-image as a gym nerd extraordinaire, I decided to compare this year's nominative list to the Code of Points--just to see how many of this year's male competitors have skills named after them. This is what me and my monogrammed, diamond-encrusted pocket protector found out…

1. Matteo Morandi, Italy – Floor

MAG nerd explanation: A Marinich to one's feet.

Non-MAG-nerd explanation: a handspring front tuck vault, but on the floor. (D)

Honestly, I just think that this is the coolest skills. It reminds me of a time when female gymnasts did "Yurchenkos" off beam.

2. Sam Mikulak, USA – Pommel Horse

Team USA might not be good at pommel horse, per se, but one gymnast has a skill named after him. (That's more than Kristzian Berki can say!) The Mikulak is a double scissors with a hop from one end of the horse to the other (D).

If you have no clue what a double scissor is, click here for a primer.

3. Alberto Busnari, Italy – Pommel Horse

This skill is so hot right now. Many of the top pommel workers are doing it. For the MAG nerds, it's a Stöckli (direct or reverse) through handstand to a 3/3 travel (down and back) with 360º turn to flairs. (G)

For the non-MAG nerds: A circle on one pommel to a handstand pirouette, during which the gymnast travels down the horse and back. Also, during the traveling pirouette, the gymnast's hands must touch all three parts of the leather. Afterwards, he must do some flairs (G).

And we wonder why pommel horse is confusing… That's all one skill.

4. Danny Pinheiro-Rodrigues, France – Rings

Even though Danny's namesake is one of the hardest skills on rings, he has yet to win a World or Olympic medal on the event. The Rodrigues is a front uprise to inverted swallow (AKA Victorian). (F)

You can see it at the 0:46 mark in this video from the recent Osijek Challenge Cup:

Do you think he's human? Even when the East Germans were doping, they couldn't do that.

5. Federico Molinari, Argentina – Rings

Molinari's skill is on the easier side of things, but it's not all that common. The Molinari is a Kip to a V-cross (D).

This one gets a resounding "Meh" from me.

6. Yuri Van Gelder, Netherlands – Rings

Lambertus--Also known as Yuri--does a planche. Then, he lowers to a back lever. Then, he lifts up to a Maltese cross (E). I call this skill "The Elevator." Lambertus starts on the 2nd floor, drops down to the basement, and then lifts up to the ground floor.

If you want to check it out, it's right at the beginning of his routine.

7. Arthur Zanetti, Brazil – Rings

Zanetti presented a variation of "The Elevator" at the Anadia Challenge Cup this year, which received a preliminary E value. Arthur starts in a planche, lowers to a back lever, and then lifts back up to a planche. In other words, 2nd floor, to the basement, and then back up to the 2nd floor.

You can see it at the beginning of his routine from Anadia.

According to a recent article in ahe!, the FIG is in the process of reevaluating the element, and Zanetti is not sure whether he will compete the skill in Antwerp.

Honorable Mention: Max Whitlock

At the 2011 World Championships, Max Whitlock submitted a new rings dismount. It was a front layout (or pike) with 2.5 twists, and it was given an initial D value. However, since Max never competed it at an FIG-sponsored meet, the skill was never named after him. You can, however, see Max competing the dismount at a 2010 meet in Great Britain:

Right now, he performs a full-twisting double layout, which is also a D. Which would you rather see? The "Whitlock" or the full-twisting double layout?

Let's continue our gym nerdery with part 2!

Related links for those who are clueless about rings and pommels:

Rings primers:

Pommel primers:

P.S. Grammar nerds, yes, I know that it should be "My monogrammed, diamond-encrusted pocket protector and I…"

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