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Jeb Jones

Proud Parent
Nov 21, 2013
10
While her wiki page and most references I can find online list Svetlana Boginskaya's height as 5' 2", I definitely remember her towering over the other gymnasts at the time (though I don't remember what year that may have been) and commentators talking about how tall she was for a gymnast at 5' 4" (the Belarusian Swan). I can still find some older articles on the internet that give her height as 5' 4". Is this because she was 5' 2" in 1992 Olympics at the height (pun not intended) of her career, but grew several inches before returning to competition for the 1996 Olympics?

Maybe someone with a long memory or inside information can confirm. I can't find any reference that explicitly documents her height in different years. Conversely, Nadia Comaneci's wiki page lists her height as 5' 4", but when she got her perfect 10s at the 1976 olympics at age 14, she was only around 4' 11". From a 1984 NY Times article on Comaneci: "At 5 feet 4 inches, she is about 5 inches taller than she was in 1976".

My DD, at 5' 4.5" and still growing, is the tallest one on her squad, so it's nice to have some examples of taller gymnasts that were exceptional. Not that my daughter will ever reach that level, just nice to know that one can excel at gymnastics even when you are a little taller. Every time I see a viral gymnastics video (like Katelyn Ohashi's floor routine from January 2019) and look up the gymnast's height, it's always under 5 feet.

Thanks.
 
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Flippin'A

Proud Parent
Dec 4, 2017
306
34
I don't know about Boginskaya either, but Svetlana Khorkina was 5'4-5'5 and had a great deal of success in multiple olympics. I think Nastia was about 5'4 in 2008 as well (someone correct me if I'm wrong.) And as the poster above said, Kyla is also a great example.
 
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ldw4mlo

Proud Parent
Feb 13, 2015
6,432
62
Look at college roosters, again Kyla Ross is 5'7"

And height is relative. 5'2" looks tall when everyone else is 4'8"-4'10"
 
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ldw4mlo

Proud Parent
Feb 13, 2015
6,432
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CLgym

Proud Parent
Dec 22, 2014
1,165
An older article but related --


My DD is likely to end up somewhere around 5'5" to 5'6" -- and although elite or even college is not the goal -- my daughter and I frequently notice and enjoy seeing taller gymnasts. Believe it or not, my DD's potential future height was one big reason she was directed (at age 6!) to Xcel rather than JO at her first gym. We've since changed gym....

Ashton Locklear is listed as 5'4"
 
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Tmacs

Proud Parent
Feb 19, 2019
219
That's crazy that they would redirect you to another program because of future height! Glad they're not doing that with my daughter with parents who are 6'4 and 5'8. I love the JO program and while I don't have any goals/expectations of how far she'll go with it, she's learning a ton and all the strength and confidence she is gaining will translate into any other sport later if she decides. I went from gymnastics to swimming and ended up swimming in college. I think gym training had a huge impact on my strength!
 

RTT2

Proud Parent
Oct 9, 2015
853
An older article but related --


My DD is likely to end up somewhere around 5'5" to 5'6" -- and although elite or even college is not the goal -- my daughter and I frequently notice and enjoy seeing taller gymnasts. Believe it or not, my DD's potential future height was one big reason she was directed (at age 6!) to Xcel rather than JO at her first gym. We've since changed gym....

Ashton Locklear is listed as 5'4"
How did the gym even guess at her future height? Just going by parents' height?
 

CLgym

Proud Parent
Dec 22, 2014
1,165
How did the gym even guess at her future height? Just going by parents' height?

Well, mostly because she was not short then, and is not short now! And neither am I (I am almost 5-6). But this gym has been known to ask "How tall is dad?" if mom does all the pick up and drop offs. The gym philosophy re: body proportions was clearly indicated on their website at the time (and I had a meeting with the HC too) -- The belief was that certain body proportions (height, weight -- but also things like shoulder/hip proportions, etc.) were strong indicators of success in gymnastics long term. Not necessarily at the early levels, but at the upper optional levels. HC predicted that my 6 year old pre-teamer would not make it past L7. (Yes, she said that to my face.) Thus, Xcel was the compassionate decision.
 

Flippin'A

Proud Parent
Dec 4, 2017
306
34
Well, mostly because she was not short then, and is not short now! And neither am I (I am almost 5-6). But this gym has been known to ask "How tall is dad?" if mom does all the pick up and drop offs. The gym philosophy re: body proportions was clearly indicated on their website at the time (and I had a meeting with the HC too) -- The belief was that certain body proportions (height, weight -- but also things like shoulder/hip proportions, etc.) were strong indicators of success in gymnastics long term. Not necessarily at the early levels, but at the upper optional levels. HC predicted that my 6 year old pre-teamer would not make it past L7. (Yes, she said that to my face.) Thus, Xcel was the compassionate decision.
Did HC come out of the soviet system? That's how they used to pick kids but I didn't think there were too many modern gyms still doing that (at least openly. I'm sure some of it goes on behind the scenes.) What a shame they're limiting kids based on that. Plenty of kids with "perfect" proportions don't make it past level 7 but still have wonderful gymnastics experiences.
 

CLgym

Proud Parent
Dec 22, 2014
1,165
Did HC come out of the soviet system?

Yes. (Although so does current HC, and the JO team gymnasts at new gym come in all shapes and sizes.) I noticed that old gym has taken down the language re: body proportions from its website, and now has an expanded JO team (albeit with clearly designated A and B teams -- complete with different coaches, practice schedules, meets, and even leotards). So maybe things are slowly changing there too?? I personally have no ill will towards first gym (HC is a lovely person and has a very talented little team) -- it just obviously wasn't for us. As my husband said at the time, I'm not paying $8k per year for someone to tell my 6 year old that she is too big to be a good gymnast! The message we try to send all of our kids is that you can achieve amazing things with hard work and dedication. We just needed to find a gym that matched our parenting philosophy. And the good news is that we did.
 

gymnastmom05

Proud Parent
Oct 27, 2015
395
43
Well, mostly because she was not short then, and is not short now! And neither am I (I am almost 5-6). But this gym has been known to ask "How tall is dad?" if mom does all the pick up and drop offs. The gym philosophy re: body proportions was clearly indicated on their website at the time (and I had a meeting with the HC too) -- The belief was that certain body proportions (height, weight -- but also things like shoulder/hip proportions, etc.) were strong indicators of success in gymnastics long term. Not necessarily at the early levels, but at the upper optional levels. HC predicted that my 6 year old pre-teamer would not make it past L7. (Yes, she said that to my face.) Thus, Xcel was the compassionate decision.
Wow! I am floored by this! I'm glad our gym didn't do this to my DD. I'm average (5'5) but my husband is 6'4. His family is all tall. I would have thought my kids would be taller as well but guess what? They're both shrimps! My grandma and cousin didn't even make it to 5 foot. It's looking like my family genes took over here. There's always the chance they'll grow later but my husband was born 24 inches long (they're all tall from the beginning) so I'm not holding my breath!
 
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Flyaway

Proud Parent
Jun 1, 2014
1,380
I don't think our gym takes parent height into account at all, but the gym lobby is basically a meeting of the short moms club.

Flyaway here, checking in! lol!

My gymnast would never be encouraged away from gymnastics due to my height, but I think it's a silly thing to do anyway. Projecting height on a little 6 or 7 year old and predicting her future success as a gymnast assumes that there's nothing to be gained from spending time in the sport unless you are sure your kid is going to be "successful" whatever that means. My dd is never going to go to the Olympics or even compete in college, but she has definitely learned some amazing life lessons from gym.
 

twinmomma

Proud Parent
Jun 13, 2013
1,191
California
Here's my plug for T&T and Acro as well - both disciplines have all forms of body types you generally see discouraged from artistic gymnastics. Some of the most amazing tumblers are atypical gymnast body types and my daughter's Acro base is 5'6". There are more than a few Acro athletes whose look defies the stereotypical gymnast. I love it. I love that these kids all get to see that strength is strength and grace is grace and you can be 80 lbs or 180 lbs and still be powerful and beautiful.
 

JessSyd

Proud Parent
Oct 10, 2013
323
Sydney Australia
An update to my previous post, Australia’s 5’8 gymnast (173cm) competes tonight in the uneven bar finals at the current World Cup competition.

Australian gymnastics is lucky she was not filtered out of the sport years ago for being too tall! And it is an extraordinary thing to watch - the lovely lines a body that long can get on bars.
 
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