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Extremely Tall Female Gymnasts

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Sk8ermaiden

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I thought Kyla Ross was pretty tall?

And I don't watch much NCAA, but I have heard a dozen times that Kyla's bars improved almost immediately when she got to NCAA and could use a better setting for her height.
 

Oopski

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Are elite gymnasts allowed to petition to raise the bars? At what height will their feet hit the ground? I guess I never realized FIG settings were so low to the ground.
 

gymisforeveryone

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Are elite gymnasts allowed to petition to raise the bars? At what height will their feet hit the ground? I guess I never realized FIG settings were so low to the ground.

Yes they are. If their feet touch the ground when they hang on the high bar, they can petition to raise both bars 10 cm.

It depends, some girls have longer arms and they hit the ground even if they are not that tall. But I have noticed that girls who are 5'7 or taller almost always hit the ground.
 
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Pineapple_Lump

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Yes they are. If their feet touch the ground when they hang on the high bar, they can petition to raise both bars 10 cm.

It depends, some girls have longer arms and they hit the ground even if they are not that tall. But I have noticed that girls who are 5'7 or taller almost always hit the ground.
If they have a badly timed tap they are more likely to hit too
 

Kelly99

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I thought Kyla Ross was pretty tall? Yes, Sarie Morrison was 5'9" and a great bar swinger! A nice person too.

She's 5' 7" or 5' 8" (I've seen both). She's my tall daughter's favorite gymnast :)
 

GAgymmom

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Maloney and Maloney half are really good choices for a tall gymnast! For really short girls those are harder.

But the "easy" transfers like pak and bail are harder for taller girls, simply because they will hit the low bar on the way up. Whitney was doing a pak, and she seemed to strugge a bit, even if she did some good ones too. However, I'm pretty sure her bars were set wider than the FIG setting.

I wonder why the FIG has decided that the high bar should be so low. I mean, even in my club there are at least 10 girls who would hit the ground when swinging. We hardly ever petition for a bar raise, we don't bother for lower ("less important") levels and take the deduction for bent knees because it's such a pain to raise the bars at meets if the bar set is anything other than Gymnova Rio, which is usually pretty easy to work with. But with Spieth bars? No way! At one meet we petitioned for a bar raise and it took 4 men 10 minutes to raise the bars. The gymnast said she would never want to be put in that position again, she was so embarrased that everyone was waiting because of her. And it needed to be done for warm up and for short event warm ups... I guess bars in the USA are usually more easy to raise and lower and set apart?

If the FIG decided to set bars 10 cm higher for everyone, I don't think that would be a problem for anyone? Maybe for really really short girls, who want to start the routine from the high bar.. But you know, you can always train to jump higher. But you can't really train to be shorter.
Bar changes are like a NASCAR pit crew, the coaches jump in and whip, snap, slide, push! The settings are changed. They get changed in every level if needed, from Bronze and Level 1 to 10. Sometimes coaches use a block for shorter girls to mount so they don’t have to change the settings as often, and we even allow rotations to change the order based on bar settings so they can group all the same settings together to save time. No one gets embarrassed because it’s normal. Even the littlest female coaches can change a bar setting quickly, especially if there’s 2 people. The gymnasts also learn to change the settings and can jump in and help. I wish FIG would allow changes and it not be a big deal. Taller girls shouldn’t be left out just because the bars are too short and close for them. There are some very talented taller girls. I’m 5’10” so I have a special place in my heart for those tall gymnasts.
 

Sparkles<3

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Bar changes are like a NASCAR pit crew, the coaches jump in and whip, snap, slide, push! The settings are changed. They get changed in every level if needed, from Bronze and Level 1 to 10. Sometimes coaches use a block for shorter girls to mount so they don’t have to change the settings as often, and we even allow rotations to change the order based on bar settings so they can group all the same settings together to save time. No one gets embarrassed because it’s normal. Even the littlest female coaches can change a bar setting quickly, especially if there’s 2 people. The gymnasts also learn to change the settings and can jump in and help. I wish FIG would allow changes and it not be a big deal. Taller girls shouldn’t be left out just because the bars are too short and close for them. There are some very talented taller girls. I’m 5’10” so I have a special place in my heart for those tall gymnasts.

Agreed. It just seems to favor gymnasts of a certain height/ body type if FIG will not allow different bars settings. Why not allow taller girls to compete, if they have the skills? Imagine the different range of skills/ combinations we might see if elite gymnastics didn't favor only one body type. Taller girls might have to focus on high difficulty dance element combinations and bars combinations if they do not have the power for the highest difficulty tumbling and vaults, but I think that would add beautiful diversity to the sport and allow a wider range of gymnasts to compete at the highest levels. Just my thoughts.

I know Kyla Ross had mentioned in an interview that her height was making it extremely difficult to continue competing elite, but moving to NCAA and being able to change bars settings allowed her to compete bars again. This might be a factor that keeps some gymnasts from being able to continue past their teenage years! If they keep growing taller and no longer have the body type that they did when they were a teenager! I know some gymnasts have continued to compete at the elite level well into adulthood, but they have mostly been the ones with the shorter, more muscular body types, right? Not bars specialists so much, who might have longer, leaner body types and might continue growing taller as they enter into adulthood. I, personally, would love to see more gymnasts continue with their gymnastics into adulthood, and if they can keep up their difficulty despise growth, let them compete! Why do we have such a narrow scope of body types that are encouraged/ given an advantage to compete? I think allowing for different bars settings for taller girls could really broaden the body types we see competing at the elite level. And growth wouldn't necessarily have to be one of the greatest fears of high level gymnasts!
 
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Sk8ermaiden

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The first time I attended a meet with level 9s was a real education! Bars I was used to seeing adjusted, pit-crew style, but vault is something else! Every girl had a different vault setting, board setting, yurchenko mat for the board or not (I don't know what that mat is called), and different height landing mats. The coaches would get their rythym at the beginning of warm up and change settings like a well-oiled machine - even if they didn't know each other. It's very cool.
 

CoachPow

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The first time I attended a meet with level 9s was a real education! Bars I was used to seeing adjusted, pit-crew style, but vault is something else! Every girl had a different vault setting, board setting, yurchenko mat for the board or not (I don't know what that mat is called), and different height landing mats. The coaches would get their rythym at the beginning of warm up and change settings like a well-oiled machine - even if they didn't know each other. It's very cool.
State High School League individual meet is like that. Swap boards, hand mats, surrounds, landing mats, heights, etc in seconds for the next girl. Even catch somebody else's kid off a stumbled landing once in awhile.
 
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CoachPow

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I have a 6'1" gymnast on my high school team (seriously, she's a D-II volleyball commit!) and watching her is about the prettiest thing you'll see. A couple of years ago we convinced her to embrace the height and play it up. Gave up on tsuks and giants (her poor shins and ankles!) and just let her stretch out. Missed going to state in all-around by 0.2 after a fall on her aerial front-walkover (only time she fell on it all year). Hoping we can salvage her senior season!!
 

LemonLime

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Under FIG 2.1.2, a gymnast can ask to raise the rails if their feet hit the ground. I may be remembering incorrectly, but I believe 2016 Olympic bronze medalist on bars 5'7" Sophie Scheder raises her rails at every meet. My daughter's teammate also routinely raised her rails.

Skills between the bars becomes excessively precise ("like a straight jacket" says my now-adult daughter and her now-adult teammates) on FIG settings once the athlete reaches above 5'5". It's harder to do a shaposh half, not easier, but it surely can be done depending on the flexibility of the gymnast and their circling technique.
 

talia.gallas

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Personally I am 5'7" (almost 5'8") and same with Kyla Ross (basically one of the best gymnasts in the country). The trick to being a tall gymnast is finding skills you are good at because a lot of times there are certain skills that just don't work for you. Being a tall gymnast if you can properly straighten legs and have good form it is quite easy to score high because of the tall lines.
 

GymnastMia_25

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Kyla Ross and Pauline Tratz for UCLA are 5'7 or 5'8 and they were both great elite gymnasts and good NCAA gymnasts, especially Kyla Ross was like the best NCAA All Arounder this past season.
 

sce

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I thought Kyla Ross was pretty tall? Yes, Sarie Morrison was 5'9" and a great bar swinger! A nice person too.
Kyla is 5’7” now, but was a few inches shorter when she last competed elite.
 
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