annia-hatch

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A Tribute to Women of Color in US Gymnastics (in chronological order)

Wendy Hilliard - First African-American rhythmic gymnast to make the US national team in 1978

Betty Okino - member of the 1992 bronze winning US Women’s Olympic team in Artistic Gymnastics

Dominique Dawes - First African-American women’s gymnast to win an individual Olympic medal and first African-American to win Olympic gold in gymnastics in 1996

Tasha Schwikert - member of the 2000 bronze winning US Women’s Olympic team in Artistic Gymnastics and the 2005 and 2008 NCAA all-around champion

Annia Hatch - Cuban-American gymnast who was a member of the 2004 silver winning US Women’s Olympic team in Artistic Gymnastics who placed 2nd in the Olympic vault event final

Gabrielle Douglas - First African-American gymnast to win gold in the Olympic All-Around and the first American to win both the All-Around and the Team competition at the same Olympics; still competitive

Elizabeth Price - alternate to the 2012 Olympic team; still competitive

Simone Biles - member of the US Junior National team; still competitive

And there are plenty more who are not listed here and with your suggestions they will be featured in future posts!

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Photos from P&G Championships 2013

The 2007 US Women’s Gold Medal Winning World Championship Team is inducted into the Gymnastics Hall of Fame, with other members of the Hall present.

Members of 2007 US Women’s Team Include: (from left to right)

Shayla Worley, Bridget Sloan, Alicia Sacramone, Samantha Peszek, Shawn Johnson, Nastia Liukin , Ivana Hong

Sorry I never uploaded these after Nationals, I got too busy.

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a snapshot of Team USA’s Olympic women’s gymnastics teams

1992-2012 (2 Gold, 2 Silver, 2 Bronze team medals)

Black Excellence in Gymnastics: Annia Hatch

Annia Hatch began her gymnastics career competing for Cuba in the mid-1990s. She won a bronze medal in the World Championships in 1996, making her the first Cuban gymnast to ever win a World medal and qualifying her for the Olympics. Unfortunately, Cuba lacked the funding to send her and so she was forced to sit the Games out. In 1997 she moved to the US, and everyone assumed her competitive career had ended.

However, this was not the case. Upon gaining US citizenship in 2001, she began training again with the goal of making the US National Team. Her efforts were successful, resulting in a fourth place finish and vault title at the 2002 National Championships, and she was considered a shoo-in for a vault medal at the upcoming World Championships in Debrecen.

Unfortunately, it was not to be. International sporting rules state that when athletes changes their citizenship, they must be granted a release by their former country if they wish to immediately begin competing for the new one. Cuba would not grant Annia’s release, and so she was forced to wait until it automatically went into effect in 2003. Then, an injury sidelined her for that year’s Worlds!

There is a happy ending to her story, though. Once she had recovered in 2004, she made the Olympic team and did herself justice at the Games, participating in the team’s silver win and earning a silver medal all her own on the vault.

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Never-Ending List of Favorite Gymnasts: One Routine Per Gymnast

Annia Hatch, Cuba/USA

Vault: 2004 Olympic Event Final