Scottish Gymnastics have finally revealed which male and female gymnasts will make up Team Scotland at the Commonwealth Games this summer.
They are -
Team Scotland Women's Artistic: Emma White (City of Birmingham GC), Erin McLachlan (Diamonds GC), Amy Regan (City of Glasgow GC), Carly Smith (City of Glasgow GC) and Cara Kennedy (City of Glasgow GC),
Team Scotland Men's Artistic: Liam Davie (City of Glasgow GC), Adam Cox (City of Glasgow GC), Daniel Keatings (Huntingdon Olympic GC), Frank Baines (Southport YMCA) and Daniel Purvis (Southport YMCA).
Quite a few of the Gymnasts who compete for Scotland are based down South but great to see so many train regularly out of Glasgow GC. It's also really nice to see Adam Cox make the team because he has worked so hard to come back from retirement to make sure he got a place at his home Games.
Here is each gymnast in Team Scotland in action:
The 2014 European Women's and Men's Artistic Gymnastics Championships in Sofia, Bulgaria were on a few weeks ago. Although no Scottish female gymnasts were included in the GB Team, we had a couple of the guys.
Daniel Keatings and Daniel Purvis were integral to a Team Silver medal win finishing respectably behind Russia but really showing their skill by ensuring that Ukraine (who traditionally have a fantastic pedigree of gymnasts) only took the Bronze. It is therefore looking very positive for our men's team this summer from a medal point of view.
When I was watching the European Championships a few weeks ago, it struck me how confusing the scoring system can be in gymnastics if you don't know how it works. Routines go very quickly so to a spectator, a routine can look flawless.
But the next gymnast could perform and have many more errors because they are attempting elements with much higher tarrifs, and it will be the second Gymnast who often scores highest.
It used to be simpler to understand, everything was out of 10, however, this meant gymnasts could do easier routines but end up with an inflated score compared to someone who had flung in the proverbial in the pursuit of gymnastic excellence.
This was changed so that the sport could continually evolve and impress us with innovative and complicated work.
The current scoring system is most easily understood if we look at the Vault in Mens and Womens' Artistic Gymnastics. Each vault is usually named after the first gymnast to perform it in a major competition and it has a difficulty tariff attached to it which is called the Start Value (SV).
The gymnast needs to elect which vault they will attempt and the vault number with its start value goes up on the screen next to the gymnast's name (it usually says SV next to the number).
To give you an idea on how to gauge the difficulty of what you are going to see this summer, a 5 is a fairly basic vault and anything from 5.8-6 is pretty hard.
We might even be lucky enough to see some start values up at 6.5 or even 7. The scoring by the judges is then done in two parts.
To work out the score, any mistakes are deducted (various penalties depending on all elements of a move) from 10 and then whatever is left at the end is then added to their start value.
With all of the other apparatus across Men and Womens Gymnastics (floor, beam, high bar etc) it is harder to understand when the score comes in. Again, the gymnasts are given a start value by the judges.
They build this by including in their routines, a number of required elements, high value moves, minimum level value of dismount (depends on the level of competition) and then linking any moves together stacks up even more bonus points towards their start value.
You will often see the breakdown when their final score comes up. Look for the SV and that will give you an indication of the difficulty of their routine. Then you'll see a score out of 10 with errors deducted, add together and that is the final score.
I am really keen to hear from anyone of any age and discipline involved with gymnastics across Scotland.
Leah Miller (6) mum Carole got in touch. Leah is a competitive dancer and as part of her disco dancing package, they are taught gymnastics and acrobatics which she has been doing since she was two and a half.
Leah told me that she doesn't like doing left hand splits (no right handed child does!) but she loves standing upright then bending backwards to put her hands flat on the ground in a bridge shape…wee bendy back!
When I asked her what she thought of the Games coming to Glasgow, her reply was, ''It's Good' and then (she is very sweet and full of confidence…oh to be five going on six again!), she said that she should actually be competing this summer at The Hydro. Brilliant!
She doesn't have tickets but she will be watching on TV and as her Mum has told her, stick in and you never know what can happen in the future.
It's lovely to think that she will be glued to the TV, inspired for the future. I think that is the best kind of legacy which the Commonwealth Games can leave behind.
No matter what your involvement in Gymnastics, it would be great to hear from you: firstname.lastname@example.org
If you are interested in seeing more top level gymnasts, the World Cup is at the Emirates on December 6. You can buy tickets now for this:
Also for the first time ever in Scotland (only second time in the UK), Glasgow will host the World Championships (second only to the Olympics) at the Hydro for four days from October 23, 2015. Tickets go on sale June 10 and you can get more info at:
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