Uneven Bar Event Finals Wrap-Up

7:46 PM Arabian Punch Front 0 Comments

Uneven bars are my favorite event. I don't understand all the names of all the pirouette moves nor can I name all of Tweddle's release moves but I thoroughly enjoy watching this event. I'm excited with the way the podium turned out - both who was on the podium and the order.

He Kexin was up first. She nailed her Li Ya/Tkatchev combo. He has been low on the second release move and was today but that didn't stop her. She also performed her beautiful laid out Jaeger and connected it well to her pak salto to the low bar. Of the 3, Tweddle was up next. She nailed all her combinations. It really was the best routine I had seen from her. All her twists were completed, her body position was great throughout, all her releases were high and caught with perfect distance from the bar. The most noticeable error came on her dismount where she landed sitting a little too far back and had to take a big step back so she didn't fall. Then, we came to Aliya Mustafina. Aliya works pretty quickly on the bars but also has a lightness and fluidity to her movement. I love her high-low-high combination - in bar stalder full - pak - stalder shaposh 1/2 (Yao/Mustafina). She stuck her Mustafina dismount and was smiling from ear to ear. It was enough to put her in 1st. Only Koko Tsurumi and Gabby Douglas were remaining but neither had the difficulty to challenge the top 3.

I like the variety that this podium has in the way that they perform uneven bars. He Kexin shows different pirouettes and grips as well as the exciting combination she's continued to do since Beijing. He Kexin has the nice lines and controlled handstand positions which we have come to expect from the Chinese on uneven bars. Beth Tweddle's routine is in release move overdrive. Instead of using pirouettes, she basically flies - non-stop. Aliya is the perfect combination of both with pirouettes, exciting release moves, but also the nice lines and fluidity that shows her ability to swing bars. This podium represents all that I love on the uneven bars.

There were lots of firsts on this podium. Aliya Mustafina was the first woman to win Olympic gold for Russia since Svetlana Khorkina won gold on the uneven bars in 2000. Silver medalist, He Kexin, became the first Chinese female to win two medals in consecutive Olympics. [Cheng Fei didn't win a medal in 2004.] Beth Tweddle is the first female gymnast to win an Olympic medal for Great Britain.

I'm glad the podium turned out as it did. All the gymnasts did a wonderful job and the best on that day, prevailed.

Here's a link to Aliya's bar routine on Fan Gymnastics facebook page. Watch HERE

Honorable mention: Arthur Zanetti gets Brazil's first EVER medal in artistic gymnastics - male or female. He won gold on the still rings.

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