Olympics: Gym Shorts: Danger in a Bold New Move

Danger in a Bold New Move

In gymnastics, innovation and injury sometimes go together. That is the case with a new move that most women will be performing in Seoul. At the 1983 world championships in Budapest, Soviet Natalia Yurchenko opened the new era when she successfully debuted the round-off vault, now called the Yurchenko. The easily recognized approach entails a cartwheel onto the springboard in front of the vaulting horse, followed by a launch backward onto the horse.

Rare in the Los Angeles Games (neither Mary Lou Retton nor her Rumanian counterparts did one), the Yurchenko is now commonplace. International Gymnastics Federation President Yuri Titov calls...

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