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It’s Not Like They Have To Forge The Right Forms, Is It?

Posted on | August 5, 2008 |

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Underage Chinese Gymnasts?

(AP) More questions about Chinese gymnasts’ ages
Well, I’ve gotten temporarily bored with McCain and Obama, but fortunately, the Chinese government has given me a bit of fodder for the mill. Seems AP has actually found evidence that the Chinese gymnastic team’s membership includes underaged contestants. Why the problem? Don’t you get better at a sport when you are older and have more experience? Not necessarily so. Younger gymnasts tend to be shorter and lighter–this combines to give them a lower center of gravity which allows them to perform the stunts much more easily AND with greater speed. Ever see a gangly kid try to do a cartwheel? I was gangly–I could never get one done–all arms and legs, but the short kids all did them perfectly. The only time I managed one was with a running start and I nearly cartwheeled all the way down the gym, before I landed on my back–OFF the mat. Younger gymnasts also like to take more risks. The older you are, the more aware you are of just what you CAN’T do. Young idiots have no such sense. They can do things they shouldn’t just because they didn’t know they couldn’t. Of course, the Chinese government has fixed them up with the appropriate papers that say they ARE the right age, but hell, it isn’t like they have to FORGE the right forms, is it? China isn’t the only country to have done so, North Korea was barred after one of its contestants was listed as 15 years old three years running and Romania admitted its own birthdate deviancies. Oh well, it will be an interesting competition :)

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