Umphrey was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico on August 2, 1970, and took up gymnastics at age 7. He attended Albuquerque Academy and graduated in 1988. While in Albuquerque, he trained at Gold Cup Gymnastics along with future Olympians Lance Ringnald and Trent Dimas.
Umphrey competed in college gymnastics at UCLA, where he was an All-American and two-time team captain. He was a member of the U.S. national team from 1989 to 1997, competing at the World Artistic Gymnastics Championships in 1991, 1994, and 1996. His best result was a 4th-place finish on the horizontal bar in 1994. He also won a gold medal for the team all-around at the 1995 Pan American Games.
At the 1992 Olympic trials, Umphrey finished 8th, just 0.018 points short of making the seven-person team. He was able to rebound and finished 4th at the 1996 trials to gain a place on the U.S. Olympic team. At the 1996 Summer Olympics, he was held out of his best event, the horizontal bar, as well as the vault, a coaching decision that he called "devastating". Nevertheless, he was able to help the U.S. to a 5th-place finish in the team all-around, their best result since winning gold at the Soviet-boycotted 1984 Olympics.
Away from competition, Umphrey also worked to promote the sport of gymnastics and appeared at clinics around the United States. He was a guest on the children's program Mister Rogers' Neighborhood in 1986 and again in 1995, demonstrating gymnastics skills and training methods.
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- Evans, Hilary; Gjerde, Arild; Heijmans, Jeroen; Mallon, Bill. "Chainey Umphrey". Olympics at Sports-Reference.com. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved 22 May 2015.
- "Umphrey Thankful for Many". Albuquerque Journal. March 4, 2010. Retrieved May 31, 2017.
- Wright, Rick (August 13, 2005). "Umphrey Enters Gymnastics Hall". Albuquerque Journal. Retrieved June 1, 2017.
- Wojciechowski, Gene (June 30, 1996). "Emotions Flow As Bagiu Claims Last Gymnastics Team Slot". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved May 31, 2017.
- Penner, Mike (July 21, 1996). "Magnificent Seven? Well, No, but They're Not Bad". LA Times. Retrieved May 31, 2017.
- "Albert Chainey Umphrey, MD". Kaiser Permanente. Retrieved May 31, 2017.
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