Perfect 10 (gymnastics)

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Nadia Comăneci poses beside the scoreboard that recorded her perfect 10 as 1.00 (with no Olympic precedent, the hardware was not capable of displaying 10.00).

A perfect 10 is a score of 10.00 for a single routine in artistic gymnastics, which was once thought to be unattainable—particularly at the Olympic Games—under the code of points set by the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG). It is generally recognized that the first person to score a perfect 10 at the Olympic Games was Romanian Nadia Comăneci, at the 1976 Games in Montreal.[1][2] Other women who accomplished this feat at the Olympics include Nellie Kim, also in 1976, Mary Lou Retton in 1984, Daniela Silivaș and Yelena Shushunova in 1988, and Lavinia Miloșovici in 1992. The first man to score a perfect 10 is considered to be Alexander Dityatin, at the 1980 Olympics in Moscow.[3][4] (However, in the 1924 Paris Olympics, 22 men achieved a mark of 10 in rope-climbing, with one Albert Séguin getting a second 10 in the sidehorse vault, events that are no longer part of artistic gymnastics.)

The FIG changed its code of points in 2006. There are now different top scores, all greater than 10, for the various events, based upon difficulty and artistic merit; there is no consistent perfect score. Execution scores are still out of 10, so the theoretical possibility exists for a gymnast to get a "perfect 10" for execution in addition to whatever number they get for difficulty, but no such score has been awarded in decades.

History[edit]

Men's Artistic Gymnastics had been an Olympic sport since the beginning of the modern games. Women's gymnastics were introduced as a single (team) event in the 1928 games, but were not expanded until the 1952 games, when there were seven events.[5] The International Federation of Gymnastics first drew up a code of points—for men—in 1949.[6]

Although the code of points was based on a maximum of 10, until 1976 it was considered impossible to achieve a score of greater than 9.95, particularly at the Olympic Games[7][8] (although Věra Čáslavská achieved perfect 10s in the 1967 European Championships,[9] which were displayed on a manual scoreboard).[10] Prior to the 1976 Olympics in Montreal, Omega, the official timers, asked the International Olympic Committee how many digits it should allow on the electronic scoreboard, and were told that three digits would be sufficient, as a score of 10.00 would not be possible.[11]

On 18 July 1976, 14-year-old Romanian gymnast Nadia Comăneci performed in the uneven bars event, and was awarded a score of 10. Because the scoreboard only allowed three digits, it had to display her score as 1.00.[11] This led to confusion, with even Comăneci unsure of what it meant, until the announcer informed the elated crowd that she had scored a perfect 10.[12] An iconic press photograph (pictured above) shows a beaming Comăneci, arms upraised, beside the scoreboard.[13] Comăneci scored a total of seven 10s at the 1976 Olympics—four on the uneven bars and three on the balance beam.[11] Her main rival, Russian Nelli Kim, scored two 10s in the same competition, in the vault and floor exercise.[14] Comăneci's coach, Béla Károlyi, having defected to the United States in 1981, subsequently coached Mary Lou Retton to gold at the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles, where she scored 10s in the vault and floor exercise.[15]

The first man to score a perfect 10 in Olympic competition was the Russian Alexander Dityatin, who received the score in the vault on the way to a record-breaking eight medals in the 1980 Olympics in Moscow.[16] Among other men to achieve the score was Comăneci's future husband, Bart Conner, who received two 10s in Los Angeles in 1984.[17]

Change in scoring[edit]

The code of points came under review as a result of separate incidents during the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, in which gymnasts were believed to have received excessively low scores.[18] A new scoring system was introduced in 2006. It consists of an "A" score, based on the difficulty of elements, and a "B" score, based on artistic impression. While the B score still has a maximum of 10, it is only a part of the overall score.[17]

The change had its share of critics. Béla Károlyi said of it: "It's crazy, terrible, the stupidest thing that ever happened to the sport of gymnastics.".[19] Mary Lou Retton remarked: "It's hard to understand. I don't even understand it."[19] Nadia Comăneci commented, "It's so hard to define sports like ours and we had something unique. The 10, it was ours first and now you give it away."[17]

List of perfect 10s[edit]

This list may be incomplete.

Olympics[edit]

Paris 1924[edit]

Montreal 1976[edit]

Women[edit]
  • Nadia Comăneci - team compulsory uneven bars, team optional uneven bars, team optional balance beam, all around uneven bars, all around balance beam, uneven bars event final, balance beam event final
  • Nellie Kim - all around vault, floor exercise event final

(Olympic database;[20] Women's individual results;[21] women's all-around results;[22] women's team results[23])

Moscow 1980[edit]

Men[edit]

(Men's all-around results;[24] men's individual event results[25])

Women[edit]

Los Angeles 1984[edit]

Men[edit]
  • Peter Vidmar - team compulsory pommel horse, all around high bar, pommel horse event final
  • Bart Conner - team optional parallel bars, parallel bars event final
  • Mitch Gaylord - team compulsory parallel bars, team optional rings
  • Tim Daggett - team optional high bar
  • Li Ning - team compulsory pommel horse, team optional rings, floor exercise event final, pommel horse event final
  • Tong Fei - team compulsory high bar, team optional rings, all around high bar, high bar event final
  • Xu Zhiqiang - team compulsory high bar
  • Lou Yun - team compulsory vault, team optional vault
  • Li Xiaoping - team compulsory pommel horse
  • Koji Gushiken - team compulsory high bar, all around vault, high bar event final
  • Shinji Morisue - team compulsory high bar, team optional high bar, high bar event final
  • Nobuyuki Kajitani - parallel bars event final
Women[edit]
  • Ecaterina Szabo - team compulsory floor exercise, team optional vault, all around balance beam, floor exercise event final
  • Simona Păucă - team optional balance beam
  • Mary Lou Retton - team optional vault, all around vault, all around floor exercise
  • Julianne McNamara - team optional uneven bars, team optional floor exercise, all around uneven bars, uneven bars event final, floor exercise event final
  • Ma Yanhong - team optional uneven bars, all around uneven bars, uneven bars event final

(Men's results;[26] women's results[27])

Seoul 1988[edit]

Men[edit]
Women[edit]
  • Yelena Shushunova - team compulsory vault, team optional vault, team optional uneven bars, team optional floor exercise, all around vault, all around floor exercise, uneven bars event final
  • Daniela Silivaș - team compulsory uneven bars, team compulsory floor exercise, team optionals uneven bars, team optionals balance beam, all around uneven bars, all around floor exercise, uneven bars event final
  • Dagmar Kersten - team compulsory uneven bars, uneven bars event final

(Men's results;[28] women's results[29])

Barcelona 1992[edit]

Women[edit]

(Women's results[30])

Alternate Olympics[edit]

Olomouc 1984[edit]

Men[edit]
  • Dmitry Bilozerchev - team optional pommel horse, team optional rings, team optional parallel bars, team optional high bar, all around pommel horse, all around vault, all around parallel bars, all around high bar, pommel horse event final, rings event final, high bar event final
  • Vladimir Artemov - team optional pommel horse, team optional rings, team optional vault, all around rings
  • Yuri Balbanov - team compulsory rings, team optional high bar, all around parallel bars
  • Holger Behrendt - team optional rings
  • Sylvio Kroll - team compulsory vault, team optional vault, vault event final
  • Roland Brückner - team optional floor exercise
Women[edit]
  • Olga Mostepanova - team compulsory vault, team compulsory uneven bars, team compulsory balance beam, team optional vault, team optional balance beam, team optional floor exercise, all around vault, all around uneven bars, all around balance beam, all around floor exercise, balance beam event final, floor exercise event final
  • Natalia Yurchenko - team compulsory uneven bars, team optional vault, all around vault, all around balance beam, uneven bars event final
  • Yelena Shushunova - team optional vault
  • Maxi Gnauck - team compulsory uneven bars, team optional vault, team optional uneven bars, all around floor exercise, uneven bars event final, floor exercise event final
  • Gabriele Fähnrich - team compulsory uneven bars, uneven bars event final
  • Hana Říčná - team optional balance beam, all around vault, all around uneven bars
  • Martina Koblizkova - team optional vault
  • Alena Dřevjaná - all around balance beam
  • Franka Voigt - all around vault
  • Boriana Stoyanova - all around uneven bars
  • Miroslava Koblizkova - all around uneven bars

Goodwill Games[edit]

1986 Goodwill Games[edit]

Women[edit]

1990 Goodwill Games[edit]

Women[edit]

World Championships[edit]

1981 World Championships[edit]

Men[edit]
Women[edit]

1983 World Championships[edit]

Men[edit]
  • Tong Fei - team compulsory parallel bars, floor exercise event final
  • Li Ning - team optional rings, pommel horse event final
  • Lou Yun - team optional parallel bars, parallel bars event final
  • Dmitry Bilozerchev - team compulsory pommel horse, team optional pommel horse, all around floor, all around vault, all around high bar, pommel horse event final, rings event final, high bar event final
  • Vladimir Artemov - team optional parallel bars, parallel bars event final
  • Shinji Morisue - team optional high bar
  • György Guczoghy - all around pommel horse, pommel horse event final
  • Alexander Pogorelov - all around rings
  • Li Xiaoping - pommel horse event final
  • Koji Gushiken - rings event final
  • Koji Sotomura - rings event final
Women[edit]
  • Natalia Yurchenko - team optional vault, team optional balance beam, all around vault, all around floor exercise
  • Olga Mostepanova - team optional vault, all around vault, floor exercise event final
  • Olga Bicherova - team optional vault
  • Lavinia Agache - team optional uneven bars
  • Ecaterina Szabo - team optional uneven bars, team optional floor exercise, all around vault, all around floor exercise, floor exercise event final
  • Mirela Barbălată - team optional vault
  • Maxi Gnauck - team optional uneven bars, all around uneven bars, uneven bars event final

1985 World Championships[edit]

Men[edit]
Women[edit]

1987 World Championships[edit]

Men[edit]
Women[edit]
  • Aurelia Dobre - team optional vault, team optional balance beam, team optional floor exercise, all around vault, balance beam event final
  • Daniela Silivaș - team compulsory balance beam, team compulsory floor exercise, team optional uneven bars, team optional floor exercise, floor exercise event final
  • Camelia Voinea - team optional floor exercise
  • Eugenia Golea - team optional vault
  • Yelena Shushunova - team compulsory vault, team compulsory floor exercise, team optional floor exercise, all around floor exercise, floor exercise event final
  • Dörte Thümmler - team optional uneven bars
  • Gabriele Fähnrich - team optional uneven bars
  • Fan Di - team optional uneven bars

1989 World Championships[edit]

Men[edit]
  • Valentin Mogilny - team optional pommel horse, all around pommel horse, pommel horse event final
Women[edit]
  • Natalia Laschenova - team optional vault, all around vault, all around uneven bars
  • Svetlana Boginskaya - team optional uneven bars, team optional floor exercise, all around vault, all around floor exercise, floor exercise event final
  • Olesya Dudnik - team compulsory floor exercise, team optional vault, team optional balance beam
  • Daniela Silivaș - team compulsory vault, team optional uneven bars, team optional floor exercise, uneven bars event final, floor exercise event final
  • Cristina Bontaș - all around floor exercise
  • Fan Di - uneven bars event final

1991 World Championships[edit]

Women[edit]

European Championships[edit]

1967 European Championships[edit]

Women[edit]

1977 European Championships[edit]

Women[edit]

1981 European Championships[edit]

Women[edit]

1985 European Championships[edit]

Women[edit]

1987 European Championships[edit]

Women[edit]

1989 European Championships[edit]

Women[edit]

1990 European Championshps[edit]

Women[edit]

U.S. National Championships[edit]

1984 National Championships[edit]

Men[edit]
Women[edit]

1988 National Championships[edit]

Men[edit]

1990 National Championships[edit]

Men[edit]

1992 National Championships[edit]

Women[edit]

U.S. Olympic Trials[edit]

1984 Olympic Trials[edit]

Men[edit]

1988 Olympic Trials[edit]

Women[edit]

1992 Olympic Trials[edit]

Women[edit]

Moscow News/World Stars[edit]

1979 Moscow News[edit]

Women[edit]

1988 Moscow News[edit]

Women[edit]

1989 Moscow News[edit]

Women[edit]

1991 World Stars[edit]

Men[edit]

1992 World Stars[edit]

Women[edit]

American Cup[edit]

New York City 1976[edit]

Women[edit]

New York City 1980[edit]

Men[edit]

New York City 1984[edit]

Men[edit]
Women[edit]

Orlando 1991[edit]

Women[edit]

Orlando 1992[edit]

Men[edit]

European Cup[edit]

1988 European Cup[edit]

Women[edit]

DTB Cup[edit]

1984 DTB Cup[edit]

Women[edit]
  • Maxi Gnauck - all around uneven bars, all around floor exercise, uneven bars event final, floor exercise event final

1987 DTB Cup[edit]

Men[edit]

1988 DTB Cup[edit]

Men[edit]
Women[edit]

1989 DTB Cup[edit]

Women[edit]

Cottbus International[edit]

1984 Cottbus International[edit]

Women[edit]

1985 Cottbus International[edit]

Women[edit]

1992 Cottbus International[edit]

Women[edit]

World Cup[edit]

1979 World Cup[edit]

Women[edit]

1982 World Cup[edit]

Men[edit]

1986 World Cup[edit]

Women[edit]

Tokyo Cup[edit]

1985 Tokyo Cup[edit]

Women[edit]

1988 Tokyo Cup[edit]

Women[edit]

Chunichi Cup[edit]

1976 Chunichi Cup[edit]

Women[edit]

University Games[edit]

1987 University Games[edit]

Women[edit]
  • Yelena Shushunova - all around uneven bars, all around balance beam, all around floor exercise

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "The first Olympic gymnast to score a perfect 10". BBC News. 20 July 2016.
  2. ^ Jamie Clarke (19 August 2015). "1976: First Gymnast to Score a Perfect 10 at an Olympics Games". Guinness World Records.
  3. ^ William D. Murray (9 January 1986). "Soviet gymnast Aleksandr Dityatin, the winner of a record..." United Press International.
  4. ^ "Moscow 1980 - Key Moments: The first male "perfect 10"". ESPN.
  5. ^ "History of Artistic Gymnastics at the Olympic Games" (PDF). Olympic.org. Retrieved 4 November 2015.
  6. ^ "Milestones". International Federation of Gymnastics. Retrieved 4 November 2015.
  7. ^ Brown, Gene (1979). The New York Times encyclopedia of sports, Volume 11: Indoor Sports. Arno Press. p. 132. ISBN 0405126379. Retrieved 4 November 2015.
  8. ^ Fulton-Smith, Graham; Sampson, James M.; Wange, Willy B. (1976). Olympics 1976: Montreal, Innsbruck. New York: C. N. Potter. p. 25. ISBN 051752743X. Retrieved 4 November 2015.
  9. ^ Tatlow, Peter (1979). Gymnastics: all the beauty and skills of this thrilling sport. Chartwell Books, Inc. p. 143. ISBN 9780711100046.
  10. ^ European Ladies Gymnastics In Amsterdam (1967). British Pathé. 13 Apr 2014. Event occurs at 1 min 32 sec. Retrieved 3 September 2016.
  11. ^ a b c "50 stunning Olympic moments No5: Nadia Comaneci scores a perfect 10". 14 December 2011. Retrieved 4 November 2015.
  12. ^ Brady, Rachel (6 July 2012). "Nadia Comaneci: From a perfect 10 in Montreal to a busy broadcaster in London". Retrieved 4 November 2015.
  13. ^ Marsden, Rhodri (17 July 2015). "Rhodri Marsden's Interesting Objects: The gymnastics scoreboard at the Montreal Olympics". Independent. Retrieved 6 November 2015.
  14. ^ Buchanan, Ian; Mallon, Bill (2005). Historical Dictionary of the Olympic Movement. Scarecrow Press. p. 149. ISBN 0810865246. Retrieved 4 November 2015.
  15. ^ Boyer Sagert, Kelly; Overman, Steven J. (2012). Icons of Women's Sport. ABC-CLIO. pp. 443, 448–9. ISBN 0313385491. Retrieved 4 November 2015.
  16. ^ Nauright, John (2012). Sports around the World: History, Culture, and Practice. ABC-CLIO. p. 334. ISBN 159884301X. Retrieved 4 November 2015.
  17. ^ a b c Diane Pucin (August 6, 2008). "A 10-shun Deficit". Los Angeles Times.
  18. ^ Dan Baynes (August 6, 2008). "Olympic Gymnasts Won't Chase Perfect 10 as New Scoring Debuts". bloomberg.com. Retrieved February 14, 2010.
  19. ^ a b Jordan Ellenberg (August 12, 2008). "Down With the Perfect 10!". Slate. Archived from the original on February 12, 2010. Retrieved February 14, 2010.
  20. ^ "Gymnastics results for the 1976 Summer Olympics". www.databaseolympics.com. Archived from the original on December 25, 2010. Retrieved May 6, 2011.
  21. ^ "Games of the 21st Olympiad 1976 Artistic Gymnastics / All-Around Final Women". gymnasticsresults.com. Archived from the original on July 15, 2009. Retrieved February 16, 2010.
  22. ^ "Games of the 21st Olympiad 1976 Artistic Gymnastics / All-Around Final Women". gymnasticsresults.com. Archived from the original on February 19, 2010. Retrieved February 16, 2010.
  23. ^ "Games of the 21st Olympiad 1976 Artistic Gymnastics / Teams Women". gymnasticsresults.com. Archived from the original on July 21, 2013. Retrieved February 16, 2010.
  24. ^ "All-Around Final Men - Games of the 22nd Olympiad Moscow 1980". gymnasticsresults.com. Archived from the original on July 21, 2013. Retrieved February 16, 2010.
  25. ^ "Games of the 22nd Olympiad 1980 Artistic Gymnastics / Events Finals Men". gymnasticsresults.com. Archived from the original on April 15, 2010. Retrieved February 16, 2010.
  26. ^ "The Games of 23rd Olympiad / Men's Artistic Gymnastics". gymnasticsresults.com. Archived from the original on April 15, 2010. Retrieved February 16, 2010.
  27. ^ "The Games of 23rd Olympiad / Women's Artistic Gymnastics". gymnasticsresults.com. Archived from the original on February 5, 2016. Retrieved February 16, 2010.
  28. ^ "The Games of 24th Olympiad / Men". gymnasticsresults.com. Archived from the original on November 6, 2013. Retrieved February 16, 2010.
  29. ^ "The Games of 24th Olympiad / Women". gymnasticsresults.com. Archived from the original on July 12, 2016. Retrieved February 16, 2010.
  30. ^ "The Games of 25th Olympiad / Women". gymnasticsresults.com. Archived from the original on September 22, 2008. Retrieved February 16, 2010.