Wednesday, October 13, 2010

nastia liukin pics582

By 2003, Luikin was one of the strongest junior gymnasts in the United States. She won the junior division of the U.S. National Championships, as well as gold medals on three of the four events. She repeated these accomplishments in 2004.

In 2005, Nastia won her first senior National Championships and, once again, earned gold medals on the bars and beam. At the 2005 World Championships in Melbourne she finished second in the AA. She was able to win gold in the event finals for the uneven bars and balance beam, and she won silver on the floor exercise.

In March 2006, Liukin placed first in the all-around at the American Cup. At the 2006 Pacific Alliance Championships, Liukin tied with teammate Memmel for first in the all around. She also won the uneven bars title and contributed to the U.S. team’s gold medal. At the 2006 U.S. National Championships, Liukin successfully defended her all-around, beam and bars titles, becoming a two-time senior National Champion. She was named to the U.S. team for the 2006 World Gymnastics Championships in Aarhus, Denmark, and was expected by many to be a strong contender for the all-around title. However, due to an ankle injury sustained in training, she was only able to compete in one event. In spite of her injury, Liukin’s bars set earned a 16.2, the highest score of any competitor on any apparatus in the meet.
Nastia Liukin, world-renown Senior International Elite gymnast and Olympic gold medalist, is known for her exceptional athletic ability and charming demeanor. She is a five time Olympic medalist, four time World Champion, nine time world medalist, four time US National Champion and has won two American Cup titles and both a Senior and Junior Pacific Rim Championship. Following her success in the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Nastia was named FIG Athlete of the Year. In 2007 she joined 1996 Olympic gold medalist Shannon Miller as the most decorated American gymnast in a World Championship competition.

Liukin was born in 1989 in Moscow, Russia and is the only child of two former Soviet champion gymnasts. Her family moved to the United States when she was just two and a half years old, after the breakup of the Soviet Union. The family spent a brief time in New Orleans before finally settling in Texas. In 1994, Valeri Liukin teamed with another former Soviet champion athlete, Evgeny Marchenko, to open the World Olympic Gymnastics Academy (WOGA) in Plano.

Liukin began gymnastics at the age of three because she was always hanging around the gym with her parents who could not afford a babysitter to look after her while they were working as coaches. Liukin’s parents did not initially aspire for their daughter to become a gymnast, knowing the pressure of high-level competition firsthand. However, her parents relented when they noticed Nastia’s aptitude for the sport.

Nastia is bilingual; fluent in both English and Russian. She graduated form Spring Creek Academy in 2007, and enrolled as a freshman in international business at Southern Methodist University in January 2008, but took a leave from her classes to prepare for the 2008 Olympic Games. She returned to campus in 2009, but is on hiatus while she manages a career outside of the gym.

Liukin competed in her first National Championships as a junior in 2002 at the age of 12. Liukin suffered a fall on the uneven bars which made her unable to finish the routine. However, she was still able to finish in 15th place and landed her one of the final spots on the U.S. national Team. She was chosen to compete with the U.S. team at the 2002 Junior Pan American Championships, where she contributed to the team gold medal and placed second on the uneven bars, balance beam and all-around.

nastia liukin
nastia liukin
nastia liukin
nastia liukin
nastia liukin

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