Aly Raisman,

Local Gymnast Aly Raisman Brings Home Olympic Gold!

Aly Raisman,

Aly Raisman from crsportsnews.

Congratulations to Needham resident Alexandra Raisman who made the U.S. Women’s Gymnastic Olympic team. She is a three-year member of the U.S. national gymnastics team and trains alongside Alicia Sacramone, also a U.S.  National team member, at Brestyan’s Gymnastics.

I guess it’s the reality of Olympic Competition that two elite teammates — the same age, and making the same sacrifices — who both deserve a place on the team, but there is only one spot this Olympics for the two of them.  And so one will fade into the background while the other shines in the spotlight. And yet, they are not so different and it could have gone either way had the make up of the U. S. team been different.

I admire Alicia’s grace during a time when she must have been crushed. She tweets: “Thanks to ALL of my supporters! You have been truly amazing! I leave this sport with no regrets and a kick ass comeback to my name!”

And gave a lovely compliment to her teammate …

[Alicia] Sacramone, a member of the 2008 silver medalist team at Beijing, but who missed making the London team, passed the torch to Raisman by calling her the “backbone” of the US squad, a “rock under pressure.” from the Boston Globe

Alicia Sacramone

And what makes it perhaps more difficult (or not),  Alicia had an outstanding performance at the Olympic trials, but the team had been picked long before the trials began.

Sacramone had performed well on her two events, vault and beam, but she didn’t figure into the mix, even as an alternate, because the U.S. is strong on vault, led by world gold medalist McKayla Maroney.

Sacramone, 24, had torn her Achilles tendon before the 2011 world championships, but didn’t appear to figure into the plans of team coordinator Martha Karolyi during her comeback. Karolyi said she had known who her five-member team would be “for quite a while.” USA Today

All year long Martha Karolyi, the women’s national team coordinator, had said that Aly Raisman was exactly the kind of gymnast the Americans needed in London. Rock solid, consistent, unshakable.

Aly Raisman brings experience and mental toughness to the team, and perhaps is stronger in more events than Sacramone?

Raisman, who finished fourth in the all-around at worlds in 2011, brings a steady, mentally tough presence to the floor, and will be perhaps the most experienced gymnast on the squad.

Karolyi said she also appreciates Raisman’s consistency, her unfailing ability to perform at a high level, something the U.S. team will need if it intends to win gold in London. from ESPN

The men’s and women’s gymnastics teams are contenders for Olympic Gold in London. Such big expectations mean a lot of pressure on each team member.  I am confident that Aly Reisman is up to the challenge and that it will be a lot of fun to watch her on the world stage.

Aly Raisman – Balance Beam – 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials Podium Training

Aly Raisman Wins Gold in Olympic Floor Exercise

Aly Raisman Beam Routine at London Olympics

Aly Raisman London 2012 Fighter

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