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The Olympics! August 5, 2012

Posted by kroberts36 in Travel Log.

This past weekend I got to go to the London 2012 Olympics.  It was truly one of the most incredible weekends of my life! I was so lucky to get to experience the world’s greatest sporting event.  Being a part of the action was such an experience, from seeing the new and old stadiums built up for the games, to the thousands upon thousands of volunteers everywhere you turned in purple jackets and Olympic attire right down to sneakers (or should I say, trainers?) and umbrellas.  With people all over the streets, or even more popular – the Underground – and excitement and spirit all around, it was such an amazing atmosphere!!

Men’s gymnastics was the first event I went to, as well as women’s gymnastics the next day.  With tickets that I got back in December, I got to go to a sport I didn’t know much about, but have always watched on TV, with a crowd of mostly locals.  The great thing about these Olympic events was the brief tutorial they gave on the screens at the beginning of how gymnastics worked – what the different apparatuses are (six for the men, four for the women), how it is scored, as well as teams and individual athletes to watch for.  The six apparatuses for men are high bar, floor, pommel horse, rings, vault, and parallel bars.  My personal favorite was the rings – watching their incredible stability and upper body strength lifting themselves up feet off the ground was amazing. The women compete in four apparatuses: floor, balance beam, vault, and parallel bars.  I loved watching the women swing on the parallel bars, with incredibly smooth and effortless transitions between the two bars where they looked like they were flying! On both days I saw one of the qualifying rounds, which consisted of six different groups of men, two sets of four for the women, each rotating around to a different apparatus where four to five athletes would compete at each one.  These groups were a mix of teams, comprised only of one country’s team, and individual competitors, athletes who did not have a full team of gymnasts, but could qualify as individuals.  My favorite thing that we saw was the men’s Team Great Britain competing, with world medalists and in front of a home crowd, of course! The atmosphere of being in London, surrounded by individuals and families from all over England with their British flags and cheering for Team GB was so much fun to be a part of and really made me appreciate being in England and fully embrace the English experience of my summer at Oxford!





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