Kevin James Kirk | Indy Week

Kevin James Kirk 
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Re: “Will Larry Nassar’s Enablers Ever Be Held Accountable?

I hate to say it, but as horrific as the stories have been coming out of the Larry Nassar trial, they are likely just the abusive nature of gymnastics training taken to the extreme. The sport, or the people making money from the sport, has long hung their hats on training techniques for young girls and women that border on torture. When I was a graduate student in exercise physiology in the 1980s, we heard a story of the Romanian national team touring this country after winning the team gold in 1984. In 12 days, we were told, the girls ate five meals. Id have to check my history, but I believe the coach of that team was Bela Karolyi. So obsessed are we in this country with gold medals that we recruited Karolyi to this country to get our programs up to speed. When he was forced out for abusive training, instead of distancing themselves as far away as possible, we turned instead to his wife. Apparently, another disciple of these training methods is John Geddert, Nassars good friend and associate. According to the article I read, Nassar was considered to be the nice one. How sad that to escape the physical and emotional abuse of their training, the girls better option was a pedophile.
We are all complicit in this toxic culture. Parents are willing to ship their children off to all corners of the globe and relegate them to such arduous training routines that they literally live gymnastics. These are the kinds of programs we derided when they perpetuated communist bloc states. Fans are willing look the other way in exchange for being able to chant USA at meets or at their televisions. Until we are willing to assign a common sense value to athletic success, the lives of young athletes will continue to be at risk.

Kevin Kirk

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Kevin James Kirk on 01/25/2018 at 2:28 PM

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