UpdatedTuesday, October 30, 2018
Who is the tallest female gymnast to compete in the Olympics? Why Female Olympic Gymnasts Look Like Children? Both are debatable questions. Tallness in gymnastics is as rare as shortness in basketball. As taller athletes are more successful in basketball, similarly dwarfness favors gymnastics. Usually short stature gymnasts are more successful in gymnastics. Particularly females with short stature are more prominent in this field. Mostly successful female gymnasts look like children with an average height of 5.1 feet. There are many reasons behind the dwarfness of gymnast.
Why Female Gymnasts Are So Short?
As I search the tallest female athlete, I encountered the name of Malgorzata Dydek the tallest female basketball player in the world with 7 feet 7 inches height. Similarly when the tallest female gymnast is search; didn’t find any lady more than 5’5”.
There are genuine reasons behind the dwarfness of gymnasts, particularly female gymnasts. Gymnasts start their training at a much younger age. Their training continues through when normal girls begin puberty, around age 11, and beyond. Because their bodies are much more physically fit from all the years of training, it imbalances the hormones and delays the process of adulthood.
Gymnasts are unbelievable fit when they’re adults. The concentration of fats in their bodies is much lower than other athletes. This low concentration of fats also effects their hormones concentration like gonadotrophin and Insulin-like growth factor (IGF1). This also plays a major role to stunt their growth.
The short stature is a blessing for most gymnasts it gives him an advantage in gymnastics due to the physics involved in the motions. So taller gymnasts usually aren’t able to compete with shorter gymnasts and thus don’t train as long or rigorously.
Who is The Tallest Female Gymnast in The Olympics?
When I searched the tallest female gymnasts in the Olympics history, I found the name of Kathleen Lindor and Svetlana Khorkina in this list. Kathleen Lindor was a French gymnast with 5-5(1.65m) height and Svetlana Khorkina the 7 time Olympic medalist from Russia. She stands out at 5-5″ (1.65m).
Ironically she was originally discouraged from gymnastics due to her height. She took advantage of her height with the help of a lifelong coach to develop 8 moves named after her. Uneven bars were her favorite apparatus as it allowed her long legs and graceful lines to be put to good use.
Svetlana Khorkina competed at the 1996 Summer Olympics, the 2000 Summer Olympics, and the 2004 Summer Olympics. One of the most successful female gymnasts of all time; Khorkina won seven Olympic medals and twenty World Championship medals. She was the first gymnast to win three all-around titles at the World Championships and the first female gymnast ever to do so, before Simone Biles in 2015.
But the tallest female gymnast is from Germany Marie Sophie Hindermann with 1.75 m (5 ft 9 in) height.
She competed at the 2008 Summer Olympics in all artistic gymnastics events. Being unusually tall for a female gymnast, she required adjustment of the uneven bars that caused frequent delays at international competitions. In December 2012 she retired from gymnastics.