The Info List - Nadia Comăneci

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Nadia Elena Comăneci (Romanian pronunciation: i[ˈnadi.a koməˈnet͡ʃʲ]; born November 12, 1961) is a Romanian-born former gymnast and a five-time Olympic gold medalist. Comăneci is the first gymnast to be awarded a perfect score of 10.0 at the Olympic Games,[2]and then, at the same Games (1976, Montreal) she received six more perfect 10s as well as winning three gold medals. She won two more gold medals and attained two more perfect 10s at the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow. During her career Comăneci won nine Olympic medals and four World Artistic Gymnastics Championship medals. Comăneci is one of the world's best-known gymnasts and is credited with popularizing the sport around the globe.[3] In 2000, she was named as one of the Athletes of the 20th Century by the Laureus World Sports Academy.[4] She has lived in the United States
United States
since 1989 and is married to American Olympic gold medalist Bart Conner.


1 Early life 2 Early gymnastics career 3 1976

3.1 American Cup 3.2 Summer Olympics in Montreal 3.3 "Nadia's Theme"

4 1977–1979 5 1980–1984

5.1 1980 Summer Olympics 5.2 "Nadia '81" 5.3 1984 Summer Olympics

6 1984–1990

6.1 Defection 6.2 United States
United States
and Canada

7 1990–present 8 Leadership roles 9 Honors and awards 10 Special

10.1 Eponymous skills

11 Book and films 12 See also 13 References

13.1 Cited sources

14 Further reading 15 External links

Early life[edit]

Onești, the small town where Comăneci was born, shown on Romania's map

Nadia Elena Comăneci was born on November 12, 1961, in Onești, which is a small town in the Carpathian Mountains, in Bacău County, Romania, in the historical region of Western Moldavia.[5][6] Comăneci was born to Gheorghe and Ștefania Comăneci, and has a younger brother.[7] Her parents separated in the 1970s, and her father (1936–2012) later moved to Bucharest.[8] She and her younger brother Adrian were raised in the faith of the Romanian Orthodox Church.[9] In a 2011 interview, Nadia's mother Ștefania said that she enrolled her daughter into gymnastics classes simply because she was a child who was so full of energy and active that she was difficult to manage.[10] Comăneci graduated from Politehnica University of Bucharest
Politehnica University of Bucharest
with a degree in sports education that gave her the qualifications to coach gymnastics.[11] Early gymnastics career[edit]

Comăneci in the 1970s

Comăneci began gymnastics in kindergarten with a local team called Flacăra ("The Flame"), with coaches Duncan and Munteanu.[12][13] At age 6, she was chosen to attend Béla Károlyi's experimental gymnastics school after Károlyi spotted a friend and her turning cartwheels in a schoolyard.[14][15] Károlyi was looking for gymnasts he could train from a young age and saw the two girls during recess. When recess ended, the girls ran inside. Károlyi went around the classrooms trying to find them, and eventually spotted Comăneci. (The other girl, Viorica Dumitru, went on to be one of Romania's top ballerinas.) Comăneci was training with Károlyi by the time she was seven years old, in 1968. She was one of the first students at the gymnastics school established in Onești
by Béla and his wife, Márta. Unlike many of the other students at the Károlyi school, Comăneci was able to commute from home for many years because she lived in the town.[16] In 1970, she began competing as a member of her hometown team, and became the youngest gymnast ever to win the Romanian Nationals. In 1971, she participated in her first international competition, a dual junior meet between Romania
and Yugoslavia, winning her first all-around title and contributing to the team gold. For the next few years, she competed as a junior in numerous national contests in Romania
and dual meets with countries such as Hungary, Italy, and Poland.[17] At the age of 11, in 1973, she won the all-around gold, as well as the vault and uneven bars titles, at the Junior Friendship Tournament (Druzhba), an important international meet for junior gymnasts.[17][18] Comăneci's first major international success came at the age of 13, when she nearly swept the 1975 European Women's Artistic Gymnastics Championships in Skien, Norway, winning the all-around and gold medals on every event but the floor exercise, in which she placed second. She continued to enjoy success that year, winning the all-around at the "Champions All" competition and placing first in the all-around, vault, beam, and bars at the Romanian National Championships. In the pre-Olympic test event in Montreal, Comăneci won the all-around and the balance beam golds, as well as silvers in the vault, floor, and bars behind accomplished Soviet gymnast Nellie Kim, who was one of her greatest rivals over the next five years.[17] 1976[edit] American Cup[edit]

Comăneci displaying her medals

In March 1976, Comăneci competed in the inaugural edition of the American Cup at Madison Square Garden
Madison Square Garden
in New York City. She received rare scores of 10, which signified a perfect routine without any deductions, for her vault in the preliminary stage and for her floor exercise routine in the final of the all-around competition which she went on to win.[19] During this event, Comăneci first met American gymnast Bart Conner. While he remembered this meeting, Comăneci noted in her memoirs that she had to be reminded of it later in life. She was 14 and Conner was celebrating his 18th birthday.[20] They both won a silver cup and were photographed together. A few months later, they both participated in the 1976 Summer Olympics
1976 Summer Olympics
that Comăneci dominated while Conner was a marginal figure. Conner later stated, "Nobody knew me, and [Comăneci] didn't certainly pay attention to me."[21] Summer Olympics in Montreal[edit]

"At Montreal
[Comăneci] received four of her seven 10s on the uneven bars. The apparatus demands such a spectacular burst of energy in such a short time—only 23 seconds—that it attracts the most fanfare. But it is on the beam that her work seems more representative of her unbelievable skill. She scored three of her seven 10s on the beam. Her hands speak there as much as her body. Her pace magnifies her balance. Her command and distance hush the crowd. — Sports Illustrated, 1976[15]

Comăneci in 1976

On July 18, Comăneci made history at the 1976 Summer Olympics, when during the team compulsory portion of the competition, she was awarded the first perfect 10 in Olympic gymnastics for her routine on the uneven bars.[22][23][24] However, Omega SA—the traditional Olympics scoreboard manufacturer— was led to believe that it was impossible to receive a perfect ten, thus the scoreboard was not programmed to display that score.[25] Comăneci's perfect 10 thus appeared as "1.00," the only means by which the judges could indicate that she had indeed received a 10.[26] The crowd was at first confused, but soon understood and gave her a rousing ovation.[24] During the remainder of the Montreal
Games, Comăneci earned six additional tens. She won gold medals for the individual all-around, the balance beam and uneven bars. She also won a bronze for the floor exercise and a silver as part of the team all-around.[27] Soviet gymnast Nellie Kim
Nellie Kim
was her main rival during the Montreal
Olympics; Kim became the second gymnast to receive a perfect ten for her performance on the vault.[28] Comăneci also took over the spotlight from Olga Korbut, who had been the darling of the 1972 Munich Games. Comăneci's achievements are pictured in the entrance area of Madison Square Garden in New York City, where she is shown presenting her perfect beam exercise.

Comăneci doing the floor exercise at the 1976 Olympics

Comăneci was the first Romanian gymnast to win the Olympic all-around title. She also holds the record for being the youngest Olympic gymnastics all-around champion ever. The sport has now revised its age-eligibility requirements. Gymnasts must now turn 16 in the same calendar year of the Olympics to compete during the Games. When Comăneci competed in 1976, gymnasts had to be 14 by the first day of the competition.[29] Legally breaking this record is not currently possible. She was the BBC Overseas Sports Personality of the Year
BBC Overseas Sports Personality of the Year
for 1976[30] and the Associated Press's 1976 "Female Athlete of the Year".[31] Back home in Romania, Comăneci's success led her to be awarded the Sickle and Hammer Gold Medal,[32] and named a Hero of Socialist Labor; she was the youngest Romanian to receive such recognition during the administration of Nicolae Ceaușescu.[12] "Nadia's Theme"[edit] "Nadia's Theme" refers to an instrumental piece that became eponymously linked to Comăneci shortly after the 1976 Olympics. It began as part of the musical score of the 1971 film Bless the Beasts and Children, originally titled "Cotton's Dream". It was also used as the title theme music for the American soap opera The Young and the Restless. It became associated with Comăneci after cinematographer/feature reporter Robert Riger used it against slow-motion montages of Nadia on the television program ABC's Wide World Of Sports. The song became a top-10 single in the fall of 1976, and the composers, Barry De Vorzon
Barry De Vorzon
and Perry Botkin, Jr., renamed it "Nadia's Theme" in Comăneci's honour.[33] However, Comăneci never actually performed to "Nadia's Theme." Her floor exercise music was a medley of the songs "Yes Sir, That's My Baby" and "Jump in the Line" arranged for piano.[15] 1977–1979[edit] Comăneci successfully defended her European all-around title in 1977, but when questions were raised about the scoring, Ceaușescu ordered the Romanian gymnasts to return home. The team followed orders amid controversy and walked out of the competition during the event finals.[12][34] Following the 1977 Europeans, the Romanian Gymnastics Federation removed Comăneci from her longtime coaches, the Károlyis, and sent her to Bucharest
on August 23 to train at the sports complex. The change was not positive for Comăneci. She was extremely unhappy, her gymnastics skills suffered, and she attempted suicide.[35][12][36] At the age of 16, Comăneci competed in the 1978 World Championships in Strasbourg
"seven inches taller and a stone and a half heavier" than she was in the 1976 Olympics.[25] A fall from the uneven bars resulted in a fourth-place finish in the all-around behind Soviets Elena Mukhina, Nellie Kim, and Natalia Shaposhnikova. Comăneci did win the world title on beam, and a silver on vault.[25] After the 1978 "Worlds", Comăneci was permitted to return to Deva and to the Károlyis.[37] In 1979, Comăneci won her third consecutive European all-around title, becoming the first gymnast, male or female, to achieve this feat. At the World Championships in Fort Worth
Fort Worth
that December, Comăneci led the field after the compulsory competition, but was hospitalized before the optional portion of the team competition for blood poisoning caused by a cut in her wrist from her metal grip buckle. Against doctors' orders, she left the hospital and competed on the beam, where she scored a 9.95. Her performance helped give the Romanians their first team gold medal. After her performance, Comăneci spent several days recovering in All Saints Hospital and underwent a minor surgical procedure for the infected hand, which had developed an abscess.[38][39][40] 1980–1984[edit] 1980 Summer Olympics[edit]

Comăneci in Moscow, 1980

Comăneci was chosen to participate in the 1980 Summer Olympics
1980 Summer Olympics
in Moscow, a city that was part of the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
at that time. As a result of the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, President Jimmy Carter declared that the United States
United States
would boycott the Olympics (several other countries also participated in the boycott, though the reasons varied). According to Comăneci, the Romanian government "touted the 1980 Olympic games as the first all-Communist Games." However, she also noted in her memoir, "in Moscow, we walked into the mouth of a lion's den; it was the Russians' home turf."[41] She went on to win two gold medals, one for the balance beam and one for the floor exercise (in which she tied with Soviet gymnast Nellie Kim, against whom she also competed in the 1976 Montreal
Olympics). She also won two silver medals, one for the team all-around and one for individual all-around. Controversies arose concerning the scoring in the all-around and floor exercise competitions.[25] Her coach, Bela Károlyi, protested that she was scored unfairly. His protests were captured on television, however, causing him to fall out of favor with members of the Romanian government, who felt that he had humiliated them. Life thus became very difficult for Károlyi from that point forward.[42] "Nadia '81"[edit]

Comăneci on the balance beam, 1980

In 1981, the Gymnastics Federation contacted Comăneci and informed her that she would be part of an official tour of the United States named "Nadia '81" and her coaches Béla and Márta Károlyi
Márta Károlyi
would lead the group.[43] During this tour, Comăneci's team shared a bus trip with American gymnasts, thus allowing her to meet Bart Conner
Bart Conner
for the third time—they had previously met at the American Cup and Montreal Games, both in 1976. She later remembered thinking, "Conner was cute. He bounced around the bus talking to everyone – he was incredibly friendly and fun."[44] However, her coaches, Béla and Márta Károlyi defected on the last day of the tour, along with the Romanian team choreographer Géza Pozsár. Prior to defecting, Károlyi hinted a few times to Comăneci that he might attempt to do so and indirectly asked if she wanted to join him. At that time, she had no interest in defecting and said she wanted to go home to Romania.[45][46] However, after the defection of the Károlyis, life changed drastically for Comăneci in ways she could not have predicted. Officials feared that she would also defect, and her actions were strictly monitored; she was no longer allowed to travel outside of Romania.[47] 1984 Summer Olympics[edit] The one exception to Comăneci's travel ban was the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles
Los Angeles
as part of the Romanian delegation. Although a number of Communist nations had boycotted the 1984 Olympics in tit-for-tat to the U.S. boycott of the 1980 Olympics in Moscow, Romania
chose to participate. Comăneci later wrote in her memoir that many believed Romania
went to the Olympics because an agreement had been made with the United States
United States
not to accept defectors. However, Comăneci did not participate in the Games as a member of the Romanian team. She served in the capacity of an observer (not a judge), and she was able to watch Bela Károlyi's new protégé, American gymnast Mary Lou Retton, dominate the Olympics. However, she was not allowed to speak with Károlyi and was closely watched the entire time.[48] 1984–1990[edit] Defection[edit] Aside from the 1984 Olympics and a few select trips to Moscow
and Cuba, the government prevented Comăneci from leaving Romania. She had started thinking about retiring a few years earlier, and her official retirement ceremony took place in Bucharest
in 1984, and was attended by the chairman of the International Olympic Committee.[26] She later wrote in her memoir:

Life took on a new bleakness. I was cut off from making the small amount of extra money that had really made a difference in my family's life. It was also insulting that a normal person in Romania
had the chance to travel, whereas I could not [...] when my gymnastics career was over, there was no longer any need to keep me happy. I was to do as I was instructed, just as I'd done my entire life [...] If Bela hadn't defected, I would still have been watched, but his defection brought a spotlight on my life, and it was blinding. I started to feel like a prisoner.[49]

Five years later, on the night of November 27, 1989, and a few weeks before the Romanian Revolution, which she had no idea was about to happen, Comăneci defected with a group of other Romanians. They were all guided by Constantin Panait, a Romanian who was now an American citizen after defecting, and whom Comăneci had met at a party given by one of her friends. In the years since Béla Károlyi's defection to the United States, she had changed her mind on the subject until she met a number of Romanians at the party who talked about it. Comăneci notes in her memoir that her first impression of Panait was a positive one as "he seemed nice, and he was believable because he was now an American."[50] Later after meeting Panait, her brother Adrian told her, "Constantin was the real deal. He wasn't bluffing. There were six other Romanians who planned to trust him with their lives."[51] Comăneci then began a long period of planning for her escape.[52] Once it began, their dangerous overland journey (mostly on foot and at night) took her through Hungary, Austria, and finally to the United States.[12][27][53] United States
United States
and Canada[edit] After she had arrived in the United States
United States
in 1989 with Panait, Comăneci stated, "Constantin told me that I was going to live with his wife and children for a bit. I never questioned him."[54] Her arrival initially generated some negative press, however, as a result of the media's misrepresentation of her relationship with Panait.[55] Comăneci later stated in her memoir that her response of "so what?" to a reporter's comment that Panait was married was due to her poor command of the English language at the time:

Constantin had offered to help me defect, and I'd accepted. I assumed that his wife knew that he was going to help a handful of Romanians get out of the country and that I was one of them. But what people took from my answer was that I was a home-wrecker. Nothing could have been further from the truth. In hindsight, I understand that I'd made a very poor choice of words. Constantin had plans to become my personal manager upon our arrival in the United States. I didn't know that, but he promised to help me get settled, and I guess I just accepted his involvement in my future career as fair payment for the risks he'd taken. People died every day trying to defect.[55][56]

Comăneci further noted in her memoir that during this period, "old friends" such as Béla Károlyi
Béla Károlyi
and Bart Conner
Bart Conner
"strained to learn the news of my plans. They tried to contact me by telephone, but Constantin did not relay their messages."[57] When Conner read in the newspaper that she was scheduled to appear on The Pat Sajak Show
The Pat Sajak Show
in January 1990 with Panait,[58][59] he wondered, "why it was still impossible for any friends to contact" Comăneci.[60] As he had worked for NBC Sports as a host during the previous Olympics, he knew the producer Michael Weisman (who had since moved to CBS) and contacted him to inquire about Comăneci's upcoming interview. They discussed the "fact that none of [her] old friends had been able to see or contact" Comăneci, and Conner was worried (given the bad press that she had received) that "something fishy" was going on. Weisman was thus able to arrange for Conner to make a guest appearance on the show if he could be in Los Angeles
Los Angeles
by taping at 5 pm.[58][60] Conner liked the idea of surprising Comăneci: "I'm thinking if she's going to be on Sajak, I might as well go out there and say, 'Hey, Nads.' "[58]

A 2016 Romanian postage stamp showing Comăneci on the balance beam at the 1976 Olympics

Conner's plane arrived at LAX at 4:40 pm; he was flown by helicopter to CBS Studios and landed during a commercial break. After appearing on the show with Comăneci and Panait, Conner met with Comăneci in the green room, later saying of the meeting:

I think I can understand why Nadia said what she did ... She said, 'He (Panit) is my manager. We don't have a relationship, so it doesn't matter if he's married or not.' But it came off really awful. She regrets it, and I don't think she realized how misunderstood she would be. She really got burned. She said the Miami media was really not nice to her.[58]

Conner gave Comăneci his telephone number, but at the time, Comăneci, who was shy and suspicious of him "[...] also sensed that he was being open and honest. For a second, I was tempted to ask for help... I needed to move on and find a better life for myself. Bart told me later that he tried to call me after the show, but Constantin never let me know of his calls."[61] Of Conner's sudden appearance on the show, Comăneci later commented in her memoir, "There was nothing romantic about [Conner's] motivation. It was based on his desire to help a young woman he'd met once who was an icon in our shared sport."[60] Later in 1990, Alexandru Stefu (another old friend from Romania) invited Comăneci and Panait to Montreal, where he was staying with his family and Béla Károlyi. Comăneci noted in her memoir that after they arrived in Montreal, and

when he finally had an opportunity to get me alone, Alexandru asked what was next for me. I told him that I was thinking about staying in Montreal, but hadn't yet mentioned the idea to [Panait] because he'd already booked us on a flight back to Los Angeles. The next day, Alexandru sent me to meet with the director of the Olympic stadium, who told me that I could do some exhibitions and appearances for him [...] When I woke up the next morning and went downstairs, Alexandru told me that [Panait] was gone. I never heard from him again, but I hope he is well and thank him for his help. I realize that our business relationship may have tarnished my name and image, but I safely escaped from Romania, and that is truly what was most important. There wasn't too much time to figure out why [Panait] had left because very soon after his departure, CNN contacted me."

[62] 1990–present[edit]

Comăneci and her husband Bart Conner
Bart Conner
meeting First Lady Michelle Obama, 2009

In the spring of 1990, Conner traveled to Montreal
to see her once again, this time to interview her for ABC. A few months later, Stefu surprised Comăneci by inviting Conner to her 29th birthday party,[63] after which they developed a long-distance friendship for a few years. In 1991 (after Stefu died in a scuba diving accident), Comăneci moved to Oklahoma to help Conner with his school. She lived with Paul Ziert's family, eventually hiring him as her manager.[64] Initially just friends, Conner and she were together for four years before they became engaged.[65] Their 1996 wedding was held in Bucharest. It was televised live throughout Romania, and their reception was held in the former presidential palace.[27][66] Comăneci later described the experience as

very emotional, not just seeing my mother, but seeing an entire country I'd left. When I got married in Bucharest, there were 10,000 people on the street. People didn't go to work that day. It was emotional to see how people care about you.[67]

In 2006, Conner and Comăneci had a son, Dylan.[68][69] Comăneci is a dual citizen of both Romania
and the United States
United States
(she became a US citizen in 2001).[12] She was later the featured speaker at the 50th annual Independence Day Naturalization Ceremony on July 4, 2012, at Monticello
(Virginia), the first athlete to speak in the history of the ceremony.[70] In October 2017, an area in the Olympic Park in Montreal, Canada that was once referred to as the "Place des Vainqueurs," was renamed "Place Nadia Comaneci" in her honour.[71][72] Leadership roles[edit]

Comăneci at the 2012 BRD Năstase Țiriac Trophy, April 2012

Comăneci is a well-known figure in the world of gymnastics, serving as the honorary president of the Romanian Gymnastics Federation, the honorary president of the Romanian Olympic Committee, the sports ambassador of Romania, and as a member of the International Gymnastics Federation Foundation. Conner and she own the Bart Conner
Bart Conner
Gymnastics Academy, the Perfect 10 Production Company, and several sports equipment shops, and are the editors of International Gymnast Magazine. She is also still involved with the Olympic Games. During the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, one of her perfect-10 Montreal
uneven bars routines was featured in a commercial for Adidas.[73] In addition, both Comăneci and her husband Bart Conner
Bart Conner
provided television commentary for the 2008 Summer Olympics
2008 Summer Olympics
in Beijing.[74] A few years later, on July 21, 2012, Comăneci, along with former basketball star John Amaechi, carried the Olympic torch to the roof of the O2 Arena as part of the torch relay for the 2012 Summer Olympics in London.[75] Prior to the 2016 Summer Olympics
2016 Summer Olympics
games in Rio de Janeiro (featuring gymnast Simone Biles), Comăneci appeared in a TIDE advertisement called "The Evolution of Power" with Biles and 1996 Summer Olympics gymnast Dominique Dawes.[76][77] She also offered daily analysis of the 2016 games (along with other Olympic champions such as Mark Spitz, Carl Lewis, and Conner), for the late-night show É Campeão, broadcast on Brazil's SporTV.[78] In addition, Comăneci is highly involved in fundraising for a number of charities. She personally funded the construction and operation of the Nadia Comăneci
Nadia Comăneci
Children's Clinic in Bucharest
that provides low-cost and free medical and social support to Romanian children.[26] In 2003, the Romanian government appointed her as an honorary consul general of Romania
to the United States
United States
to deal with bilateral relations between the two nations.[79] In addition, both Comăneci and Conner are involved with the Special
Olympics.[80][81] One of the public methods Comăneci used to raise funds for the Special
Olympics in 2008 was to participate in Donald Trump's reality show, The Celebrity Apprentice, season seven. Prior to the airing of the season, Trump announced that it was going to be the "nastiest version that we've done" and "a very vicious show" because of the unusual combination of celebrities who were each competing to raise money for a favorite charity.[82] Comăneci was a member of "The Empresario" team (all women), which lost to "The Hydra" team (all men) in the second episode. Trump responded to this loss by firing Comăneci,[83] thus preventing her from raising money for the Special
Olympics.[84] Comăneci later commented on her participation in the show, stating, "[she] had great fun. I only did it because it was all for charity. If I had to do that to apply for a job with Donald Trump, no, I would never do that."[85] Honors and awards[edit]

2016: 2016 Great Immigrant Honoree: Carnegie Corporation of New York[86] 2004: The Olympic Order 1998: Flo Hyman Award 1998: Marca Leyenda 1993: International Gymnastics Hall of Fame 1990: International Women's Sports Hall of Fame 1983: The Olympic Order 1976: BBC Overseas Sports Personality of the Year 1976: Associated Press
Associated Press
Athlete of the Year 1976: Hero of Socialist Labour 1975 and 1976: The United Press International Athlete of the Year Award

skills[edit] Comăneci was known for her clean technique, innovative and difficult original skills, and her stoic, cool demeanor in competition.[15][87][88] On the balance beam, she was the first gymnast to successfully perform an aerial walkover and an aerial cartwheel-back handspring flight series. She is also credited as being the first gymnast to perform a double-twist dismount.[15][87] Her skills on the floor exercise included a tucked double back salto and a double twist.[87] Eponymous skills[edit]

Comăneci salto[89] Comăneci dismount[90]

Book and films[edit]

Comăneci's 2004 memoir, Letters to a Young Gymnast, is part of the Art of Mentoring series by Basic Books.[91][92] Katie Holmes
Katie Holmes
directed a short 2015 documentary for ESPN
about Comăneci entitled, Eternal Princess, that premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival.[93][94] In 1984, Comăneci was the subject of an unauthorized biopic television film Nadia.[95] The film was developed without her involvement or permission (although the content was described to her by others). She later stated publicly that the producers "never made contact with me ... I sincerely don't even want to see it, I feel so badly about it. It distorts my life so totally."[95]

See also[edit]

Gymnastics portal Biography portal

List of Olympic female gymnasts for Romania List of Olympic medal leaders in women's gymnastics List of multiple Olympic medalists at a single Games


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Associated Press
Athletes of the Year". MSN.com. Archived from the original on April 7, 2009.  ^ "Decretul nr. 250/1976 privind conferirea de distinctii ale Republicii Socialiste Romania
unor sportivi, antrenori si activisti din domeniul educatiei fizice si sportului" (in Romanian). Retrieved April 6, 2014.  ^ "Nadia Comăneci: The Perfect 10" International Olympic Committee (IOC) website ^ Comăneci, pp. 61–62. ^ http://articles.latimes.com/1990-02-19/sports/sp-869_1_nadia-comaneci ^ Comăneci, pp. 64–68. ^ Comăneci, pp. 68–72. ^ "Nadia." The Epistle, (All Saints Episcopal Hospital), January 1980 ^ Comăneci, pp. 87–91. ^ Little Girls in Pretty Boxes. Ryan, Joan. 1995, Doubleday. ISBN 0-385-47790-2. ^ Comăneci, p. 98. ^ Comăneci, pp. 99–105. ^ "Miss Comăneci, 19, Makes Fresh Start". Ira Berkow, New York Times, March 6, 1981 ^ Comăneci, pp. 111–112. ^ Little Girls in Pretty Boxes. Ryan, Joan. 1995, Doubleday. ISBN 0-385-47790-2, p. 201. ^ Comăneci, pp. 113–120. ^ Comăneci, pp. 120–125. ^ Comăneci, pp. 125–6. ^ Comăneci, p. 121. ^ Comăneci, p. 129. ^ Comăneci, p. 133. ^ Comăneci, pp. 133–135. ^ Comăneci, pp. 137–148. ^ Comăneci, p. 147. ^ a b "Comăneci Says Live-in Is Manager". Chicago Tribune. December 13, 1989. Retrieved August 19, 2016.  ^ Comăneci, p. 149. ^ Comăneci, pp. 149–150. ^ a b c d Rohde, John (January 24, 1990). "Bart Gets The Scoop On Nadia". The Oklahoman. Retrieved August 19, 2016.  ^ Comăneci, pp. 149–154. ^ a b c Comăneci, p. 150. ^ Comăneci, pp. 153–154. ^ Comăneci, p. 154. ^ Comăneci, pp. 157–159. ^ Comăneci, pp. 160–162. ^ Comăneci, pp. 162–164. ^ "Nadia Tumbles over Wedding" Cincinnati Post, April 6, 1996 ^ Rebecca Hardy (August 1, 2014). "The terrifying day I defected: She was the golden girl of gymnastics at just 14 – before fleeing Romania
for the States. Now, Nadia Comăneci
Nadia Comăneci
tells her full harrowing story". DailyMail.  ^ "Nadia Comăneci, Bart Conner
Bart Conner
Have a Boy People, June 6, 2006 ^ "Former Gymnasts Nadia Comăneci
Nadia Comăneci
and Bart Conner
Bart Conner
Baptized Their First Child, Dylan Paul" Catalina Iancu, Jurnalul National, August 28, 2006 ^ "Olympic champion Nadia Comăneci
Nadia Comăneci
to be featured July 4 speaker at Monticello". monticello.org. May 11, 2012. Retrieved April 21, 2013.  ^ Amadon, Brett (October 4, 2017). "Nadia Comaneci honored with public space next to Montreal's Olympic Stadium". Excelle Sports. Retrieved October 12, 2017.  ^ " Montreal
Olympic Park unveils plaza honouring gymnast Nadia Comaneci". Montreal
Gazette. October 4, 2017. Retrieved October 12, 2017.  ^ "2004 Athens
Games: Advertising". SFGate. August 12, 2004. Retrieved April 21, 2013.  ^ Roenigk, Alyssa (August 17, 2008). "The First Family of Gymnastics". ESPN
The Magazine. Retrieved August 21, 2008.  ^ " London
2012 Olympics: The torch begins its journey across London". The Daily Telegraph. July 21, 2012. Retrieved March 15, 2013.  ^ Dominique Dawes, Nadia Comaneci Share Advice for Olympic Hopefuls: ‘Enjoy the Journey’ ^ Olympic Gymnasts Simone Biles, Dominique Dawes, And Nadia Comaneci Partner In ‘The Evolution of Power’ Video ^ Rio 2016: Globosat's SporTV
Captivates Olympic Fans in Brazil ^ Honorary Consulates of Romania
in the US Retrieved July 31, 2012. ^ Nadia Comaneci, Global Ambassador ^ On Mats, Bars and Boards, Bart Conner
Bart Conner
and Nadia Comaneci Lead by Example ^ Trump promises new ‘Apprentice’ the nastiest yet ^ Celebrity Apprentice: Ivanka Trump vs. Gene Simmons ^ Sports stars on reality TV ^ Nadia travels from “10” to Trump ^ 2016 Great Immigrants Honorees: The Pride of America ^ a b c "A Great Leap Backward" Anita Verschoth, Sports Illustrated, April 12, 1976 ^ "The Games: Up in the Air" Time, August 2, 1976 ^ Comăneci, p. 1. ^ Comăneci, p. 15. ^ Comăneci ^ Letters to a Young Gymnast. basicbooks.com ^ Eternal Princess ^ Short Film Eternal Princess, Directed by Katie Holmes, Debuts on espnW ^ a b Lindsey, Robert (July 29, 1984). "Nadia Comaneci Still Glows as Images of 1976 Recede". New York Times. Retrieved September 4, 2016. 

Cited sources[edit]

Comăneci, Nadia (2004). Letters to a Young Gymnast – The Art of Mentoring. Basic Books. ISBN 0-465-01276-0. 

Further reading[edit]

Kerr, Roslyn. "The Impact of Nadia Comaneci on the Sport of Women's Artistic Gymnastics." Sporting Traditions, Australian Society for Sports History. November 2006:87–102.

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Nadia Comăneci.

Official website Nadia Comăneci
Nadia Comăneci
on IMDb Voices of Oklahoma interview with Bart Conner. First person interview conducted on February 28, 2013, with Bart Conner, husband of Nadia Comăneci.

Video clips:

Nadia Comăneci
Nadia Comăneci
makes history at the Montreal
1976 Olympics – The Olympic Channel, 2010 Nadia Comăneci
Nadia Comăneci
– First Olympics Perfect 10 (Uneven Bars)- Montreal 1976 Olympics – The Olympic Channel, 2015 Nadia Comăneci
Nadia Comăneci
– Selections from all of her routines – Montreal 1976 Olympics (overview) – The Olympic Channel, 2012 The Adorable Way This Olympic Couple First Met Where Are They Now Oprah
Winfrey Network – Oprah
Winfrey Network (U.S. TV channel), 2016 Nadia Comaneci & Bart Conner
Bart Conner
Commentate on Their Perfect Olympic Routines Take the Mic – The Olympic Channel, 2016 Nadia Comaneci and Bart Conner, 11 Olympic Medals in this Olympic Family – The Olympic Channel, 2016

Awards and achievements

Preceded by Irena Szewińska United Press International Athlete of the Year 1975, 1976 Succeeded by Rosemarie Ackermann

Preceded by Arthur Ashe BBC Overseas Sports Personality of the Year 1976 Succeeded by Niki Lauda

Preceded by Billie Jean King Flo Hyman Memorial Award 1998 Succeeded by Bonnie Blair

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Nadia Comăneci


Perfect 10 (gymnastics) 1976 Summer Olympics 1980 Summer Olympics Universiade European Women's Artistic Gymnastics Championships World Artistic Gymnastics Championships American Cup (gymnastics) Comăneci salto Nadia's Theme

Honors and Awards

Associated Press
Associated Press
Athlete of the Year United Press International Athlete of the Year Award BBC Overseas Sports Personality of the Year International Gymnastics Hall of Fame Flo Hyman Award Olympic Order


Cold War Socialist Republic of Romania Onești 1980 Summer Olympics
1980 Summer Olympics
boycott 1984 Summer Olympics
1984 Summer Olympics
boycott Romanian Revolution


Bart Conner Paul Ziert Béla Károlyi Márta Károlyi

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Olympic Champions in Artistic Gymnastics – Women's All-Around

1952  Maria Gorokhovskaya (URS) 1956  Larisa Latynina (URS) 1960  Larisa Latynina (URS) 1964  Věra Čáslavská (TCH) 1968  Věra Čáslavská (TCH) 1972  Ludmilla Tourischeva (URS) 1976  Nadia Comăneci (ROM) 1980  Yelena Davydova (URS) 1984  Mary Lou Retton (USA) 1988  Yelena Shushunova (URS) 1992  Tatiana Gutsu (EUN) 1996  Lilia Podkopayeva (UKR) 2000  Simona Amânar (ROM) 2004  Carly Patterson (USA) 2008  Nastia Liukin (USA) 2012  Gabby Douglas (USA) 2016  Simone Biles (USA)

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Olympic Champions in Artistic Gymnastics – Women's Balance Beam

1952  Nina Bocharova (URS) 1956  Ágnes Keleti (HUN) 1960  Eva Bosáková (TCH) 1964  Věra Čáslavská (TCH) 1968  Natalia Kuchinskaya (URS) 1972  Olga Korbut (URS) 1976  Nadia Comăneci (ROM) 1980  Nadia Comăneci (ROM) 1984  Ecaterina Szabo (ROM) 1984  Simona Păucă (ROM) 1988  Daniela Silivaș (ROM) 1992  Tatiana Lysenko (EUN) 1996  Shannon Miller (USA) 2000  Liu Xuan (CHN) 2004  Cătălina Ponor (ROM) 2008  Shawn Johnson (USA) 2012  Deng Linlin (CHN) 2016  Sanne Wevers (NED)

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Olympic Champions in Artistic Gymnastics – Women's Floor Exercise

1952  Ágnes Keleti (HUN) 1956  Ágnes Keleti (HUN) 1956  Larisa Latynina (URS) 1960  Larisa Latynina (URS) 1964  Larisa Latynina (URS) 1968  Věra Čáslavská (TCH) 1968  Larisa Petrik (URS) 1972  Olga Korbut (URS) 1976  Nellie Kim (URS) 1980  Nadia Comăneci (ROM) 1980  Nellie Kim (URS) 1984  Ecaterina Szabo (ROM) 1988  Daniela Silivaș (ROM) 1992  Lavinia Miloșovici (ROM) 1996  Lilia Podkopayeva (UKR) 2000  Elena Zamolodchikova (RUS) 2004  Cătălina Ponor (ROM) 2008  Sandra Izbașa (ROU) 2012  Aly Raisman (USA) 2016  Simone Biles (USA)

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Olympic Champions in Artistic Gymnastics – Women's Uneven Bars

1952  Margit Korondi (HUN) 1956  Ágnes Keleti (HUN) 1960  Polina Astakhova (URS) 1964  Polina Astakhova (URS) 1968  Věra Čáslavská (TCH) 1972  Karin Büttner-Janz (GDR) 1976  Nadia Comăneci (ROM) 1980  Maxi Gnauck (GDR) 1984  Julianne McNamara (USA) 1984  Ma Yanhong (CHN) 1988  Daniela Silivaș (ROM) 1992  Lu Li (CHN) 1996  Svetlana Khorkina (RUS) 2000  Svetlana Khorkina (RUS) 2004  Émilie Le Pennec (FRA) 2008  He Kexin (CHN) 2012  Aliya Mustafina (RUS) 2016  Aliya Mustafina (RUS)

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World Champions in Artistic Gymnastics – Women's Team Competition

1934:  Czechoslovakia 1938:  Czechoslovakia 1950:  Sweden 1954:  Soviet Union 1958:  Soviet Union 1962:  Soviet Union 1966:  Czechoslovakia 1970:  Soviet Union 1974:  Soviet Union 1978:  Soviet Union 1979:  Romania 1981:  Soviet Union 1983:  Soviet Union 1985:  Soviet Union 1987:  Romania 1989:  Soviet Union 1991:  Soviet Union 1994:  Romania 1995:  Romania 1997:  Romania 1999:  Romania 2001:  Romania 2003:  United States 2006:  China 2007:  United States 2010:  Russia 2011:  United States 2014:  United States 2015:  United States

1979:  Romania (ROM), Nadia Comăneci, Rodica Dunca, Emilia Eberle, Melita Ruhn, Dumitriţa Turner, Marilena Vlădărău

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World Champions in Artistic Gymnastics – Women's Balance Beam

1938: Vlasta Děkanová 1950: Helena Rakoczy 1954: Keiko Tanaka 1958: Larisa Latynina 1962: Eva Bosáková 1966: Natalia Kuchinskaya 1970: Erika Zuchold 1974: Ludmilla Tourischeva 1978: Nadia Comăneci 1979: Věra Černá 1981: Maxi Gnauck 1983: Olga Mostepanova 1985: Daniela Silivaș 1987: Aurelia Dobre 1989: Daniela Silivaș 1991: Svetlana Boginskaya 1992: Kim Zmeskal 1993: Lavinia Miloșovici 1994: Shannon Miller 1995: Mo Huilan 1996: Dina Kochetkova 1997: Gina Gogean 1999: Ling Jie 2001: Andreea Răducan 2002: Ashley Postell 2003: Fan Ye 2005: Nastia Liukin 2006: Iryna Krasnianska 2007: Nastia Liukin 2009: Deng Linlin 2010: Ana Porgras 2011: Sui Lu 2013: Aliya Mustafina 2014: Simone Biles 2015: Simone Biles 2017: Pauline Schäfer

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European Champions in Artistic Gymnastics – Women's Individual All-Around

1957: Larisa Latynina 1959: Natalia Kot 1961: Larisa Latynina 1963: Mirjana Bilić 1965: Věra Čáslavská 1967: Věra Čáslavská 1969: Karin Büttner-Janz 1971: Lazakovich / Tourischeva 1973: Ludmilla Tourischeva 1975: Nadia Comăneci 1977: Nadia Comăneci 1979: Nadia Comăneci 1981: Maxi Gnauck 1983: Olga Bicherova 1985: Yelena Shushunova 1987: Daniela Silivaș 1989: Svetlana Boginskaya 1990: Svetlana Boginskaya 1992: Tatiana Gutsu 1994: Gina Gogean 1996: Lilia Podkopayeva 1998: Svetlana Khorkina 2000: Svetlana Khorkina 2002: Svetlana Khorkina 2004: Alina Kozich 2005: Marine Debauve 2007: Vanessa Ferrari 2009: Ksenia Semyonova 2011: Anna Dementyeva 2013: Aliya Mustafina 2015: Giulia Steingruber 2017: Ellie Downie

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European Champions in Artistic Gymnastics – Women's Vault


1957: Larisa Latynina 1959: Natalia Kot 1961: Ute Starke 1963: Solveig Egman-Andersson 1965: Věra Čáslavská 1967: Věra Čáslavská 1969: Karin Büttner-Janz 1971: Ludmilla Tourischeva 1973: Hellmann / Tourischeva 1975: Nadia Comăneci

1977: Nellie Kim 1979: Nadia Comăneci 1981: Cristina Elena Grigoraș 1983: Olga Bicherova 1985: Yelena Shushunova 1987: Yelena Shushunova 1989: Svetlana Boginskaya 1990: Svetlana Boginskaya 1992: Tatiana Gutsu 1994: Lavinia Miloșovici

1996: Simona Amânar 1998: Adrienn Varga 2000: Simona Amânar 2002: Natalia Ziganshina 2004: Monica Roșu 2005: Francesca Benolli 2006: Anna Grudko 2007: Carlotta Giovannini 2008: Oksana Chusovitina

2009: Ariella Käslin 2010: Ekaterina Kurbatova 2011: Sandra Izbașa 2012: Sandra Izbașa 2013: Giulia Steingruber 2014: Giulia Steingruber 2015: Maria Paseka 2016: Giulia Steingruber 2017: Coline Devillard

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European Champions in Artistic Gymnastics – Women's Uneven Bars

1957: Larisa Latynina 1959: Polina Astakhova 1961: Polina Astakhova 1963: Thea Belmer 1965: Věra Čáslavská 1967: Věra Čáslavská 1969: Karin Büttner-Janz 1971: Tamara Lazakovich 1973: Ludmilla Tourischeva 1975: Nadia Comăneci 1977: Comăneci / Mukhina 1979: Elena Mukhina 1981: Maxi Gnauck 1983: Ecaterina Szabo 1985: Gnauck / Shushunova 1987: Daniela Silivaș 1989: Henrietta Ónodi 1990: Boginskaya / Kalinina / Pașca 1992: Tatiana Gutsu 1994: Svetlana Khorkina 1996: Amânar / Khorkina / Podkopayeva 1998: Svetlana Khorkina 2000: Svetlana Khorkina 2002: Svetlana Khorkina 2004: Svetlana Khorkina 2005: Émilie Le Pennec 2006: Beth Tweddle 2007: Dariya Zgoba 2008: Ksenia Semyonova 2009: Beth Tweddle 2010: Beth Tweddle 2011: Beth Tweddle 2012: Viktoria Komova 2013: Aliya Mustafina 2014: Becky Downie 2015: Daria Spiridonova 2016: Becky Downie 2017: Nina Derwael

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European Champions in Artistic Gymnastics – Women's Balance Beam

1957: Larisa Latynina 1959: Věra Čáslavská 1961: Polina Astakhova 1963: Ewa Rydell 1965: Věra Čáslavská 1967: Věra Čáslavská 1969: Karin Büttner-Janz 1971: Tamara Lazakovich 1973: Ludmilla Tourischeva 1975: Nadia Comăneci 1977: Elena Mukhina 1979: Natalia Shaposhnikova 1981: Maxi Gnauck 1983: Lavinia Agache 1985: Oksana Omelianchik 1987: Daniela Silivaș 1989: Dudnik / Potorac 1990: Svetlana Boginskaya 1992: Svetlana Boginskaya 1994: Gina Gogean 1996: Rozalia Galiyeva 1998: Yevgeniya Kuznetsova 2000: Svetlana Khorkina 2002: Ludmila Ezhova 2004: Cătălina Ponor 2005: Cătălina Ponor 2006: Cătălina Ponor 2007: Yulia Lozhechko 2008: Ksenia Semyonova 2009: Yana Demyanchuk 2010: Amelia Racea 2011: Anna Dementyeva 2012: Cătălina Ponor 2013: Larisa Iordache 2014: Maria Kharenkova 2015: Andreea Munteanu 2016: Aliya Mustafina 2017: Cătălina Ponor

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European Champions in Artistic Gymnastics – Women's Floor Exercise

1957: Larisa Latynina 1959: Polina Astakhova 1961: Larisa Latynina 1963: Mirjana Bilić 1965: Věra Čáslavská 1967: Věra Čáslavská 1969: Olga Karasyova 1971: Ludmilla Tourischeva 1973: Ludmilla Tourischeva 1975: Nellie Kim 1977: Filatova / Mukhina 1979: Nadia Comăneci 1981: Maxi Gnauck 1983: Bicherova / Szabo 1985: Yelena Shushunova 1987: Daniela Silivaș 1989: Boginskaya / Silivaș 1990: Svetlana Boginskaya 1992: Gina Gogean 1994: Lilia Podkopayeva 1996: Miloșovici / Podkopayeva 1998: Khorkina / Ungureanu 2000: Ludivine Furnon 2002: Alona Kvasha 2004: Cătălina Ponor 2005: Isabelle Severino 2006: Sandra Izbașa 2007: Vanessa Ferrari 2008: Sandra Izbașa 2009: Beth Tweddle 2010: Beth Tweddle 2011: Sandra Izbașa 2012: Larisa Iordache 2013: Ksenia Afanasyeva 2014: Ferrari / Iordache 2015: Ksenia Afanasyeva 2016: Giulia Steingruber 2017: Angelina Melnikova

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Associated Press
Associated Press
Female Athlete of the Year

1931: Helene Madison 1932: Babe Didrikson Zaharias 1933: Helen Jacobs 1934: Virginia Van Wie 1935: Helen Wills 1936: Helen Stephens 1937: Katherine Rawls 1938: Patty Berg 1939: Alice Marble 1940: Alice Marble 1941: Betty Hicks 1942: Gloria Callen 1943: Patty Berg 1944: Ann Curtis 1945: Babe Didrikson Zaharias 1946: Babe Didrikson Zaharias 1947: Babe Didrikson Zaharias 1948: Fanny Blankers-Koen 1949: Marlene Hagge 1950: Babe Didrikson Zaharias 1951: Maureen Connolly 1952: Maureen Connolly 1953: Maureen Connolly 1954: Babe Didrikson Zaharias 1955: Patty Berg 1956: Pat McCormick 1957: Althea Gibson 1958: Althea Gibson 1959: Maria Bueno 1960: Wilma Rudolph 1961: Wilma Rudolph 1962: Dawn Fraser 1963: Mickey Wright 1964: Mickey Wright 1965: Kathy Whitworth 1966: Kathy Whitworth 1967: Billie Jean King 1968: Peggy Fleming 1969: Debbie Meyer 1970: Chi Cheng 1971: Evonne Goolagong 1972: Olga Korbut 1973: Billie Jean King 1974: Chris Evert 1975: Chris Evert 1976: Nadia Comăneci 1977: Chris Evert 1978: Nancy Lopez 1979: Tracy Austin 1980: Chris Evert 1981: Tracy Austin 1982: Mary Decker 1983: Martina Navratilova 1984: Mary Lou Retton 1985: Nancy Lopez 1986: Martina Navratilova 1987: Jackie Joyner-Kersee 1988: Florence Griffith Joyner 1989: Steffi Graf 1990: Beth Daniel 1991: Monica Seles 1992: Monica Seles 1993: Sheryl Swoopes 1994: Bonnie Blair 1995: Rebecca Lobo 1996: Amy Van Dyken 1997: Martina Hingis 1998: Pak Se-ri 1999: United States
United States
women's national soccer team 2000: Marion Jones 2001: Jennifer Capriati 2002: Serena Williams 2003: Annika Sörenstam 2004: Annika Sörenstam 2005: Annika Sörenstam 2006: Lorena Ochoa 2007: Lorena Ochoa 2008: Candace Parker 2009: Serena Williams 2010: Lindsey Vonn 2011: Abby Wambach 2012: Gabby Douglas 2013: Serena Williams 2014: Mo'ne Davis 2015: Serena Williams 2016: Simone Biles 2017: Katie Ledecky

Authority control

WorldCat Identities VIAF: 38161161 LCCN: n50031920 ISNI: 0000 0000 8117 4651 GND: 119080990 SUDOC: 088551024 NDL: 00436