Nastia Liukin won the all-around title for gymnastics in the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games. Four years on and she’s trying to regain her title. This video shows Liukin’s performances from the Chinese Olympics.
Professional sportsmen and women generally have short careers. It depends on the sport of course, with golfers tending to play until the drawing pensions, but in general it’s for young people.
Gymnasts have it worse than most. In order to perform at the highest level of the sport a gymnast’s body needs to be flexible, and that is something lost with age.
Luikin is currently trying to make it into the team for the London 2012 Olympics. At 22 she probably only has one more chance to make the Games beyond this one. It’s a tough world.
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