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Gymnastics Rhythmic History

Canada's Stephanie Sandler is a real medal contender at the Melbourne 2006 Commonwealth Games in the Rhythmic Gymnastics competition.

Canada's Stephanie Sandler is a real medal contender at the Melbourne 2006 Commonwealth Games in the Rhythmic Gymnastics competition.

Gymnastics was held as a demonstration sport in 1974 in a successful bid to get the sport on the Commonwealth Games program for future Games.

It was officially included at the 1978 Games in Edmonton, Canada, and has since been on the program at the 1990, 1994, 1998 and 2002 Commonwealth Games.

Rhythmic Gymnastics will make a return to the 2006 program after being dropped in 2002.

In Previous Games

At Manchester 2002, Artistic Gymnastics was dominated by Australia, Canada and England.

Australia's Women's team won gold for the second time in a row, ahead of England and Canada, while England won gold in the Men's Team All-Round, with Canada and Australia filling the silver and bronze medal positions in the Women's.

The Men's Individual All-Round title was won by England's Kanukai JACKSON, Philippe RIZZO of Australia took silver and Canadian Alexander JELTKOV bronze.

Canadian Kate RICHARDSON claimed the gold medal in the Women's Individual All-Round, with Beth TWEDDLE of England and Australian Allana SLATER joining her on the podium.

The Australians received the most medals in both divisions winning 6 of the 15 gold medals awarded.

Overall, Australia won 15 medals in Gymnastics (6 gold, 5 silver, 4 bronze), Canada 12 (4 gold, 2 silver, 6 bronze), England 9 (3 gold, 5 silver, 1 bronze), Scotland 2 (1 gold, 1 bronze), Malaysia 2 (1 silver, 1 bronze), Cyprus 1 (1 gold) and South Africa 1 (1 bronze).

Rhythmic was not held in Manchester.

At Melbourne 2006

Gymnastics will be held at Rod Laver Arena (RLA) which is a multi-purpose venue that was first used for Gymnastics at last November's World Championships. The compact venue, used every January as the main court for the Australian Open tennis tournament, will provide an intimate experience for spectators.

The minimum age for women's artistic and rhythmic competitors is 14 years (in the year of competition - so born in 1992 or earlier) while men must turn 15 in the year of competition to be eligible.

The Team Competition also serves as the qualification round for the Individual Apparatus Finals.

A total of 20 gold medals will be awarded: 6 for Women's Artistic, 8 for Men's Artistic and 6 for Rhythmic.

Rhythmic Gymnastics returns for these Games.

What's New

The 'perfect 10' scoring system will be replaced for the first time at the Games in Melbourne with a points system designed to be fairer to gymnasts and reward more daring manoeuvres.

The scoring system will now be similar to other sports, such as ice skating, where two sets of judging panels are used. One panel of judges gives an A score for skill difficulty and element requirements, which is added to the second panel of judges who give a B score from 10.0 for execution.

This recently adopted system offers an unlimited scoring system to encourage world records.

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