You most likely recall the video that became famous online in January: an athlete in a stunned naval force leotard executing a story routine more fun than any you’d at any point seen at the Olympics. That is on the grounds that it was performed by Katelyn Ohashi, at that point a senior at UCLA, at a school aerobatic meet.
At the time, I was an associate mentor at UCLA, where I had earned my four year college education in the wake of resigning from tip top challenge following the 2012 Olympics. While I was an understudy, I worked with unbelievable UCLA lead trainer Valorie Kondos Field — lovingly referred to as Miss Val — as the group administrator.
Whenever Katelyn, Valorie, and I met, it was 2015, and we didn’t have the foggiest idea what might come to pass in vaulting not long after. Only a year later, USA national group doctor Larry Nassar was denounced, arraigned, and indicted on various checks of sexual maltreatment after in excess of 300 gymnasts at the club and world class level approached.
“I was slapped when I was 4 in acrobatic.” – Katelyn Ohashi
I am no longer at UCLA — this late spring, at 23, I acknowledged a situation as the most youthful NCAA lead trainer regularly, instructing the University of Arkansas tumbling group. Katelyn graduated not long ago and is chipping away at her first book. This fall, Miss Val will set out on her well-earned retirement. I got up to speed with them to talk one final time — in broad daylight, in any event — about how, in this basic time, UCLA Gymnastics made security and cleared a path forward for gymnasts and the game we cherish.
On Katelyn: Markarian dress, Concrete Collective hoop.
Jordyn Wieber: How did every one of you get to UCLA?
Valorie Kondos Field: I was a ballet artist. I’d never done aerobatic. It was 1982, and UCLA required a move mentor for their acrobatic group, and they offered me a full grant. After I graduated, the athletic executive extended to me the head training employment opportunity, which I thought was over the top. In any case, I took it.
Katelyn Ohashi: I knew nothing about school vaulting. I didn’t know whether vaulting was in the image for me. My [U.S. National Team] colleague Madison Kocian was going to UCLA and spoken so exceptionally about Miss Val, so when I was 18, I called her.