I was watching the gymnastics olympic trials today and had the sudden realization of why I’m not a big fan of gymnastics or figure skating. They are sports judged almost entirely by focusing on faults. There’s judges dissecting every move, analyzing every step in an effort to see what was done wrong. When you listen to commentators, they say things like “that hop is going to cost him” “her legs aren’t perfectly together during her flip” a lot more than they say “great move.” The fault finding goes on and on, as the camera follows and interviews athletes that miss qualifying by fractions of points, or single mistakes during routines. It’s all about putting mistakes under microscopes and it gets old real quick.
When the olympics get televised next month, I hope NBC gives other sports more time, instead of focusing so much on gymnastics like they did in 1996.