The 1971 Pan American Games were held in Cali, Colombia from July 30 to August 13, 1971. The then called "Salsa World Capital", located at the foot of the Andes Mountains, hosted a total of 2,935 athletes from 32 countries, who participated in seventeen sports. The highlight of the opening ceremony was a synchronised dance routine involving 12,000 young girls dressed in native costumes.
Format of Competition
The format was very similar to that of the Olympic Games. It was carried out in three stages:
- Competition I - The team competition/qualification round in which all gymnasts, including those who were not part of a team, performed both compulsory and optional exercises. The combined scores of all team members determined the final score of the team. The thirty-six highest scoring gymnasts in the all-around qualified to the individual all-around competition. The six highest scoring gymnasts on each apparatus qualified to the final for that apparatus.
- Competition II - The individual all-around competition, in which those who qualified from Competition I performed exercises on each apparatus. The final score of each gymnast was composed of half the points earned by that gymnast during Competition I and all of the points earned by her in Competition II.
- Competition III - The apparatus finals, in which those who qualified during Competition I performed an exercise on the individual apparatus on which she had qualified. The final score of each gymnast was composed of half the points earned by that gymnast on that particular apparatus during Competition I and all of the points earned by her on that particular apparatus in Competition III.
No limits were imposed as to how many gymnasts each country could enter into the individual all-around final or apparatus finals.