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Yao Jinnan
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Yao at the 2014 World Championships

Nickname(s)

Nannan

Country represented

Flag of China China

Born

February 8 1995 (1995-02-08) (age 22)
Fuzhou, Fujian, China

Years on National Team

2010-present

Coach(es)

Lu Shanzhen, Wang Qunce, Xu Jinglei

Current status

Retired

Yao Jinnan (姚金男) (born February 8, 1995) is a retired Chinese gymnast from Fujian. She joined the Chinese national team in 2010 and is the current Chinese National Champion. She's the 2014 World Uneven Bars Champion and team silver medalist. She's also the 2011 World All-Around and team bronze medalist and balance beam silver medalist. She has a twin sister who started gymnastic training with her but did not continue into elite level training. Yao was the third female gymnast to perform the Mo salto on uneven bars.

Senior Career

2011

In 2011, she made successful international debut by winning gold on bars, beam and floor at the Cottbus World Cup. She then won gold on floor and bronze on bars at the Doha World Cup.

At the 2011 Chinese National Championships, she got silver in the All-Around and bars event final, and bronze on floor exercise. In the Japan Cup, she won gold in the team event with fellow teammates Yang Yilin, Sui Lu and Huang Qiushuang. In the all-around, she won the bronze medal.

Yao Jinnan was named to the Chinese woman's team to compete at the 2011 World Gymnastics Championships. Yao had a successful qualifying by completing consistent routines, qualifying as the highest Chinese gymnast in the all-round final, as well as qualifying to the Balance Beam and Floor event finals, and placing 9th, becoming first reserve for the final, in the Uneven Bars. Yao contributed high scores on every apparatus to help win the bronze medal in the team competition. She then placed third in the individual all-around final after fellow first-year seniors Jordyn Wieber and Viktoria Komova. Yao fell on the balance beam in the individual all-around competition. Without the one point deduction for the fall, her score would have been the highest total of all competitors in the meet, making her the winner of the all-around. This also would have made her the first Chinese gymnast ever to win the World Championship All-Around title.

In the Balance Beam event final, she placed second, winning the silver medal behind team mate Sui Lu, and placed fourth in the floor event final, .134 behind bronze medalist Alexandra Raisman.

2012

Yao competed at the Zibo World Cup, where she won gold on the uneven bars and balance beam. However, she injured her knee in training and was unable to compete at the Chinese Nationals.

On June 19th, China named her to the preliminary team for the Olympics, in one of the guaranteed spots.

During qualifications, Yao competed on all four events, where she was plagued by problems due to an ankle injury. Yao fell on the beam, vault and floor, only managing a hit routine on bars, arguably her best event. She qualified to the uneven bars final, but although she placed 22nd in the preliminary all-around, she did not advance to the final due to the "two per country rule", as her teammates Deng Linlin and Huang Qiushuang had qualified ahead of her.

During the team final, Yao only competed on vault and bars. She posted a decent score on bars, but the Chinese finished fourth in the team final. She also placed fourth in the uneven bars final.

2013

Yao continued to compete after the Olympics, winning the all-around at the Chinese Nationals in May. She also won bronze on uneven bars and floor exercise, and placed fifth on balance beam.

In September, Yao competed at the Chinese National Games. She helped her team place sixth in the final, but sustained an injury on vault. The injury was not serious and she was able to continue, winning gold in the all-around (tied with Shang Chunsong), silver on uneven bars, and placing seventh on floor. She was named to the Chinese team for the World Championships soon after.

In qualifications, Yao competed in the second subdivision. She qualified to the all-around in third place (after a fall on balance beam) and qualified first to the uneven bars final. She also qualified as the first reserve to the balance beam final. In the all-around, Yao competed her Mo salto on uneven bars, but again fell on beam, finishing fifth. In the uneven bars final, she performed first. She fell on her Mo salto and scored a 14.633, finishing sixth.

In November, she was named to the Chinese team for the Stuttgart World Cup, where she won the gold medal in the Team Challenge.[1]

2014

In May, she competed at the Chinese Nationals, winning all-around and uneven bars gold, floor exercise silver, and placing fifth with her team. Over the summer, she was named to the Chinese team for the Asian Games and World Championships. At the Asian Games, she took home four gold medals: team, all-around, uneven bars, and floor exercise.

At the World Championships, she came in as a favorite for medals. She qualified for the all-around in fourth place, the uneven bars final in first place, and the balance beam final in third place. In the team final, she had an uncharacteristic fall on uneven bars but came back with a solid beam routine to capture a team silver behind the United States. In the all-around, she went clean on her first three events, but ran into trouble on floor exercise. She landed low on her last pass and tried to disguise putting her hands down by doing a cartwheel, but she didn't fool the judges and finished in fifth place. After the all-around, she was awarded the Longines Prize for Elegance.

In the uneven bars final, her number fell off right as she got up on the podium. Performing without a competition number is a 0.3 deduction. Since there was no time to pin it to the back of her leotard, her coach showed it to the judges, who acknowledged it, and there was no deduction. She performed last, delivered a great routine and captured her first World title. In the balance beam final, she fell on her acrobatic series and finished in eighth place.

2015-2017

In January, Yao dealt with an old injury to her shoulder that caused her too much pain to continue training. The injury required surgery and left her out of competition for about a year.[2] The operation took place in America in February, and Yao began her post-op rehab in March.[3]

Unfortunately, her injury and subsequent recovery hindered her in competition. After not competing well at the Chinese National Championships in 2016, she retired the following year.[4]

Medal Count

Year Event TF AA VT UB BB FX
2011Cottbus World Cup1st1st1st
Doha World Cup3rd1st
Chinese National Championships1st1st3rd
Japan Cup1st3rd
Tokyo World Championships3rd3rd2nd4
2012Zibo World Cup1st1st
London Olympic Games44
2013Chinese National Championships1st3rd53rd
Liaoning Chinese National Games61st2nd7
Antwerp World Championships56
Stuttgart World Cup1st
2014Chinese National Championships51st1st2nd
Incheon Asian Games1st1st1st1st
Nanning World Championships2nd51st8

Floor Music

2010-2012 - "Jets Song"/ "Dance at the Gym"/ "America" from West Side Story

2013-14 - "Sphynx" by Giamero Ponte

2014 - "The Question of U" by Prince

References

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