Nadia Comaneci

Olympic Person of the Month April 2022

At age 14, most of us were in their school classes pondering on what we’ll discuss with their friends during the lunch break. Nadia Comaneci, on the other hand, was breaking Olympic world records in the sport of gymnastics. At age 14, the Romanian athlete became the first gymnast to be awarded a perfect score of 10.0 at the 1976 Montreal Summer Olympics.

Even though Comaneci’s greatest accomplishment was achieving a perfect score of 10.0, she did not stop there. At the same Games, she received more perfect 10s for events en route to winning three gold medals. After this, she was named a Hero of Socialist Labour by Romania. Further, at the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow, she won two more gold medals and achieved two more perfect 10s. Overall, she has earned nine Olympic medals and four World Artistic Gymnastics Championship medals. In fact, the song used to accompany her floor exercises was retitled “Nadia’s Theme (The Young and the Restless)” and became an international hit, earning a Grammy Award in 1977.

Comaneci retired from competition in 1984 as a 5-time Olympic gold medalist, all in individual events. In 1993 Comaneci became the second person (after Olga Korbut) inducted into the International Gymnastics Hall of Fame. Today, she remains quite relevant in the world of gymnastics serving several honorary positions such as Honorary President of the Romanian Olympic and Sports Committee.

The gymnastics superstar is often credited for popularizing the sport worldwide. She made it possible for a young, female from Romania to become the face of gymnastics, and show that the sky is the limit young girls. The EOA is delighted to honor Nadia Comaneci as the Olympic Person of the Month for April, and we stand by all the future female gymnasts who will continue to pave the way for young girls.

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