During the 1983 World Games in Baton Rouge, I sent out a survey to the Gymnastics Coaches that participated. One of the ? I asked them was if they would be part of the first Gymnastics rules sub committee. The first committee added more events to gymnastics & created our first compulsory routines. It consisted of Mary Figueroa (La), Buddy Goldsmith (NY), Bonnie Moor, Peter Bauer (Wi), David Rozzell (UK), and myself (Kate Faber (Hickie))
In 1989, the men’ s members were Peter Bauer, William Ferrer, and Donny Bauer. The Women’s members were Linda Charzuk, Mary Figueroa, and Carol Keller. The Rhythmic members were Beth Evans, Susie Ditullio, and Suzanne Dixon. Kate Faber (Hickie) was the Director of Gymnastics.
Over the years, people dropped off and new members joined the subcommittee. By 1995, there were 3 committees- Men’s (Peter Bauer, Trevor Creagh and athlete Jason Stutey, Women’s- Linda Charzuk, Mary Figueroa, Carol Keller, and athlete Nikki Peck, Rhythmic- Dr. Beth Evans, Susie Ditullio, Cindy Stone Bickman and athlete Jen Mohr. The Director was Kate Faber Hickie and additional members were on the advisory committee.
In 1998, our discussion included rule changes that were proposed by coaches, the rules committee itself, and FIG changes. We introduced new rhythmic compulsory routines in July, 1999 at World Games. After months of writing/creating them, editing music, & producing videotapes of them. This is the last time Rhythmic & Artistic committees worked together. In the future, Cindy Bickman headed the Rhythmic Committee, as I continued to head the Artistic Committee. We
alternated introducing the new routines at World Games- every 4 years either rhythmic or artistic came out with new routines to be used for the next 8 years.
Our biggest discussion that year was about the “sandbagging” rule we were using. The 10% rule leading to disqualification would not work in gymnastics, due to the variability of judges. We chose to weigh the preliminaries 25% of the award score and finals would count as 75% of the award score. This worked extremely well. We continued to award single person heats based on their score. We started this at World Games in Notre Dame, continued it at World Games in Minneapolis instead of participant ribbons or gold ribbons. The gymnast’s score would earn them anywhere from a gold medal to 8th place, based on the chart we created. It worked very well & encouraged the athletes to strive for their best. We no longer follow this method, but try to combine age groups, so there are very few 1 person heats.
Committees continue to this day and are invaluable when we are trying to come up with new routines every 4 years in artistic or rhythmic.