U.S. Olympians use honey in order to get a grip | Gymnastics
Men on the U.S. Olympic gymnastics team use honey and syrup on their hands to get a better grip for some of their routines.
U.S. Olympians use honey, syrup in quest to get a grip
As the U.S. men head off to their final training camp before the London Olympics, several gymnasts will be toting plastic bears filled with honey. Or bottles of Karo syrup.
Really. And no, it's not for breakfast.
Some of the equipment can be as slick as ice, and gymnasts have had to get creative in order to keep a grip on things.
"You start slipping off the parallel bars and you're like, 'How do I hold onto this?' " said 26-year-old Jonathan Horton, a two-time medalist at the 2008 Games in Beijing.
"When you're a kid, I guess you don't really think about it. Then you get older and you're like, 'Man, this should be easier.' You just start figuring out, OK, what can I put that's sticky on my hands to make me do this?"
For most gymnasts, honey does the trick. Whatever the sticky substance, they rub it on their hands, run their hands along the bars and then cover both with a layer of chalk.
The women have a similar routine on uneven bars, though most spray water on them and then dust them with chalk. Many gymnasts have their own concoctions, recipes developed through trial and error.
"Growing up, I tried pancake syrup and Karo syrup," Horton said. "Then I was like, 'OK, honey,' and I tried a million different types of honey until I finally found one that really works. Everyone kind of has their own little combination of how they like it."
Silver Stars win 7th in a row
Jia Perkins scored a season-high 24 points, Becky Hammon had 23 and Sophia Young added 21 to lead San Antonio to its seventh straight victory, 94-81 over the host New York Liberty.
Perkins, who made 10 of 17 shots, said, "My teammates do a good job of penetrating and finding the open players."
Essence Carson scored 25 points to lead New York and Cappie Pondexter had 23.
In other league games, Ivory Latta scored 18 points to help the Tulsa Shock beat visiting Washington 78-62 and Kristi Toliver scored 19 points to lead host Los Angeles to a 79-63 victory over Atlanta.
Game's inventor dies at 87
Well before "Madden NFL" video games, there was a quirky tabletop toy called Electric Football.
Many will remember the game with a metal playing field. It had plastic players, each standing on a rectangular base with prongs on the bottom.
Before each play, the human "coach" sets the players in the desired position and puts the football in the hands of one. A switch is flicked, the gridiron vibrates and the players move — often hilariously in every which direction. Occasionally the player with the ball "runs" to daylight.
Norman Sas invented Electric Football in 1948 and introduced it a year later. In 1967, when he signed a deal with NFL Properties, the league's product-licensing division, plastic players represented actual pro teams and Electric Football took off.
Florida resident Sas, who died June 28 at age 87, was "one of the real innovators of toy land," said Chris Byrne, content director of timetoplaymag.com, a toy-review website.
A 1971 Sports Illustrated story identified Tudor Electric Football — then retailing for $9.95 to $14.95 — as the "bestseller" among all NFL-licensed products.
"For the first 10 years, we generated more money for NFL Properties than anyone else," Sas said in 1998. "Then the (video) games came out, and that was the beginning of the end."
• A Colorado man and a Connecticut woman won the triathlon that uses Central Park and streets and waterways around Manhattan as a course.
Jordan Jones of Golden, Colo., finished first in the men's competition in the New York City Triathlon, swimming about a mile in the Hudson River, biking almost 25 miles and running 6 miles in 1 hour, 45 minutes, 4 seconds.
Amy Bevilacqua of Wilton, Conn., won the women's competition in 2:00:04.
• Poland beat the United States 25-17, 26-24, 25-20 to win its first gold medal in the World League men's volleyball final in Sofia, Bulgaria.
The Americans sought a repeat of 2008, when they won the World League and Olympic titles.
• Hall of Fame defenseman Larry Robinson, 61, has been hired as an associate coach by the NHL San Jose Sharks, coached by Todd McLellan.
• The NHL Detroit Red Wings hired former standout defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom, 42, as a scout. Lidstrom, who retired in May, plans to move back to his native Sweden.
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