Mina Kim (USA)

Photo used with the expressed permission of
Shanfan. Check outShanfan's gymnastics site

1994 American Classic (Juniors): 5th AA, 1st BB (junior division)
1994 Jr. US Nationals (Juniors): 5th AA, 1st BB
1994 Goodwill Games: 4th T (alternate)
1994 Catania Cup: 9th AA, 2nd UB, 4th FX
1995 American Classic/Pan American Games Trials: 10th AA (tie), 4th BB
1995 U.S. Olympic Festival: 6th AA, 5th BB
1995 American Cup: 7th AA (prelims.), 2nd BB (tie)
1995 International Mixed Pairs (with Brian Yee): 7th AA
1995 Jr. US Nationals: 1st AA, 3rd V, 4th UB, 1st BB
1995 Kodak Invite: 1st Team
1995 Canberra Cup: 2nd AA, 2nd UB, 2nd BB, 3rd FX
1996 Kodak Invite: 1st T
1997 Go For it Classic: 1st T, 1st BB

Results courtesy of Mina Kim's Official website

A native of Korea, Mina Kim moved to the USA with her family in 1983. By age 10, Mina was accepted to train at Dynamo and the family moved to Oklahoma. Mina excelled very quickly under the tutelage of Steve Nunno and Peggy Liddick. Two years after joining Dynamo, Mina was competiting internationally in Italy and serving as the team alternate in Russia at the 1994 Goodwill Games.

Placing first at the 1995 Junior US Nationals, Mina seemed a likely candidate for the USA's 1996 Olympic team. Shortly before the Nationals though, Mina was told that she was 16 days too young to even try out for the 1996 Olympic team. Steve Nunno argued that an exception should be made for Mina, because in Mina's native Korea, you turn one year of age the day you are born. Not surprisingly, Nunno attempt to argue that Mina was actually one year old than her birthdate would indicate proved futile.

Mina in 1998 (left) and 1999 (right). Photos used with the expressed permission of the webmaster of Mina Kim's Offical Website

Although disappointed, Mina set her sights on the 2000 Olympics. Although she kept training, in 1997 she changed her mind and retired from gymnastics. On her official website Mina explains, "I decided to retire because I felt like I had completed what God wanted me to do with gymnastics. I don't regret a single year I was in it, but I just didn't have the heart to continue. And I believe that if there is no heart, then it is time to move on." Like most retired gymnasts, Mina tried her hand at coaching, coaching young girls at Dynamo.

Mina is now involved with cheerleading. According to her official website, she made her school's 1998-1999 cheerleading squad and hoped to get a cheerleading scholarship to the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. Incidently, Marianna Webster, Mina's former teamate at Dynamo, attends UNC at Chapel Hill!

. This page was created on April 28, 1999 and last updated on December 22, 1999.

 

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