Improve Your Score This Competition Season

Competition season is here and who wouldn't want to improve their all-around score? You may be ready to compete, have all your routines down, and hit all your events, but without concentrating on the major areas of deduction, you may not be happy with your final score. Posture and body alignment are becoming crucial aspects of a routine and judges are becoming very picky about this topic in your performance. There are 4 major body areas to focus on that can lead to a better posture and body alignment.
  • 1. The Feet:
    • You may not know this but judges can deduct if you do not pivet on high toe in a tight releve position on beam. 0.10 can be deducted when you do not show this position.
    • Point your toes on everything you do, from giants on bars to leaps on floor and beam. 0.10 can be deducted from flexed feet.
  • 2. The Knees:
    • Unless you are in "pile", your knees need to be straight on every skill and also in the standing position while dancing. Tight hamstrings can lead to consistent bent legs. Bent knees will also lead to 0.10 deductions.
  • 3. The Abdominals, Rib Cage and Shoulders:
    • Every gymnasts should stand with their hips under, abdominals and rib cage tucked in and shoulders pressed down. Deductions have been added to the code pertaining to the shoulders during your performance. Having your shoulders pressed down, and your back muscles pinched together, your neck will appear longer making your body look taller. Ballet dance classes are a great way to help you and teach you how to make a straight body line. Correcting a gymnasts "line" earlier in their career will better their gymnastics in the long run. 
  • 4. The Head:
    • When performing, a gymnast should NEVER look down! Having your chin lifted and looking above eye level will make your presentation look 100 times better.
Up to a 0.30 deduction can be taken off from incorrect posture and body alignment on each routine. Just imagine adding up to 1.2 to your final all-around score by just fixing these small deductions! If you really concentrate on these areas and make your posture and body alignment perfect, you will give the judges no reason to take deductions!

Do you watch the gymnastics series Make It Or Break It? Have you noticed the gymnasts on the series wear GK Elite Sportswear? If so, check out the
As Seen On Make It Or Break It Leotard Line. You can wear the same leoards the actors wear!

Make It Or Break It Leotard Line
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The Sport of Wheel Gymnastics

Even if this is the first time you've heard of it...get ready for the 10th World Championship of Wheel Gymnastics coming to Chicago in July, 2013.

Be on the look out for Wheel Gymnasts sporting GK Elite Gymnastic Leotards, Gymnastic Warm Ups and Gymnastic Accessories!

The wheels will roll into The Windy City as the sport continues its growing popularity here in the U.S., bringing with it a strong worldwide following.  To find out more about this up and coming sport, visit the official website of The USA Wheel Gymnastics Federation.




GK looks forward to outfitting Wheel Gymnasts with Gymnastic Apparel, Leotards, Warm Ups and Accessories with the same quality and precision as we've done for traditional artistic gymnasts at every level of competition. 

Wolfgang Bientzle, Director of Operations for the USA Wheel Gymnastics Federation and winner of 8 World Champion Titles, 11 European Champion Titles and more than 60 German Champion Titles in the sport, encourages all those he coaches to only wear GK - the Choice of Champions! 

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A Closer Look at the GK Styles on Display at the 2011 Visa Championships - Shawn Johnson

2008 Olympic Gold Medalist Shawn Johnson from Chow's Gymnastics made a magnificent comeback at the 2011 Visa Championships proving she's still got it.  Shawn placed 4th on beam and 6th on bars.  Shawn's GK Leotard from finals was one of our favorite GK Custom Made Leotards.  


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If you love Shawn's custom leo, take a look at GK Style 4860 Sporty Competitive Leotard.  Visit the GK Design Studio and choose any fabric and any color combination to design a GK Competitive Gymnastics Leotard for your very own custom look.  Be classic and fantastic with infinite choices in jewels, embroidery, sequinz or imprinting. 

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GK.  Choice of Champions. 

Visit GK for all your gymnastic apparel needs including
toddler gymnastic leotards and a full line of mens gymnastics apparel.

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A Closer Look at the GK Styles on Display at the 2011 Visa Championships - Jordyn Wieber

After the 2011 Visa Championships in Saint Paul, Minnesota, we posted pics of the nation's most talented gymnasts competing for the top spot in the country in their GK Leotards. 47 out of 50 competitors wore GK!

In this series of posts, we'll take a closer look at some of the amazing GK Competition Leotards with links so you can shop now to find your own championship leo. 

Jordyn Wieber, All-Around National Champion, wore two amazing GK competitive leotards for the championships.

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Here, Jordyn sports her GK Style 9544 Elegant Swirl Competitive Leotard in Purple Mystique.  Style 9544 is a classic neckline gymnastics competition leotard with a dazzling curling design across the bodice and back, available with optional jeweling along style lines and scoop back.


















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Jordyn wore a stunning gold and white GK Leotard
for prelims.  If you like Jordyn's look of a sweetheart style bodice and V back, check out GK Style 7545 Classy Sweetheart Comp Leotard

Remember, with GK Gymnastic Competition Leotards, there are infinite possibilities - any style, any fabric, any combination!


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A Closer Look at the GK Styles on Display at the 2011 Visa Championships - Aly Raisman

Aly Raisman from Brestyans Gym finished 11th bars, 6th beam, 3rd floor, and 3rd all around at the 2011 Visa Championships looking amazing in her GK competition leotard.  Aly's custom made leotard is unique with its shortened mesh sleeves and jewel design over the bodice and sleeves.

If you like Aly's awesome GK leotard, check out GK's Asymmetrical Tier Drop Gym Leo Style 7462, a boat neck gymnastics competition leotard featuring asymmetrical style lines on bodice, cuff accents and scooped V back or GK's Classic Asymmetrical Comp Leo Style 7464, a classic neckline gymnastics competition leotard with color block styling, inset stripe look on upper bodice and back, and scoop back to create your own sparkle and shine!


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The College Gymnastics Recruiting Process

Every year, thousands of gymnasts begin searching for a suitable collegiate gymnastics program. The recruiting process is a stressful and serious process that involves not only the gymnast, but also their parents and coaches. If a gymnast is serious about collegiate gymnastics and may be able to obtain a scholarship, the process must begin as early as their sophomore year in high school. Here are some basic steps to help in your search for the right collegiate program!
  • You can begin to contact colleges in your junior year of high school. Send the head coaches of all the schools you are interested in an e-mail to see if they are interested in you. Remember: coaches can not call you until July 1, after your junior year of high school.
  • Start preparing your recruiting video. This video should include routines from competitions and the new skills you are working on. Make sure to make it good because you want to make a great first impression on the coaches. Send your video to all of the schools you are interested in.
  • Along with your video, you should include a letter to the coaches. Include your name, graduation year, high school GPA, level of competition, your coach's names and phone numbers, the skills you perform on each event, any awards you have received, SAT or ACT scores, your intended college major, and any other interests of yours that will help you stand out in the crowd! Include a recent picture of yourself in competition as well.
  • Once you have received a response of the coach or coaches, visit the schools unofficially and attend their gymnastics meets. Unofficial visits are extremely important because they will help you get a feel for the school, gymnastics team and coaches. 
  • Once you become eligible for official visits, you must determine up to 5 schools you want to visit. The school will pay for all of your expenses on the trip. You will follow an itinerary during your trip, visiting practice facilities, apartments, academic support staff, and much more. What you learn and see on your official visits will help in your final decision of a college. 
  • You must register and be certified to the NCAA through the NCAA Clearinghouse. 
  • When making your final decision, you must put many things into consideration. Ask yourself the following questions:
    • Is my intended major available at this school?
    • Is the gymnastics program suitable for me?
    • Is it too close or too far away from home?
    • Are the campus and classes to big?
    • Are there different activities to do in surrounding areas of the campus?
DO NOT rush your final decision! Take the time to evaluate and make sure your final choice is the right choice for you!

Be sure to check out the 2011 GK Holiday Workout Essentials catalog! The holidays are coming up, so purchase holiday presents here at GK Elite Sportswear!

2011 GK Holiday Workout Essentials
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A Closer Look at the GK Styles on Display at the 2011 Visa Championships - McKayla Maroney


McKayla Maroney from All Olympia finished 1st Vault, 2nd All Around, 5th Floor and 7th Beam at the 2011 Visa Championships.  McKayla was simply stunning in her custom GK competition leotard.  The celestial color scheme really makes her shine.

Want to stand out?  Take a look at GK's Stunning Swirl Comp Leotard Style 9549, a classic neckline competitive gymnastics leotard with elegant swirls on bodice and back with a scoop back. 

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On the podium, the backdrop for McKayla's medal was GK's Petal Design Competition Leo Style 9550, a scoop neckline gymnastics competition leotard that dazzles with its floral design throughout the bodice and ribbon effect on back. 
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Either of these competition leotards would make you a star!

GK Competitive Gymnastics Leotards.  Choice of Champions.


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USA Gymnastics Junior Olympic Program Shines in New GK Leos and Warm Ups

The USA Gymnastics Junior Olympic National Team premiered new GK Leotards and Warm Ups at camp this past August.  The coaching staff also sported new Coaches Shirts from GK.  Connie Maloney, Women's J.O. Program Director, filled us in and sent along some pictures to share. 

"The J.O. National Team apparel looks wonderful, and the staff loves the shirts!
Thanks again for supporting our J.O. Team."
 

The Junior Olympians are ready for the season in their GK Leotard Style WL342 in Navy Mystique and Red Fusion Fabric with a glittering Clear Jewel USA logo on the chest. 

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In between events, the Junior Olympians will sport team pride in GK Gymnastic Warm Ups.  Their custom GK Warm Up jackets are Sapphire and Red Hot DryTech fabric with "2011 JO National Team" embroidered on the left chest in white.  Take a look at GK Warm Up Jacket Style 1791 for a similar style that can be customized with colors, fabric and embellishments.  The matching GK Warm Up pant is GK Style 8250 in Sapphire DryTech. 

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GK. Choice of Champions.


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Preventing and Taking Care of Rips

While swinging on the uneven bars, parallel bars, or pommel horse, friction between a gymnasts hands and the bar is greatly increased. The more the event is performed, the greater the chances for a gymnast to get a hand rip. Rips are a gymnasts worst nightmare! They are completely inevitable. Here are some prevention and treatment tips to help with rips.

For the Prevention of Rips:
  • Wearing grips is the greatest prevention on hand rips. Reisport dowel grips are a preferred brand of gymnastics grips.
  • If calluses start to build on your hands, use a pumice stone on your hands to reduce them.
  • After a bar training session, wash your hands with cold water. This reduces the heat from friction and will help in the prevention process
  • Wear thicker wristbands to help prevent rips on your wrists and palms. I would suggest using the GK 5 inch Terry Wristbands.
  • Use Handebalm on your hands every time you do bars. This is a great prevention method that works great.
For the Treatment of Rips:
  • Wash off the rip immediately with warm water and soap.
  • Cut off access skin around the rip.
  • Treat immediately with Neosporin or Vitamin E and bandage it up.
  • Before bed, wash out the rip with soap and water, then pat dry. Cover the infected area with Neosporin and bandage the area. Wear a glove on your hand while sleeping to help keep the bandage from falling off. Continue this until the rip is gone.
  • You may need to take a few days off from swinging bars depending on the severity of the rip. You can still swing and perform what you can on the strap bar since there is no friction build-up while swinging on this piece of equipment.
  • Sometimes you have to work through the pain!
  • Use tape grips when the rip is healed enough to start swinging again. Ask your coach or athletic trainer how to make them. They can be reused many times.
  • You can also use second skin to cover the area under the tape grip.
  • Spray tuff skin on the rip before putting on the second skin and tape grip.
Make sure to be the stylish girl in your gym and carry your gymnastics grips and wristbands in a Mystique Grip Bag featuring a GK logo made of SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS!

GK Grip Bag
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Everyday Champions: 2011 TXUSAG Level 5 Team

Check out the Kurt Thomas Gymnastics TXUSAG Level 5 Team of Frisco, TX at their first meet of 2011. The 5P gymnasts finished first place with a score of 117.55, with 8 girls finishing in the top 10 AA out of all athletes competing.

Their new GK gymnastics leotards were a big hit at the competition!!

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Texas Dreams Championship Leotard Voted Best!

This year, Kim Zmeskal's Texas Dreams Gymnastics chose a custom design GK Competitive Leotard in Azure Sparkle, White Sparkle and White Mesh.  This womens gymnastics leotard features brilliance crystals along the neckline and back detail, scattered down both arms, and in a custom design pattern on the front.  According to Peggy Davis of Texas Dreams, this leotard won the Best Leotard award as voted by the "crazy fans!"

Blue Axure LeotardTexas Dreams Leotard

Photos (c) Lloyd Smith

If you like this custom design, you might also like our Butterfly Back Competition Leotard Style 7511 or our Wrapped Racerback Gymnastic Leotard Style 4850, which both feature unique style lines on the back of the gymnastic leotard.  Visit the GK Design Studio today where you can choose any fabric and any color combination to create a GK Competitive Gymnastics Leotard with your own custom look. Add jewels, sequinz, embroidery or imprinting to embellish any of our Special Order Leotards.

GK. Choice of Champions.

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Choosing Floor Music That Fits You!

      Choosing the right floor music is a very critical process, whether you are choosing your very first piece for your level 7 competition season, or mixing together multiple songs for your level 10 routine. Since you will be performing the routine for a year or two, serious thought and consideration should go into choosing and preparing the music. Here are a few pointers to help you choose the correct piece for you:
  • Choose a piece that will make you stand out. Getting the crowd and judges involved with the routine and music will help boost your score.
  • The music MUST fit your personality. A very serious gymnast should not choose a piece that requires an upbeat and happy personality.
  • Since you will be competing the routine for a year or two, you MUST enjoy the music.
  • Music can also display your talents. (If you are a graceful gymnast, choose classical music that will display your beautiful dance movements and graceful leaps. If you are a powerful tumbler, choose music that is upbeat and has a fast tempo. If you can dance to hip-hop music, choose a current rap or hip-hop instrumental. )
  • Have an emotional connection with the music so that judges and the crowd will get involved.
  • Do not choose a piece with a lot of musical repetition.
  • Your music can not have any words or singing in it.
  • Your music can not be longer than 90 seconds.
  • Expect to pay from $50.00 to $200.00 on a piece of floor music.
  • After choosing the right floor music for you, hire a professional choreographer or someone with experience in choreography to help you demonstrate your personality through your routine!
Get connected with the worlds leading brand of gymnastics leotards, GK Elite Sportswear. Press LIKE on FACEBOOK or search GK Elite Sportswear on TWITTER (@gkelite)!
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Coming Soon: Holiday Workout Essentials Catalog

The holidays are approaching and so is the NEW Holiday workout essentials catalog, arriving soon from GK! The new holiday collection will be available October 14, 2011 through January 31, 2012.  This brand new catalog features Nastia Liukin leotards, Shawn Johnson leotards, Supergirl leotards by Nastia, six adidas leotard styles, and our latest GKids children's leotard collection made just for the little gymnasts.

GK Elite 2011 Holiday Gymnastics Leotards

The holiday catalog offers great leotard color combinations and designs perfect to fit the holiday season.  With over 35 gymnastics leotards to choose from you're sure to find the perfect fit.  With the largest variety and best quality in the industry, GK is the Choice of Champions.  Tis the season to give, so pick up your GK gymnastic leotards starting October 14, 2011 and don't miss out on this great opportunity for the gift giving season.

GK.  Choice of Champions. 

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When To Use Heat vs. When To Use Ice

After an injury, you may wonder "Do I use heat? or Do I use ice?" Icing is the best thing to help your body heal after an injury has occured. Icing a new injury will narrow the blood vesels in the area and will relieve pain and stops the body from sending in scar tissue. Scar tissue will only cause stiffness and more pain. Ice also helps reduce inflammation. Heating a new injury causes blood flow to increase and will result in relaxed musles only for an hour. After that hour, the pain will return and in the long run will cause the pain to get worse and prolong the healing. Heat is good for only chronic situations to relieve some pain.

Use ice for only 20 minutes at a time on a certain area. After 20 minutes, ice has a reverse effect and mimics the use of heat. You must also wait an hour to put ice back on for another 20 minutes. Do not apply ice directly to the skin. Put a towel, cloth or papertowel in between your ice pack and your skin.
     
It's time for the 2011-2012 competitive year! Make sure you check out GK Elite Sportswear Competitive Gymnastics Apparel!!
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How to Measure For A Girls Gymnastics Leotard

While other manufacturers cast uncertainty on ordering the right size gymnastics leotard, GK has it narrowed down to a science. If you're unsure about your size, particularly if you're unable to try it on, you can relax.  As long as you have the proper measurements, you can certainly figure out what size you need to order.

How To MeasureHow to Measure for Girls Gymnastics Leotards :
  1. Chest Measurement: Take this measurement when you are taking a deep breath, arms held out at shoulder height.
  2. Waist Measurement: Take this measurement at the natural waistline - reference the photo to the right to understand this placement.
  3. Hip Measurement: Take this measurements around the fullest part of the buttocks.
  4. Torso Measurement: Take this one from the center of the shoulder, down the front, through the crotch, and up the back to the starting point.
  5. Inseam Measurement: This is the measurement that is the length of the leg from the crotch to one inch above the floor.  Measure in stocking feet.
Now that you've measured, you'll want to follow two simple steps to make sure that your garment fits the way you would like it to fit:
  1. Select the row of measurements that best represents your size.  If all your measurements do not fall within the same row, use the row that represents your largest measurements. (Note: Your torso measurement is the most important measurement followed by the chest and hip measurements; the least important is waist).
  2. Choose the type of fit you would like.
Available Fits:
  • Sleek Fit - We consider this our competition fit - fits like second skin.
  • Growing Room - We consider this our workout fit - with a little room for growth.

Girl's/Women's Size Chart-Gymnastics(inches)

ChestWaistHipTorsoInseamSleek FitGrowing Room
17-1918-1919-2137-39---TDCXS
20-2219-2122-2440-4220CXSCS
23-2621-2225-2743-4522CSCM
26-29 22-23 28-29 46-48 24 CM CL
29-31 23-25 30-31 49-51 26 CL AXS
32-3423-2532-3452-54 28 AXS AS
33-3525-2633-3555-5629ASAM
35-3626-2735-3657-5930AMAL
36-3728-2937-3860-6231ALAXL
37-3929-3039-4063-65 32 AXL ---
39-4230-3340-4365-67332XL---
41-4432-3542-4567-69343XL---
43-4634-3744-4669-71354XL---
 
Once you've measured, it's time to place an order.  CLICK HERE TO SHOP AND ORDER NOW!

Join us on Facebook and tell us about your experience with ordering from our catalog and how you went about selecting the size that worked for you. 

Of course, you can always submit your leotard story whatever it may be and we'll share it on our blog with other readers just like you!
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Starting A New Season With A New Attitude

This is the time of year when all gymnasts deal with balancing a new school year and a new gymnastics season.  Here I will give you a few tips on how to begin this competitive season successfully.

GK Back To School Gymnastics Leotards
  • Summer has now ended, so it’s time to put together routines. Be excited about the new skills you have learned over the summer and start adding them into your new routines. New perfected skills= a perfected routine!
  • Start your season off with a great attitude! Thinking positive thoughts about your new season will lead you to a positive year.
  • Not only do you need to concentrate to prepare for the new gymnastics season, but you also have to concentrate on a new school year. Remember: education always comes before athletics. Take care of your schoolwork, just as you are your gymnastics.
  • Take care of your body from the start! Start your season off healthy. Not only should you be taking care of injuries, previous injuries and rehabilitation, you should also be aware of how you are fueling your body. Give yourself the energy it needs in the right way. With balancing school and gymnastics, you need the proper energy to get you through the day. The healthier you are, the more successful you will be!
  • Get your sleep! Refueling your body with the proper rest is also the key to a great start. Since gymnastics season requires traveling all over the country, you must get rest for your body to be in tiptop competitive shape.
  • Be excited for a new start!
  • Last but not least… back to school means you need to buy the new GK Elite Sportswear back to school workout essentials! Take a look at the catalog here!

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GK Fall-Winter Gymnastics Leotards COMING SOON

Coming Soon: the NEW Fall-Winter Workout Essentials catalog from GK featuring gymnastics apparel from the industry's leader, GK Elite Sportswear!

GK Fall-Winter Gymnastics Leotards & Apparel

This all new catalog will be available September 26 through February 1 and offers the latest fall-winter collections, featuring Nastia Liukin Leotards, Shawn Johnson Leotards, and our popular GKids Collection, made for little gymnasts everywhere.  With over 50 styles to choose from, GK offers the more variety than any other gymnastic leotard manufacturer!

There is something for everyone in the new Fall-Winter collection, so be the first to check it out on Monday, September 26th.  You won't want to miss out on over 20 value priced gymnastics leotards under $30!  With the largest variety and great affordability, be sure to order your new gymnastic apparel today.


GK. Choice of Champions.

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Make Use Of The Strap Bar At Your Gym

Most high-level gymnasts have used a strap bar before as part of their training regimen. Do you know what a strap bar is? It’s one of the most efficient training tools for learning circling skills on bars. With just strapping your wrists onto the plastic piping surrounding a metal high or low bar, you can learn many different skills. A high metal bar is used to learn tap swings, uprises, back giants, front giants, kips as well as drills for specific release moves, and the low metal bar is used to learn free hips, stalders, and toe shots.  A strap bar gives gymnasts comfort and security while learning new skills because your hands are completely strapped in.


Navy Blue GK Neoprene WristbandNeoprene Wrisband in Red by GKNeoprene WristbandGK Neoprene Wristband in Black


Different gymnasts will use different size straps and wristbands while using the bar, so be sure to wear the correct size strapping and wristband that fits your wrist size. GK Elite Sportswear sells the perfect neoprene wristband for you to use! Also, you must be supervised by a trained coach while using a strap bar. If your gymnastics facility does not have a strap bar, talk your coach into getting one. Using less space as a regular bar, and also costing less than half of the cost of a regular set of bars, a strap bar will definitely work in your favor and will help you become more successful on the event!

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GK Leotards Shine in Beijing

Did you ever wonder how GK became the choice of champions all over the world?  This month we will feature a series of articles tracking the evolution of GK gymnastics apparel and the company's involvement in the world of gymnastics.

Elite Sportswear became even bigger in 2007 when its seven year relationship with adidas took on a completely new phase.  Now, GK had the rights to market and to sell adidas gymnastics styles.  Check out all of GK's adidas gymnastics apparel by clicking here.
Team USA wore adidas leotards manufactured by Elite Sportswear for the 2008 Olympic Games
At the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, several countries wore the GK or adidas logo as they performed.  Team USA competed in adidas leotards which were manufactured by Elite.  A long list of other countries, including Australia, Bulgaria, Belgium, Columbia, Czech Republic, Egypt, Finland, Greece, Luxemburg, Puerto Rico, Slovenia, and Belarus, outfitted their gymnasts in the GK logo for the Beijing Games.

Visit www.gkelite.com to check out the huge selection of GK and adidas leotards!

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Everyday Champion Shelby F. told GK, "I am beautiful!"

Shelby F. of Garlands Gymnastics in Kennewisk, Washington told GK  that this gymnastic leotard makes her feel great and gives her more self confidence because when she looks good, she shines when she performs.  Plus, Shelby continues,  "GK leos never wear out!"

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