By Jordan Brunk, Amazing Kid from History Editor and Contributing Writer
Nadia Comaneci is an amazing kid from history. She was born in Gheorghe Gheorghiu-Dej, Romania, on November 12, 1961. Nadia shows us to always practice and work long and hard for our dreams so that we will not give them up. At a very young age, she showed exemplary potential for gymnastics. When she was six years old, a gymnastics teacher named Bela Karolyi began to teach her, and Nadia was able to attend the 1976 Olympic Games in Canada at just 14 years of age.
During the 1976 Olympic Games, Nadia made history as a young individual when she became the first woman to receive a 10 out of 10 score for one of her events. In earlier Olympic Games, no female had ever accomplished this. But Nadia did not stop there; she continued to earn perfect scores from the judges and leave the world watching in awe at her talent and mastered craft. All in all, Nadia attained seven perfect scores and won several medals, including three gold medals, a silver medal, and also a bronze medal.
From her victories, people in the world realized that not just men could receive perfect scores for events, but women could, too. Her high level of achievement also set the scale for how other gymnasts practiced and were judged. People assumed that the other female gymnasts should perform close to the level of Nadia and receive almost perfect scores.
After the 1976 Olympics, Nadia continued to work and practice a lot of gymnastics. At such a young age, her career was only starting. By the time she retired when she was 23 years old, Nadia won two more gold and silver medals during the 1980 Olympic Games. As of now, Nadia travels, supports gymnastics, and coaches other gymnasts.
Nadia’s skill level and determination were brilliant. She never gave up and continued to work and push herself to the limits in order to get better at gymnastics. She would not have gained any more gymnastics ability had she given up. Nadia shows us to always push and work for the things we enjoy doing because we should do them before it is too late. She also shows us to live out our dreams—no matter how large or tiny—because if we set our minds to do it, then we can accomplish anything.
Nadia says, “Hard work has made it easy. That is my secret. That is why I win.” She is basically stating that as long as you push yourself and work hard, you are able to do anything easily and win. She inspires us to always believe in mind over matter because if we believe that we can do it, then we can do it. In this way, Nadia Comaneci really is an amazing kid from history.