Who will come out of Rio as this year’s summer Olympic Stars? With the opening ceremonies for the Summer Olympics in Rio scheduled for August 5, we thought it would be fun to review some very impressive performances from past Summer Olympic games.
With the focus of the World’s attention on the Olympic Games, it takes a special athlete to stand head and shoulders above the others in their field of competition. Just making an Olympic team is an incredible achievement. To perform at such a high level that folks are still talking about your performance years after is truly impressive.
Here are a few inspirational performances that have lingered in our memories for some time.
Inspirational Summer Olympic Stars
Nadia Comaneci’s “Perfect 10”
At the age of 14 years old, Nadia Comaneci won three gold medals and became the first gymnast to be awarded a perfect score of 10 in an Olympics Gymnastics event. Born in Romania, Nadia started gymnastics at the age of 6. Nadia is the record holder for being the youngest Olympic gymnastics all-around champion ever.
Graceful and stoic in competitions, Nadia credits her commitment to practice for much of her success.
Married to another Olympics star, Bart Conner, Comaneci currently serves on the International Board of Directors for the Special Olympics, and along with Conner own a gymnastics academy and several equipment shops.
The Best on the Bars – Nadia Comaneci Video
Usain Bolt – The Fastest Man Ever
At 6’5″, Usain Bolt is extremely tall for a sprinter. Having won every Olympic and World Championship in the 100 meters but one since 2008, he somehow makes his height work for him. In a typical 100 meters for Bolt, he completes the race in 41 strides. His opponents average 45 strides. At his fastest, he runs about 27 miles per hour.
The Jamaican is the first person to hold the 100 meters and 200 meters world records since mandatory time measurements went into effect in 1977. His speed and achievements have earned him the nickname, “Lightning Bolt.” A Catholic with the middle name of St. Leo, he is frequently seen making a sign of the cross before races. He’ll be racing again in Rio.
The Fastest on Land – Usain Bolt
The Most Decorated Olympian
Experts thought Mark Spitz’s record of 7 Gold Medals at the 1972 Games was unbreakable. Apparently, the message didn’t get through to Michael Phelps. Phelps won 8 gold medals and set 7 world records. He needed some strong support from his relay teammates, but things fell in place, and Phelps became the biggest winner at any Olympics games.
His positive attitude and commitment to practice, along with some God-given natural abilities, led Phelps to this historic achievement.
The Fastest in Water – Michael Phelps
Tune into the Rio Games to see who will be the next inspirational Summer Olympic Stars.