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Oklahoma women's gymnastics: OU coach K.J. Kindler pushes her team's thinking

The OU gymnasts were used to “this is how it's always done,” but coach K.J. Kindler decided to take a new approach. Conditioning became tougher. Nutrition was rigid.
BY STEPHANIE KUZYDYM Published: April 5, 2013
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/articleid/3780214/1/pictures/2003536">Photo - Oklahoma's Taylor Spears competes on the bars during the Perfect 10 Challenge hosted by the Bart & Nadia Sports & Health Festival at the Cox Convention Center in Oklahoma City, Friday, Feb. 10, 2012. Photo by Bryan Terry, The Oklahoman
Oklahoma's Taylor Spears competes on the bars during the Perfect 10 Challenge hosted by the Bart & Nadia Sports & Health Festival at the Cox Convention Center in Oklahoma City, Friday, Feb. 10, 2012. Photo by Bryan Terry, The Oklahoman

Spears said the changes put her in the best physical condition she's ever been in, and she's gained more confidence.

“The changes helped,” Spears said. “We needed to hear stuff like that and be responsible for those types of things. It was a huge adjustment, just so many different things with workouts and conditioning.”

 Kindler said if girls thought they could do three beam routines, why not push to go further. In her words, create a “jaw-dropping but judge-friendly” routine.

 “We're going to go the extra mile for the extra benefit,” she said. 

The Sooners still suffered a few injuries, but, for the most part, maintained a high level of work in the gym and also swimming two days a week. This weekend, the Sooners hope to place in the Top 2 of the regional to make sure they advance to the NCAA Championship in Los Angeles. But the main goal is to win the regional. 

“We want to be content that we did absolutely everything we could,” Kindler said. “And this is a group of doers.” 


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