Kurt Thomas (gymnast)

Kurt Thomas (gymnast)

Kurt Bilteaux Thomas (born March 29, 1956 in Miami, Florida) is an American Olympic gymnast.

While at Indiana State University in Terre Haute, Indiana, Thomas became a member of the US Olympic team at the 1976 Summer Olympics. In 1978, Thomas was the first American male gymnast to win a gold medal in floor exercise in a world championship. In 1979 he became the first gymnast to receive the James E. Sullivan Award for the best amateur athlete in the US and earned two gold medals and three silver medals in international competition. He was expected by many to win a gold medal at the 1980 Summer Olympics, but the games were boycotted by the United States government. A gymnastic move, the "Thomas flare," is named for him. The move was originally invented by L.J. Larson from Arizona State, however it has become incorrectly associated with Thomas.

Thomas starred in the 1985 film "Gymkata" as an athlete sent by the US Government to compete in a deadly competition called "The Game." The movie is still remembered as a notorious flop. It has developed a minor cult following as an unintentional comedy for its poor production quality and low budget. Thomas also was a host for the television show "That's Incredible", starred in the syndicated show "True Confessions", and has worked as a commentator for ESPN.

In 1996, Thomas married Rebecca Jones, a dancer who also choreographs gymnastic routines. They have 2 children together.

In 2003 Thomas was inducted into the International Gymnastics Hall of Fame. ref|hof He and his wife currently operate the Kurt Thomas Gymnastics Training Center in Frisco, Texas. His gym has hosted the USAG-sanctioned Kurt Thomas International Invitational gymnastics meet annually since 2003.


# cite web
work = International Gymnastics Hall of Fame
url = http://www.ighof.com/honorees/honorees_thomas.html
accessdate = May 12
accessyear = 2007

External links

* [http://www.kurtthomas.net/ Kurt Thomas Gymnastics Center]
* [http://www.kurtthomasinvitational.com/ Kurt Thomas Invitational meet]
* [http://www.gymn-forum.net/bios/men/thomas.html List of competitive results at Gymn Forum]
*imdb name|0859123|Kurt Thomas

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