07/22/2012 06:59 pm ET Updated Jul 22, 2012

Why Do Male Gymnasts Have Longer Careers Than Women?

It looks like 20-year-old Shawn Johnson had the right idea: quit while you’re on top. If you saw the heartbreaking exit of last year’s all-around gold medalist Nastia Liukin at this year’s Olympic trials, you know what I mean.

Nastia, a former gold medalist in peak physical condition, trained and competed admirably in the trials, saying she had accomplished all she wanted individually, but would train and try out if it was possible for her to help her team. Watching Nastia take a hard fall off the uneven bars and not make the team, realizing that at just 22 years old, her career is over, was astounding to me.

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