Definition: Competition 1A

Competition IA: Competition IA is a type of competition in International F.I.G. (the international gymnastics federation) gymnastics competitions, called Compulsory Competitions. The FIG decided to discontinue Compulsory competitions after the 1996 Olympics, primarily due to the how they lengthened the competitions, were not good at attracting spectators to the sport and limited the time gymnasts could work on their Optional routines.

Many purists miss the exquisite performances (of admittedly more simple skills) that marked Competition IA compulsory competitions.

In compulsory competitions, every gymnast performs exactly the same skills and routines on each event. Compulsory routines are created by the federation and test the gymnast’s mastery of basic elements and combinations.

Compulsory routines are also often used by national federations in their developmental competition programs, but each country usually has its own very different compulsory routines. Occasionally, different countries use the same developmental program and compulsory routines, like the Australian gymnastics developmental system and compulsories are used by other nearby countries, like Thailand. That allows them to be able to share judges and participate in lower level Compulsory competitions in other nearby countries.

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