Redefining Success and the Future of Gymnastics with Betty Okino – Episode 10

The Recap

Betty Okino is a former American artistic gymnast and Olympic medalist who was born in Uganda to a Ugandan father and a Romanian mother. As a result, she is fluent in Romanian. Growing up, she trained with Márta and Béla Károlyi in Houston. She was part of the 1992 bronze-winning Olympic team, which was also the first ever team medal at the Olympic Games for USA Gymnastics. In addition, Betty won a silver medal with her team in the 1991 World Championships and a bronze medal on the balance beam. Betty also won a gold medal on beam and a silver all-around medal at the 1990 US National Championships.

In this episode, Betty looks back on her career and injuries and states that she believes everything happens for a reason. She states that even though her injuries were the biggest obstacles she faced as a gymnast, recovering from them have made her a stronger person. Betty also speaks of what she did after retiring as a gymnast and speaks of her goals in her peak training camps. She describes what makes a good coach and explains the work ethic and humility needed to be a leader. Bella expresses her views on the evolution of USA Gymnastics throughout the years since her involvement from the 1980s and speaks about the beauty of gymnasts coming together through the years has made them stronger.

Episode Highlights

  • 03:29 – Betty’s first memory of Sam
  • 04:38 – Sam’s first memory of Betty
  • 07:38 – Some of Sam’s high school memories
  • 09:38 – A big misconception of the gymnastics world
  • 10:09 – Betty explains the nature of gymnastics
  • 11:20 – Betty’s best friend came from her team
  • 13:11 – What’s so valuable about gymnastics
  • 13:49 – Why you are driven by the success of your teammates in gymnastics
  • 16:17 – Betty tells her peak through her gymnastics career
  • 18:57 – Betty tells her valley through her gymnastics career
  • 20:25 – Everything happens for a reason
  • 25:39 – Were injuries Betty’s biggest obstacles as a gymnast
  • 26:44 – When, why, and what did Betty do after she retired as a gymnast
  • 30:51 – Betty on starting her peak training camps
  • 34:14 – The story of a little girl named Allison who never gave up
  • 37:15 – What’s the definition of a good coach
  • 43:06 – What was Betty’s experience with being coached by the Karolyis
  • 50:08 – How does Betty think USA Gymnastics has changed for better and for worse since the 1980s
  • 53:00 – What are some of Betty’s hobbies
  • 57:38 – Combining play with work
  • 59:02 – What is one thing listeners can do to get one percent better each day

Tweetable Quotes

Links Mentioned

Destira: Gymnastics Leotards & Accessories

Tumbl Trak: Gymnastic, Cheer, Dance, Martial Arts and Special Needs Equipment

Betty’s Instagram

Betty’s Twitter

Betty’s Website

Connect with Sam

Sam on Instagram

BeamQueenBootcamp on Instagram

Sam on Twitter

Sam on Facebook

Podcast production and marketing provided by Fullcast.

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