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trudacia's avatar

Do you believe that all the Chinese athletes in the Olympics are at least 16 years old.

Asked by trudacia (2508 points ) August 10th, 2008 from iPhone

Maybe it’s just me but these girls don’t look a day over 12. The commentators seem to agree but don’t say it outright.

It all seems a little shady and disturbing.

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22 Answers

sndfreQ's avatar

I’m not sure there’s a minimum age; on the opening ceremony one of the former eastern-block countries (can’t remember) had a 14 year-old. Curious.

trudacia's avatar

I’m sure the minimum age for gymnasts is 16.

simone54's avatar

There is a swimmer that is 14.

DrasticDreamer's avatar

The minimum age is 14, but there’s a question up in the air about one of the Chinese girls competing. Her identification said she was 13 one week and then two weeks later her passport said she was 16. So, I’m sure that some of them are probably under the minimum age requirement.

Eureka's avatar

I saw the girl they were talking about. No freaking way she is 16.

trudacia's avatar

@eueka, she looked about 11? Am I right? They have pretty much said that something sketchy is going on without actually saying it.

Eureka's avatar

12 at the most. They were saying the Chinese government visits schools looking for girls that are flexible and take them into training “schools”. I also wonder what , if anything, they have been threatened with if they fail.

Eureka's avatar

Some of the kids go into training at the age of 3 or 4. Very sad.

XCNuse's avatar

No! I was just commenting this on twitter, after watching those girls on the offset poles, they looked like they were 10 to like 13 at the oldest!

El_Cadejo's avatar

Oh yea definitely not older than 13 they looked 11–12 imo. I can see trying to cheat one or two years younger than the rules, but come on this was just obvious.

Skyrail's avatar

I’ve not watched any of it so if anyone has any actual info I may have some input. I know there’s one British lad who’s 14 but I don’t know about anybody else.

shrubbery's avatar

Well I think there’s a coxswain that’s 13 so I guess there isn’t a minimum age or they make exceptions or something. But what you guys are saying does sound a bit iffy.

bluemukaki's avatar

As for the whole China seeking out kids who will perform well at the olympics, Russia and Australia also do a lot of testing and measuring of kids to find new athletes! Its all a big business for countries these days.

There’s a 14 year old British Diver in the games too, so maybe there isn’t an age limit? I don’t see why there would be, most kids will get beaten and if they’re good enough to compete, why stop them because they are younger than everyone else?

trudacia's avatar

From Newsweek article dated 8/11/08:
Re: Gymnasts. According to the international federation rules, Olympic and world championship competitors must turn 16 during the year they participate. The two Chinese women who have qualified for the individual all-around – Yang Yilin and Jiang Yuyuan – were named in several news reports as having birth dates on provincial registration lists in 1993 and 1994. According to passport information submitted to become Olympics eligible, they are now 16.

After China outscored the United States in team qualifications, Karolyi said the Chinese team is using “half-people” and that China is arrogant. “These people think we are stupid,” Karolyi said.

International federation officials have reiterated over the last two weeks that it is not their job to investigate “Internet” reports or challenge the passport information submitted by a federation.

“We are in the business of gymnastics,” Karolyi said. “We know what a kid of 14 or 15 or 16 looks like. What kind of slap in the face is this? They are 12, 14 years old and they get lined up and the government backs them and the federation runs away. There is an age limit and it can’t be controlled

bluemukaki's avatar

@trdacia: So how did the British team get Thomas Daley, who is 14, into the Diving team? It sounds like the IOC et al. don’t really care about it at all…

trudacia's avatar

The age requirement I mentioned is for gymnasts only. Not sure about diving or other sports.

8lightminutesaway's avatar

just watched a video of them online… some of them are definitely not 16… Its kind of gross to see such young kids out there, and that someone encouraged them to cheat. Meh, what can we do now except beat them.

allengreen's avatar

no way those girls are 16—no possible way

alexalexalex's avatar

But all the Chinese girls look so young. Some PHD in our school are over 25, but look like 18, and they are shy.

gooch's avatar

No there are not age restrictions in all sports.

Meathooks24's avatar

No they all look too young and I believe that they should make it the legal age of 18for certain sports, That way there can’t be any arguements about minors. I know it should be equal for all people but some children can’t handle the stress.

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