Host City: Atlanta, United States
Date Started: July 20, 1996
Date Finished: July 29, 1996
Participants: 216 (111 men and 105 women) from 36 countries
Youngest Participant: Kirsty Leigh-Brown (14 years, 251 days)
Oldest Participant: Donghua Li (29 years, 253 days)
Most Medals (Athlete): Aleksey Nemov (6 medals)
Most Medals (Country): Romania (10 medals)
The 1996 Olympic gymnastics competition took place in the [Georgia Dome] in Atlanta, the home of the NFL's Atlanta Falcons. The competition was also the first at the Olympics since the complete break-up of the Soviet Union, which had been dominant in women's gymnastics since 1952, and in men's gymnastics was one of two top dominant nations, with Japan, during that time. In 1992 the Soviet Union no longer existed but a reincarnation of many of the several republics competed as the Unified Team, which was effectively the same entity for gymnastic purposes.
On the men's side, Russia still won the most medals, with six, while China and Belarus won four each, but only Russia won two gold medals, as seven nations won gold medals. Among the women, Romania won eight medals but only one gold, while the United States and the Ukraine won two gold medals, with the USA winning four medals in all.
There were some changes in format. In the individual all-around 36 gymnasts still advanced from the team all-around qualifying, with a max of three gymnasts per nation, but the qualifying scores were now thrown out, and only the final round score was used to determine individual all-around placements and medals. The team all-around was also slightly different. For years, the event had consisted of six-person teams, with the five best all-around scores counting towards the team scores. It was changed slightly in 1992 when the five best scores on each apparatus routine, compulsory and optional, were used for the team scores. In 1996, teams were allowed seven gymnasts, choosing six to compete on each apparatus, with the five best scores on each apparatus counting towards the team score.