Host City: Beijing, China
Date Started: August 9, 2008
Date Finished: August 19, 2008
Participants: 196 (98 men and 98 women) from 40 countries
Youngest Participant: Jo Hyun-Joo (15 years, 241 days)
Oldest Participant: Yordan Yovchev (35 years, 167 days)
Most Medals (Athlete): Nastia Liukin (5 medals)
Most Medals (Country): China (14 medals)
The 2008 gymnastics tournament took place at the [Guojia Tiyuguan], Beijing Aolinpike Gongyuan, better known as the Beijing National Indoor Stadium. Seating 18,000, it was constructed specifically for the 2008 Olympics, was completed in 2007, and also hosted trampoline and handball competition.
In men's gymnastics, China's dominance harkened back to the days of the Soviet women, as they won seven of the eight events and eight medals in all. Their women also won two events and six medals, but they were surpassed by the United States women, who won two gold medals, adding five silvers, and a bronze, for eight medals in all. Individually, China's Zou Kai won three golds on the men's side, while among the women, the big medal winners were Americans Nastia Liukin, with five medals (one gold), and Shawn Johnson, with four medals and one gold.
A major change occurred in Olympic gymnastics in 2008, as the new scoring system, first introduced at the 2006 World Championships, was used for the first time at the Olympics. This was an open-ended scoring system, with gymnasts theoretically able to score as many points as possible, putting an end to the long used perfect 10.0 scoring. In actuality, high scores tended to be in the 15-16 point range with the new system.