Gymnastics is a collection of sporting disciplines involving performance of exercises requiring physical strength, agility and coordination. The most recognised form is the Artistic gymnastics discipline typically involving exercises on uneven bars, balance beam, floor exercise, and vault (for women); and high bar, parallel bars, still rings, floor exercise, vault, and pommel horse (for men). This form evolved from exercises used by the ancient Greeks, including skills for mounting and dismounting a horse, and circus performance skills. Other major Olympic Gymnastics disciplines include Trampolining and Rhythmic gymnastics.
Anastasia Valeryevna "Nastia" Liukin (born October 30, 1989) is an American retired artistic gymnast. She was the 2008 Summer Olympics individual all-around champion. She was also the 2005 and 2007 World Champion on the balance beam and the 2005 World Champion on the uneven bars. With nine World Championships medals, seven of them individual, Liukin is tied with Shannon Miller as having won the most World Championship medals of any American gymnast in history.
The daughter of two former Soviet champion gymnasts, Olympic gold medalist Valeri Liukin and World Champion rhythmic gymnast Anna Kotchneva, Nastia Liukin was born in Moscow and moved to the United States as a young child. She began gymnastics after spending time in the gym while her parents coached. Liukin was coached by her father at the World Olympic Gymnastics Academy, her family's gymnastics club in Plano, Texas.