1984 Olympic Champion, Bart Conner is the only American male gymnast to win gold medals at every level of national and international competition. Bart Conner has been a USA Champion, NCAA Champion, Pan-American Games Champion, World Champion, World Cup Champion, and an Olympic Champion.
Bart Conner was a member of three Olympic Teams in 1976, 1980 and 1984. It was in the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics where he made a dramatic comeback from his second torn biceps injury to win two gold medals, one as a member of the US team. Bart Conner earned his second gold with a score of perfect 10 on the parallel bars.
Bart Conner’s interest in gymnastics began in grade school gym class when he excelled at acrobatic moves. As a child he participated in many sports, but, at every opportunity, Bart Conner could be seen trying handstands. By the time he was a teenager, he had a set of parallel bars in his back yard and a pommel horse in his basement.
In the fall of 1976, Bart Conner moved to Norman, OK to attend the University of Oklahoma, and to be coached by Paul Ziert. While at OU, Bart Conner earned 14 NCAA All-America honors, and led his team to 2 national team titles.
After graduating with a degree in Journalism in 1984, Bart Conner went into business with Ziert. Today, they own several gymnastics related business interests, including the Bart Conner Gymnastics Academy, where more than 1000 gymnasts train at every level, from beginning motor skill development to elite athletes aiming for college scholarships, and spots of the US National team.
In 1992, Bart Conner and Ziert took over International GYMNAST magazine, the premier international gymnastics magazine. 2006 marks the 50th Anniversary of IG, which ships to more than 15,000 serious gymnastics enthusiasts in 70 countries.
In 1996, Ziert and Bart Conner formed Grips, Etc., a gymnastics supply company. That same year they opened up a new office building and factory in Norman, OK to produce gymnastics grips, t-shirts, and tumbling shoes.
Bart Conner still enjoys high visibility as a TV color commentator and public speaker. He has worked as an expert announcer for every major television network. Bart Conner’s production company, Perfect 10 Productions, has produced gymnastics TV shows for ESPN, Fox Sports Net, Oxygen TV, and the World Championship Sports Network.
Bart Conner has appeared in television and feature films, including, RAD…about BMX Bike racing, Peaceful Warrior, and the 2006 Disney gymnastics feature, “Stick It” starring Jeff Bridges.
In 1996, Bart Conner married Romanian Olympic Champion, Nadia Comaneci in a lavish state wedding in Bucharest, Romania.
Today, Conner and Comaneci are involved in several charities including the Executive Board of Special Olympics International, and the Board of Directors of the Muscular Dystrophy Association.
In 1991, Bart Conner was inducted into the US Olympic Hall of Fame, and in 1997, he was inducted into the International Gymnastics Hall of Fame. In 2006, Conner’s Olympic Gold medal winning team was inducted into the US Olympic Hall of Fame.
Along with some of their fellow Olympic medalists, Conner and Comaneci contributed a chapter to an inspirational book called “Awaken the Olympian Within.”
On June 3, 2006, Bart Conner and Comaneci welcomed their son, Dylan Paul Conner, into the world. Dylan, who was born a few weeks early, was 4lbs. 10 oz., and 17 and 1/2 inches long at birth, is doing well. In fact, Bart Conner boasts, “he already has a pretty good set of biceps!”
Today, Bart Conner and Comaneci continue to travel the world delivering inspirational speeches, as well as promoting their charities, gymnastics, fitness and healthy lifestyles.