On this day: Nadia Comaneci’s first “Perfect Ten”

Nadia Comăneci 1976 uneven bars

Despite the way it is commonly reported, Romanian gymnast Nadia Comăneci was not the first gymnast to earn a perfect score of ten. She was, however, the first to do so at the Olympic Games, and there’s no denying her incredible influence on gymnastics.


On the 18th of July, 1976, Comăneci was yet to have her fifteenth birthday when she earned that perfect score on the uneven bars. She’d go on to finish her first Olympics with three gold and one silver medal. Some of the skills she was famous for are still performed.

Here is that historic performance. It is the compulsory routine, so not the routine with all her big skills, but you can see her clean technique.