The first evidence of gymnastics at Western Reserve University appeared for the 1938/39 academic year. From that time to 1958/59 (the last year there was documentation of gymnastics), the status of gymnastics changed frequently. Sometimes it was a varsity sport, sometimes part of intramurals, sometimes it was like a club.
The national gymnastic fraternity, Gamma Phi, organized a chapter at WRU in 1950.
The WRU Athletic Board, at a meeting on October 3, 1950, passed a resolution regarding gymnastics: "future gymnastic teams, conducted under the supervision and financial support of the Physical Education Department, be approved and accorded varsity recognition subject to detailed rules and regulations to be presented to the Board at a later date."
The few WRU Athletic Board minutes in the Archives after this meeting do not provide any further information on gymnastics.
There are two confirmed years of intercollegiate meets: 1949/50 and 1952/53. However, even this information is not clear. The WRU student newspaper, Reserve Tribune, reported a January 13, 1950 triangular meet between Kent State University, Case and WRU. Yet there was no mention of this meet in the Case student newspaper, The Case Tech.
The WRU yearbook in 1952/53 mentioned that the WRU team competed against both Ohio State University and Case. There is no record in the Case student newspaper or yearbook of WRU and Case meeting.
Records confirm that there was no varsity team in 1940/41, 1951/52, 1953/54, and 1956/57.
Years which may or may not have had a varsity team include 1938/39-1939/40, 1941/42-1948/49, 1950/51, 1954/55-1955/56, 1957/58-1958/59.
This summary was compiled by staff of the Archives from sources in the custody of the Archives.
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