Kurt Thomas

  • United States of America

With his explosive style and flair, there is no question that Thomas’ exciting performances raised the bar for the future of the U.S. program. And his trademark Thomas flair will forever be a symbol of his creativity and daring.

With just the right mix of aggressive attitude and physical strength, Thomas seemed destined for greatness in his chosen sport.

Kurt Thomas was born on March 29, in 1956, in Miami, Florida. With the help of coaches Don Gutsler and Bruce Davis, Thomas excelled quickly. They had to encourage Thomas to enter his first AAU Nationals, and as they say, the rest is history.

With just the right mix of aggressive attitude and physical strength, Thomas seemed destined for greatness in his chosen sport. By the time of the 1976 Olympics, Thomas’ skill and explosive power were beginning to get noticed. But it was the introduction of the Thomas flair that forever sealed his stamp on the sport.

At the 1978 World Championships in Strasbourg, France, Thomas delivered one of U.S. gymnastics’ finest triumphs, winning the gold medal in floor exercise with a 9.90 in the finals. 

His mastery continued through the 1979 World Championships, in Fort Worth, Texas, where Thomas won six medals, including gold in the floor exercise and the high bar. 

In response to the Olympic boycott in 1980, Thomas elected to retire and focus on professional tours, coaching, and even a stint in the movies. In total, Thomas won 12 major international medals at the World Championships and World Cup competitions. 

With his explosive style and flair, there is no question that Thomas’ exciting performances raised the bar for the future of the U.S. program. And his trademark Thomas flair will forever be a symbol of his creativity and daring. 

1978 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS

  • Gold Medalist & European Champion
    • Floor Exercise

1979 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS

  • Gold Medalist & World Champion:
    • Floor Exercise
  • Silver Medalist:
    • All-Around
    • Pommel Horse
    • Parallel Bars (T)

2003 INTERNATIONAL GYMNASTICS HALL OF FAME

  • Inducted as a member of the Class of 2003

Induction Speech Video