Optimize Your Gymnastics Performance

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How To Use Nutritional Supplements To Maximize Your Gymnastics Performance

foundational nutrition

Step 1 - Choose Your Multi-Vitamin

A Multi-Vitamin & Mineral Complex will be the staple of your supplement protocol by providing the vitamins and minerals needed for health & performance.

Take the Quiz from Thorne® to find the perfect multi-vitamin for you.

Multi-Vitamin Elite

Male & Female Competitive gymnasts ages 11 and Up.  Take AM dose with breakfast and PM with dinner.

Basic Nutrients 2/Day

Male & Female gymnasts, training 3 to 5 times a week.  Ages 11 and Up.  Take 1 serving at breakfast.

Children's Basic Nutrients

Children ages 1 to 10.  Currently discontinued.  New Version coming soon!

6 Reasons Why You Need a Multi-Vitamin Regardless of Your Diet

A good multi-vitamin is considered "dietary insurance" to ensure essential nutrients are being consumed daily.

6 Reasons Why You Need  A Multi-Vitamin

#1  Depleted Soil

Industrial agriculture has depleted the nutrient content of soil.  Soil nutrient depletion results in less nutritious vegetables, fruits, and other plant foods.  Studies show that plants grown with modern fertilizer can contain only 25% of the micro-nutrients of plants grown using the more traditional farming methods of the past.

#2  Food starts to lose nutrients as soon as it is harvested. 

Modern harvesting, shipping, processing and storage techniques degrade the nutrient content of food.  The long distances that most produce travels before reaching our plates causes significant declines in nutrient levels.  Furthermore, when produce is picked out of season, the nutrient content is significantly decreased compared to in-season produce.

#3  Pesticides, Herbicides, and Pollutants

Pesticides and herbicides found in the modern food supply are exacerbating our toxic load.  Adding to this burden are factors like low-quality water, environmental contaminants from elements like degraded plastic, airborne pollutants like carbon monoxide, lead and mercury. These synergistic factors vastly increase your need for extra vitamins, minerals and nutrients to combat the formation of free radicals and the attack on your metabolism and immune system.

#4  Athletes need higher amounts of nutrients

The amount of extra oxygen and energy used by athletes requires far more than the nutritional recommended daily allowance (RDA) of the average population. Consuming only the stated RDA can actually limit your athletic performance. If you are a competitive athlete training multiple times a week, you'll most likely need supplements to meet your nutritional requirements.  

#5  People are finicky 

Most people are very insistent on what they will and will not eat, especially kids.  Trying to get kids, adolescents, or even adults, to eat enough vegetables in a day to fulfill nutrient demands can be nearly impossible.     

#6  Nutrient deficiencies are extremely common in the U.S.

Concerning research indicates that one-third of Americans are at risk for at least one vitamin deficiency or anemia, despite the plethora of food options available.  One of the reasons for nutrient deficiencies in the U.S. is the widespread consumption of a nutrient-poor, processed Standard American Diet.

Why Your Current Multi-vitamin Might Be Harmful

Thorne's Multi-Vitamins are formulated with superior forms of vitamins and minerals designed by a team of researchers and doctors.  For example, the Multi-Vitamin Elite is actually two unique formulations – the AM formula is designed to support daytime energy, and the PM formula is designed to support better rest and recovery in the evening. 

Some of the key differentiators in Multi-Vitamin Elite include:

  • Vitamins K1 and K2 (most use only K1 or no K2 at all)
  • Natural folate (5-MTHF) instead of synthetic folic acid
  • Natural form of B12 (Methylcobalamin instead of cyanocobalamin; a derivative of cyanide)
  • Chelated minerals to ensure optimal absorption
  • Higher doses of magnesium and calcium than typically found in a multivitamin
  • Natural anti-inflammatory Curcumin Phytosome (curcumin complexed with phosphatidylcholine for superior bioavailability)
  • Green Tea Phytosome (antioxidant of green tea complexed with phosphatidylcholine for superior bioavailability)
  • Relora, a blend of adaptogenic plant extracts to aid in relaxation, curb late-night cravings, and balance cortisol, testosterone and DHEA levels. 
  • No wheat, corn, gluten, yeast, egg, dairy products, artificial colors, artificial sweeteners, artificial flavors, lactose, magnesium stearate, palmitic acid or stearic acid.

If you see any of the synthetic versions of Vitamin E (DL-alpha-tocopherol acetate), Vitamin B9 (folic acid), or Vitamin B12(cyanocobalamin) in your current  multi-vitamin, you can be certain the entire multivitamin is synthetic, poor quality, and useless.

The bottom-line...avoid mass-market synthetics like Centrum, drug store chain brands, grocery store chain brands, most vitamin store chain brands, and membership club brands.

foundational nutrition

Step 2 - Choose Your Fish Oil

Fish Oil helps maintain the body's normal inflammatory response in muscles and joints.  It enhances mood, supports a healthy heart, brain, and insulin response. 

Take the Quiz from Thorne® to find the perfect Fish Oil for you.  

Super EPA

Highest quality fish oil; appropriate for everyone.  Can be taken anytime.  

Omega Superb

Lightly sweetened-berry flavor in an easy to swallow liquid for kids. Can be taken anytime.

Protect Your Joints, Reduce Inflammation, and Enhance Your Brain With Fish Oil

Thorne's Super EPA - A premium fish oil supplement containing the essential Omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA

Omega-3 fatty acids are categorized as essential fatty acids because humans must obtain them from food or supplementation.  They offer a broad range of health benefits:

Cardiovascular system - support good circulation by promoting healthy blood vessels, enhancing blood flow by optimizing vascular endothelial function, and maintaining already normal triglyceride and cholesterol levels.
Brain - 60% of your brain is made up of fat cells. Omega-3 fatty acids make up part of the outer membrane of brain cells where nerve signals pass making omega-3 fatty acids essential for a well-functioning central nervous system.
Joints - Supports the normal inflammatory response in joints and muscles, which helps protect them from damage and supports flexibility.

Thorne's Super EPA, a best-selling product for more than two decades, provides the highest quality, purest fish oil available.  Molecular distillation is utilized to ensure the removal of cholesterol and contaminants from the raw ingredients, including PCBs and heavy metals.

performance nutrition

Step 3 - Add Performance Essentials

Take your training and performance to the next level.  Thorne's Amino Complex and Meriva-500 will help you fuel muscle recovery, repair injuries, increase strength, strengthen bones, reduce inflammation, and protect joint health.  

*The Multi-Vitamin Elite already includes 200mg of Meriva-500, so you can skip it or add an additional 500mg (1 pill) of Meriva-500 for aches and pains.

Amino Complex

Essential for muscle recovery.  Use 1-2 scoops in water pre or post workout.


Natural alternative to ibuprofen for joint pain and inflammation.  Take 1-2 capsules once a day.

Optional Recommendation


Increase power, strength, endurance, & work capacity.  2.5 to 5 grams a day.  

Amino Complex - Recover faster so you can train harder and outperform your competition

Thorne's Amino Complex - a comprehensive blend of essential amino acids

Gymnastics training causes micro trauma to muscles. The body is constantly fighting an uphill battle to repair damaged muscles, tendons, and ligaments due to the demands of the sport. Amino Acids are the building blocks of protein that are used to remodel tissue after damage. The body cannot make essential amino acids, so they must be obtained from the diet. Gymnasts who never seem to get stronger, are constantly sore, or have injuries that will not heal are usually lacking essential amino acids.  

Thorne's Amino Complex is a comprehensive blend of essential amino acids. Amino Complex is the best supplement a gymnast can use for muscle recovery. The faster a gymnast can recover, the harder they can train.

EAAs benefit the body in multiple ways:

Build Muscle
Repair Injuries
Speed Recovery
Strengthen Connective Tissue
Strengthen Bones

Meriva 500 - Reduce Pain & Inflammation without the harmful side effects of Ibuprofen 

Meriva 500 - The most clinically studied Curcumin on the market

Gymnastics training causes inflammation. While inflammation is a natural process that signals the body to send resources to injured areas, chronic inflammation causes gridlock; blocking fresh blood and oxygen from reaching inflamed areas. Too many gymnasts rely on Ibuprofen, Motrin, Advil or other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) for pain management.  It is a well known fact that these drugs can cause gastrointestinal damage, ulcers, internal bleeding, as well as, heart and kidney problems. 

Thorne's Meriva 500 is a patented form of the plant compound Curcumin (the active ingredient in Tumeric). Used as a food ingredient in Asia for thousands of years, Curcumin is a natural potent antioxidant that offers numerous health benefits, including support for joint, liver, GI, and cardiovascular function.

Meriva 500 helps maintain a healthy inflammatory response throughout the body. It provides relief to overused muscles, joints, and injured areas. With all the health benefits Meriva 500 offers, there is simply no reason for a gymnast to rely on NSAIDs for daily inflammation.

Creatine - Support energy production and promote lean muscle mass, endurance, and power output

Creatine, an amino acid stored mostly in skeletal muscle, is necessary for creating ATP – the body’s readily usable form of energy.

Creatine is especially needed during high-intensity exercise and training to help recharge the body’s energy pools. The liver and kidneys can produce up to half of the body’s creatine needs but the remainder must come from consuming creatine in food – mainly from meat, fish, and eggs – or from supplementation.

Sports nutrition and exercise physiology research have described numerous physiological changes that occur with creatine supplementation including supporting energy production, helping to maintain and promote lean muscle mass, endurance, and power output.

Supporting these systems can result in an increased training capacity, which can enhance, improve, or quicken physical adaptations.

The International Olympic Committee recommends the following creatine protocol:

Loading Phase:  20 grams of creatine monohydrate per day divided into four equal doses for 5-7 days.
Maintenance Phase:  3-5 grams of creatine monohydrate per day in a single dose for the duration of the supplement period.
Alternate Non-loading phase:  3-5 grams of creatine monohydrate per day in a single dose for 30 days.

Creatine supplementation promotes a well-hydrated environment, indicated by water mass gains, which in turn supports protein and carbohydrate metabolism both during and following exercise.

Because creatine helps maintain hydration within the cells, an individual might weigh more when stepping on the scale after exercise because the supplemented creatine in the body can hold water in the muscles.  

*Coach Stephen recommends using a maintenance phase of 2.5 - 5 grams to increase ATP and avoid excess muscle hydration

Here is a great explanation of what creatine does to increase performance

performance nutrition

Step 4 - Add Additional Protein 

Every gymnast needs high quality protein at every meal. Protein contains the raw materials that help build our muscles, bones, connective tissues, skin, hair, and nails. Thorne's Whey or Vegan Protein powders are a convenient way to fill in the gaps in your diet.

Whey Protein Isolate

Ideal for anyone who needs additional protein in their diets.  One scoop in smoothie.


Ideal for plant-based eaters who need additional protein in their diets.  One scoop in smoothie.

Whey Protein Isolate - a simple solution to get enough protein with a busy schedule

Whey Protein Isolate - Protein in a bio-available isolate form with no artificial sweeteners

Gymnasts should consume high-quality protein at every meal. Busy schedules can make it difficult to prepare balanced, high quality meals. Also, digesting a full meal prior to practice or competition can weigh-down a gymnast and hinder performance, especially when nerves are involved.

While most whole food protein sources require preparation and refrigeration, protein powder is easily kept in a gym bag, suitcase, school locker, or a kitchen pantry for a quick serving of protein.  Protein smoothies can act as a stand-alone snack or complement a protein-deficient meal. Drinking a smoothie with protein powder, a carbohydrate, and a fat, is a great way for a gymnast to obtain a highly bio-available complete meal without the extra energy required for digestion.

Easy way to add protein to any meal
Easy to digest smoothies
Travel friendly way to get enough protein in diet

*Plant-based eaters or dairy-sensitive individuals can opt for Thorne's VegaLite, a great alternative to Whey Protein Isolate powder. 

Step 5 - Order Thorne Supplements  

Click here to go to Stephen McCain's Thorne Dispensary and create your account. This video will walk you through the sign-up process.  Add the Gymnast Nutrition recommended products to your cart.

Your 20% discount and free shipping will automatically be applied every time you login.

Order your selected supplements.  When you choose automatic repeat delivery, you'll get an additional 10% off all of your subsequent refill orders, along with free shipping.  You have complete control - select a delivery frequency and cancel or modify your order at any time.

If you have any problems, please email: 


Most comprehensive NSF Certified for Sport® line

Thorne has an NSF Certified facility and manufactures 30+ NSF Certified for Sport® products which gives athletes complete confidence in Thorne products. This is particularly important for the 12 U.S. National Teams they partner with as their exclusive nutritional supplement provider.

About Your Nutrition Coach

Stephen McCain

Stephen McCain is a 2x Olympic Gymnast and has performed on every continent except Antarctica. He is an Elite Gymnastics Coach and holds certifications from the National Academy of Sports Medicine, Precision Nutrition, & Bulletproof. 

Stephen is a World Class Biohacker with a passion for Human Optimization and increasing Healthspan.  At 48 years of age, Stephen still performs gymnastics in film, television, and commercials in Los Angeles, CA.

Statements made on this website have not been evaluated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.  The products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.  Information provided by this website or this company is not a substitute for individual medical advice.  

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