When talking about his impact as an out gymnast, Heath Thorpe often points to the Code of Points. Male gymnasts are judged on a more rigid scale than their female counterparts, with leaps and other dance elements not counted in their favor.

But those frustration provisions are no longer in place! It looks like Thorpe’s advocacy has paid off.

The 2025-28 Code of Points was released Monday, and Thorpe says the new scoring formula works to his benefit. Finally, leaps and releases will count!

While the details are wonky, Thorpe shared an image on his Instagram story that helps explain the change.

A former jazz and hip hop dancer, Thorpe takes his agile moves to the mat. The native Australian has said for a long time one of his primary goals is opening up the men’s Code of Points to reward flamboyancy.

Arthur Gander, the person credited with creating the Code of Points, explicitly said he wanted to discourage femininity. “Men must be careful of going too far with the feminine trend,” he told Modern Gymnast in 1968.

Thorpe is proud to sidestep Gander’s warning.

“You’re told from a young age that the sport you’re doing is emasculating, essentially,” he told Inside Gymnastics. “I think in retaliation to that, men’s gymnastics has created this environment of hyper masculinity and heteronormativity. Artistry in the eyes of men’s gymnastics equals femininity and for some reason we see that as a bad thing.”

But those antiquated mindsets appear to be shifting. Thorpe expects the changes to work to his advantage.

“Thinking about how I used to get bullied by grown men as a child for doing ‘gay’ releases on high bar and now those very skills will give me one of the highest potential start values in the world next Olympic cycle,” he posted on social media.

It’s wonderful when life comes full circle, isn’t it?!

The scoring change is especially sweet for Thorpe, considering the trying year he’s experienced. Despite winning the Australian All-Around Championships, he was inexplicably snubbed from the country’s team for the World Championships. 

Thorpe appealed the decision, but dropped his case when he lacked the financial means to continue.

“I am absolutely heartbroken to share that I have not been selected to the Australian team for the 2023 World Gymnastics Championships,” Thorpe posted at the time. “Despite my many results and improvements this year alone, including my recent Australian All-Around title, I will not be one of the five Aussie gymnasts afforded an opportunity to compete in the biggest Olympic qualifier come October.”

Never one to wallow, Thorpe found his way to the World Championships, anyway. He obtained credentials to work as a journalist, conducting interviews with some of the sport’s biggest stars.

One of his biggest fans, gold medalist Simone Biles, even gave him a special shoutout.

Following the World Championships, Thorpe decided to stay in Europe and train in Belgium, where he’s been living for the last several months.

Determined to qualify for the Paris Games, Thorpe participated in two training sessions per day with Belgium’s top gymnasts. He provided his followers with an inside look at his intensive regimen at the start of the year.

Appropriately, a track titled “Life gets hard” is playing in the background.

It’s apparent that all of Thorpe’s hard work has paid off. He recently won his first ever international All-Around medal in Luxembourg, while also winning silver in the high bar and bronze on the high bar.

Those medals aren’t Thorpe’s only triumphs, either. His Olympic dreams are still very much alive! He was selected as one of four Australian gymnasts who will be competing for a spot in the Olympics at next month’s Oceanic Championships.

“Regardless of the outcome, I feel proud to have persevered over these last few months and even more blessed to have so much support from you all,” he shared on Instagram. “Here is to hard work and big dreams. Let’s see what the next 5 weeks brings!”

Suffice to say, Thorpe’s time in Belgium was a success. He’s on his way home; but before that, made sure to gift his fans with us one last European photo dump.

Naturally, the gallery leads with a thirst trap 😛😛😛.

Thorpe is on a roll, and with the long-awaited scoring changes, one of our favorite heartthrobs should only score more 10s from here on out!

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