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Henry Smidl

Class of 1960· Disciplines(s): Men's Artistic· Inducted as: Coach

While coaching at Chicago’s Englewood High School, Henry Smidl helped to introduce intramural gymnastics to the city’s schools, becoming a leader in bringing competitive gymnastics statewide to Illinois high school gymnastics. In the early 1920s, the former Sokol National Champion initially recruited Chicago schools Harrison High and Lane Tech for participation.

By his retirement 30 years later, he had recruited more Chicago schools for competition and won 49 high school championships during his tenure at Englewood and Lindblom High. For his efforts in developing the sport in his community, Smidl received the AAU Award for Outstanding Coach in 1957 and the Honor Coach Award seven years later.