GERMANTOWN -- A little girl from Cedarburg stands tall when it comes to doing pull-ups. In fact, she is a world record holder.
The fact that Madison Long has done something special is not surprising to her parents.
"She's always been awesome. She's the type of child that forces you to be a good parent, in your face like watch, watch, watch. She always has to show you something," said Safiyah Long, Madison's mom.
When you throw an infant in the air, she was very much aware of her body compared to our other kids, even at such a young age. She's always been very headstrong and very determined, and very competitive as well, which helps with athletics, and she has an amazing amount of strength," said Matt Long, Madison's dad.
Now, she has a world record. For Madison, there's a fairly simple explanation for that.
"I like working hard at stuff that I do," said Madison. 67
Madison works hard on the equipment at LaFleur's Gymnastics Academy in Germantown, often with her older sister Christine. She has all-around ability but stands out on the bars.
"Usually we do chin-up pullovers where you do a chin-up and then you pullover," said Madison.
When she and her dad learned from Dale Harder, an independent judging official in California, that the world record for consecutive pull-ups for a five-year-old was 14, she saw an attainable goal. The idea of trying for a new record took root, and Christine would be among those there for support.
"She's the one who's always behind everybody, like encouraging," said Safiyah.
"I thought she was going to get it because she's been practicing really hard and every time she tries it, she makes it," said Christine Long, Madison's sister.
The whole process is very interesting. To actually try for the world record, the judge in Calirfornia encouraged the Longs to have some people moving around in the background behind Madison on the bar in the video, or have a song playing -- something that shows that this couldn't have been doctored.
For a pull-up to count as consecutive, the chin has to clear the bar but you can't rest on the bar or down in a locked arm position for more than a second. Leg movement designed to boost momentum is not allowed.
In her first recorded try for the record, Madison did 19 pull-ups, receiving credit for 18 after Harder's video evaluation.
That shattered the existing mark.
"Immediately after we found out that the judge had certified 18 and that she had officially broken the record of 14, Madison's first question was, well what's the six-year-old record because I want to break that too," said Matt.
That record is 18, the same number five-year-old Madison accomplished on video. She may very well do something special again, which won't surprise her folks at all.