Lausanne (SUI), FIG Office, December 4, 2013: The stars came out for the Stuttgart World Cup, the first competition of the 2013-2014 FIG World Cup series, held this past weekend in Germany. In addition to the individual World Cup event, some of the best in the world showed up to take part in the men’s and women’s Team Challenge, where the Chinese men's and women's teams emerged victorious.
Here are eight noteworthy routines:
Oleg Verniaiev (UKR), Floor Exercise: The big story in Stuttgart was that this Ukrainian talent hit all of his routines and scored a monster 92.165 points, a score that would have beaten Kohei Uchimura (JPN) for the World All-around title had he done it at the World Championships. Check out his floor exercise here: http://goo.gl/15yxJP
Elizabeth Price (USA), Vault: The raw power of the two-time Stuttgart World Cup champion on her Amanar makes it one of the best of its genre. Price has battled injuries throughout the year, but returned to Stuttgart ready to defend her title. On to Glasgow! Watch her vault here: http://goo.gl/jQFriC
Fabian Hambuechen (GER), Horizontal Bar: The stuck double double layout dismount and the way he plays to the crowd after landing it never gets old. Watch it here: http://goo.gl/XEL7c2
Larisa Iordache (ROU), Balance Beam: After a fall on Uneven Bars, Iordache came to Beam having dug herself into a hole behind leader Elizabeth Price. With this unflappable exercise, Iordache put herself back in the game. She's got potential to do even more difficulty, adding a full twist to that roundoff, layout combination. Watch the tour de force here: http://goo.gl/14r1p5
Sophie Scheder (GER), Uneven Bars: The 2013 World Bars finalist delivered one of the best sets of the year with this light, flighty routine. Scheder, the 2012 European Junior champion on bars, is just one more proof that you don't have to be short to be good at bars. Watch her routine here: http://goo.gl/XuTKOp
Marcel Nguyen (GER), Still Rings: Back in competition after a well-merited fall break, Nguyen did Rings before a respectful house that seemed not to breathe while he was on the apparatus. He got the highest score on the event in the team competition, too. Watch it here: http://goo.gl/HkxSMK
Aliya Mustafina (RUS), Balance Beam: All eyes were on the surprise 2013 World Beam champion, who added a new front aerial combination as she delivered a nearly flawless exercise during the team final in Stuttgart. Her 15.15 was the second highest score of the team competition. Check it out here: http://goo.gl/fRLb9l
Yao Jinnan (CHN), Uneven Bars: Even without the Mo salto that made people gasp at the World Championships, this routine remains one of the best in the world. The proof is in the score: 15.5, the highest of the entire team competition. Watch it here: http://goo.gl/zHfkYW
LAUSANNE (SUI), FIG Office, December 4, 2013: Over the course of six days, competitions in eight different sports, including Artistic, Rhythmic and Aerobic Gymnastics took place at the 15th Gymnasiade in Brasilia (BRA). Public and private school student athletes, as well as students from Olympic Centres between the ages of 14 to 17 from more than thirty-five countries took part in this quadrennial multi-sport event, organised by the International School Sport Federation (ISF).
Russia took the Gold in both boys’ (253.100) and girls’ (165.150) team events in Brasilia. Team England claimed Silver in the boys’ (249.150) and Bronze in the girls’ (162.950) competition, while the girls’ team of host country Brazil (164.600) ranked second and the French boys’ team won the Bronze (241.450).
Russia’s Kirill Potapov, 17, came out on top of the boys’ All-around rankings with a total score of 84.450. He was joined on the podium by England’s Nile Wilson (84.050) and Artur Dalaloyan (83.100) also of Russia.
16-year-old Alla Sosnitskaya of Russia, who has already competed on the senior World Cup circuit this year, took the girls’ All-around title with a 56.050 total, prevailing over 14-year-olds Flavia Saraiva (55.400) and Rebecca Andrade (55.350) of Brazil, who won Silver and Bronze, respectively.
England and Russia were the most successful countries in the boys’ Apparatus Finals, sharing all but four medals up for grabs on the six events. In an outstanding individual performance, Wilson added four more medals to his All-around Silver: Gold on Horizontal Bar (14.400) and Silvers on Pommel Horse, Rings and Parallel Bars.
Wilson’s compatriot Jay Thompson won Bronze on Rings, Vault and Horizontal Bar, while teammate Giarnni Reginmoran claimed the Floor title (14.450) and added Bronze on Parallel Bars. All-around Bronze medallist Dalaloyan topped the field on Rings (13.975) and Vault (14.813) and also won Silver on Horizontal Bar. Russia’s Ivan Stretovich prevailed on Parallel Bars with a score of 14.200. Joe Connor Fraser added a Bronze on Pommel Horse to England’s medal haul.
Other countries that medalled were Hungary (Silver by Botond Kardos on Floor) Chinese Taipei (Bronze on Floor by Chiahung Tang), Brazil (Silver on vault from Angelo Assumpcao) and Cyprus (Marios Georgiou won the title on Pommel Horse).
In the girls’ Apparatus Finals, the host country secured three Golds, with Saraiva prevailing on Beam (14.450) and Floor (13.775) and Andrade taking the title on Vault (15.100) for an impressive Amanar. Mariana Oliveira added Silver on Beam and Bronze on Vault for Brazil.
16-year-old Noemi Makra of Hungary, who competed at the 2013 FIG World Challenge Cup series and finished 14th in the All-around at the World Championships in Antwerp (BEL) in October, won the Uneven Bars title with 14.075 points. Makra outscored Loan His of France and Elissa Downie (GBR), the younger sister of famous barworker Rebecca Downie.
Russia added three more medals in the girls’ Apparatus Finals, with Sosnitskaya ranking second on Vault, Victoria Kuzmina third on Balance Beam and Seda Tutkhalyan third on Floor. Argiro Afrati of Greece won the country’s only medal, a Silver on Floor.
The Rhythmic Gymnastics Individual competition was dominated by 14-year-old Iuliia Bravikova of Russia, who took the Gold in the All-around with a 64.250 points, prevailing over her compatriot Veronika Poliakova (61.800) and Brazil’s Andressa Jardim (58.250).
Bravikova went on to win the Gold in three of the four Apparatus finals on Tuesday. She had the top scores on Ball (16.100), Ribbon (16.050) and Clubs (15.900) and ranked second to Poliakova (15.850) on Hoop (15.250). The latter added three Silvers to her record, while Kyriaki Alevrogianni of Greece claimed Bronze on Ball and Clubs, Polina Berezina of Spain took the Bronze on Hoop and Jardim won another Bronze on Ribbon.
As the only team that lined up in the Rhythmic Gymnastics team competition, Brazil garnered 250.000 points and took home the Gold.
Russia outscored Brazil in the Rhythmic Group competition with 31.550 to Brazil’s 29.000.
With Gold in all events but the girls’ Individual competition, Hungary dominated the Aerobic Gymnastics tournament in Brasilia. Daniel Bali took the boys’ Individual title, scoring 21.200, and added Gold in Mixed Pairs with his partner Fanni Mazacs (20.700). China’s Wang Hayou (19.600) ranked second and Paulo Santos (19.100) of Brazil third in boys’ Individual, while the Brazilian Mixed Pair (19.500) outscored China (18.350) to take Silver.
Hungary’s Trio (20.450) prevailed over China (19.150) and Brazil (18.150) and the Hungarian Group (20.650) won over Finland (18.350) and China (18.300). 16-year-old Spaniard Belen Guillemot (20.750), who ranked third at the 2012 World Age Group Competitions, took the girls’ Individual title in Brasilia, outscoring Panna Szollosi (20.000) of Hungary and Caroline Santos (19.350) of Brazil.
Photos (c) Jorge Henrique via Facebook
Among all sports, Russia topped the overall medal table in Brasilia, with a total of 62 medals (37 Gold, 16 Silver, 9 Bronze). Italy followed in second place (20 Gold, 19 Silver, 16 Bronze for a total of 55) with host country Brazil in third (19 Gold, 28 Silver, 22 Bronze, 69 total).
Full results can be found on the official event website’s bulletins.
Lausanne (SUI), FIG Office, December 2, 2013: More than 100 gymnasts from 23 countries are set to participate in the 20th annual Mikhail Voronin Cup, which begins Tuesday at the Olimpiyskiy, the 1980 Olympic stadium in Moscow (RUS).
The annual winter competition is named in honor of Voronin, who won nine Olympic medals in 1968 and 1972 and later served as President of the Russian Gymnastics Federation. It is organised by the fabled Dinamo Sports Club, where Voronin and numerous Russian greats have trained over the years.
For the first time this year, the tournament will welcome gymnasts from Cyprus, Egypt and Azerbaijan, including a very familiar name: two-time Russian Olympian Anna Pavlova, whose change in nationality to Azerbaijan was approved by the FIG Executive Committee just last week.
Since 1925, the Dinamo club has shaped more than 50 World or Olympic Gymnastics champions, including Alexander Tkatchev, Olga Mostepanova, Elena Zamolodchikova and Elvira Saadi (who named her own Gymnastics club in Canada “Dynamo” after her home club). In addition to the 20th year of the Voronin Cup, the Dinamo society, created in 1923, is also celebrating its 90th birthday.
Expected to compete this year are several of Russia's top gymnasts, including 2012 Olympians Emin Garibov and Igor Pakhomenko, as well as national team members Matvey Petrov and Andrey Cherkasov. The list of past Dynamo competitors reads like a who's who of famous eastern European gymnasts, counting Alexei Nemov, Svetlana Khorkina, Dmitri Karbanenko, Sergei Kharkov, Alexei Bondarenko, Nastia Liukin, Viktoria Komova and Aliya Mustafina among them.
Two-time World team member Anna Dementyeva (RUS) and 2010 Youth Olympic Games champion Yuya Kamoto (JPN) won the Voronin Cup in 2012.
December 3, 2013: All-around and event finals qualification
FIG Executive Committee Official News
by Mr André F. GUEISBUHLER, FIG Secretary General
LAUSANNE (SUI), FIG Office, November 28, 2013: The International Gymnastics Federation (FIG) publishes the main decisions taken by its Executive Committee during its scheduled meeting, November 21 - 22, 2013, at the federation's head office in Lausanne (SUI).
- Due to a natural disaster that struck the Philippines, the FIG Foundation Council will consider bringing aid to the Gymnastics Association of the Philippines;
- Said Foundation Council has confirmed the allocation of scholarships. A total of US$ 60,000 is available;
- The President informed that the new Athletes’ Commission is now complete, and will meet in Lausanne on January 24, 2014 to elect a President. It is made up of:
Elisabeth Tweddle MBE
Aldrin Rodriguez Garcia
- The FIG President met with a delegation from Australia and New Zealand to discuss the possible founding of a Continental Union of Oceania (OCE);
- The Executive Committee has decided to study the restructuring its Olympic contingent for Rhythmic Gymnastics, bringing from 6 to 5 the number of gymnasts in a group, which would allow for 14 instead of 12 groups to participate in the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro;
- The Executive unanimously decided to revamp the entire IRCOS system. A 2.45 million CHF wallet is allocated for the project over an 8-year period;
- The Executive took note of the Central African Gymnastics Federation’s (CAF) candidacy for the status of associated federation, as well as the readmission of Sudan (SUD) as an affiliated federation. These two points remain to be confirmed by the FIG Council in May 2014 in Kuwait City (KUW), and by the General Assembly in Tashkent (UZB) in October 2014;
- The “World Class Gymnasts” regulation has been extended to include the Aerobic Dance and Aerobic Step categories. Results from the 2013 World Games in Cali (COL) and the 2012 World Championships in Sofia (BUL) will count retroactively;
- The concept of a gift in the “FIG Code of Ethics” has been brought into compliance with the current IOC document. Starting today, all infractions will be brought before the FIG Disciplinary Commission;
- Following the October 2013 Symposium on calendar coordination and the new Olympic qualifying system, the Executive has examined the desired trajectories. A working group will meet in January 2014 to finalise proposals that will then be submitted to the Executive and FIG Council;
- At the close of the three world championships held in 2013, the Medical Commission informed that in terms of accidents, this year showed the lowest number of accidents over the past twenty years;
- From 2011 – 2013, the Medical Commission conducted 950 antidoping tests. Three positive, venial cases were recorded in all (furosemide, cannabis, stimulant);
- The Gymnastics for All Committee, in collaboration with British Gymnastics, will hold a Symposium on gymnastics for the disabled under the non-competitive Gymnastics for All umbrella;
- Organisers of the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro (BRA) have secured the services of Ms Naomi Valenzo (MEX), FIG Women’s Technical Committee Vice-President, for the position of Director of Gymnastics Competitions. The same organisers have confirmed the organisation of a gymnastics Gala;
- The 30th Trampoline Gymnastics World Championships 2014 will be held in Daytona Beach (USA), November 7 - 9;
- The 13th Aerobic Gymnastics World Championships 2014 are slated for June 27 – 29 in Cancun (MEX);
- The 24th Acrobatic Gymnastics World Championships 2014 will be held in Levallois (FRA), July 10 - 12;
- Finnish organisers of the 15th World Gymnaestrada in Helsinki report 21,000 registered participants to date;
- Change in nationality:
De JESUS Sophina
HERNANDEZ RECALDE Angel
HERNANDEZ RECALDE Katish
PLUZHNIKOV Konstantin Sergey
- At the close of the 2013 Artistic worlds, the Men’s and Women’s Technical Committees submitted various changes to the codes of points for Executive Committee approval. These modifications will come into force as of May 1, 2014;
- Following the World Games in Cali, the Acrobatic Gymnastics Technical Committee proposed modifications to its code of points, proposals which were accepted by the Executive and which will come into force as of May 1, 2014;
- The Executive gave the Presidential Board the power to accept modifications to the Rhythmic Gymnastics code of points at its January 2014 meeting. These changes will be valid for the 2014 Rhythmic worlds in Izmir (TUR);
- Members reviewed the competitions programme for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio (BRA);
- The Executive approved judge selection criteria for the 2014 YOG;
- The FIG President set up a working group to examine the negotiation and validation procedure for all television and marketing contracts. The working group is composed of Vasily Titov (RUS - President), Morinari Watanabe (JPN) and Georges Guelzec (FRA), Members;
- Members of the Executive modified the Specific Judges’ Rules for Men’s Artistic Gymnastics, which will allow some ten judges to obtain a category 1 brevet.
The next FIG Executive Committee meeting will be held at the FIG head office in Lausanne (SUI), February 27 – 28, 2014.
Lausanne (SUI), FIG Office, November 27, 2013: An eclectic mix of veterans and newcomers make up the field for this weekend's third annual Abierto Mexicano de Gimnasia, beginning Thursday at the Fairmont Acapulco Princess Resort in Acapulco (MEX).
2011 Pan American Games champion Jossimar Calvo, a World finalist on Horizontal Bar this year, is one of the top contenders for a men's title that usually includes a sombrero to be worn on the medal podium. Challengers include 2012 Olympian Vlad Cotuna (ROU), 2012 Olympic alternate Nikita Ignatyev (RUS), Koji Uematsu (JPN), Ruben Lopez (ESP), Francisco Barreto (BRA) and Josh Dixon (USA).
Newcomers Ludovico Edalli (ITA), Zhang Yang (CHN), Joshua Stuart (CAN), Yevgeni Yudenkov (UKR) will also take part in the two-day All-around competition. In the absence of World pommel horse silver medalist Daniel Corral, who is already preparing for next year's competitions, Kevin Ricardo Cerda (MEX) will represent the home country.
The women's field includes six-time Olympian Oksana Chusovitina (UZB) and 2013 Worlds competitors Roxana Popa (ESP), Zeng Siqi (CHN), Angelina Kysla (UKR), Karla Torres (MEX) and Francesca Deagostino (ITA). They are joined by first-year seniors Mariana Valentin (BRA), Evgenia Shelgunova (RUS), Maggie Nichols and Peyton Ernst (USA), as well as Canadian hopeful Sabrina Gill.
For the first time, this year's Abierto de Mexicana also features an international junior competition, with men's and women's teams from Brazil, Mexico and the United States. 2016 Olympic hopefuls in the mix include Brazil's Rebeca Andrade, one of the only juniors in the world to have landed an Amanar vault in competition, as well as American Junior National champion Bailie Key.
Honored guests Nadia Comaneci (ROU) and Svetlana Boginskaya (BLR) will also take part in the festivities, while Yin Alvarez (USA) and 1996 Olympic champion Lilia Podkopayeva (UKR), among others, will give clinics.
Olympians Ksenia Afanasyeva (RUS) and Danell Leyva (USA) won the inaugural Abierto de Gimnasia (and sombreros) in 2011. Ukraine's Oleg Verniaiev and Brenna Dowell (USA) were the champions in 2012. Fan favorite Afanasyeva, who missed the 2013 Worlds after ankle surgery, was initially scheduled to compete this weekend, but has been replaced by Shelgunova. Deagostino has stepped in for teammate Elisa Meneghini (ITA), while Ernst replaces Elizabeth Price (USA), who will be competing at the FIG World Cup in Stuttgart, Germany instead.
LAUSANNE (SUI), FIG Office, November 26, 2013: Organised by the International School Sport Federation (ISF), the 15th Gymnasiade will be held in Brasilia (BRA) from November 28 – December 4, 2013. This quadriennial international multi-sport event for school children between the age of 13 and 17 is the largest event held by the ISF.
Brazil’s capital city is preparing to host two thousand participants from 40 different countries for the 15th edition of the event that was inaugurated 1974 in Wiesbaden (GER). The young athletes compete in eight different sports: Artistic, Rhythmic and Aerobic Gymnastics, Swimming, Athletics, Judo, Karate and Chess.
While Brasilia’s impressive Nilson Nelson Gymnasium will host the Artistic Gymnastics events, Rhythmic and Aerobic gymnasts are scheduled to perform at the Convention Centre Ulysses Guimaraes in the heart of the city.
Nilson Nelson Gymnasium
Convention Centre Ulysses Guimaraes
Photos (c) LOC
Selected over Palma de Mallorca (ESP), Brasilia is the first city on the American continent to host the Gymnasiade. The event is co-organised by the Brazilian Federal District Government’s Secretariat of Sports in partnership with the country’s Ministry of Sports and the Brazilian School Sport Confederation (CBDE).
The previous edition of the Gymnasiade took place in 2009 in Doha (QAT).
LAUSANNE (SUI), FIG Office, November 25, 2013: The Finnish men and the Welsh women successfully defended their team titles at the 2013 Northern European Gymnastics Championships, held this weekend in Lisburn, Northern Ireland.
Finland returned several members of its men's team that captured the team title last year to mount a successful title defense, the team's 247.475 points outpacing Scotland (243.600) and Wales (241.025) in a tightly contested race.
The Welsh women once again took the team gold with 155.150 points, besting Scotland (153.300) and host country Northern Ireland (147.250), which climbed from ninth place in 2012 to bronze this year after strong contributions from all team members, including 2013 FIG World Championships competitors India McPeak and Nicole Mawhinney.
In the Women's All-around final, Scotland's Amy Regan tied 2012 Junior European British team member Georgina Hockenhull for the title, each scoring 52.600. Wales's Elizabeth Beddoe finished with the bronze (51.100).
Regan continued her success with gold medals on Vault (13.763 average) and Floor (13.775), and also added a silver on Balance Beam (12.700), bringing her total medal count to five at this Championships. Northern Ireland newcomer Casey Bell claimed three medals for the host country in event finals, sharing gold on Uneven Bars with Finland's Erika Pakkala (12.650) and winning silver on Vault (13.500) and bronze on Floor (12.575). Erin McLachlan gave Scotland another gold on Balance Beam (13.4).
In the men's competition, Norway's Stian Skjerahaug posted 82.500 points to win the All-around, with Finland's Oskar Kirmes taking silver (81.750) and Welsh veteran Clinton Purnell bronze (80.900). Skjerahaug added another three medals in event finals, winning gold on Parallel Bars (14.250) and adding bronzes on Pommel Horse (13.800) and Horizontal Bar (13.475).
Finnish gymnasts won half the golds up for grabs in men's event finals: Juho Kanerva and Markku Vahtila took gold on Pommel Horse (14.475) and Still Rings (15.200), respectively, 2010 European Vault champion Tomi Tuuha easily won his specialty (14.363).
Other gold medalists included Ireland's Christopher O'Connor on floor (14.550) and Scotland's Liam Davie on Horizontal Bar (14.35), who improved from his silver medal finish on the same event in 2012.
Reigning European Pommel Horse champion Daniel Keatings competed four events for Scotland in Lisburn, taking silver on Pommel Horse (14.075) and just missing out on bronze on Parallel Bars (13.600). Keatings and British teammate Daniel Purvis, have both declared their intention to continue representing Scotland when they can, including at next year's Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.
Related: Full results of the Northern European Championships can be found here: http://goo.gl/GUOAb3
LAUSANNE (SUI), FIG Office, November 22, 2013: Gymnasts from the host country headline Saturday's Sokol Grand Prix, a mixed pairs competition in Brno, Czech Republic.
Similar in format to the Swiss Cup, at Brno all pairs perform on two events during the first round, with the top eight couples moving on to the semifinal. The top four pairs from this round advance to the final, where female gymnasts may repeat an event they've already competed on, while men are encouraged to perform on a fourth apparatus. Scores do not carry over from one round to the next, and the pair with the best combined score from the final round wins.
The format has attracted some of central Europe's top gymnasts, including two-time Czech Olympian Kristyna Palesova, who will compete with Fabian Leimlehner (AUT), Hungary's Dorina Boczogo (paired with Croatia's Filip Ude) and Czech veteran Jana Sikulova, who will form a team with countryman Martin Konecny.
Several gymnasts participating this year have already won the competition at least once before. Palesova and Sikulova have both won twice: Palesova took the title with Ude in 2007 and Samuel Piasecky (SVK) in 2008, while Sikulova teamed with countryman David Vyoral to win in 2006 and won again with Leimlehner in 2010. Konecny won the 2003 title, paired with now-retired Czech great Jana Komrskova.
Ukraine's Maksym Semyankiv, who shared the 2012 Brno title with teammate Mariya Livchikova, has entered again this year, this time with first-year senior Olena Vasylieva (UKR).
Austrian pairs Elisa Hammerle and Michael Fussenegger and Jasmin Mader and Matthias Schwab will challenge them, as will as Tunde Csillag (HUN) and David Jessen (USA), and Cezechs Alice Janova and Jiri Vesely, who finished sixth at last year's Grand Prix. Nika Janova and Radek Smekal and Veronika Drapalova and David Kratochvil shore up the home country's chances for a spot on the podium.
2013 Brno Grand Prix Pairs Assignments
Alice Janova (CZE) and Jiri Vesley (CZE)
Kristyna Palesova (CZE) and Fabian Leimlehner (AUT)
Olena Vasylieva (UKR) and Maksym Semyankiv (UKR)
Jasmin Mader (AUT) and Matthias Schwab (AUT)
Elisa Hammerle (AUT) and Michael Fussenegger (AUT)
Dorina Boczogo (HUN) and Filip Ude (CRO)
Jana Sikulova (CZE) and Martin Konecny (CZE)
Tunde Csillag (HUN) and David Jessen (USA)
Nika Janova (CZE) and Radek Semkal (CZE)
Veronika Drapalova (CZE) and David Kratochvil (CZE)
LAUSANNE (SUI), FIG Office, November 22, 2013: At a scientific colloquium held upon invitation by the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG) in Lausanne (SUI) in February 2011, a panel of internationally recognised experts addressed the effects of intensive training on the growth and maturation of Artistic gymnasts.
Chaired by Prof. Dr. Keith Russell (CAN), President of the FIG Scientific Commission, and commission member Prof. Dr. Adam Baxter-Jones (USA), the colloquium featured nine speakers from Canada, the USA, Great Britain, Belgium, and Australia, all aiming to find objective answers to questions on a topic largely debated within the FIG.
Based on the four debated questions below, the panel drew the following conclusions:
Q:Is there a negative effect of training on attained adult stature (height)?
A:Final adult height of both female and male gymnasts is not compromised.
Q: Is there a negative effect of training on growth of body segments?
A:There is no credible evidence that Gymnastics training alters growth of upper body (sitting height) or lower body segments (legs).
Q:Does training alter the timing or tempo of pubertal growth?
A:The majority of gymnasts are shown to be late maturers but they have the same pattern of growth (timing and tempo) as late maturing non-gymnasts.
Q:Does training have a negative influence on the endocrine system?
A:The available data are inadequate to address any effects of intensive Gymnastics training on the endocrine system.
Studies claiming that there was evidence of stunted or deflected growth were shown to be flawed in design or in statistics. Specifically, many studies were conducted while late-maturing gymnasts were still growing. The colloquium also expressed concern with inappropriate nomenclature used in many published papers, concluding that “Use of terminology that implies a direct causative link between Gymnastics training and growth and maturity status is not warranted.”
Examples of inappropriate nomenclature in the literature include: adversely affected, blunted growth, growth faltering, without a normal growth spurt, inhibited growth, attenuated growth, deterioration in growth, growth deficits, retarded growth, etc.
There is still much research needed in this area, but at this time there is no credible scientific evidence to show detrimental effects of Gymnastics training on growth.
The above stated conclusions were published in the peer reviewed scientific journal Sports Medicine (Role of Intensive Training in the Growth and Maturation of Artistic Gymnasts: Sports Medicine: Sept. 2013 Vol 43, No.9: R. Malina, A. Baxter-Jones, N. Armstrong, G. Beunen, D. Caine, R. Daly, R. Lewis, A. Rogol, K. Russell).
LAUSANNE (SUI), FIG Office, November 21, 2013: The FIG Men’s and Women’s Technical Committees convened for their final meeting of the year in Montreal (CAN) from November 7-13, 2013. Each committee held sessions related to issues within their individual discipline and also got together for common meetings in order to continue harmonisation between rules for Men’s (MAG) and Women’s Artistic Gymnastics (WAG).
The meetings took place at the Cirque du Soleil headquarters. Cirque has been an excellent partner of the FIG for many years and looked forward to some collaborative time with both technical committees. Presentations and introductions were made by Cirque in order to foster even better working relationships in the future, especially with so many Cirque performers coming from Artistic Gymnastics.
Major topics of discussions by both committees during their individual and common meetings included final review of the 2013 World Championships, composition of the upcoming Newsletters, compilation of interpretations needed for the updated Code of Points scheduled for January 2014, Youth Olympic Games judge nominations, Judges Evaluation Programme (JEP) future planning, assignment of technical delegates for the upcoming World Cups and World Challenge Cups, as well as formation of proposals to be considered by the FIG Executive Committee.
Both committees also had the pleasure of reviewing and offering initial comments regarding the new FIG Age Group programme for Artistic Gymnastics presented by Hardy Fink, the FIG Academy Director. The programme especially provides a structured system to aide small and developing federations desiring improvement and growth.
The technical committees also enjoyed a historic tour of the newly renovated 1976 Montreal Olympic Stadium. Gymnastics Canada is planning a potential bid to host the 2017 Individual World Championships inside the Olympic Stadium. The excursion to the venue and the city of Montreal brought a flow of emotion from Women’s TC (WTC) President Nellie Kim (BLR) who won three gold medals and a silver at the 1976 Olympic Games. The well trained staff at the Olympic Stadium proudly pointed out Kim’s achievement as the first woman in Olympic history to score perfect 10’s on Vault and Floor Exercise. The TC members were impressed with the stadium staff’s knowledge of the stars from the Montreal Games.
This WTC meeting also marked the final one for 2008 Olympic All-around champion Nastia Liukin (USA) as the WAG Athlete representative, as she has completed her term and did not run for reelection. Newly elected representative Elizabeth Tweddle will join the WTC meetings in the new year.
Both committees extend a gracious thank you to the three hosting organisations: Cirque du Soleil (Vice President Bernard Petiot), Gymnastics Canada (President Jean-Paul Caron and Board Chairman Richard Crepin), and Gymnastics Quebec (President Serge Sabourin).
LAUSANNE (SUI), FIG Office, November 21, 2013: The Bolivia Gymnastics Federation hosted the seventy-first FIG Academy for Artistic Gymnastics and the 157th Academy overall in the city of Cochabamba. It was a Level 1 Academy held from October 10 - 17, 2013. It began while an Academy for Rhythmic Gymnastics was nearing completion in Colombia and overlapped with another Academy for Rhythmic Gymnastics in Costa Rica.
A very large number of 42 coaches attended this Academy and they represented ten countries from the Pan American Gymnastics Union (PAGU) – Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Mexico, Paraguay and Peru. There were 18 Men’s (MAG) and 24 Women’s Artistic Gymnastics (WAG) coaches. The large turnout and interest in this Academy was a pleasant surprise. PAGU has partially funded many Academies with the FIG Development Fund for that continental union. However, this Academy in Bolivia was not among those funded. Even so, the participation was as large as if it had been funded. It is a scenario that we have seen for almost every Academy in the Americas and has put PAGU far in the lead over other continental unions with the total number of Academy participants.
Lilia Ortiz Lopez of Mexico served once again as FIG course leader and taught one half of the theory lectures and one half of the practical lectures. She was joined by Mónica Calabro of Argentina who taught the other half of the theory and WAG practical lectures. The expert for the MAG technical lectures was José Sucart of Puerto Rico.
All three of these experts have served the FIG at several Academies and earned the FIG Coaching Brevet in recent years.
As is typical for a Level 1 Academy, there was wide range of results in the two-part examination process with a range of 45% to 95%. The highest results for MAG and for the course overall was achieved by Roberto Robles Herrera of Costa Rica. In fact the top three places went to men’s coaches – 2nd to Sebastián Banados Solis of Chile and 3rd to Sebastian Sgroppo of Argentina. The top result for WAG was achieved by Patricia Duran Iglesias of Bolivia.
One disappointment for this Academy was that the box of material sent by the FIG was not released from Bolivia customs and immigration by course end. The FIG Office always sends the technical manuals, gifts for gymnasts and hosts, t-shirts for participants and various other items. None of that was available at this Academy. It was the very first time that such a problem could not be resolved before the course ended.
We thank President Fabricio Pinto of the Bolivia Gymnastics Federation for his willingness to host this Academy in an excellent facility and with excellent demonstrator gymnasts and very efficient and helpful staff.
The Academy programme is continuing with an Academy for Rhythmic Gymnastics in Costa Rica that will end later this week. And then in December there will be an introductory camp for the Age Group Development and Competition Programme in Hong Kong for the countries in that region. Following that will be two Academies in South Africa – one for Men’s and Women’s Artistic Gymnastics and one for Acrobatic Gymnastics.
Lausanne (SUI) / FIG /UEG Offices, November 19, 2013: The Slovak Gymnastics Federation has just celebrated its 60th birthday. About 250 people came together to celebrate this occasion in the historical center of Banská Bystrica, in the heart of the country.
Guests of Mr. Jan Novak, President of the National Gymnastics Federation, included Mr. Bruno Grandi (ITA) and Mr. Georges Guelzec (FRA), Presidents of the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG) and the European Union (UEG), respectively, who wished to mark this occasion in the gymnastics life of the country with their presence.
Both were delighted to meet Mrs. Vera Čáslavská, now 71 years old, one of the most decorated gymnasts in the history of artistic gymnastics and a real star in her country; she won seven Olympic titles during her illustrous career.
She was also a member of the UEG Women's Artistic Gymnastics Technical Committee. The UEG President and the Director, Ms. Kirsi Erofejeff-Engman (FIN), were also pleased to meet Mrs. Lubica Risova, former President of the UEG Women’s Technical Committee. Both are now Honorary Members of the European Union of Gymnastics.
During the official event, different personalities took the floor, including Mr. Dušan Čaplovič, Slovak Minister of Education, Science, Research and Sport, Mr. Peter Gogola, Mayor of Banska Bystrica, and Presidents Grandi, Guelzec and Novak, who explained the history of the federation and received the rapt attention of the guests present. Afterwards, guests were treated to performances from groups of local gymnasts.
From left to right : Kirsi Erofejeff-Engman, André F. Gueisbuhler, Bruno Grandi, The Mayor of Banska Bystrica Mr Peter Gogola, Vera Caslavska, Georges Guelzec, Jan Novak. (Picture Andrej Brummer)
Lausanne (SUI) / FIG Office, November 13, 2013: Members of the Mediterranean Gymnastics Confederation (CoMeGym) held their ordinary general assembly in the presence of their President, Dr Michel Léglise (FRA) on October 18-19, 2013, in the Sicilian city of Ragusa (ITA). In his opening address, the President extended wishes for success on behalf of Prof. Bruno Grandi (ITA), the FIG President.
Of the decisions taken by the assembly, it is worth noting organisation of the 1st Mediterranean Junior Championships in Artistic Gymnastics, scheduled to take place in Ragusa on September 4 – 8, 2014. To this end, CoMeGym has designated an organising committee and drawn up a provisional work plan.
The Mediterranean Gymnastics Confederation was founded in 2010 and is recognised by the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG) and Mediterranean Games Association, which counts 23 affiliated federations, unfortunately only a few of whose delegates appear below.
Left to right: Gianfranco Marzolla (ITA), delegate and Executive member of the European Gymnastics Union (UEG); Rosario Cintolo, Director of Sport School in Ragusa, an establishment affiliated to the Italian National Olympic Committee, (CONI); Lamia Sakr (EGY), Director of Development for CoMeGym; Dr Michel Léglise, President of CoMeGym and Vice-President of the FIG; Riccardo Agabio, President of the Italian Gymnastics Federation; Cristina Casentini, Vice-President of CoMeGym and member of the UEG Executive Committee; Roberto Desantis (MLT) and Snezana Lakicevic (SRB), members of a CoMeGym Executive Board.
LAUSANNE (SUI), FIG Office, November 7, 2013: The Gymnastics Association of the Philippines became the 54th FIG member federation to host an FIG Academy. It was a Level 1 Academy for Men’s (MAG) and Women’s Artistic Gymnastics (WAG) held in the capital city of Manila during the last seven days of October. It was the 70th Academy for Artistic Gymnastics and the 155th overall in the FIG Academy Programme that was launched 11-years ago.
Twenty-two coaches representing three federations – Hong Kong, Philippines and Singapore attended. There were nine MAG coaches and thirteen WAG coaches.
Tim Lees of Australia served as FIG course leader and taught all of the theory lectures. He has been a frequent Academy expert including at the very first one in Malaysia in 2002. He has served also as an expert for Men’s and Women’s Artistics Gymnastics. Takashi Kobahashi of Japan tuaght all of the men’s apparatus. He was the coaching director for the Japanese National Olympic Centre and was recently appointed as head coach for the Japanese Women’s Team. Pedro Roque, the women’s national coach from Portugal taught the women’s apparatus. Anastasia Umeh who is choreographer for the Australian team and owns her own dance company, The Creative Movement Group, presented the sessions for artistic preparation and choreography for Floor Exercise and Balance Beam.
The technical lectures were held at the Philippines Gymnastics Association Gymnasium within the Rizal Memorial Sport Complex. Because of a recent flood, the foam in the pit had not been replaced so the pits could not be used nor was there a trampoline. Some of the other apparatus had also suffered some damage. Nevertheless, the apparatus was sufficient for the content of a Level 1 academy and the experts were able to improvise when necessary.
As is typical for a Level 1 Academy, there was wide range of results in the two-part examination process with a range of 45% to 93%. The highest results for WAG and for the course overall was achieved by LAU Chee Nuo of Singapore followed closely by the top MAG result by SNG Puay Liang also of Singapore. The third highest result was achieved by NG Koon Yu of Singapore.
We thank President Cynthia Carrion for providing the staff and demonstrators to make this Academy a success. Special thanks to Jhan Mari Tan and Dane Maturan who acted as support staff throughout the course and to Secretary General Bettina Pou who was head of the organising committee.
Another Academy began almost as soon as this one ended. It is an Academy for Rhythmic Gymnastics in Colombia to be followed next week with a similar Academy in Costa Rica and one for Artistic Gymnastics in Bolivia.
Lausanne (SUI) / FIG Office, November 01, 2013: Laszlo (Les) Sasvary passed away unexpectedly on October 29, 2013 due to cardiac arrest at the age of 81. He was a recognized and unanimously beloved figure worldwide for the human qualities conveyed through his work as educator, coach and judge.
Having earned a diploma from the University of Budapest in 1964, Les Sasvary rounded out his education in the United States in 1961. He obtained citizenship and pursued his studies at California State University, Northridge, receiving a master ‘s Degree.
It did not take long for Les Sasvary to join forces and create lasting friendships with gymnasts along the California coast. An educator first and foremost, he swiftly earned the trust of his gymnasts through an emphasis on education and health. His competence was recognized at every level of education. As a coach and international judge (OG Munich 1972, Los Angeles 1984, Sydney 2000 and seven World Championships), Les Sasvary garnered the gratitude and support of the entire international gymnastics community.
At the 36th Artistic Gymnastics World Championships in Debrecen (HUN) in 2002, Les Sasvary liaised between all gymnasts and delegations present. His abilities, warm personality and enthusiasm contributed tangibly to the success of the event.
The FIG and its authorities, on behalf of the entire international gymnastics community extend their sincere condolences to his family, children, grandchildren and countless friends. phs/sbu