2/21/2017

The Superhero Gymnasts from Team Egypt

Only three groups went to Grand Prix Moscow in 2017. The hosts from Russia, the Bulgarians, and...unexpectedly.. Egypt! It was very brave of them to perform at this event, which most teams in the world missed including teams with a lot of medals such as Italy, Spain, Belarus, Israel, Greece, China and Ukraine, who have all have had claims for top spots at the world level.

When we consider how many long decades of training, tradition and podium standings both Russia and Bulgaria have, for this team to have come out as the third team in the event was absolutely superhero material. In fairness, all three teams made mistakes but Egypt showed that it is never too late, nor to early, to start something new if you have passion, and have courage.

When I was watching Petrova compete in the 1990s, I became aware that some gymnasts from Egypt had come to train at the "Gerena" gym with Neshka Robeva and her team at the time. Many years passed and though we have seen individual gymnasts from Egypt, I think building both a senior and a junior group is a spectacular achievement for their country. The routines they showed had complexity and potential, especially for a team that is so young and new to the big scene.



My impression from Egypt was that the hoop routine was well crafted to show the gymnasts' abilities but they were somewhat more nervous in performing it than in the mixed routine which they just did with smiles on their faces. I enjoyed the music in this routine very much and the general positive mood that the team showed. I also thought the leotards and the make up were looking great for a brand new group. It is very challenging to use rope in a senior routine because it has been a while since we have seen rope included in the program for both individuals and groups. This team did a great job for a start of the season, which is, for them, also a start of a new endeavor altogether. 


2/14/2017

Valentine's Day in Soldatova's Red

Aleksandra Soldatova looks spectacular with her new red leotard and hoop routine. Soldatova is one of the most talented gymnasts in the world and it was unfortunate that she could not participate in the Rio Olympics.

This year Soldatova will have her chance to win more medals and to establish herself as the top Russian gymnast and possibly as the best gymnasts in the world. Her strongest rival will be the illustrious Ukrainian, Ganna Rizatdinova. My personal preference is for Soldatova, who I think could be unbeatable if she had more original and exciting choreography. Overall, I think she is the more versatile and artistic gymnast of the two.

I love watching her and I am really looking forward to seeing he win. So, for today's Valentine's Day, I would like to wish you:

  • to surround yourself with talented people who bring you joy and excitement;
  • to truly show your love to those you love;
  • to do the things you love better than ever;
  • and, of course, to see your favorite gymnasts win! :)


1/25/2017

Bulgarian Group Shows New Routine with Ropes and Balls

An internal competition for the national team of Bulgaria has allowed the fans to see a portion of the new routine of the senior group.

The gymnasts are showing very good synchronization so early in the season and though the routine is hardly polished, the team looks like they "stick together" very successfully and with a lot of artistic expression and with clean lines. 

I think the leotards and colors of the apparatus may change for big competitions, but it already feels so exciting that the rope will make another of its fun "comebacks" in rhythmic gymnastics

This may not be the best camera angle to truly show the risk and the difficulty in the routine so I am looking forward to more videos.