A few weeks ago a video and article emerged of the Russian girls taking a break from Round Lake and training in Mallorca in Spain. They were all there, Nabieva, Komova, Mustafina, Dementyeva, Belokobylskaya, Semenova, Afanasyeva.
Another article titled “The rebirth of Russian gymnastics” has appeared this week of the Russians training in Spain. The spanish article translates as the following in Google;
During recent decades the Russian gymnastics was a big mystery. It was known that a hundred kilometers from Moscow, near the lake, stood a gray and mammoth sports complex where they lived the best gymnasts, isolated, unrelated to the disappearance of the Soviet Union, first as the difficult transition to democracy later. Or not so isolated, because the advancing pace of reforms and money was scarce, the discipline lost its magic and the Russian team, great ruler of the world scene since the 50’s, it fell from the pedestal.
From Barcelona 92, when he won his last major team title in the strange flag of the CIS (Commonwealth of Independent States), Russia, Great Russia, became accustomed to a new role, that of second place. Until last year. A handful of teenagers, some girls almost regained the pride of the Soviet gymnastics becoming the best team in the world, and now look optimistically, one year ahead, the London Games to Olympic glory with the emparentaría Turisheva mythical, Korbut, Davidova, Shushunova …
Much of this new group, led by world champion, the unflappable and somewhat disturbing Aliya Mustafina has changed for a couple of weeks forests landlocked Moscow and the usual sunny, humid, almost suffocating in this July, Palma de Mallorca.Teenagers are a dozen tiny, except Nabieva Mustafina all seem genuine and girls, and 21 technicians, including coaches, doctors, physios , a choreographer … (Men’s team is also here, but that’s another story).
“This is not a concentration as hard as we usually do,” says Alexander Alexandrov, a true legend of the gym, head of the last Soviet team, more than a decade in exile in Texas (USA) and recovered as a coach for the cause the rebirth of Russian gymnastics.Hard to believe because in three hours longer than the duration of the session, gymnasts do not stop for a moment, at one time or another, all release a crybaby. They are more whining or angry reaction to a setback than anything else, but do not seem very happy with their work. “Because the atmosphere is very different here,” the coach explained later, in a fun and funny English, “for them is very difficult to work in this heat. It’s normal.”
The atmosphere is that of work, but no shouting or bad manners, discipline and smells.Each gymnast knows what to do and does not change device until it meets the objectives. Some, like the sweet Belokobylskaya at the bar, stalls and delays the departure time.
But now a little after 10 am, the hall of the Center for Modernization of Palma is an oven and the gymnasts work in small groups on all devices. Earlier, at seven, have an hour of physical training on the beach and have breakfast at the hotel. “The main difference with us is the workload,” says Pedro Mir, the host, and largely responsible for the rise in the gym on the island.
Most striking however is Mustafina see in action. The champion broke the cruciate ligament in his left knee in the first year of the Europeans in April. He had surgery in Germany and even protects the joint with a cumbersome protection, and a few exercises in parts. The rhythm of the soil. Mills in parallel. Tuning.
The coach does not have it for the World October in Tokyo: “We’ll see how it is after the summer. If she is well, maybe. But the Games are first injury because it is very difficult.” He does not know even if we Viktoria Komova – “maybe I can make any device” – a prodigy of 16 years undefeated as a junior, the young woman who has created more excitement in recent years. An ankle heavily bandaged today, forced also to undergo surgery before debuting in the top flight.
Closely Komova is even thinner and does not seem to resent the injury, it has already recovered twice as iron in soil, but the most complaints. Neither the music of her floor exercise makes her smile. There is also the European champion, Anna Dementyeva, exercise improved.
“We trained hard but not vacation. The main difference is that we only do one session a day and evening is free. Girls can go shopping, the beach or just relax,” sums Alexandrov. All are dark, and that theirs must be the beach.
The article is accompanied by a photograph of Viktoria Komova training. Marocanu who linked to this article on the International Gymnast forum also includes more photographs from a Russian article. There are also photos of the Russian men further down in the thread.