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Written by John Crumlish    Monday, 24 September 2012 07:25    PDF Print
Tunney Stays Tuned Into Training
(7 votes, average 5.00 out of 5)

Although British gymnast Rebecca Tunney is enjoying the public attention she has received since her strong performance at this summer's London Olympic Games, she told IG she is keeping her focus on upcoming training and competition.

“I’ve been offered the chance to compete in various competitions but have turned them down for now,” said Tunney, who was the British women’s top all-arounder (13th) in London. “I would prefer to stay training and give myself a chance to take a look at some new things, and generally get back into the rhythm of things.”

Tunney, the 2012 British all-around champion, said she enjoyed participating in the September 10 parade of British Olympians and Paralympians on 21 floats along the streets of London.

“The parade was unreal,” she said. “We knew people loved the Olympics but to see that many people come to see us basically stand on buses was amazing. People were cheering and shouting to us.”

Tunney, who will turn 16 on October 26, said she is now shifting her attention to the new season.

“I need to maintain my fitness and stamina,” said Tunney, who trains with fellow Olympians Beth Tweddle and Hannah Whelan at the City of Liverpool club. “We have a bit of time now to look over routines and maybe add skills, but at the moment, after a break, it’s about getting the body in shape. Then my coach will decide on any changes if they are needed.”

Despite Tunney's recent public acclaim, she avoids viewing herself as an Olympic hero.

“I don’t see myself as a role model, but some younger kids at my school were saying, 'Wow, that’s Rebecca Tunney,' so I guess people know who I am now," she told IG. "It’s really nice to think people take notice of what you do, and if that means more people are interested in gymnastics or sport in general, then that's great. I just focus on my training and doing the right things, and if people like that, then great.”

 
Written by John Crumlish    Friday, 21 September 2012 06:48    PDF Print
Black Rebuilding After Olympic Mishap
(6 votes, average 4.33 out of 5)

Despite a pair of mishaps that dropped her to eighth place on vault at this summer’s London Olympic Games, Ellie Black of Canada told IG she is focused on improving her results in 2013.

“I am very motivated to continue and build on the path I started in 2012,” said Black, who trains under two-time Olympian David Kikuchi and Keiji Yamanaka at Alta Gymnastics Club in Halifax, Nova Scotia. “My first priority is to recover from injuries. This will be the focus for the next three months or so.”

In London, Black helped the Canadian women finish fifth in the team final, which was their best performance in Olympic history. She also qualified for the vault final, where she crashed her first vault and injured her ankles. Black balked on her second attempt and finished eighth.

Black said that once she is healed she wants to learn new skills for competitions in 2013.

“My goal is to develop my gymnastics to the full potential, and hopefully to make more contributions on behalf of Nova Scotia and Canada,” she said.

Read more about Black in an upcoming issue of International Gymnast magazine. To subscribe, click here.

 
Written by John Crumlish    Monday, 17 September 2012 11:40    PDF Print
Douglas Stays Sure-footed in Celebrity Spotlight
(19 votes, average 4.58 out of 5)

2012 Olympic all-around champion Gabrielle 'Gabby' Douglas told IG on Saturday that she counts on friends and family to keep her humble in her new status as a pop-culture celebrity.

"I have people that ground me, and when my head gets a little big, they push it back down," said Douglas during rehearsal for the Kellogg's Tour of Gymnastics Champions Sept. 15 stop at Staples Center in Los Angeles. "It's always good to have that. If you don't, your head keeps getting bigger and bigger, and you (could) walk around like, 'I'm better than everyone.' You don't want to do that. You want to have the same personality as before, and be the same you."

Douglas said performing at Staples Center brought back happy recent memories of the MTV Video Music Awards held at the same venue on Sept. 6.

At the VMAs, Douglas and the other four members of the gold medal-winning U.S. women's Olympic team introduced the performance of "Girl on Fire" by Alicia Keys and Nicky Minaj. Douglas performed some gymnastics skills during the song, which included Minaj's rap homage to Douglas.

"When I went up on stage and performed with Alicia Keys and Nicky Minaj, it was so much different than performing at the Olympics," Douglas said. "At the Olympics, you want to have fun and still want to focus and deliver the job when you need to. But when you're onstage with these singers you've known and seen on TV, it's a different kind of feeling. It's like, 'Wow, I cannot believe I'm performing with them!' It was so much fun."

Douglas said she was surprised to learn that Minaj's rap of "And I got 'em aggy 'cause I win the gold like Gabby" is part of the song's official single.

"I had no idea," Douglas said. "Everyone was tweeting me, 'Gabby, you have to check out this new song by Alicia Keys and Nicky Minaj, where Nicky says your name.' I was like, 'Yeah, whatever, I don't believe you, it must be just a saying.' But then I checked out the song and I said, 'Wow, this is awesome!'"

Douglas said the Kellogg's tour is a welcome break from competition, but she is concentrating on giving her best performances nonetheless.

"I'm so happy to be on this tour," she told IG. "You get to see us do dances, routines and show more of the beauty of gymnastics .You get to see us do the Shuffle, which I think is very exciting. My favorite number is the Shuffle. It's so dynamic and everyone gets together and starts dancing on the floor. I think it's a great piece."

Read an exclusive interview with Douglas in the October 2012 issue of International Gymnast magazine. Douglas is also featured in the 2012 Olympic Games special issue (September 2012). Click here to subscribe or order back issues.

 
Written by Amanda Turner    Saturday, 15 September 2012 23:45    PDF Print
Acapulco Offers Warm Welcome for 2nd Mexican Gymnastics Open
(5 votes, average 5.00 out of 5)



Gymnasts from eight nations will be warmly welcomed to sunny Acapulco for next month's Mexican Open, event organizer Estela de la Torre Borja told IG on Saturday. Pictured: Reigning European all-around champion Anna Dementyeva (Russia)

Gymnasts from eight nations will be warmly welcomed to sunny Acapulco for next month's Mexican Open, event organizer Estela de la Torre Borja told IG on Saturday.

"We welcome all the gymnasts, coaches and judges from all over the world with a big hug and a big smile and treat them so they feel like they are at home," Borja said.

The men's lineup includes Sergio Sasaki (Brazil), Jorge Hugo Giraldo (Colombia), Daniel Purvis (Great Britain), Mattia Tamiazzo (Italy), Luis Sosa (Mexico) and David Belyavsky (Russia).

The women's competition roster consists of Georgia-Rose Brown (Australia), Jessica Gil (Colombia), Chiara Gandolfi (Italy), Ana Lago and Yessenia Estrada (Mexico), Anna Dementyeva (Russia), and Kennedy Baker and Brenna Dowell (USA).


Pan American floor exercise champion Ana Lago (Mexico)

The roster will be finalized Sept. 21, Borja said.

The competition includes the Junior Mexican Cup on Oct. 11, followed by the international event Oct. 12-13. The international event features both an all-around competition and mixed-pairs event. This year's event also will feature special awards for the winners of each apparatus.

At the inaugural Mexican Open in December 2011, Russia's Ksenia Afanasyeva and American Danell Leyva captured the all-around titles. Purvis — a member of the bronze-medal winning British team at this summer's Olympic Games in London — took second behind Leyva and is back again this year.

The unique format of dividing the all-around competition into two days takes pressure off the gymnasts, said Borja, a 1980 Mexican Olympian.

"Artistic gymnastic has been increasing a lot in difficulty," she said. "This is great for the sport but this causes a lot of mistakes with the pressure of the event. For example at the London Olympics, many great gymnasts made a lot of mistakes for this reason. For sure gymnastics in the future has to continue increasing the level and the gymnasts will try to be as perfect as they can with this high difficulty."

The competition takes place at the Fairmont Acapulco Princess Hotel & Resort, located on the city's famous beach.

"It's also a great event because we have the competition arena at the resort, so the gymnasts don't have to spend the week moving from one place to another," Borja said.

Borja said she and the event sponsors hope the competition will continue to grow in prestige.

"Grupo Pegaso and The Mexican Open are working very hard to have the best all-around level like a World Cup," she said.

External Link: Official Website

 
Written by Amanda Turner    Monday, 10 September 2012 20:02    PDF Print
Maroney, Raisman Suffer Injuries on Tour
(7 votes, average 3.86 out of 5)

Update: McKayla Maroney has been diagnosed with a fractured left tibia, USA Gymnastics announced Tuesday.

World and Olympic champions McKayla Maroney and Alexandra Raisman suffered back-to-back injuries Sunday night while performing at a gymnastics show in Ontario, Calif.


McKayla Maroney (U.S.)

Maroney and Raisman were injured while performing on the same set of uneven bars during the Kellogg's Tour of Gymnastics Champions at only its second stop. Raisman suffered bruised knees while Maroney underwent further testing, USA Gymnastics announced Monday.

"Raisman, who was examined at the arena by the physician for the performance, has bruised knees," USAG said in a statement. "She will follow an icing and additional treatment regimen with continued assessment by the medical staff, but does not require any further testing at this time.

"Maroney is undergoing medical evaluations and tests today to determine the extent of her injury to her left knee. A further update will be provided once Maroney's injury is diagnosed and confirmed."

Maroney was performing first, mounting with a Maloney to the high bar followed by a back uprise, front giant pirouette and giant full. She dismounted with a layout flyaway and landed on her feet before stumbling backward and grabbing her knee.

Raisman, set to perform next, comforted Maroney until medical staff arrived and carried the injured gymnast out of the spotlight. Raisman threw her own Maloney but peeled backward, landing on her knees off the mats.

Both gymnasts were stars at the 2012 Olympic Games, helping the U.S. win the team title. Maroney, the 2011 world champion on vault, added the silver medal on her specialty. Raisman won the bronze medal on balance beam and gold medal on floor exercise.

The 40-city Kellogg's Tour of Gymnastics Champions kicked off Saturday in San Jose and goes through November. International Gymnast Magazine Related Features:
2012 Olympic Games special issue (September 2012)
"It's Showtime" – Maroney profile (May 2011)
"Young Reliable" – Raisman profile (April 2011)
Maroney on cover (September 2010)

To subscribe to IG Magazine or order back issues, click here.

 


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