Entries Tagged 'Rhythmic' ↓

gymnastics in Africa?

I attended the 12th African Championships to gain better perspective on the potential of FIG gymnastics disciplines in Africa.

I’ve led coaching clinics in Senegal, Nigeria, Mozambique and South Africa and need a better answer to this question:

Bread, not circuses?

Should international sport truly be a priority for African nations?

Shouldn’t resources be spent on health and education?

Martin Luther King

South Africa and Egypt have proved they can compete with the rest of the world. The Algerian men are world class, too. What about the other African nations?

I’m not willing to deny any African the right to pursue life, liberty and happiness.

young gymnasts

If sport is your passion, I’m willing to volunteer to help.

My hope is that sport and arts can bring the nations, religions and tribes of Africa together. Indeed, I cannot report a single incident of racism at this competition. Athletes were judged only on their gymnastics, so far as I can see.

Gymnastics in Africa!



In 1986 a football team that lived on a small island in Thailand called “Koh Panyee“. It’s a floating village in the sea that has not an inch of soil. The kids here loved to watch football but had nowhere to play or practice. But they didn’t let that stop them. …

Click PLAY or watch a reenactment on YouTube.

That was put together by Thai Military Bank. :-)

Inspired by the 1986 FIFA World Cup, children built the pitch from old scraps of wood and fishing rafts. After making it to the Semi-final on an inland tournament, all the village were inspired to take up the sport. They Built a brand new pitch, although the wooden one still remains and is popular among tourists. As of 2011, Panyee FC is one of the most successful youth soccer clubs in Southern Thailand, and the boys who built the pitch back in 1986 are now grown men.

(via Jamie Ellacott)


• Angolan Youth and Sports minister, Gonçalves Muandumba, met the Rhythmic Team on return from the airport. Wants to prioritize basic training in gymnastics.

12th African Gymnastics Championships a great success!

South African gymnastsHold Their Breath” awaiting decisions of the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee. Are their scores good enough for approval to Commonwealth Games and/or Youth Olympic Games.

understanding Rhythmic

Though I just watched another major Rhythmic competition, I understand it about as much as I understand Cricket. :-)

Perhaps slow motion video will help.


Enjoy this beautiful slow motion clip of last weekend’s #Rhythmic #Gymnastics World Cup in Stuttgart

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Rhythmic Champion Grace Legote

Though she only “narrowly outscoredSara Rostom of Egypt, most felt Grace Legote from South Africa was the star of the African Rhythmic Championships.

Legote, at 21, was the eldest Rhythmic competitor. I’m predicting you’ll see her at Olympic Championships Rio.

Click PLAY or watch the making of that photo on YouTube.

FIG is rolling out the Age Group Development Programme for Rhythmic by summer 2014.

Nadya Alexandrova and Eunice Lebre are working with Hardy Fink on that.

related – Legote takes gold for SA at African Championships

Grace LEGOTE Sr Rhythmic Champ

She truly is stunning to watch.

Rhythmic Jr #AfricanChamps

African Jr Rhythmic Championships

Jr Women

1. Egypt
2. South Africa
3. Morocco

I was surprised at the number and quality of Junior competitors from across the continent, Muslim nations included.

Training apparatus is not quite so expensive as Artistic. A Rhythmic coach can find talent in Africa.

African Championships venue

University of Pretoria. Looks great.

African Champs venue

MAG and WAG can train in the attached TUCS gym.


Rhythmic has a dedicated training gym. And there’s an additional small matted room available for stretching.

I have a media credential … but no internet access. Media is supposed to get “guest accounts” from the University. But all the guest accounts were gone by the time I tried to log-in.

What does a blogger do?

Walk to McDonalds to log-in. Rah USA. :-)

Internet access in southern Africa is lousy.

podium training African Champs

Began today for WAG and Rhythmic.


Balance P Bar

… No, I do not know why she’s warming up on the Parallel Bar rail. :-)

12th African Gymnastics Championships, Tshwane

Walvis Bay Gymnastics, Namibia

I visited the tourist town of Walvis Bay, Namibia to see 200,000 flamingos and gymnasts.


The club is impressive to look at. MAG, WAG, Rhythmic, Trampoline & Tumbling.

Walvis Bay Gym

more photos

Unfortunately this facility must be set-up and taken-down each day. :-(

Walvis Bay Gymnastics Club is run by Vesko and Roumi Kostin from Bulgaria.

incredible active flexibility

Iliyana Raeva – Bulgarian politician

What is it about Rhythmic gymnastics that motivates women to become politicians? :-)

Coalition for United Democracy” is the name of the new coalition on the country’s political scene,” Raeva, who set off on a political career last summer, announced on Wednesday.

Her new party, which is called United Bulgaria and defines itself as a center-right formation …


read more …

Iliyana Raeva is a Bulgarian gymnast who competed in modern rhythmic gymnastics for her country from 1978 to 1982. She was one of the Golden Girls of Bulgaria that dominated Rhythmic Gymnastics in 1980′s. …

Youth Olympic Games 2014

Aug 16-28 in China.


Just like at the Olympic Games, Men’s and Women’s Artistic, Trampoline and Rhythmic Gymnastics are included in the sports programme in Nanjing.

Artistic Gymnastics at the Youth Olympic Games features All-around competitions as well as Event Finals on the six apparatus for the men and four apparatus for the women, respectively. The YOG do not include a Team competition. Trampoline is on display with individual competitions for men and women and Rhythmic Gymnastics includes an individual All-around as well as a Group competition.

What are the age requirements for gymnasts qualifying for the Nanjing Youth Olympic Games?

Women’s Rhythmic and Artistic Gymnastics participants must be 15 years old, (born between January 1 and December 31, 1999) and Men’s Artistic and Trampoline participants need to be 16 – 17 years old (born between January 1, 1997 and December 31 1998.)

What is the quota for each Gymnastics discipline at the Nanjing Youth Olympic Games and how is it divided for each continent?

A total of 84 places – 42 for men and 42 for women — have been allocated to Artistic Gymnastics. Europe has 19 places each for men and women; Asia has 10 places for the men and 9 for the women (including one host country place in each for China). Four places each have been allocated to Africa; America has eight places for the men and nine for the women; and one place each has been allocated to Oceania.

Individual Rhythmic Gymnastics has a quota of 18 places, divvied up into seven for Europe, four for Asia (including one host country place), three each for Africa and America and one for Oceania. Each continent may qualify one Rhythmic group, with Asia having an additional host country place for China, bringing the total up to six places.

Twelve places for men and women respectively have been allocated to Trampoline Gymnastics. Europe has a quota of four places each, Asia three each (including one men’s and or one women’s host country place for China), Africa and America have two places each for men and women, respectively, and Oceania may qualify one man and one woman.

Fast facts with 200 days to go before the Nanjing Youth Olympic Games

Click PLAY or watch a promo clip on YouTube.

I’m a guest this weekend at the South African Men’s Team Camp preparing for Cottbus, African Championships, YOG and the other big meets of 2014.

2014 Pacific Rim tickets

Sandra Lewis, Communications Director, Gymnastics BC:

slewis (a) gymbc.org

Tickets go on sale this Saturday

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada – One of gymnastics’ premier international events, the 2014 Pacific Rim Gymnastics Championships, is set to take place at the Richmond Olympic Oval. Taking place April 9 to 12, the championships feature some of the world’s best artistic, trampoline and rhythmic gymnasts. …

Close to 300 athletes from 17 countries around the Pacific Ocean are expected to compete. Perennial Olympic favourites Japan, China, Russia and the United States are among the countries confirmed for the championships. …

Pac Rim

Public ticket sales begin on Saturday, February 1 with two categories of tickets:

· General Admission: Youth (6-17) and Seniors (65+) – $15; Adult – $20 plus taxes and service fees

· Priority Seating: $35 plus taxes and service fees

All tickets can be purchased on line at pacificrimchamps.eventbrite.com

WAG will most likely sell out quickly. Buy now or cry later.

I’ll be there volunteering with Sandra’s communications team. :-)

read more – 2014 Pacific Rim media announcement – January 29

related – Richmond to host 17-nation 2014 Pacific Rim Gymnastics Championships