Gymnasts competing skills on to hard mats that they’ve obviously rarely done on to competition mats.
Coaches should do a better job of simulating the competition landing in training.
The best I’ve ever seen was T&T coach Tammy Stephenson. She trained landings on to very high, very soft surfaces for most of the year. Prior to a competition she alternated layers of matting stiffened with sheets of plywood.
The 2003 German AA national champion Ronny Ziesmer was paralyzed training Tsuk double back preparing for the Athens Olympics.
I was reminded of Ronny’s story watching the far-too-dangerous Vault landings at Worlds in Stuttgart. Obviously the rules should be changed so there is less incentive in chucking BIG difficulty vaults.
Is Ronny coming to Worlds?
* Ronny Ziesmer founded the “Alliance of Hope Foundation” which supports the worldwide research in the field of regeneration of nerve cells in the spinal cord. Patron of the Foundation, the German Federal Chancellor, Dr. Angela Merkel.
* Ronny Ziesmer started three times at the Berlin Marathon (2009, 2010, 2011) in the handbike. His goal is to attend the 2016 Paralympics.
* Just now in October 2011 Ronny Ziesmer has just completed a very successful study of biotechnology at the German “University Lausitz” in Senftenberg (near his hometown Cottbus) as a “Bachelor of Science”.
* Ronny Ziesmer is also working for the biggest European and German TV station “ZDF” as a co-commentator for the artistic gymnastic events like worlds, Europeans or Olympic Games.
The Agency, European Gymnastics Service “GYMmedia INTERNATIONAL” supports and cared for these exceptional athletes in all its responsibilities.