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Written by Amanda Turner    Monday, 23 November 2015 12:37    PDF Print
Soviet Legend Valentin Mogilny Dies at 49
(1 vote, average 5.00 out of 5)

Five-time world champion Valentin Mogilny has died at aged 49, the Russian Gymnastics Federation announced Monday.

The federation stated Mogilny died Sunday of a heart attack in France, where he has lived the past 20 years.

Known for his artistic mastery and flair, Mogilny was born December 18, 1965 in Kokhanivka, Dnepropetrovsk Oblast, Soviet Ukraine. He began gymnastics in Dobropillia, Donetsk region, before moving to Leninsk-Kuznetsk in Siberia to train with Vladimir Astafyev at the boarding school set up by coaches Innokenty Mametyev and Galina Mametyeva. Mogilny later moved to Moscow to train under coach Alexander Alexandrov.

Mogilny amassed six world and 10 European championship medals from 1985 to 1990. He was a five-time world champion, winning three golds in 1985 (team, pommel horse,parallel bars) and two in 1989 (team and pommel horse). He was the alternate to the Soviet team to the 1988 Olympic Games in Seoul. He was also the world all-around silver medalist at the 1989 Worlds in Stuttgart, where he scored three of the competition's four perfect 10.0s in the men's competition.

He also won six gold medals at the European championships, including the all-around title in 1990.

He was married in 1986 to fellow world champion Olga Bicherova. The couple moved to France, where Mogilny acquired citizenship and hoped to continue his career. The couple had a son, Alex Moguilnyi, who was a national-level gymnast in France and is now a coach. Bicherova and Mogilny later divorced.

Valentin Mogilny worked as a coach in France but was plagued by poor health in later life.

Written by John Crumlish    Thursday, 19 November 2015 09:15    PDF Print
Garcia 'Making the Best Out of It' After Injury
(2 votes, average 5.00 out of 5)

Although 2012 Mexican Olympian Elsa Garcia was unable to compete at the recent world championships in Glasgow after she injured her knees in training there, she told IG she is optimistic that she can recover in time for the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro.

Garcia at the 2014 World Championships in Nanning

"I am working to give myself a second Olympic experience, learning from past mistakes and making the best out of it," she said.

Garcia injured her knees when she landed a 1-1/1 twisting Yurchenko vault in the warm-up hall during Mexico’s day of podium training in Glasgow.

"When I landed, both of my knees went backwards," she said. "My left knee did go back but not as much as my right knee. I have been wearing a knee brace for about three-and-a-half weeks, and am now starting the strength and mobility process."

Garcia said the diagnosis for her left knee was a minor hyper-extension of her lateral ligaments, which are now fine. Her right knee, however, "ad more things going on," she said.

"I ruptured my medial collateral ligament, and the outer lateral collateral ligament also got damaged but not as much," Garcia said. "My ACL was fine and that was a relief, but the posterior cruciate ligament got a bit injured as well, and my bones got swollen up because of the impact."

Garcia said she is slowly regaining power in her right knee, and looks forward to resuming training in the next several weeks.

"I have been working on my strength conditioning a lot since I got back from Glasgow," she said. "It´s the only thing I´ve been able to do. The first step was to immobilize the right knee with a knee brace (cast) for about three-and-a-half weeks. Second is to regain mobility and gradually work on the strength. I think I will be able to start with gymnastics gradually, by late December or the first of January."

Although Garcia did not compete in Glasgow, she said seeing her rivals perform there helped her clarify the improvements and changes she wants to make to her routines on all four apparatuses.

"I think I have to mainly strengthen both of my vaults," she told IG. "I can upgrade my bars routine, if all goes well, work on consistency and cleanliness on beam, and add a few upgrades on floor. All of this can be possible with a strong mind and a healthy body, and I am working on both of them very much."

Read in-depth coverage of the 2015 World Championships in the December 2015 issue of International Gymnast magazine. To order back issues, or subscribe to the print and/or digital edition of International Gymnast magazine, click here.

Written by John Crumlish    Sunday, 15 November 2015 20:37    PDF Print
Komova: 'I Will Fight for the Top Step of the Pedestal'
(12 votes, average 3.67 out of 5)

Russia's Viktoria Komova told IG that her performances at the recent world championships in Glasgow will help her better prepare for next summer's Olympic Games.

Russia's Viktoria Komova told IG that her performances at the recent world championships in Glasgow, which included a share of gold on uneven bars, enabled her to study her rivals and better prepare for next summer's Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.

"The key to victory was probably the same as for everyone - a lot of work," said Komova, who shared the title on uneven bars with teammate Daria Spiridonova, Madison Kocian of the U.S. and Fan Yilin of China. "I really wanted to compete at these championships and perform successfully, because this was the last world championships before the Olympic Games. For me it was necessary to psychologically test myself, assess the competitors, see their programs, draw certain conclusions and set tasks for myself for training towards the Olympics."

Komova, the 2012 Olympic all-around silver medalist, said she is eager to earn gold of her own in Rio, after sharing the top spot on the medal podium in a historic four-way tie in Glasgow.

"Four gymnasts on the pedestal is not probable, and most likely will not happen anymore," she said. "I don't know what will happen in Rio, because the Olympic Games aren't predictable. But if I make it to the final, I will fight for the top step of the pedestal."

Komova, who also placed fourth on balance beam and competed on vault in Glasgow, said she hopes to contend for an all-around medal at next summer's Games. She did not compete on floor exercise in Glasgow.

"For Rio I will try to prepare not only for individual apparatuses, but also prepare such a program for the all-around so as to fight for medals of the highest merit!" she told IG.

Read IG's in-depth coverage of the 2015 world championships in the December 2015 issue of International Gymnast magazine. To subscribe to the print and/or digital editions, click here.

Written by John Crumlish    Thursday, 12 November 2015 12:42    PDF Print
Steingruber: 'I Was a Very Lucky Girl'
(4 votes, average 5.00 out of 5)

Swiss star Giulia Steingruber told IG that the knee injury she sustained at the recent world championships in Glasgow is healing with time and therapy.

“I have a bone bruise, the ligament inside is a little bit dragged and the capsule is slightly ripped,” said Steingruber, who injured her right knee on the landing of her second vault in the apparatus final on Oct. 31. “I was a very lucky girl because it could be worse.”

Steingruber, the 2015 European all-around champion, is undergoing rehabilitation.

“It takes three to four weeks,” she said. “I just need to go to the physio (therapist) and do some conditioning for my leg.”

Despite the injury, Steingruber said she was pleased with her performance in Glasgow, where she placed fifth in the all-around final that took place prior to the apparatus finals. The injury forced her to withdraw for the floor exercise final on Nov. 1.

“I'm really proud about my fifth place,” she told IG. “I had a fall on beam so I think it’s pretty good. I can learn from every competition, so I hope I can improve a lot for next year.”

Read in-depth coverage of the world championships in the December 2015 issue of International Gymnast magazine. To subscribe to the print and/or digital editions, click here.

Written by John Crumlish    Thursday, 17 September 2015 07:05    PDF Print
Tunney Ready To 'Get Back Out There Again'
(4 votes, average 4.50 out of 5)

British Olympian Rebecca Tunney told IG that, following injuries which have kept her out of action until recently, she is eager to test herself on two apparatuses at this weekend’s Challenge Cup of Osijek, Croatia.

“With not being in competition for a while it's a great experience to get back out there competing again,” said Tunney, the youngest member of the British delegation at the 2012 Olympic Games in London. “It will get me back into the competition environment and prepare me for the rest of the year.”

Tunney said she looks forward to competing on balance beam and floor exercise in Osijek. She said she will not compete on vault and uneven bars because she is not quite ready.

“My main focus is just to get back out competing again and gain the experience of performing under pressure, as I haven't been able to experience that feeling in a while,” she said.

Looking ahead to next month’s world championships in Glasgow, Tunney said she is gradually regaining her all-around form.

“At the moment I am pretty much ready with beam and floor,” she told IG. “Bars and vault are still a work in progress with getting all my skills back.”

International Gymnast magazine’s recent coverage of British gymnasts includes:

Coach Barry Collie interview (July/August 2014)

“A Sorority of Success” - Becky Downie and Ellie Downie interviews (June 2014)

Becky Downie, Max Whitlock, Nile Wilson and Brinn Bevan on cover (June 2014)

“Britain’s New Bombshell” - Claudia Fragapane interview /coach Helen May Potter chat (December 2014)

Catherine Lyons interview (June 2015)

Coach Claire Starkey chat (October 2014)

Amy Tinkler interview (June 2015)

“Branching Out” - Rebecca Tunney profile (May 2014)

2014 Commonwealth Games and 2014 Youth Olympic Games coverage (September 2014)

2014 European Championships coverage (June 2014)

To subscribe to the print and/or digital editions of International Gymnast magazine, or order back issues, click here.

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