Irina BLOKHINA: “the Transfer of the Olympics – blow to the sports world”

After the who announced the spread of the coronavirus pandemic, the sports world stood still. Competitions fall under the category of “mass actions”, so they banned first and allow last. So, the Olympic Games postponed for a year. The number of migrated tournaments were the Kiev and the European championship in rhythmic gymnastics.

We have long planned interview with the coach of the national team of Ukraine in rhythmic gymnastics with the Irisha Blokhina, but the quarantine has made adjustments. Only after a substantial easing of restrictions, we were able to meet with the Ira and to discuss pressing issues.

You can already congratulate the European championship still held in Kiev this year?
— These competitions are carried out by the European gymnastics Union (EG), so the final decision was for him. The new date for the championship is named – it will be held in Kiev from 26 to 29 November. It is very important that the Executive Committee of the EG confirmed that the competition format remains the same as previously planned, including the Olympic qualification.

For Ukraine this will be the first and not exclude, the only major sports event this year. We as organizers are ready to provide the highest level of the holding of this event. Keeping fingers crossed that the situation is allowed to host the championship are complete and the audience, and with a maximum number of participants.

Tell us how gymnasts and coaches are in quarantine? Was allowed to workout?
— Rhythmic gymnastics is a sport where simple, without exaggeration, catastrophic. Fall out of training for two months is to put an end to the physical form of all our girls. The recovery after such a break would require a huge effort. So of course, we continued training. The main squad have isolated themselves in the hall, we conducted all possible tests, regularly measure temperature, disinfecting room and office space base. No one else had access to the gym.

Who from trainers working in the gym?
— Irina Ivanovna, I, Marina Kardash, Alain Dmitrash, Victoria Mazur, Olga Lobas, Eugene Gaumont. We are also preparing to coach Alena Dyachenko, Victoria Fotieva, Margarita Vasilyeva, Valery Khanin – they now undergo training with the national team.

Temporarily with us now Nina Yeresko, the founder of the Deryugin School in Dubai. She and her girls flew out here in March for the Cup Deryugin. Due to quarantine with Nina here left 9-year-old Lina, a citizen of Egypt. As a team we care about the girl, she adapted and even learned Russian language! Recently, Lina was able to fly my mom.

In the team there were no cases of coronavirus?
— No. I hope that will not happen.

The girls took the news about the postponement of the Olympic games for the year?
— Why only girls? I can say that for everyone who was preparing for the Olympics – gymnasts, coaches, officials, parents – is a huge blow. Incredible. Whole life to prepare for the performance in the Games, put so much work, effort, nerves, some of the victims for a single coin, and in gymnastics she is one in private and one in group exercises. But to educate the athlete and bring him to Olympus is a philosophy, an art.

Irina Derugina in a recent interview he said that a few girls from group exercise left the team?
— Finally nobody left. There are several girls who are currently not practicing. They need this break, I understand them. At the same time, I’m going to stand behind this team with hill, because I believe in it. I want to see them through the year on the podium.

Can you name them?
— I will not say.

Who now instead of them in the group?
— The composition varies, and we trust the decisions of the head coach of the country Irina Deriugina. The final word – for it. Some time ago in the group exercises, for example, began to work eve Meleshchuk and Nicole Krasyuk.

I think that standing in the team in group exercises very helpful for LACNIC, it helps them to develop. At the time, our gold membership – Tamara Erofeeva, Anna Bessonova, Natalia Godunko; – also stood in the group, became Champions of the world in New Orleans in 2002.

Now ask fans: don’t draw conclusions about the team in group exercises on scraps videos that have appeared on the Internet. The time will come and we will all officially report. Irina Deryugina knows exactly what to do.

As a training session during the quarantine?
— We use this break with use, changing the program, looking for new music, something innovating, inventing new, sharpen. Awesome wrap up for the eve Meleshchuk, there’s a new style, new music. In a situation with eve we always strive to give her what she’s afraid of. When she leaves the comfort zone is her growth as athletes.

Replaceable a program for Nicole Krasyuk and Christine Edge. We work with our main asterisk Possess Nikolchenko. Updated program for juniors and pre-juniors. New exercise groups this year hasn’t been shown, but we are already working on the complication.

Our first priority is to use this time and give peace of gymnastics some innovations, to develop and push it forward.

What are you, Irisha Blokhin involved in the quarantine?
— Me and mom, coach, and Manager, and the Director of DYUSSH regardless of the quarantine. We in “the Deryugin School” every day for 8 hours to undergo online training with four hundred pupils… Sometimes people ask me, where did you go from social networks? I’m not gone, just no time to choose and upload photos, the priority of real life.

If you have a question. Coach Kristina Border Iryna Ruda is no longer working with her?
Christina trains in the national team in Kiev. But when he leaves home to the city, it deals with Irina.

If the offer Irina Rudoy to work with Christina in Kiev?
— Our doors are always open. We wanted Irina was in the team. And she was a period here. But, you know, that is not so easy to leave the life, club and family in Lviv.

You may be familiar with talk about the fact that Christina treated worse than other girls?
Details do not know, but heard something. I wonder what the basis of these conversations. These people were in the hall? They interacted with girls? Team Christina in love with her serious work, she’s adapted perfectly.

Ask fans not to pump and not to invent. Better just often wish us a good day, charge, energy, and motivation. Maybe the girls from the group, which, as I said, took a break, that’s what it takes – to get the fans support.

Okay, let’s change the subject. How do you see this trend?
— From 2021 had to change the rules. Now approved, the changes will come into force from 2022. Can say one thing – we in Ukraine have always advocated a real gymnastics, the one that loves the audience. Under any rules, we focus on the spirituality of the exercises, trying to convey a certain idea. Now many athletes exercise monotonous. They choose the more expensive items and they fill the exercise. It does not benefit the gym. If the ordinary spectator, not a fan who watches every event, and the casual observer will see, he won’t know the difference. We would like to give gymnasts and coaches the freedom to choose what items to gain points. Let each uses their strengths.

Let’s talk to the other many topics. Tell us about the situation around the October Palace?
— We very much hope that soon this issue will budge. 1 June children’s Day, we held an open training session in the area before October, because really children have nowhere else to do. For the first time in 63 years, Children and youth sports school Deryugin refuse to rent, referring to the accident rate of the building. October Palace belongs to the Federation of trade unions of Ukraine, and our school is communal, i.e., rent for classes of children to sports provided from the budget of Kyiv. We ask that in joint negotiations it was decided to urgently repair the building and extend the lease for the “School Deryugin”.

The October Palace is the home of rhythmic gymnastics of Ukraine. Base in the Lifter, where is now engaged in the National team, have appeared at us rather recently. And before that, all of our champion went out from the October Palace. This Rizatdinova Anna, and Anna Bessonova, Tamara Yerofeeva and Natalia Godunko; and many other outstanding athletes. In this room a special and inspiring atmosphere.

By what principle are divided, who is training the Athlete, and who in October?
— A clear division there. The team is training in the Athlete, and in October. The Athlete the best conditions, but there is not enough space for all of Lichnice, group, juniors…

  If to speak about the ideal model of sports funding, how you think it should be? State budget or sponsors?
— In our country not applicable neither model in its pure form. I think there should be a combination of sponsors and the state. Because Ukraine today is not every parents can pay for classes of children in clubs. You calculate how much will cost this lesson: owners need to pay for the room rental, salary of trainers, utilities (and given the size of the rooms, one heating it won’t be cheap), repair. So, clearly, we need a state sports school. If to make the sport completely private, many gifted children just… lose their dreams. You know, today, when the quarantine, the sports schools are closed. We have very quickly established online training workshops, where about 400 children. So, again, we stand for the support of children’s sports at the state level.

Christine POLISH

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