Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Yana Kudryavtseva Acquires Sofia World Cup All-around Title

The Russian rhythmic gymnast Yana Kudryavtseva, regarded as the “Queen of Rhythmic Gymnastics”, acquired the gold medal in the individual all-around event and two of the four apparatus event finals of the sixth FIG World Cup which was held last weekend in Sofia. 

The 2013 edition of the Sofia World Cup was the first World Cup competition where Kudryavtseva, 15-year-old at that time, had acquired a World Cup title. She continued her dominance in the succeeding World Cups in Sofia (2014,2015) , and the competition that was held last Saturday was marked as her fourth consecutive Sofia World Cup victory. 

Yana Kudryavtseva

“I love Bulgaria,” said the 18-year old rhythmic star, while mentioning that the crowd in the country has always been very supportive. “It can be said that I like it like my home country. It is very nice to compete here.”

Combining the scores she acquired from her three World Cup victories in Pesaro, Tashkent and Sofia, Kudryavtseva, the heavy favorite for the Olympic gold medal in Rio, is currently tied with Ukrainian gymnast Ganna Rizatdinova for the second place in the 2016 Rhythmic Gymnastics World Rankings list. The ranking list features the four best finishes of the athletes from the World Cup competition, and they are ranked based on the total of their four best results. With four more events to come, the World Cup series is currently led by Russia’s Aleksandra Soldatova. 

In the all-around competition, Yana Kudryavtseva obtained a total score of 75.750 points, more than a point ahead of Rizatdinova (74.250) and Son Yeon Jae (74.200). In the apparatus event finals, the Hoop and the Club title were achieved by Rizatdinova and Son Yeon Jae respectively. Son also managed to acquire silvers in the Hoop and Ribbon and a bronze in the Ball, making her the only gymnast to reach all the individual event podium in Sofia. 

Bulgarian National Team

Aside from Kudryavtseva, two Russian twins Arina and Dina Averina also entered the competition, with Arina appearing as more successful. She surpassed her sister’s score to acquire the bronze in the Hoop event and outscored Kudryavtseva to take a second bronze in the Clubs. 

Neviana Vladinova and Katrin Taseva represented the host country Bulgaria. They both made it to the event finals, with Vladinova obtaining a bronze medal in the Ribbon. 

In the team competition, the Bulgarian national team acquired both titles in the apparatus event finals, but only took the second place behind Russia in the Group All-around. Belarus obtained the All-around bronze, placed second in the Clubs/Hoops and tied in 3rd place with Israel in the 5 Ribbons event. Russia also acquired the silver in the 5 Ribbons event, while the Italian team achieved bronze in the Clubs/Hoops. 

The full results of the event can be viewed here (credits to FIG) 

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Thursday, May 26, 2016

Baku to Host FIG World Cup Finals

Azerbaijan, a country that is achieving a lot of success in gymnastics in such a short span of time, continues to organize prestigious international competitions. 

The final Rhythmic Gymnastics World Cup of the season will be held in Baku, the capital city of Azerbaijan, on 22nd to 24th of July, 2016.

AGF Trophy 2016

Fans and audiences will get the opportunity to witness the remarkable performances of some of the most prominent gymnasts coming from 22 different countries. The competition will take place 2 weeks ahead of the most important event of the season – the 2016 Rio Olympic Games.

Thirty four prominent gymnasts and eleven groups will compete in group exercises on the first two days of the event. The final day of the World Cup finals will feature performances from different gymnastics disciplines.

Nine World Cup competitions have been hosted by the International Gymnastics Federation this year. At the World Cup in Baku, a special awarding ceremony will be organized for the athletes and teams taken the first places according to the best four results shown at previous Series.

“The winner of the annual World Cup is the gymnast or group with the highest number of points of the all World Cup Series Ranking Lists (Groups as well as All-Around for each apparatus) after the last event of the year.” (source: FIG)

Azerbaijan will be represented by the First European Games’ silver medalist Marina Durunda. The silver medalist of the European Championships in the junior category, Zhala Piriyeva, who has just joined the senior program, will also compete in the event. 

Azerbaijan Gymnastics Federation

Siyana Vasileva, Ayshan Bayramova, Aleksandra Platonova, Diana Doman and Elif Zeynep Celep will compete for Azerbaijan in the group exercises at the World Cup event.

The competition will also feature a spectacular Opening Ceremony (22nd of July), which will be directed by Mariana Vasileva, the Head Coach of the Azerbaijan National Team. There will also be a traditional Gala on 24th of July, where the young gymnasts – the future international competitors of Azerbaijan – will deliver an outstanding performance for the rhythmic gymnastics fans to watch.

The tickets for the said event can be purchased at the ticket office of the MGA, National Gymnastics Arena, and also at the “Bazerstore supermarket. The tickets are priced from 5 to 20 manats, and a discount will be provided for those who will avail tickets for all 3 days of the World Cup competition. Students will also be provided with a special discount.

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Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Belarus Acquired Seven Medals at the BSB Bank Rhythmic World Cup

Belarus acquired a total of seven medals at the 2016 BSB Bank Rhythmic Gymnastics World Cup, which was held in Minsk Falcon Club last weekend. On the final day of the competition, Melitina Staniouta, the leader of the Belarusian team managed to acquire a spot on the podium three times.

Melitina Staniouta

The three-time World all-around bronze medalist acquired the silver medal in the Hoop event with a score of 18.700 points and the bronze in the Ball (18.700). She also posted a score of 18.650 points in the Clubs competition to win another bronze. The Belarusian rhythmic gymnast achieved the fifth place in the Ribbon event, behind her fourth placer teammate Yekaterina Galkina.

On the second day of the competition, the 22-year-old Belarusian gymnast earned a bronze medal in the individual all-around event. The Russian rhythmic star Margarita Mamun made a gold medal sweep of all the individual apparatus titles after posting the highest scores in all of the events. Mamun acquired 19.000 points in the Hoop, 19,150 points in the Ball, 19,100 points in the Clubs and 18.950 points in the Ribbon. 

In the Team competition, the Belarusian team, which consists of Ksenia Cheldyshkina, Anna Dudenkova, Maria Kadobina, Maria Kotyak, Valeria Pishchelina and Arina Tsitsilina, acquired the silver medal with a total score of 17,950 points, just behind the 18.150 points which was posted by the gold medalist Russia. The bronze medal was obtained by Israel, who earned a total score of 17.750 points.

Belarusian team

The Belarusian national team acquired the gold medal in the Two Hoops and Six Clubs event after posting the highest score of 18.850 points. The silver medal was won by Italy (18.050 points), while the bronze medal was obtained by Israel (18.000 points).

A day earlier, the Belarusian team also finished ahead the silver medalist Russia, to take hold of the gold medal in the Group all-around event. 

The 2016 BSB Bank Rhythmic Gymnastics World Cup, which took place on 20th to 22nd of May, 2016, was a very significant stepping stone in the Belarusian gymnasts’ preparations for the upcoming European Rhythmic Gymnastics Championships in Holon, Israel, which is scheduled to take place on June 17-19, 2016. The competition also served as a training ground for the upcoming Rio Olympic Games in August. 

The next FIG Rhythmic Gymnastics World Cup is scheduled to take place in Sofia, Bulgaria on May 25-30, 2016.

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Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Rhythmic Gymnastics Exercises Can Improve Child’s Creativity, Study Suggests

Based on a research, engaging in a motor improvisation program can positively affect the motor creativity of the young children. According to the research, the young children who participated in the study experienced an improvement in their motor creativity (fluency, originality, expansion, flexibility).

The study included a small number of girls whose currently in the 3rd grade. Out of the 44 girls who were initially chosen to take part in the study, only a total of 20 girls were carried to participate as the final experimental sample. These girls were asked to participate in a motor improvisation program, primarily using exercises and apparatuses from the rhythmic gymnastics.

Throughout the study, the equipments and instruments that were used are forms for recording information and measurements of the research group, a restameter to measure the subjects’ height in centimeter, a medical balance to determine the subject’s weight in kilograms, a stopwatch, rhythmic gymnastics apparatuses (ball, rope, hoop), a laptop and CDs, a set of sterile plastic cups and glass tubes and a video camera.

The training program was divided into three parts – the preliminary part, which lasts for 20 minutes; the main part, which has a total duration of 60 minutes; and the final part, which lasts for around ten minutes.

The preliminary part consists of changing the outfit and checking the attendance of the participants (5 minutes are allotted for this). The 15 minutes that was left are used to perform relaxation exercises (from the 1st to the 6th lessons) and warm up exercises for all the parts of the body from the 7th to 12th lessons.

The main part of the training program consists of different exercises that included the exercises used in rhythmic gymnastics training. Lastly, the final part, which lasts for ten minutes, are comprised of calming activities such as mini games.

The training program lasted for 8 weeks, wherein the subjects have to attend two training sessions a week. Each session lasts for 90 minutes. The program was applied on Mondays and Wednesdays, from 2 in the afternoon until 3:30 pm. 

After the training program has ended, the participants were evaluated and measured. The results were compared to the measurements they got before the training program has begun. The researchers saw a significant difference in the pre and post measurements, seeing a positive improvement in the post measurements in variables of fluency, expansion, flexibility and total motor creativity.

The results were rather impressive, and it successfully proved the hypothesis of the researchers which states that the motor improvisation program positively affects the motor creativity of the children. 

If you will think about it, it is not surprising that the training program boosted the creativity of the participants. The training program they used included some activities from the rhythmic exercises, which is a sport that primarily uses creativity and imagination in order to be properly performed. So, by regularly taking part in rhythmic exercises, the motor creativity of the participants were positively affected.

By performing rhythmic gymnastics on a regular basis, it is not only your physical capabilities that are enhanced, but also the level of your creativity.

So, what are you waiting for, take part in a rhythmic gymnastics program and enjoy all the benefits that the sport can bring to you. Experience an excellent kind of gymnastics training experience, enroll at Bianka Panova Sport and Art Academy today :) Come and learn gymnastics for kids with us

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Korean RG Team Surprised of the Group Event Cancellation in Uzbekistan

The Korean rhythmic gymnastics group were surprised when they arrived in Uzbekistan after hearing the news that the event they came for had been cancelled. The disappointment in their faces was obvious as they travelled for 7 hours just to compete for the international competition.

The Korean delegation composed of 20 members – comprised of four gymnasts, managers, coaches and a team doctor – reached Uzbekistan on 6th of May to participate in the 8th Senior Rhythmic Gymnastics Asian Championships which will take place at Gymnastics Sports Palace from 8th to 10th of May, 2016.

Unfortunately, at the meeting they attended on the 7th of May, they were told by the Asian Gymnastics Union (the organization which is responsible for hosting the event) without prior notice that the group event was cancelled. The AGU told that the reason for the cancellation was because of the FIG World Cup that is scheduled to take place this week. That was a very frustrating news for the Korean delegation, as two of their gymnasts were scheduled to participate in the group event. 

The cancellation of the group event affected not only the Korean group, but also other countries who flew their way to Uzbekistan just to compete.

Infuriated Korean representatives and other countries demanded the event organizers to deal with this matter and devise an effective solution.

“We’ve confronted the AGU about the matter,” said a staffer from the Korean gymnastics governing body. “After making our case, it’s been arranged that the gymnasts who were originally planning to participate in group events could compete in individual events.”

The Asian Gymnastics Union also sent a letter of apology to the participating nations for the unexpected and unannounced changes in the competition’s schedule. The letter itself, however, was not enough to compensate for the time, effort and money that the nations spent to participate in the event.

The four rhythmic gymnastics members of the Korean delegations were Son Yeon-jae, Chun Song-e, Lee Da-ae and Lee Na-kyung. They were chosen after the two rounds of national team qualifiers with Son and Chun grabbing the first and second spot, while Lee Da-ae and Lee Na-kyung acquired the third and fourth place.

While Son and Chun were slated to compete in the individual event of the competition, Lee Da-ae and Lee Na-kyung were scheduled to participate only in the group event. However, the sudden cancellation of the group event forced the two Lees to compete in the individual event, despite their weeks-long effort preparing for the group competition.

This is not the very first time that the Asian Gymnastics Union has come under criticism. The Rhythmic Gymnastics Asian Championships in Uzbekistan was originally a biennial event – a competition that is held once every two years. The event was initially expected to take place in 2017, but the AGU decided to hold the competition this year and even changed the date from June to May, causing hassle and confusion amongst participating nations and gymnasts.

Despite the sudden changes in the competition, the Korean representatives are doing just fine, with Son Yeon-jae dominating the competition, taking home all of the five individual titles.

Son is aiming to acquire a medal at the upcoming Olympic Games this August. If she will be able to do so, she’ll be the first-ever Korean gymnast to take home an Olympic medal in rhythmic gymnastics.

“I am so happy to wrap up this year's Asian Championships with five gold medals,” the 21-year-old gymnast said "I will keep training hard for the Rio Olympics in August.”

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Thursday, May 5, 2016

Physical Activity Guidelines For Young Children

To maintain a healthy and physically-fit body, young people should get enough exercise everyday. It is important for them to meet the exercise guidelines that are appropriate for their age level to keep their physical fitness at the optimal level.

For young children aged five years old and above, it is important to get at least an hour of exercise each day to keep their bodies active, healthy, and physically fit. The exercises a young child should perform must be comprised of moderate and vigorous physical activities. At least thrice a week, these exercises must focus on strengthening the muscles and the bones of these young children.

Normally, in the current generation of youth, most young children are spending too much of their time in front of their screens (smartphones, TVs and personal computers), which eats away all of their free time, leaving barely enough time to do any physical activity.

This kind of habit can be pretty damaging to your child’s health, so you should ensure that your child is not allocating most of their precious time doing such things. It is your task, as a parent, to limit the time they spend in front of their screens. 

You should also start to encourage your child to engage in physical activities such as jogging and sports. You should convince them that these kinds of activities are more fun than sitting in front of the computer screen all day, and you should also tell them some of the benefits they can get from doing such things, so they can be more motivated to start doing it.

Kids at a young age basically won’t do an activity he/she doesn’t enjoy, so you need to make sure that you choose the kind of physical activity he/she will truly enjoy so that your child will be able to willingly do these activities. 

For example, if your child shows enthusiasm to be more active when surrounded with friends, then you should consider letting him/her join a team-oriented sport such as basketball, football and hockey. However, if your child enjoys doing splits and performing tumblings, then gymnastics might be the best sports choice for her.

If your child doesn’t want to join any sports, but is still willing to be physically active, then you should encourage him/her to do any kind of moderate to vigorous physical activities.

What is Considered as a Moderate Activity?

Moderate physical activities are those activities that can be done with only a moderate amount of effort. These activities are known to raise your heart rate levels and make you break a sweat. One way to tell if you’re performing a moderate physical activity is when your breathing still enables you to talk, but you’re unable to sing a song properly without losing a breath.

Moderate activities include: walking to the school, playing outside with their friends, riding a bicycle, and doing simple household chores.

What is Considered as a Vigorous Activity?

Vigorous physical activities require a great amount of effort, and usually make the child push their physical capabilities to the limits. You know you are performing a vigorous physical activity if you can barely talk without having to pause to catch a breath. 

Despite requiring more effort, vigorous physical activities are known to provide better health benefits compared to what a moderate activity could bring. Vigorous physical activities are linked to better overall health, stronger and healthier bones, better physical fitness and higher levels of self-esteem.

Some examples of vigorous activities are: dancing, swimming, running and playing intense sports.
Learn more about physical fitness and expand your knowledge regarding your child’s health by reading our educational articles. Let your child learn gymnastics in the most fun and exciting way, enroll today at Bianka Panova Sport and Art Academy! :) Join us in the fun and learn gymnastics for kids :)