|Svetlana Boginskaya, 15 years old, with her medals from the Seoul Olympics
The National Olympic Committee of Belarus held a press conference with three-time Olympic Champion in artistic gymnastics, Svetlana Boginskaya. The meeting was devoted to the 25th anniversary of the Olympic Games in Seoul. In South Korea the Belarussian won two gold medals in the team competition and vault.
As a gift to the Olympic Hall of fame, the famous gymnast, now living in the United States, donated one of her trophies that she won at the 1990 European Championships and a pennant for Best Female Athlete of the USSR in 1989.
How happy we were when we could share with such stars as Boginskaya, Scherbo, and Ivankov, who fought for the top spots at major competitions. Nowadays fans are deprived of all that because Belarussian gymnastics is down and can’t get back up.
-Do you have a formula for its revival?
Boginskaya: You know, I still don’t know too well about it to expose the diagnosis. You probably won’t believe me, but I flew home for the first time since moving to the United States. For example, I haven’t seen my brother in fifteen years. The fact is that I was very afraid of flying with the birth of my daughter. It was only five years ago that I eased up a little on this plan. Finally, by encouragement of my husband, I decided to travel to my homeland.
I honestly admit that I only have a vague idea on the current situation of Belarussian gymnastics. But I hope to sit down with the women’s head coach, Antonina Vladimirovna Koshel, and discuss the points where I can help our team. In general, everything became complicated after the breakup of the USSR. Russia was the same for a long while not being able to show anything serious at the world level. We need good conditions, we need coaching staff, we need high salaries, we need modern equipment, and that’s not all. We still need to find that pearl that will become a star on a planetary scale in the near future. Some of the kids are a little spoiled, free of discipline, and they say that’s how it should be, so they don’t make any kind of effort. It’s such a consumerist attitude toward the sport. We weren’t like that; I worked my guts off like hell in the gym! They would say, “do a thousand V-ups,” I would do 1200. I would die and do it.
I was a bitch in gymnastics. Ugh, it must have not been easy for others around me. Now I can only ask for forgiveness from everyone who came in contact with a gymnast named Boginskaya for her antics. But who knows, maybe the only way to reach the top is to burn yourself in the fire of self-improvement.