This is going to be a long post…
While I was watching the documentary based on the road of Russian rhythmic gymnast Margarita Mamun to the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, all kind of thoughts and questions popped up in my head, but probably the biggest one was: “Is this the way to win an Olympic Gold Medal?”
As the movie was rolling, I finally got convinced on why she deserved to win. Beyond the sport and the champion she is, this is about something else. It actually requires a WARRIOR HEART AND SOUL to overcome all the things she went through during that Olympic cycle. What a warrior is Rita, unbelievable!
My personal opinion about what is shown in this documentary goes beyond my words. I know how it feels to be humiliated and insulted for nor being “good enough” or “fat” but this goes in another dimension.
For the last 6 years, I’ve been volunteering in different international rhythmic gymnastics event, from world championships to the Olympics where Rita won. In each of these events, a sentence was present… “The crazy ladies from Rhythmic Gymnastics”. To be honest, hearing that every single time felt like taking a bullet in my heart, but I couldn’t defend us… Why?
In a sport where perfectionism is a must, the pressure is extreme, the skinny body is the rule, and “The System” is covering everything, it looks like there is no space for sanity or even peace. Competition is fearless, but sometimes I wonder, who are the real competitors in here?
Let’s make something clear, gymnasts, like any other athlete, are humans, not robots or money machines, HUMANS. They feel, get excited, nervous, tired and hungry. They have dreams and goals, and all of them got into the sport because it was fun and they loved that. How can you have fun when you are insulted?
Without a doubt, I will always say the Rhythmic Gymnastics is the most beautiful sports on earth, period. It’s like a play, a show! And it’s so delightful to watch gymnasts that are actually showing their joy, their passion. There is no need to be an expert because you can see it and feel it.
No one knows what is happening behind the scenes and if they knew, how will we be called again? Yes.
I feel such a big admiration for Rita, not everyone can handle a situation like that, I know I can’t, that was one of the reasons for me quitting the sport, I was tired of that unnecessary pressure.
Yet everybody around the world is wanting a little piece of this “system”… Why? This documentary is a WAKE-UP CALL, so we better answer and soon.
From a coach or judge point of view, let’s think about it… How are we treating our gymnasts? Who is the real competitor? How can we help them better? How can we coach them for LIFE? What role am I playing in their lives? What kind of role model am I?
One thing is clear, we are probably too in love with this, it’s the truth! But how do you treat something that you love so much?
Another thing is clear to me. Every single woman I met in this sport feels a deep passion for it. They don’t know other things or another way, this is life for them. The level of devotion is admirable and it goes Over The Limit.
So, what’s the real price? That’s the thing. I believe the answer to this question is very personal, like the definition of success.
Every person has the freedom to decide what kind of efforts they are willing to do in other to achieve what they want. Just let’s make sure that these decisions are based on kindness, love, and respect.
Hats off for this real and limitless Warrior. She got her Olympic Gold Medal.
Now I wonder what’s next for her.
For the rest of us… Let’s have a look again and then meditate. Here is the link à https://ok.ru/video/762469288506
Keep Going Champions!