Alexey Ryzhkov: "We're returning to old Soviet system"

The new Olympic cycle's first World Cup in Trampoline Gymnastics and Tumbling will begin in Baku tomorrow. 85 gymnasts from 15 countries will participate in the competition. Their performances will be judged under the new rules, which came into force in 2017. February 18 will be the day of qualifications, while finals will be held on February 19. Head coach of the Russian trampolining national team  Alexey Ryzhkov discussed the event in an interview with Vestnik Kavkaza.

- Are you satisfied with the level of preparation of your team?

- It's the beginning of the season, the first competitions after the Olympic Games. Prior to this, all major competitors of the world, men and women, were resting. Russian national team started its training in December, we held training camp in Sochi. On January 14 we visited the base in Novogorsk and began to get back in shape little by little. We made adjustments to the training, thought out model characteristics and training cycles. Everything new is actually well-forgotten old. Right now we're returning to our old Soviet system, let's see what happens.

- What are your main goals?

- Rules of the competition have changed in this Olympic cycle, the number of elements has increased, the difficulty of performances has increased, another exercise has been added. There were two, and now there are four. The tactic has changed. Let's see whether athletes will be comfortable with this program, what our main competitors will show, and then we will make necessary adjustments to the training. The main competition this year - the World Cup, which will be held in Sofia. After that there will be a few World Cups, and right now there's Azerbaijani World Cup - the first stage. Strongest athletes in the world participate in it, we will watch them and make some adjustments. 

- New elements were added after changing the rules. How will it affect the technique? Were those changes objective?

- All elite athletes of the world made adjustments, which is, of course, affects the technique. New rules were introduced. Now computer decides the score. We must figure out how all of this will eventually affect the final score, because the rules have really changed a lot. Russia already held several events under new system last year, and our results have changed by 7-15% for the worse or better. Some people showed better results, some didn't. The coaching staff analyzed everything, so the corrections were made.

- Do you like this arena, the illumination?

- I've never saw anything like that before. This illumination is used during the demonstrations, during huge shows. It helps to focus on the performance itself. This is an unusual thing, which we can see in this arena. A place where athlete performs will be in the focus, the sports component will be in the focus, not just a show. I'm really interested in the results, how athletes, audience and judges will react. It's very interesting,

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