Mariana Vasileva: "Faith is most important thing"

The four-day FIG Artistic Gymnastics World Cup in Baku has come to an end. On the last day there were finals in five gymnastics disciplines among men and women. One of the organizers, the head coach of the Azerbaijani national rhythmic gymnastics team, Mariana Vasileva, speaking to Vestnik Kavkaza, shared her impressions of the competitions.

- Mariana, the championship in gymnastics has come to the end. As a person in charge of the beauty of all the championships held in Azerbaijan, tell us what innovations were made.

- It is very difficult to come up with innovations, because every month we hold some big sports forum. It's hard to maintain a high level, but fortunately, we have a big professional team, we all come together to come up with surprises for our guests. This time, we presented each country as our young rhythmic and artistic gymnast in the national dress of the respective country and its national dance. There were 23 countries. We made the same presentation of all the participants before the finale as well. Thanks to this, the atmosphere was warmer and brighter. All the athletes, thanks to them, responded to my request and actively participated in this presentation together with our young athletes. The legend of artistic gymnastics Oksana Chusovitina even danced together with our girls. It was very pleasant.

 - There's a little more than a month until the rhythmic gymnastics competition. How do you assess the physical and moral shape of your wards?

- Since the beginning of this cycle, new rules have appeared, we changed the entire program, adjusted to these new rules, and it seems to me that it was a success. This is my subjective opinion, but I'm usually very critical of my work and the work of my team. This time I really like the whole program and the chosen music. We present the new rules from a special point of view. I think that it will touch the soul of any spectator. Azerbaijani music will also be present, it is invariable, but in a new arrangement. The performance of Marina Durunda with the ball will be accompanied by a very original arrangement. The rules now allow us to use greater complexity with objects, and, of course, we took a chance. When you put more at risk with the complexity of the subject, you are more likely to fail, but we feel positive. Our first start is in just five days. We will left for the Grand Prix at Thiers. Durunda will be the team leader there, who will show her new exercises. I hope that they will be well received.

- Will the group performance be accompanied by the national music?

- No. This time we have chosen absolutely different musical accompaniments. The girls will perform hoops exercises under Sevara Nazarkhan's soul song 'There is no me'. The girls got older and feel the music much more emotionally now. It seems to me that they managed to show my idea in this exercise very well. Balls and ropes exercises will be accompanied by modern music. The colleagues who were here at international and intercontinental courses saw and said that they really like both exercises, because they are very different. And the girls' performance is very artistic.

- The girls had a talisman - a white bear. Did they keep it?

- Oh sure. They keep it, they take it everywhere. I have to hold it when they perform.

- Does it help?

- It helps. The most important thing is for a person to believe that something helps him. Faith is the most important thing.

- And what are the ideas about the opening of competitions in rhythmic gymnastics?

- The idea is that a little girl who sees a successful gymnast on television dreams to be just like her. And we show her way to achieve success, and in the end it turns out that she was the girl shown on TV.

- Will the program, which is being prepared by the girls now, be performed at the Islamic Solidarity Games?

- Yes, the same program. I usually try to change the program every year, because the judges, the audience and fans get bored to look at the same thing, even though it's a masterpiece. Therefore, we try to change the program. But the program for the Islamic Games and the World Championships at the end of this year will be the same.

- Will any of your athletes take part in the opening of the Islamic Solidarity Games?

- Several girls as young as 12 years old will take part in the opening as "flying gymnasts." I am proud of them, they are very responsible for this work, have been preparing for 6 months already. I hope that it will be a push for them to become Olympic champions someday.

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