Andrei Levit and Lorenzo Frenza: "Azerbaijani gymnasts have bright future"
The Azerbaijan Gymnastics Federation includes seven types of gymnastics recognized by the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG), including men's artistic gymnastics, and international experts are saying that the level of athletes in Azerbaijan has grown rapidly over the past years. Now Baku hosts the FIG courses for men's gymnastics coaches. These courses that are divided into theoretical and practical parts, the FIG specialists talk about biomechanics, anatomy and psychology. In addition local trainers, three coaches from Egypt are also participating. Participants who successfully pass the exams will receive international coaching degree of the first level.
These courses are conducted by the FIG specialists - Lorenzo Frenza from Portugal and Andrei Levit from Poland. They discussed courses and their impression of Baku in an interview with Vestnik Kavkaza.
- Why are these courses necessary?
- We're holding the FIG academy's first level coaching courses. They will last eight days. Coaches undergo theoretical and practical training, and then they have to pass exams. The FIG prepared these courses to train coaches so that they would understand new technique. We show basic elements, and then elements of the highest complexity.
- Are there some kind of new rules?
- These are not new rules. The International Gymnastics Federation has an educational structure that works on education of coaches, judges, managers. We host coaching courses as part of this structure.
- Do you like Baku?
- I was here two years ago. My student took second place at the World Cup here, it was very nice. To be honest, I'm surprised by what I see in Baku. Today I went to the embankment and was amazed by the architecture. What was built here is simply gorgeous. I'm speechless. Sports facilities are of the highest level. Azerbaijan has one of the best sports infrastructures in the world. I was here two years ago during the competitions - there's an excellent hall, excellent sports equipment, a very good warm-up hall, a wonderful hotel. All of this is needed for successful competitions.
- What can you say about coaches?
- Both young coaches and older generation participate in these courses. Most importantly, what I saw is that coaches want to learn, they are interested in this, they want to know new trends, we argue, we discuss. There are also very good athletes - with fire in their eyes, who want to improve their future and be at the top level. Six 12-13 years old boys work at these courses. They have very good basic training, very good stance, very good base for the future. I really liked them.
- What is your impression of coaching courses?
- They are productive. "Students" are very motivated. Sometimes it seems like there's too much information in a short period of time, but I think that everything will turn out well. The level of training of athletes in Azerbaijan has significantly improved. There are many gymnasts here. It's impressive. They work on all disciplines, including rhythmic gymnastics. The Azerbaijan Gymnastics Federation invests a lot and it pays off - the level is really very good. Azerbaijan achieved tremendous results in gymnastics. During the last European Championship in 2017 in Azerbaijan, Azerbaijani athletes showed remarkable results. Our courses help to improve the level of coaches. If coaches improve, then gymnasts will also be better. We're glad to see progress here.
- What do you think about prospects of Azerbaijani men's gymnastics?
- Coaches will continue to study and continue to improve their level in all areas, including physiology, anatomy, biomechanics, psychology. Accordingly, the level of gymnasts will constantly grow. There are very good training facilities in Baku, athletes get a lot of support, there are doctors, physiotherapists, there's everything necessary. Now it's time for coaches to improve their level so that they could help gymnasts get better. Azerbaijani gymnasts have a bright future.