The Golden Girl

From  published on 23-09-2009

Originally written by Natalia Graf (Omsk) in Russian; English text was translated and edited by catts

Yesterday the world champion of RG – winner of 6 gold medals – Evgenia Kanaeva returned back to her homeland Omsk for a break after her triumphal performance in Mie, Japan. The best artist of our planet took the opportunity to talk with the correspondent of about her ‘gold’ record for the nation, her new plans and ways of a relaxation.

Q: Zhenya, what is the secret of your stunning success? This year you have won absolutely everything in all the competitions you took part.
A: The secret of my stability, first of all, is related to the constant exhausting training. It is impossible to relax literally for even a second. Besides, a lot is due to my trainer – Vera Efremova Shtelbaums. Without her, I would never be what I am now. After each victory she always tells me, ‘everything will vanish after you stepped off the podium, all are forgotten and thus it is necessary to start all over again.’

Q: And how did you feel when you stood on the podium in Mie with 6 gold medals? Since 17 years ago when Oksana Kostina won 5 gold medals in a WC, no one has ever repeated such astonishing results.
A: I was simply glad when all came to an end, which was my feeling when I was on my way to the kiss and cry area after my final routine. After five days of performing, all our strengths were already drained. During the time of the WC, early morning we started with warm-up, then competing, and afterward – in an hour time – again on the carpet. And the most difficult competition of all – the Individual All-around – began on the fifth day. By then I was already exhausted and felt weary. Yet, I sustained and went for victory.

Q: Whose performances do you like the most?
A: I am particularly impressed by Ulyana Trofimova from Uzbekistan – she does such things which no one else in the world does. Also, Liubou Charkashyna from Belarus, and our Sasha Ermakova. In general, you always feel that there are someone just not far from you in terms of RG technique. The popularity of RG lately has gained momentum. For example, tickets for this WC in Japan needed to be reserved 6 months in advance.

Q: How are your relationships with the girls in a national team after you clean-swept all the gold medals? Do they feel jealous?
A: I do not think about it. After all, they all know what victory costs, and what I have been through. Nevertheless, I feel I reached the expectation of the new fans. I feel this intuitively.

Q: For a long period of time you were labeled as ‘the second Kabaeva’ or ‘the new Tchachina’. However, after your triumphal performance in Mie, obviously a new era in Russian RG has begun.
A: I always try to be myself, not to copy from others. And the Russian RG school has taken the lead in the world. Simply, different generations of sportswomen are not comparable to one another. Today, there are too many talented girls with excellent abilities – which creates a very competitive environment. Therefore, it is necessary to work further in order to stay ahead of others. To be the best means a commitment surpasses all. As the level of the competitors progresses, the whole settling requires us to go forward.

Q: Zhenya, all your routines contain difficulties beyond the average standard. Does it mean you intentionally take risk?
A: It is necessary to have 3 risky sheaves in each of the routines. It is impossible to do our sport without taking risk. All of my routines are put together by Irina Zenovka – the deserved trainer of Russia. She explains each movement to me. We thoroughly fulfill each trifle. However, there is another set of risks which is not dependent on us. For example, a ribbon routine can be ruined by the powerful conditioners. In Japan we asked the organizers to switch off the conditioners during competition time.

Q: How do you get refreshed after all the heavy pressure?
A: There are very good facilities for rehabilitation for us, such as massage and some other special devices for relaxation. But for me it is important to be able to sleep. The best rest is a strong healthy dream, and to read books. And I also like to do embroider as leisure with a dagger – which is very calm and helps to put my thoughts in order.

Q: What will you be doing in Omsk?
A: First of all I will need to spend time with my parents. My last visit was two months ago, which only lasted for a few days. And mum also worries about me. She is the master of sports in RG, and thus knows inside-out what it takes to win. It is time for me to think about decorating the apartment which was presented by the governor last year. Of course, I will need to meet my friends.

Q: And do you go anywhere for rest/holiday?
A: I will go off to France for some days, which will take place just before the end of this vacation. We (with Vera Shtelbaums) were invited to attend a two weeks joint-training program in America, as well as to go to Italy. However, unfortunately, there is not enough time.

Q: Has your schedule of competitions already planned?
A: Yes, almost confirmed. In October there will be the Grand Prix in Berlin, then competition in Italy, and afterward Galina Gorenkova’s memorial tournament in Omsk. And the new World Championship is not that far off. Next year it will begin rather early, in April. Therefore there is no time to rest. I have plans to change my routines in order to master new elements. Recently many people said to me, ‘you have taken all high prizes, what do you do now?’ For me, sport is not about the number of gold medals you have won, but is about constantly in progress. As far as I like this sport, I will not leave RG.

Q: There is a new law on which Olympic champions can choose any high school in the country to study in. Have you taken the advantage of this law?
A: Higher education, if conducted seriously, is incompatible with sport. I even decline the invitation to go on a TV show – ‘The Big Races’. My life pattern does not allow me to sit down as all strengths are reserved for training. And I don’t want to get a diploma without working hard on it. I am used to achieve everything by reaching top marks. At the moment I study in Omsk in order to get a qualification to become a trainer. I have no clue about anything further. You know, for some reason, it seems to me RG is what ahead awaiting me.



Chinese Translation by Zoe Wan (zhenya0402)

昨天-藝術體操世界冠軍-6面金牌得主-Evgenia Kanaeva回到家鄉OMSK, 這是她在日本三重縣驚人的表現後的小休. 這個星球上最好的RG選手藉此機會跟ru.rg的記者談了她這次的替國家所創造的黃金紀錄, 她未來的計畫, 還有她放鬆的方式.

Q: Zhenya, 你如此驚豔的成功的秘訣是什麼? 今年你贏了所有你參加的比賽.
A: 我的穩定性的秘訣, 首先, 是長年不斷的刻苦訓練. 不可能有一刻的放鬆. 此外, 很大原因得歸功於我的教練-Vera Efremova Shtelbaums. 沒有她就不會有現在的我. 在每次的比賽勝利後, 教練總是告訴我 ‘當你走下頒獎台, 所有的一切就消失了, 都歸零. 所有的事情都會被遺忘. 因此一切必須重頭再來.

Q: 在Mie, 當你掛著6面金牌站在頒獎台上, 你是什麼感覺? 自從17年前Oksana Kostina在一個世錦賽中贏得5面金牌後, 沒人曾經再獲得如此驚人的成績. (note by zhenya0402, 其實5面金牌的人也有好幾個, 2005年Kapranova也拿了5金. Petrova也拿過5金)
A: 我只是很高興所有的一切終於結束了. 這是我做完最後一個Routine, 走回Kiss&Cry時的感覺. 經過5天的比賽, 所有我們的精力都耗損殆盡, 在世錦賽期間, 一大早我們開始暖身練習, 然後比賽, 一個小時之後, 又回到比賽場. 而最困難的比賽-個人全能-是在第5天進行. 當時我已經筋疲力盡, 而且覺得疲憊不堪. Yet, 我支持住並邁向勝利.

Q: 你最喜歡誰的表演?
A: 我特別對來自Uzbekistan的Ulyana Trofimova 印象深刻, 她的動作非常獨特, 世界上沒有其他人做過. 還有我喜歡白俄羅斯的Liubou Charkashyna, 跟我們隊上的Sasha Ermakova. 一般, 你總是會覺得有其他人, 在RG的技術上跟你不是相差很遠. 最近, RG的受歡迎程度獲得很好的推動. 例如, 這次在日本舉辦的世錦賽門票, 需要從6個月前就開始預約.

Q: 你在世錦賽橫掃所有金牌後, 你跟國家隊其他女孩的關係如何呢? 她們會嫉妒你嗎?
A: 我沒想過這個問題. 畢竟她們都知道成功/ 勝利的代價. 跟我經歷過的一切. 無論如何, 我覺得自己達到了新粉絲的期望, 這是我的直覺.

Q: 很長一段時間, 你被稱為’Kabaeva第二’ 或’新的Tchachina’ 然而, 經過你在Mie的驚人表現之後, 顯然地, 俄羅斯的RG開啟了新的時代.
A: 我總是試著去做我自己, 不要去複製其他人. 且俄羅斯的RG學校在世界上是居於領先地位的. 只是, 不同世代的運動員是無法互相比較的. 今天, 有很多有天分的女孩, 具有傑出的能力. 這創造了一個很有競爭氣氛的環境. 因此, 更進一步的努力是必須的, 以便能繼續領先其他人. 成為最好意味著超越所有. 當競爭者的水準提升, 我們更需要走在前面.

Q: Zhenya, 所有你的成套, 所包含的難度都超越平均水準. 這是否意味著你刻意嘗試冒險?
A: 每個成套都必須包含3個驚險性的elements. 在我們這個運動不可能不冒險. 我的成套都是由Irina Zenovka-俄羅斯著名的教練, 設計編排. 她向我解釋每一個動作. 我們很透徹的完成每一個細節. 然而, 有另一種風險, 是不取決於我們. 例如, 一個彩帶的成套可能會因為太強的空調而毀了. 在日本, 我們要求主辦單位在比賽期間關掉空調.

Q: 在所有這些沈重的壓力之後, 你如何再重新振作.
A: 我們有很棒的設備幫助選手復原. 例如按摩或一些其他特別的幫助放鬆的設施. 但對我而言, 最重要是睡眠. 最好的休息就是健康的睡眠, 還有看書. 此外, 閒暇時, 我喜歡刺繡, 這能幫助我靜下心來, 釐清自己的想法.

Q: 待在OMSK的這段時間, 你打算作什麼?
A: 首先, 我會花時間跟父母相處, 我上一次回來是2個月前, 且只待了幾天. 媽媽很關心我, 她以前也是練RG的/ 精通RG的, 因此她很清楚(由內而外), 取得勝利該付出的是什麼. 而現在也是時候讓我想想該怎麼裝飾去年地方政府送我的公寓. 當然, 我還會跟朋友碰面.

Q: 你會去任何地方休息/ 度假嗎?
A: 假期尾聲的時候, 我會去法國待幾天. 我們(with Vera Shtelbaums) 被邀請去參加一個在美國舉辦的2個禮拜的聯合訓練計畫. 還有去義大利. 然而, 很遺憾地, 沒有足夠的時間.

Q: 你的比賽時間表是否已經都安排好了?
A: 是的, 幾乎都確定了. 10月份有柏林年終大獎賽 (卡娜好像記錯時間, GP Berlin是在11月), 然後在義大利的比賽 (我想可能是指Serie A). 之後, 在OMSK舉辦的Galina Gorenkova 的紀念比賽. 而新的世錦賽(??)為期也不遠 (記者可能寫錯, 我覺得應該是指歐錦賽), 明年開始的相當早, 在4月舉辦. 因此沒有時間休息. 我計畫更改成套以配合新的動作. 最近, 有很多人跟我說: 你已經贏得了所有崇高的桂冠, 現在還有什麼需要做的? 對我而言, 運動不是指你贏的金牌的數量, 而是要持續的進步. 只要我喜歡這個運動的一天, 我不會離開RG

Q: 有個新的法律通過, 奧運冠軍可以挑選任何一個高的學府去研讀. 你會利用這個法律的優勢嗎?
A: 高等教育, 如果嚴格考慮, 是跟運動有所衝突的. 我甚至拒絕了一個名為‘The Big Races’的電視節目邀請. 我的生活模式, 不能允許我坐下來, 因為所有的精力都是保存來訓練的. 而且我不想沒經過努力而去取得文憑. 我已經習慣以高標準達成每件事. 現階段我在OMSK學習成為一個夠資格的教練. 對於更進一步的事情, 我沒有任何的頭緒, 你知道, 因為一些原因, RG就是等在我前面的事情。

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