Friday, May 15, 2009

Watch Out Vanessa......

The Next Generation is Coming!

A few weeks ago I was contacted by the father of a a young Italian gymnast.  He and his family were going to be spending some time in Moscow over the summer and were looking for a school or summer gymnastics camp for their little girl, Diana to train in while they are there.  He was asking if I knew of anything.  I asked around, but to no avail.  Well after a few emails back and forth, I have learned a little about little Diana, and let me tell you guys, it sounds like there is some more raw talent coming Italy's way in the near future.

(Diana's father told me not to make a joke about the leotard, because Diana's mother, who is also Ukrainian, cut and sewed it herself!  I wouldn't anyway, because think it is adorable!)

Diana is seven-years-old, was born in the Ukraine, and is the national gymnastics champion for her age group in Italy.  She trains thirty hours a week, and refuses to change her schedule for the summer (hence needing some teaching in Russia).  Her father describes her as a "gym rat"

Her favorite event is uneven bars, where she is already learning Giants, Stalders and Endos.  Apparently her coaches, Samuel Franco and Giulia Rossi don't believe in using grips, so she struggles with blisters and rips, but her father says Diana is very tough and it doesn't stop her loving bars and learning these big tricks. He also says she is small and light but very muscular which is perfect for bars.  She trains at a club near Pisa called Gimnasticsscina

Her gymnastics hero is, not surprisingly, Vanessa Ferrari (I wonder if Diana was one of the many, many little girls running around the at the European Championships looking for Vanessa for an autograph- apparently Diana and her parents were there.  I was nearly trampled a few times!).  Because she is a bars fiend she also loves Nastia Liukin and Beth Tweddle (she's got great taste!).  After the European Championships, she is now also a big fan of Ksenia Semenova (more about Ksenia later).

I have included some photos of of Diana performing, which her father sent to me.  Apparently Diana loves The Couch Gymnast and always asks her father to read out parts to her and help her vote in the Best and Worst leotard Contest (new heats next week). Cute!!!  It was lovely to hear a little bit about Diana and I wanted to write something about this amazing, talented little gymnast- and I thought you guys might like to hear about her too.

Also, the good news about Diana is that Ferrari's coach, Enrico Casella has said he will be happy to take Diana at his new training complex PalAlgeco in Brescia to train with the Brixia gymnasts, if the Russian training doesn't work out.  So i think either way, Diana is going to have a huge learning experience.  

BUT, if anyone does know of a good coach or training opportunity in or around Moscow, please email me at the address in the side bar, and i will pass the information on to Diana's father.  

Anyway, good luck Diana, for your big future in gymnastics!


  1. Aw, that's adorable that you have such a young reader!

  2. Wow!!!She's very cute!!!!!I didn't know anything about her!

  3. Gorgeous, but 30hrs per week at age seven???

    Seriously vulnerable to burn out IMHO

  4. I agree with anonymous. They're going to have a a very burnt out gymnast on their hands. 30 hours a week is WAY to much for a 7 year old. That's just nuts.

  5. she's either going to be incredible or be burnt out by age 13.