01 March 2015
Women's artistic gymnastics, an Olympic sport, is one of the disciplines to be presented at the European Games in Baku. Three gymnasts who will compete for six sets of medals - for the team standings, individual all-around and individual competitions - on the balance beam, uneven bars, vault and floor exercises, will present Azerbaijan during the Games.
Azerbaijani gymnast Anna Pavlova - a possible participant at the Games. By tradition, the press service of Azerbaijan Gymnastics Federation took a short interview with Anna where she talked about how she got involved in the world of sports, as well as other things.
Tell us how you got involved in gymnastics. Why did you choose this sport?
- My parents were coaches in gymnastics, and I grew up in the hall. I did not have much choice. Then I started to train from 4 years.
How do you think, could you perform in any other sport?
- I had variants to try myself at something else. I was mainly engaged in music and chess. Then I went to school with the second shift. I had to choose, and I chose gymnastics. It was my choice. Parents and grandmother were against it. They wanted me to get involved in dances, but the dances wildly irritated me. With age, I become more loyal to the dances, but as a child, I did not like it.
How do you deal with your emotions on the day of competition? Have you any special secrets of self-control?
- Differently. In any solution of the problem, one needs to return to its roots. When analyzing, everything becomes clear. Sometimes it does not work and there is nothing you can do about it.
What do you think is the most important aspect in any sport?
- Working on yourself and desire to win.
How dangerous is to be engaged in professional sports, or does it depend on the sport?
- None of professional sport gives health. However, it gives very different things. To provide health it is needed to be engaged in physical exercises. A big plus of the gymnastics is that there is no a couple or a rival. Your performance depends on how you are training. General gymnastics is important for health. Big sport is an opportunity to travel, to make a name for oneself and lifestyle. I cannot imagine what I would do after I retire. There is an opportunity to pursue a career as a coach, but I am not ready to take this step. Moreover, I am used to my way of life - I am constantly on the move visiting unknown countries and regions.
Do you have an idol in the sport?
- No. There are people who I respect for their achievements. I do not consider imitation appropriate.
Tell us about your sports plans for the near future.
- Given my injury, I find it hard to plan anything. Now I have one goal - to cure my foot and to think about the European Games. Because of these Games, I decided to recover and worked for three years. I want to be on top form. I did surgery two months ago, but it all went a bit wrong. After the injury, I was told it would be difficult to recover. I am wondering if I could. After the European Games we will see if it is advisable to pursue a career. However, every day becomes harder for me. I have to work it out for myself, because soon the World Championships will start, which will be output to the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
What do the European Games mean for you and how do you prepare for them?
- When I finished my career for the first time, I arrived in Baku. I like it very much and decided to stay for 3 years. I was not able to attend the Universiade. At first, one coach did not allow me, then another one. After that I suffered from trauma. I believe that the European Games, where almost all sports will be presented, are something similar to the Universiade. I see serious preparation for this tournament. For me it is very interesting. I would like to try myself at the Games.
If we move a little bit away from sport - do you have any aspirations or dreams that you want to achieve?
- I do not know. I do not dream about something special, but I want to realize myself after sport. Because sport is fine, I have achieved a lot, but it ends. Then it is necessary to find myself in something else. I do not know what can interest me in. One never knows about it until he tries. For example, coaching attracts me. Moreover, I cannot help trying. I would like to teach children.
Are you able to combine sport with normal life?
- I live in the sport. I cannot imagine myself without sport. It is everyday life for me.
Tell us about your family.
- My family is small. My dad died, and my mother is my personal trainer. Also a younger brother helps me in terms of organizational issues. There are first cousins, second cousins, brothers and sisters; and I consider them family members. I try to see them often. If not, we constantly keep in touch through social networks.
Do you have a loved one?
No, I havenвЂ™t.
What do your fans usually shout, and want do you want to hear from them?
- They shout whatever they want (laughing). When they are supporting me, I am very happy. The most common words makes me stronger.
What would you like to tell them?
- I want to tell them that their support is very important for every athlete. We have recently been on the showcase tournament in Mexico and we were greeted very warmly. Fans supported, shouted, and we have received positive emotions. I would like to thank all who supports and worries.