Yana Kudryavtseva, the Angel with Iron Wings and queen of the past Olympic Cycle, will be always remembered not only as the youngest world champion but also as a revolutionary gymnast. This article is a throwback to Yana’s story with the apparatus that may be considered her best one: the ball.
Don’t forget to rate you favorite ball routine at the end of the post!
Although she has been a promising junior since the beginning of her career, Kudryavtseva became very famous in 2012 her last year as a junior, when she became European champion with ball.
In Nizhny Novgorod she also became European Champion with team Russia together with Diana Borisova, Yulia Sinitsina and Alexandra Soldatova. Her ball routine on the music “Din Din Din” by Oleg Pogudin was choreographed as most of her routines by her coach Elena Karpushenko.
For her first year as senior, Yana broke the ice with a classical music and routine well suited to her clean lines. The music was Chopin’s Nocturne No. 2 Op. 9 in E Flat Major.
That year Yana added a precious element to her routine: spinning the ball on the tip of the finger while doing front walkover. It latter became one of her signature element, and one of the most appreciated by the audience.
In 2014 Yana started to mature her expression, her music choice was “La Bohème” by the Italian singer Ornella Vanoni.
In Izmir World Championship Yana became world champion for the first time with ball, together with her teammate Margarita Mamun.
Yana’s turning point was in 2015. Her ball routine was choreographed on the sensual voice of Amy Irving singing “Why Don’t You Do Right”. Yana won her second European gold with ball and despite her foot injury she won also the world title.
In 2016 Yana came back competing only in late March, after she underwent a foot surgery right after the World Championship in 2015. For the Rio Olympics Yana performed on Mozart’s on “Piano Concerto No.23 – Adagio” and “Piano Concerto No. 21 – Andante”
While she was still injured Elena Karpushenko tried Yana’s routines on Karina Kuznetsova. Yana made her first exhibition during Baltic Hoop in Riga. Few months later she became Rio silver medalist.
Now choice is yours which Yana’s masterpiece you love the most?