Preview, Moutier, March
On June 16, Rimini (ITA) will welcome the first Final in the Sports Aerobics World Series. This historical event will be one of the highlights marking the 2001 season of the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG). Eight of the world's top gymnasts will compete in individual exercises, in mixed pairs, and trios. The finalists were selected at the conclusion of the 4 qualifying competitions held in Clermont-Ferrand (FRA), Halle (GER), Bucarest (ROM), and Sofia (BUL).
This Final, first of its kind, will take place within the context of the Italian National Championships in Sports Aerobics and during the Fitness Festival, the largest European fair in this sport.
It was in May 1994 that the FIG Congress approved the addition of Sports Aerobics as a new competition discipline, joining Artistic and Rhythmic Gymnastics. The first world championships were held in 1995 in Paris-Coubertin with 34 participating countries.
Since the end of the 1980s, Sports Aerobics has become one of the most popular and widespread activities in the training and fitness world. Following its inclusion in the FIG, it became a full-fledged sports discipline administered by a technical committee chaired by its British president, John Atkinson, MBE, and governed by the specific rules of a Code of Points. Physically this discipline is very demanding, combining dynamics movements, strength, flexibility, coordination, and an acute musical sense in an exercise that lasts less than two minutes.
Looking back at the recent 2000 World Championships, we will note that the best individual competitors were a Spaniard (Jonathan Cañada) for men and a Rumanian (Izabela Lacatus) for women. Rumanians, Russians and Koreans excelled in mixed pairs, while the prize in trios again went to the Rumanians and Koreans as well as to the Brazilians.