Ready for going to University?...
Silvia: yes, tomorrow (sept 29) will go at both Universities
to check my schedule.
Silvia: yes, I am a student at National Sport Academy and
also at "Spiru Haret" University (the largest Romanian private
university), where I will study psychology.
RG: And, you want to become a...?
Silvia: haven't decided yet, will see after I will graduate.
maybe a coach or a specialist in sport psychology.
RG: last one is cool, definitely we may use such a trained
person, the "good old times" with crying and yelling are (hope)
now passed.A specialist which may help coaches to motivate
girls and to help them surpass their problems will be really
RG: Do you still speak with girls from the team?
especially with Oana Ban, now that she is retired, too.
RG: you have some nice evening chats like the ones in a retired
house, between "girls?"
Silvia: no, we are not so old (yet), ha-ha!
RG: tell us about your hobbies.
Silvia: music, travel-I would like to be , for a second time,
RG: Have you been before?
Silvia: Yes, two years ago, with the team, and liked a lot.Now
I want to go again one day and explore those places in my
aren't you afraid of volcanoes? Each time I go there, want
to keep a packed bag near door, just in case the volcanoes
will change his minds...
Silvia:didn't know about volcanoes thing.
RG: well, can't say more about geography at some sport schools...Surprising
that you didn't get many info on spot, they have plenty of
good guides there.
RG: what food you like? Now that you try to keep up with the
lost kitchen times...
Silvia: Yes (ha-ha), those days I liked to eat a little bit
more, but not so much you may think. I like Romanian traditional
food, like "ciorba de burta" (beef soup) and "sarmale" (traditional
Romanian meat balls rolled inside a leaf of cabbage or sauerkraut),
cakes... RG: house-made?
Silvia: no, I just buy them we have a nice place with good
stuff close to us.
RG: well, if you go there few times a day, this may be a good
Silvia: no (laughing), I don't go so often, ha-ha!
RG: you like music?
Silvia: dance, R &B, Britney Spears, Andra
RG: What about actors?
Silvia: Antonio Banderas, Bruce Willis
RG: You like movies, which ones?
Silvia: don't ask me more about this, at Deva we have had
to go to bed at 10,30 in the evening, we don't see many movies
back there. But I just saw now "The 5th element" and liked
RG: Favorite apparatus?
Silvia: balance beam
RG: Your best friend when you was in the team, at Deva?
Silvia: Catalina Ponor
what pets you have?
Silvia: three dogs, Bella (a common name for a beauty female
Italian-origin), Lisy, Brindusa (a little flower in Romanian)...
Silvia: yes, each one have his one story: the little one I
have found it during the winter, it was so cold outside and
I bring him home; another
one was injured by a car and I found him in the middle of
the street-I had to take him, could not leave it there; the
third one was living near our block we used to live. When
we moved into this new house, two years ago, I have had to
take him with me, otherwise he was a sure target for flayers
and could be put into sleep easy.
RG: and the little kitten?
is just a nice kitten I have found on the street, she is so
nice and looks like the one from our TV commercial with Whiskas...
RG: it sounds like a good reason to be a star herself in future....Now
that you have more time, any special plans?
Silvia: I wanted to have a holiday and go somewhere like Italy
or France but with all those receptions and ceremonies time
passed and now have to go to school.
will you buy your own apartment from the cash prizes you have
received? (note: because she has retired early, she was the
first one to take her money from the State Reserve Bank in
Bucharest, followed by Oana Ban, earlier this week).
Silvia: No, I don't need an apartment, I have my own (first)
floor-see photo, on our family villa (we moved two years ago
including my own separate entrance, too.But I have ordered
the new Logan car for me. (Logan is a French Renault car,
build in Romania, which made sensation at her launching earlier
this month; considered as a national car due to her previous
version which have lasted as national car since 70's.)
Silvia, we have some questions for you, from our site visitors,
posted in our forum.
Kilroy, USA: You are one of the few girls who doesn’t want
to stay involved in gymnastics (i.e. coach) after your career.
Why is that?
Silvia: I may be involved in gymnastics, as a coach, after
I compete my studies. It was hard for me in gymnastics, especially
past two years, and I don't want to do this sooner anyway.
Kilroy, USA: Would you allow your children to do gymnastics?
Silvia: Only for their own pleasure, not as high performers;
if you want to be on top, there are too many sacrifices.
Kilroy, USA: What would you say is the best thing you’ve gotten
out of your gymnastics career besides winning competitions
or being famous for being on the national team?
Silvia: I went up to maturity very early, to be a top gymnast
is very hard, but is a lesson for life: you need to make sacrifices
to obtain performance and what you may dream about.And definitely,
you need luck, too.
Kilroy, USA: what kept you going when you went through that
horrible back injury that almost jeopardized your career?
Silvia: I wanted so much a medal from Athens Olympics....
RG: and the money involved?...
no, for me it was more important to prove that I can get a
medal. Nine months after I get my injury, doctors said I have
to quit, I said no, I sign for this-will do on my own risk,
I want to have a chance to compete in Olympics! I was sure
I can get a medal and was ready to do anything for it.
Kilroy, USA: many of the girls said that Sunday is the day
when they had the most free time. Could you tell us what a
regular Sunday was like?
Silvia:Free time?... On Sunday, we do have had a training
session, from 10,00 to 12,30 or even 13,00. We use to go in
town for a ride in the afternoon, but one year before Olympics
no more walks out of campus on Sundays.
Kilroy, USA: how do you see the future of Romanian gymnastics
with talents, like Steliana Nistor coming through?
Silvia: We have to wait to see what coaches may be at Deva,
if our former coaches will decide to leave. How many actual
juniors will remain long enough to become seniors is another
story, a lot of girl quite early these days.
Kilroy, USA:what would you say makes the Romanian team so
consistent in competitions?
Silvia: We don't have much emotions in the contests...
RG: ... here we go, again, this will "feed up" again those
idiots who refer to our team as "rombots"...
Silvia:...I mean, they teach us how to focus to our evolutions
only, nothing around us can distract (much) our attention
and concentration. We have manages not to think anything else,
but at our exercises only.
Kilroy: will you study psychology at university or do you
want to become a veterinarian?
Silvia: I wanted to become a veterinary but finally decided
it may be a little too hard for me and choused sports and
psychology. Kilroy:when looking back ,would you say you have
any regrets about anything?
Silvia: I regret I have had to suffer that one year pause
outside gym hall, otherwise, I definitely could do much more,
compete with better chances for more medals in Athens.
Floorking: How did it feel when you were on
the podium and had the gold medal around your neck?
Silvia: I was happy to see that I have ended well, I was grateful
to God for this.
Floorking: Where you nervous when you did your bars routine
in the prelims?
Silvia:I was not so sure about the bar, didn't have enough
time to check it because the referees put the green light
so fast, earlier than I have expected.
I have heard that the girls at Deva are into Fashion if so
who is your favorite designer?
Silvia (laughing):no, this is not true. We weren't into fashion
. When I buy clothes, I don't pay much attention on who made
it, just check to see how it looks on me, if I like that piece.
Floorking: How did it feel when you found out you were going
to Athens after you had left Deva? (webmaster note: the team
was in Bucharest during past four months before Athens, and
Silvia also live in Bucharest with her family).
Silvia: I was happy, it was one of my happiest day in may
life, maybe even the happiest one.I didn't expect to come
back. I am happy that I could compete, to prove myself I can
do it (get a medal) and I was useful for the team, too.
When you thought you would not go to Athens and you quit gymnastics
for that short time (a few days?), what did you do? Did you
go home to your family? What did you do with your newly found
free time? (although it didn't last long!)
Silvia: I went back home, I live in Bucharest, the team was
in Bucharest, too.I was very nervous, cleaning the house,
eating, trying to think about anything else but not to gymnastics.
RG: when you start thinking (seriously, because girls at Deva
usually speak about this every few weeks during hard times)about
retire, by the way?
Silvia: Back in 2002 I was sure I have to retire after Athens
Olympics, anyway. (webmaster-due to her back problems).
R.G: Because you was afraid of your back problems and another
Silvia: yes, I was afraid of that.
RG: at least, you was enough lucky to have in time all the
RMN and x-ray scans made in time and have the time-off (doctors
required) respected, unlike Marinescu (unfortunately).I have
that new book and moved on my desk from one place to another,
than to the "need-to-read" corner of my library. I know the
(real) whole story, just read some paragraphs from the book
and made me feel (again) bad about gym. Did you know that
Silvia: Yes, I know it.
RG: What do you recommend to me, to read it, will it make
me feel bad again about that sad story?
Silvia: Yes, it will; better don't read, it now if you already
have had those bad feelings, if you still want to enjoy gymnastics...
RG: Well, that book review have to be done one day and believe
me, I am not to anxious to do it.
Victorsasleep: has your relationship with the girls on the
team changed because you left Deva? were they accepting of
you when you went to Athens with them?
Silvia: With the girls, no.
RG: ...this mean, with the coaches it has changed, maybe?...
Silvia: Maybe was just my impression that they were upset.I
have left the team-but come back anyway when they asked me
to do, anyway.I still speak with girls from time to time.
RG: You said before that your best friend back at team was
Catalina Ponor? What about the other girls?
Silvia: Catalina was my best friend back then, also Dana (Sofronie)
was a good friend for me.Not so close with other girls.
Deirdre, Galway, Ireland: The leotard you wore during the
team event was one of the nicest I have seen in a long time,
do you all have input or a choice of what design or leotard
you will wear in competitions?
Silvia: They bring us few models and Mrs. Maria Bitang (the
secondary coach) choose between different models. The designer
is Christian Moureau.
Sarmis, Bucharest: Which period do you think it is the most
important for the performance of a gymnast (the first years?
the years in Deva? the period before a major competition?
The years in Deva, definitely; first years in your local Club
you don't really think about high performances, just hope
one day will be selected. When you came to Deva at National
team, you start thinking that it really became serious and
work harder. Sarmis, Bucharest:The sports psychology is sometimes
considered a key issue for consistency; do you agree with
that?; would you like to specialize in the future in this
Silvia: Yes, this is what I'm doing now.
Sarmis, Bucharest:Why are the uneven bars so weak for the
Romanians compared with the beam, vault or floor?
Silvia: we can't say that any more, there are some major steps
into improving this point. Back at last W.C., our scores were
very low at this apparatus, comparing with the ones we have
had in Athens.There is still room for future improvement,
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