Former Olympic gymnast Kate Sarisska about the history of Gymnastics and the future of air

By maarten • 1 min read

Kate Sarisska Level Up AirTrack Factory

Kate Sarisska is the head coach of Dutch gymnastics team BATO Haarlem, and a former gymnast who performed at the Olympics in Moscow in 1980. Kate grew up in Czechoslovakia where from an early age she knew she would be a gymnast. At the age of 5, when Sarisska saw Věra Čáslavská perform she told her parents “That will be me when I grow up”. This motivation did not leave her and she ended up competing at four world cups and in the Olympics. In this article she talks about the history of gymnastics and the future of air.

In the 1980’s, the typical gymnastics training facility wasn’t what you’ll find today. Nothing had padding and everything was hard. This made training tough and often painful. Nowadays Kate teaches gymnastics to young elite gymnasts as the head coach of BATO Haarlem. The club partnered with AirTrack Factory and uses most of the equipment made by AirTrack Factory for gymnastics.

Her favorite AirTrack Factory equipment

Sarriska’s favorite piece of equipment is their setup of two connectable 8 x 2 meter AirFloors, that combined with their existing gymnastics floor creates an extra bouncy tumbling setup. In the Level up series, Kate talks about how double flips are more easily taught to the kids, how their fear barrier is lowered and that with a little practice on the AirFloor, the step to just the gymnastics floor is most often easily made.
She loves that with the AirTracks, her gymnasts can train for much longer and perform more repetitions without their developing bodies taking a beating. She mentions she and her trainers can focus on technique a lot more, since they’re able to train for much longer.
Apart from the AirFloors, Kate uses the AirIncline to create a quick and easy ramp, AirBox parts for bounces, stretches and the warming up and the AirBoard boost for the uneven bar.

Learning new skills is always the motivation, she continues.

“When you learn a single flip, you’ll move to double flips, or add a twist. It’s never ending. But each time you learn something new, that’s.. indescribable. It’s the best feeling in the world.”

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