Sabina
Courtesy: Facebook
Sabina Cojocar was a talented Romanian gymnast. She competed at 2001 and 2002 World championships. As a junior gymnast, she dominated the European championships in 2000 winning three gold medals on vault and beam, and in the all around and silver on floor exercise and in team competition.

Cojocar suffered from a chronic liver problem which put an end to her career. her career highlight was originating the 2.5 forward twisting layout on floor exercise.

We got the chance to catch up with the former gymnast.

Gigi: Where is Sabina Cojocar nowadays?

Sabina:  I am a gymnastics coach. I teach gymnastics to girls between 3 and 9 years old at the moment

Gigi: You lost your battle to illness, hence you were forced to end your career. You said in an interview that you had a hard time accepting this fact and it took you up to 4/5 years to cope with it, how did you manage to accept your fate?

Sabina: I have practiced gymnastics for almost 15 years, time in which I hoped, I dreamed, I had failures and success, there were good times but also sacrifice and hard work. 

Everything that I was doing since waking up in the morning until I went to bed at night was organized for the benefit of practicing gymnastics on a high level. I had a hard time accepting that my career ended because I didn`t know who I was without gymnastics. My whole identity was wrapped around it.

Gigi: Are you at peace now?

Sabina:  Yes. Though, I still miss practicing sometimes.

Gigi: What advice do you have for gymnasts who also have been forced to retire and have difficult time dealing with it?

Sabina: Gymnastics was my dearest experience for the time I was practicing it. To me, trying to discover other talents that God has put in me helped let go of my old passion and dedicate myself into discovering more and more of what else I could do.

Gigi: What have you learned from this unpleasant experience?

Sabina: I learned that my identity is not based on what I was doing or how good I was at it but on who I was as a person. I learned that I have value even without winning trophies. 

Gigi: In 2001, you originated the two and half forward twisting layout, but it got mistakenly named after your then teammate Silvia Stroescu, can you tell us what happened exactly?

Sabina:  I don`t know what happened about that but I am glad that everything is in order now.


Gigi: What is your best moment in gymnastics?

Sabina: My best moment in gymnastics was the sensations when I am in tumbling. Also the happiness I felt when I was able to learn a new skill and being happy with my routines in a competition.

Gigi: You left Deva due to problems with your health, however in 2004 you made one final push towards the Olympics, at that time were you recovered from your health problems?

Sabina:  I was feeling better, but I was not recovered from the health problem that I have. It is genetically which means I am have to live with it.

Gigi: You have pursued a singing career, can you tell us about that?

Sabina: That was in the time when I was trying to discover what else I am able to do other than gymnastics. That was a brief experience but pursuing a singing career was not meant for me.

Gigi: Former Olympic gymnast Carly Patterson of USA had also pursued a singing career, what do you think her?

Sabina:  I am happy for Carly. She has a lovely voice and I wish her all the best.

Gigi: You have as well pursued jewelry designing, can you tell us about that?

Sabina:  I am a creative person. I love art in different ways. I love beads, pearls and crystals; I love colors, mixing them together. Designing jewelry is a hobby of mine. Something that I don`t do very often, but most of the time when I feel creative.

Gigi:  If you can erase one moment in your life what would that be?

Sabina:  I would be more careful in my choices.

Gigi: What would you like to achieve in your life?

Sabina:  I would be very happy if I could be able to impact the life of others in a positive and meaningful way. 

Interview by: Gigi Farid




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