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Aliya Mustafina "People Can’t Get Me To Lose My Temper."

This month, fan favorite Aliya Mustafina officially announced her retirement. She is now serving as the acting junior women’s gymnastics he...



This month, fan favorite Aliya Mustafina officially announced her retirement. She is now serving as the acting junior women’s gymnastics head coach for Russia.

Mustafina reveals, in an interview with mk.ru, that she was offered the head coaching position of the junior women's gymnastics team last December by the Russian senior team's head coach Valentina Rodionenko. Both her parents encouraged her to accept the position. 

Mustafina previously stated that she did not want to become a coach after retiring from gymnastics. However, her desire to remain involved in the sport led to a change of heart.

"Yes, I didn’t want to," said Mustafina. "But I also never wanted to stray far away from gymnastics. I’ve always thought about how to give more to gymnastics – not just through my performances but also through my personality, if you could say so. Leaving gymnastics completely would be a pity. And I didn’t leave, I just stopped training."

While she acknowledges that accepting the position is risky, she believes that there will always be risks and that such thinking will lead one to "just stay in bed and do nothing".

"Of course, people expect a lot of me, but if it won’t work out… then it just won’t work out."

"I’m only trying. Experience will come with age. I’m trying. If that experience will come later and not now, then it will come later. But I’ll say again – staying under a blanket, not getting up, and just thinking about the risks is not for me."

The Russian former gymnast described herself as extremely patient. She is not short tempered, she never yells or even talk loudly.

"I think everyone can see my patience. I can probably be forever patient. People can’t get me to lose my temper."

The double Olympic champion said that her patience did not come overnight, but rather came gradually through difficult times during her career. 

"That was when I learned how to fight it. I learned how to show the ill-wishers the way out and… that was it, basically. I stopped being haunted by thoughts of other people. I don’t care at all what people say about me. They can even beat me up when I’m not there – be my guests."

When asked if it is wisdom or thick skin, she said that it is her choice and that is how she wants it to be as it is easier to live like that.

Mustafina, who turned senior in 2010, last competed in early 2019. She is the winner of seven Olympic medals, and twelve World and European champion medals.

Written by Gigi Farid

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