Gymnastics, a sport known for its grace, agility, and discipline, overcomes age boundaries to inspire individuals of all generations. In the heart of Riga, Latvia, an international gymnastics tournament “Latvian Veterans Open” brings together ex-gymnasts from diverse age groups, ranging from 25 to 76 years old.
The participants from various countries will showcase their unfading skills for the first time since 2020 when the event had to be put on pause due to the coronavirus pandemics. The difficult circumstances surrounding the global outbreak visibly impacted the tournament format, but the organizers are certain that after a short warm-up period the event will be back in full force.
To support this confidence and the ongoing tradition, SEOBROTHERS decided to become one of the sponsors of the tournament and provide organizers with additional resources so that they could make the occasion even more unforgettable for everyone involved, be it athletes or lovers of the sport.
Simone Biles, one of the most renowned gymnasts of all time, has been saying that she is always trying to push herself to the limit to see what she can do. This gymnastics tournament serves as a testament to the enduring power of sports in promoting physical well-being. Regardless of age, engaging in gymnastics activities fosters flexibility, strengthens muscles, and enhances overall fitness levels. Participants in their 40s and beyond showcase their determination to maintain an active lifestyle, with the rewards of improved cardiovascular health, increased endurance, and enhanced body control. Gymnastics becomes a gateway to lifelong fitness, proving that age is not a barrier to achieving and maintaining a healthy and resilient body.
In addition, gymnastics offers more than just physical benefits; it also nurtures mental resilience and cognitive well-being across all age groups. The harsh training, concentration, and discipline required in gymnastics foster mental agility, focus, and problem-solving skills. Ex-gymnasts in their 60s and 70s demonstrate their commitment to lifelong learning, enhancing memory and sharpening cognitive function.
While some may consider “veterans” to be a bit of an excessive term when it comes to people as young as 26 years old, it’s nevertheless true in terms of many professional sports, including gymnastics.
The international ex-gymnast tournament in Riga began in 1999 to celebrate the spirit of camaraderie and unity among gymnasts of different generations. The event provides a platform for athletes to reconnect with their shared passion, exchange experiences, and forge lasting friendships. Younger participants benefit from the wisdom and guidance of their older counterparts, while the seasoned gymnasts find renewed inspiration in the enthusiasm and energy of the younger generation. Together, they create a vibrant community that transcends age, enriching their lives through mutual support and encouragement.
The “Latvian Veterans Open” tournament in Riga, Latvia, embodies the transformative power of sports, specifically gymnastics, across age groups. By promoting physical fitness, mental resilience, and fostering intergenerational connections, the tournament serves as a testament to the enduring and invaluable properties of gymnastics and sports in general. It reminds us that the benefits of staying active and engaged in sports are boundless, enriching lives at any age.
The undertaking routinely enjoys participation of world-renowned athletes from different countries, and welcomes all friends of the sport.
SEOBROTHERS are proud to take part in supporting the tradition this year and invites everyone to Riga Gymnastics School located at Miera iela 62 (Riga, Latvia) on June 3rd, 15:00 to enjoy the competition.
Latvian Veterans Open championship 2023 is officially over. As was planned, senior gymnastics competitions took place on Saturday, 3 June 2023. The event was attended by participants from Germany, Austria, Lithuania, Estonia and Latvia.
As usual, the competitions were held in a friendly close-knit atmosphere, with lots of spectators supporting and energizing the participants. The Latvian Veterans Open events are characterized by their friendly atmosphere, reminding everyone that sports should unite people and help establish contacts among athletes and sport enthusiasts from different countries.
In a graceful display of their skills, the ladies took to the stage, deftly handling four gymnastic apparatuses in the vault, uneven bars, beam, and floor. The men, on the other hand, adorning themselves with prowess, embracing the mastery of six apparatuses – the pommel horse, parallel bars, high bar, rings, floor, and vault. It was a hymn of athleticism, where age served merely as a number, for despite the average age of the participants being 50, they showcased extraordinary professionalism and undying love of the sport.
The participants spanned across the spectrum of age, with some just coming off their early youth at the age of 25, and others basking in the wisdom of 70 years. Among them, stood the participants hailing from Germany and Austria, whose performances held a showmanship capable of arousing envy even in the hearts of young gymnasts. Estonian, Latvian and Lithuanian competitors, too, unveiled a splendid level of performance, a testament to their commitment and dedication.
Alas, there were people who bore the burden of recent injuries, which were impeding their ability to fully compete in the event. Nonetheless, these brave souls still summoned their inner strength and fortitude, mustering the courage to step forward and perform. We felt nothing but respect for these people and applauded them with a suitable fervor.
As the result of fierce competition, triumph was bestowed upon the winners in each age category. Moreover, at the course of the event the organizers had chosen the top six athletes of the Latvia Veterans Open – people who managed to further distinguish themselves amidst the distinguished men and women. In the overall standings, the cup of this year’s competition went to the triumphant participants from Germany, Frank Pollmeier and Barbara Stand. We extend our heartfelt congratulations to them.
Seobrothers also had the honor to award the titles of the Mr. and Miss of the competition which went to Natalia Cherneyko from Estonia and Gunther Wiesmeier from Austria. Natalia simply stole the show with her mind-blowing artistry. And Gunther, at the ripe age of 55, performed a very difficult routine which resonated with spectators.
We also want to specifically mention the living legend of gymnastics, Leonid Zhilinsky. At the age of 73, he pulled off insane combinations on all the apparatus, including a crazy double somersault on the high bar. Talk about defying expectations! Leonid got recognized for his indomitable will and unyielding determination, and rightfully so, as he absolutely deserved it.
During the awards ceremony, all the sponsors who played a huge role in making this event happen got special shoutouts and letters of gratitude for their contribution to the development of sports. And after the awards ceremony, it was party time! The participants enjoyed an awesome buffet and drinks, and then hit up a well-known Riga club for an epic after-party.
Big thanks to the organizers, Gennady Drigo and Bronislav Konstantinovich, for putting on a spectacular show. Another grateful nod towards the head of sales at Seobrothers Alexandra Drigo, who acted both as an organizer and as the hostess of the competition.
The 23rd championship next year is tentatively set for June 1, 2024. Hopefully, everything and everyone will be alright and able to participate in the event thus preserving the tradition.
All the photo materials from the Latvia Veterans Open competition are located on the Google Drive.
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