The Story of Larisa Iordache - Part 1

The beginning
Larisa Performing one of her signature moves - Top Gym 2009
Photo source http://www.gymnasticsunited.com

Born on June 19th 1996 in Bucharest, Larisa is the “child” of CSS7 Dinamo. You know who else was from Dinamo? I am sure you have heard of this name before: Aurelia Dobre. Larisa’s first coaches at Dinamo were Mariana Silişteanu Câmpeanu, Raluca Suciu Popescu and Vladimir Potop

She comes from a family of athletes: her mother was a handball player who had to give up the sport when her family was unable to financially support her anymore and her father was a football player. Larisa’s brother, who is five years older than her, is also a professional footballer. Unsurprisingly, when she was little Laris also wanted to take up a sport: ballet.

But, as it happens, one day she was spotted by a gymnastics coach while rollerblading in the park. Mariana Silisteanu, the gymnastics coach, seeing the kid’s fearless and poised attitude asked her mother if she wanted to send her do gymnastics. The answer: no.  

Nonetheless she allowed Larisa’s grandmother to take her and check out the gym. It was not love at first sight for the five year old. Still, once she overcame her shyness and tried to do some gymnastics elements, the was won.

In fact, after the “play” hour had ended, she did not want to leave the gym anymore.
As time passed, she wanted to work more and never seemed to be bored of the training. He coaches started teaching her harder and harder elements eventualy starting the training appropriate for a future elite athlete.

By the time she was eight years old she had won her first gold medals at the “Little gymnast” national contest. And she loved it. Whenever she was second or third, that meant her ambition increased, it was only a sign that she had to keep working in order to maintain her status of best gymnast in the team.

At 11 she became a member of the junior national team and moved to Onesti.

Larisa's floor routine - 2007 (same choreo!)

Beam, same competition in 2007

Don't miss the next 4 parts about, among others, her results as a junior and how she ended up in the Romanian olympic team at 14 - I will post them in the following days.

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