Olympic gold medalist Alina Kabaeva believes that the absence of Russians on the world stage of rhythmic gymnastics will cause the sport to fall into “degradation”.
Russian gymnasts are currently prohibited from taking part in international competitions due to a ban imposed by the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG) as a response to Russia’s military operation in Ukraine.
Athens 2004 all-around champion Kabaeva told Russian media outlet TASS that the current rules “already limit the possibilities and development of world rhythmic gymnastics” and need to be improved.
“This sport was born in our country and until now Russia has been a trendsetter in rhythmic gymnastics,” the 38-year-old continued.
“The absence of Russia in this sport will lead the world rhythmic gymnastics to degradation. And we will develop.”