Albina Deruigina's interview 2001

Her sports carrier started very succesfully. She was good at athletics and rhythmic gymnastics.When she was 20, Albina Deruigina competed on the USSR Championships. She got a ticket to the big sports, but a silly accident turned her life...

- When I am asked how I go through everything I get in my life, I answer : "I'm from Donbass and I'm as strong as a steel!". Surely, I'm joking. I had a difficult childhood. I came through the war, I've seen everything: how alive people were bunt and other things. The ground practically had a smell of blood. We, small kids, wanted to help, but faschists didn't allow to do a step...And then we knew that our father died near Berlin. It was painful, but mom didn't allow to get up, to feel yourself week and useless.And afterwards, the difficults couldn't make me cry. 

The life of Albina Nikolayevna is made of lots of strikes. It is difficult to guess, which were more : white or black. In her childhood except athletics and other sports, she did choreography in the palace of pioneers in Makeyevka. And where such strength could be in such a thin girl, who was able to study good at school to?...When she came to the Technikum of Physical Education, she had to start doing rhythmic gymnastics. Thanks to the choreography, she was much more graceful and better on the carpet than other girls. She made compositions herself. She was one of the best pupils and got into 5% of her technikum, who could came to the institue without taking any exams. She chose Institue of Physical Education in Kyiv, where her teacher was a famous coach Valentina Zinchenko...

- We built great planes on the future, but on the first course I had an exam in athletics and aftre the jump, I had a bad landing and was badly injured. I was operated in Moscow, but afterwards I wasn't able to do rhythmic gymnastics. Then Valentina Zinchenko started to give me some coach work, I had to coach some gymnasts. When the gymnast was good and talanted, I was very strict and was making her do difficult elements (She still does it, by the way - LV). And I wasn't satisfied if I saw that it can be better and we do worse. By the way, I always tried to learn something from other coaches, who did something better. I'm still studying. 

- Who have practically seen all the periods of growing Rhythmic Gymnastics. Which was the most interesting as you think?

- Well, I don't know. Each period was interesting. At first, rhythmic gymnastis had to do some acrobatic elements. Then people could come to rhythmic gymnastics practically from all kinds of sports. For example, acroobat could become a USSR champion in rhythmic gymnastics. When the music came, it became more interesting to see the routines. The routines, music were changing. The leotards also didn't stay the same. Woolen (!!!! - LV) leotards changed the cotton ones.

- Were they more comfortable?

- No one was talking about how comfortable it was, though they could stretch a little bit better. But if to compare with the leotards nowadays, they looked really ugly - dark-blue, fully closed. And then leos started to open a bit.  And now you can see fantastic leotards. I call them "brilliant leotards". Though, sometimes the gymnasts overopen them, but this attracts spectators too. It is pleasant to look on such beauty, because they are made indvidually. Since this year gymnasts are allow to wear skirts. And if earlier such leotards you could see only on exhibitions, now they can become normal.

- Except skirts, which new things are in the Code since this year?

- Changes in the programm are , as it is known, each 4 years. Sometimes they are good and sometimes not very. Now rhythmic gymnastics is just upside down! Now gymnasts have to have tree times more elements than in the past years and the time of the routine didn't change! It is said that it isn't necessary to have lots of difficulty in the routine, but why did they take 10 combinations then? They should have taken 5-7 combination, maximum 8 and to add points with the difficult. For example, the difficulty of the elements if 0.5, then for two such elements gymnast will recieve a points.But if she can't do such difficulty, she should take3-4 elements easier and to have the same points. And how the gymnast should be with the music, she can't be artistic! She doesn't even have time to turn the head. Surely, the best gymnasts should be up to date, but there aren't many! Yerofeeva, Bessonova and some more gymnasts, but there are thousands of the gymnasts that can't follow the new rules! That's why coaches, not only in Ukraine, send complains to FIG to change the rules, but we haven't recieved answer yet.

- Well, I hope you'll recieve it someday. By the way, I heard that  there was an oppurtunity of oraginizing a World Championships in Kyiv...

- We wer proposed such things since 1992 year, when we organized Deruigina Cup for the first time.UFG even came to Kyiv, instead of Japan. We were praised, but..We don't have enough bases in Kyiv and enough carpets. one carpet costs 10,000 dollars and we can't allow ourselves that. The participating from 43 countries means at least 15 carpets, so 150 thousand dollars.

- Nowadays you and your daughter are one team. But, at first you didn't believe in Ira as a gymnast, did you?

- I didn't pur big hopes on Ira. If she wanted, I brought her to the gym. I remember, Ira came to the hall and sits in the corner and learns compositions. And at home, she was asking father: "Dad, ask mom to coach me a bit, please!!". And the husband was saying : "This is your native daughter! Are you a stepmothers? Caoch her a bit!". And how could I train with her, if she was the whole week in the choreography school? Then Ira asked to take the documents. All were just shoked.

- Did you have to change the speech of the mom to the speech of the coach often?

- Yes, it can't be devided. And I also asked her not to it a lot.

- And you didn't lock the fridge?

- No. She was writing messages to herself: "Ira, think over your figure!". She always got what she wanted. When she gets a difficult job, she always solves it excellently. Irina is great at making compositions. She is a coach from God and I'm happy for her.

- Only some women managed to save the family, when she is fully engaged in the sports work..

- Once my husband said on one interview : "I know what sports is. I'll do everything for my girls". Practically all in our family relied on him, I was all in work and if I didn't have Ivan, I would hardly reach such successes. I and Irina new that someone is waiting for as at home, that all there is ok. 

- Where did you meet such a person, if that's not a secret?

- I met him in the institute. He was a very merry person, optimist and I liked his character very much.

- How did he fall in love with you?

- If to be true, he had a girlfriend. And after they had a huge row, I had to make piece there. When I was doing that, Ivan fall in love.

- You had lots of fans. Wasn't Ivan jealous?

- Everything was: I was jealous and he waas jealous. 

- How many years did you life together?

- Forty too. Afterwards he fall ill. Here they couldn't find out the desease, then we went to Greece, where doctors said it was cancer. They said that there is no hope for Ivan to survive. We returned home and tried to care about him as much as we could. Friends and relatives were near him. He was melting, but he didn't know to the last moments about his desease, we didn't want to hurt him. And only before some deys of his deat h the nurse accuidently tol him. It is hard for me to remember those day. A wonderful family was - and in one moment all crashed. I lost my husband and a real friend. Now there is less pain. Each person has his'her own years of life. Though sometimes I sit and think: "Why shouldn't he live now?"

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