SIMONE PEROLARI FOR “THE WORLD”
ReportageLoss of benchmarks, joint pain … For the gymnasts of the French team, deprived of their apparatus during confinement, recovery at Insep is done gently to avoid injury.
Allan climbs on the trampoline, dashes, jumps on the canvas, bounces, legs and arms outstretched. Quickly, the young man takes height, up to eight or nine meters above the ground, and goes on acrobatics. A few meters away, the sound system spits out musical tubes: a dozen girls from rhythmic and sports gymnastics (GRS) repeat their dance movements under the eye and the voice of their choreographer. In the adjacent room, the boys of artistic gymnastics warm up, joined at a good distance by their female counterparts.
For the gymnasts of the French team present at the National Institute of Sport, Expertise and Performance (Insep), located in the Bois de Vincennes (Paris), training resumed a month ago . The return has been gradual since the first phase of deconfinement for the forty gymnasts and their coaches.
It was done according to a strict health protocol because of the coronavirus: hydroalcoholic gel available in quantity, wearing of the mask compulsory for coaches, direction of circulation in the rooms to avoid crossings between athletes, apparatus disinfected after each passage, carpet and apparatus marked with the name of the athletes … The locker rooms remain doomed.
“The body and the brain were no longer used”
So many constraints for athletes who must reclaim a space and a work tool of which they were, for the most part, deprived during confinement. “We couldn’t figure out how to train without a device, Note Christine Blaise, national trampoline trainer. The athletes have lost all that is visuospatial, contact, pressure on the web. “
Allan Morante, 25, including eighteen years of ” work “, confirms: “When I got back on the trampoline, I felt heavy. The body and the brain were no longer used, I had all my bearings to find. “ The quadruple champion of France relied on mental imagery – a technique he has practiced since 2015 – to visualize the figures of his program.
“Relaxed, my eyes closed, I can break down my movements in slow motion. You can even get to feel the lightness, this feeling of hovering over the trampo ”, says Allan, who after four weeks of recovery admits that he is still far from his best level.
“At the beginning, we redid things that we learn when we start the gym”, recognizes Frédéric Jay, trainer at Insep
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