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Author: Anna Piunova, Mountain.RU
Yulia Abramchuk. Speaking to bouldering World Champion of 2009
MR: Zhuzha, my poor girl, has she been beating you? Just say “yes”, and we take ride on a big black car to punish her :-)
Y.А.: Actually no, I just didn’t shoot on the salad dish precisely with my face :-)
MR: How did you spend time, schedule, as morning warm-ups you both did, I could hear and – getting-ups, light-outs?
Y.А.: Yeah, we did it in the morning. We were told there’s nothing to spend time on in Xining. The schedule was such that for female boulderers first day were qualifiers, and only in four days semifinal, and final.
So I grabbed a bunch of books with me, and discovered one of those was yoga book. And so we found it good to develop both spirit and body.
We got up sporadically, or upon the helping bangs at the door, when at 7 am the staff started breaking into the room for cleaning. So, once our eyes opened, we moved to a.m. exercises.
Also breakfast at a strictly allowed hour was helpful, and we would thus obtain couple hours in store. After meal we went browning under Chinese sun, then in the city to watch the comps, or exploring around.
In the evening few leaps within residence site sports ground. Went to meet some friends, and shove sleeping.
MR: Different time zone mattered?
Y.А.: After sleepless 24 hours of transfer flights, Chinese time was no problem.
MR: Shortly before China you looked so poorly pale in a gym. I then thought like “oops… Zhuzha screwed the shape for Championship” :-). How you did away with weight and other probs so fast?
Y.А.: Well, why so bad I looked? :-) And, actually, it has been no 10 kilos that i put on, right?… I had been going through psychological adaptation course after trip to Europe :-). Just hanged home eating, reckoning good rest will favour! But, once we landed in China, and I saw Balakireva, thin as a feather, like blown away by a wind to oblivion), I was about to reconsider a weight loss issue. But there were nine days left before final to get rid of weight, I knew even though it’s not sort of vital importance thing:-)
MR: What did you think on a way to China, and what seemed your chances to be?
Y.А.: I was so afraid of plain crash, and so hoped to be late, but couldn’t escape boarding :) I never calculate my chances, you remember.
MR: Well, I just thought if you could this time at least fabricate a theory, like inside pro et contra chance calculator, or something… Which of the rounds turned hardest (qualification, semis, or final)?
Y.А.: Semis. All of us think so: you are to hit 6, and not 20, like in qualifier.
MR: Which is the role of luck at a level of a WC?
Y.А.: It’s like Mike Shalagin said: “one day your star would shine, and another day come heavy clouds”:-)
And Jack (Ovtchinnikov) said “Karma”.
Thus you may be training, and may be not, but it all goes its own way…
MR: Tell me if there was a time you felt it became possible to grab gold?
Y.А.: Second route made me feel so, I thought I was a good girl, and then just waited for my star to raise :-)
MR: What came hard and what easy?
Y.А.: Hard… taking a pee at a doping control :) Hard was doing second, and 3rd try (more tries looked like impossible at all), as you’d need a minute-two to maintain your breath, it all has been at about 6500 feet above sea level in Xening. Hard was not to think of the medal, prizes, and how to live afterwards. And supporting others was easy :)
MR: Mood and tactics, no telling out a big secret.
Y.А.: Just think positive :-) Try to climb with pleasure. Bouldering, unlike lead, doesn’t require spraying effort on a variety of long sequences, taking rest, or speeding up. You just have a boulder problem, few minutes and your contemplation on solving it to make it to the top.
MR: What is a modern bouldering?
Y.А.: This is… awesome :) Right away I come back to Val Mazino, and the dandelion fields, thousands of people with crash pads, and the happy smiles, and the bloody palms…:) And bouldering is a line on a stone, which you look at with curiosity, if it’s beautiful, easy or impossible, but which you’d give a shot to climb from down to top. And boulder comps is a small part of bouldering. There are emotions, adrenalin, public, and a show. 5-12 movers with one or more technical elements. Routes may be slopy, crimpy, jumpy, whatever, but always attractive for a show.
MR: A strong boulder athlete is..?
Y.А.: Is not necessarily thin, unlike in lead, must love rockclimbing, should have a car to fit at least two crash-pads, and… oh, yes, strong fingers, what else…I don’t know. Must be kind of little freak, and a bit lazy. And, of course, a brush he’d need also. To clean the holds, you know. A toothbrush, you know :)
MR: Which are your type routes?
Y.А.: Not ones with long jumps, i.е. I like it, but can’t always grab a hold love using heels, when possible, but it’s always possible :-)
MR: How often and what mostly you train?
Y.А.: Different. Depending on stars, and on when I got up. Getting up early leaves training useless :-) My training’s like this: – I get in, do bouldering, sometimes long boulder routes, and sometimes endurance, and once skin is gone, I end up with stretching, and power exercises.
MR: What motivates you?
Y.А.: Well, as far as I do climbing, it implies it’s all my life, and then I love comps, and make a living from it. So it means the better you climb, the better you do.
MR: Zhuzha, why the Champion?
Y.А.: It must have been my happy star shining :-)
…and my sponsors:
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