Team South Africa is heading to Lausanne, Switzerland to participate at the week-long 14th World Gymnaestrada from 11-16 July 2011.
This will be the ninth time that South Africa has participated in this international event, which takes place every four years, with more than 20 000 international gymnasts of all ages partaking at this year’s festival.
The event is the biggest non-competitive mass-participation sports festival in the world, with this year’s event themed Meet the Magic. Team South Africa will comprise of 500 participants, with representation from all┬ánine provinces, spreading across urban to rural towns, and including participants from the smallest villages. The biggest group of gymnasts and officials will be from the Northern Cape, having a representation of 101 participants.┬á The youngest participant is 11 years of age and the oldest 70 years of age!
In addition to the festival, each country will have its own special to showcase their own national culture, traditions and heritage, through the use of gymnastic displays. The South African National Evening will occur on Tuesday, 12th July 2011. It will encompass all South African participants and will be choreographed by Maureen van Rooyen.
SAGF will also use this opportunity to market the International Gym for Life Challenge, which will be hosted by Cape Town in July 2013. ÔÇ£We intend to use this opportunity to introduce the Gym for Life Challenge 2013 as an ice breaker as this will be the first Gymnastics For All event to be hosted outside of EuropeÔÇØ, says Anton Jordaan, SAGF Gymnaestrada Project Manager. ÔÇ£We hope the participants warm up to the idea of travelling out of Europe to participate in the second edition of this eventÔÇØ.
Through SAGF’s National Participation Strategy and SRSA’s Mass Participation Strategy, participation at the 14th World Gymnaestrada in Lausanne looks forward to being a celebration of the extensive ground work put in place to send this team to Switzerland. All participants are immensely proud to represent Team South Africa and participate at this prestigious event.