Seventh on vault at the world championships in Nanning earlier this month, veteran Mexican gymnast Alexa Moreno has a medal on her mind as she begins to prepare for the 2015 Worlds and Pan American Games. Pictured: Moreno, third from left, with her teammates in Nanning.
Seventh on vault at the world championships in Nanning earlier this month, veteran Mexican gymnast Alexa Moreno has a medal on her mind as she begins to prepare for the 2015 Worlds and Pan American Games.
Moreno, who turned 20 on Aug. 8, has been challenging for and winning medals on her best apparatus for the past few years. She placed seventh on vault at the 2011 worlds in Tokyo; second on vault first on vault at the 2012 Challenger Cup of Ghent; second on vault at the 2012 World Cup of Zibo, China; and fifth on vault at the 2013 University Games in Kazan.
In Nanning, Moreno also contributed significantly to Mexico quest to qualify for the Rio de Janeiro 2016 Olympic Games. She was 39th all-around in qualifications, where she helped Mexico place 14th in team standings. The top 24 teams in Nanning advanced to the 2015 worlds in Glasgow, from which the top eight teams will qualify for the Rio Games. Four additional teams will earn Olympic berths at an event in Rio in early 2016.
IG caught up with Moreno about her performance in Nanning, as well as her goals for herself and her team next year.
IG: What aspect of your performance in Nanning gave you the most satisfaction, and why? Was it making the vault final again, your all-around finish, your team finish or something else?
AM: There were various things that make me feel satisfied with my work. Our team participation was a lot better than we were expecting. We did not have big failures, we showed constancy and I think we looked kind of like a strong team.
IG: How would you compare your all-around result to your vault result?
AM: I was able to compete all-around and I was so happy because, in my previous world championship participations, I was not able to compete in everything. I was especially glad when I competed on beam and did my routine with just little errors. Lately I was having trouble with that, and doing it right makes me feel very good. And of course, achieving my goal of being in the first eight on vault let me realize that I am on the correct path, and if I keep training hard I can go further.
Moreno on vault in Nanning
IG: What caused the problem you had on your second vault in the final, and what do you think you need to work on to avoid it in the future?
AM: For that I was pretty upset at first. Why? Maybe the nerves or maybe I wasn't thinking very clearly. I really don't know. But what I have to do is go out and compete more. That is what, I believe, I need to do. Competing is a way to train mentality.
IG: Since the Tokyo worlds you added an extra full twist to your second vault. What improvements or upgrades do you plan so you can keep making vault finals?
AM: What is most important is gaining height. After accomplishing this I can do whatever change I need. I have to improve my execution, too. And if I can do this, then I can start thinking about upgrading my vaults.
IG: What are your plans for upgrades on the other events?
AM: I will work to be in the top 24 in the all-around next year. I have to get better E notes in everything, so I have lot of work to do. And I will try to improve my D notes, too, just a little more. I believe I have good abilities for tumbling.
IG: 2015 will be an important year for you individually, as well as for the Mexican team. What are your personal goals for next year?
AM: Indeed it will be an important year. We are looking to be in the top 16 teams next year, but if we work hard we can think in being in the top 12. I will be training to be stable in my all-around, maybe increasing to 55 or 56 points, and next year I will be looking for the top three on vault. Those are the goals I have in mind.
International Gymnast Magazine features on Mexican gymnasts and coaches include:
Elsa Garcia update (December 2013)
"On the Mend" – injury updates including Elsa García (April 2008)
Elsa García cover photo and interview (May 2007)
Elsa García profile (May 2006)
"A Life that Makes Sense to Me" – Daniel Corral profile (December 2013)
"Mexican Maestro" - Daniel Corral profile (November 2010)
Karla Salazar on cover photo collage (July/August 2010)
"10 Questions with Coach Antonio Barraza" – interview (April 2010)
"10 Questions with FIG Technical Committee Member Naomi Valenzo" – interview (September 2009)
"Catching up with... Tony Piñeda" (May 2009)
"Catching up with... Denisse Lopez" (April 2007)
"Mexican Revolution" – Denisse Lopez profile (February 2000)
"Mexican Evolution" - Brenda Magaña profile (November 2002)
To order back issues, or subscribe to the print and/or digital edition of International Gymnast magazine, click here.