2011, August - Freyburg /Unstrut (Germany)
Interview with the multi-times German Senior Champion of artistic gymnastics, the 86-years old Johanna Quaas from Halle (Saxony-Anhalt), at the 89th Jahnturnfest in the Jahn City of Freyburg.
Translation, thanks to Gymnastike user, Nika!
Q: If there were World Championships or European Championships, you would be a candidate for a title, I would say. Is that the case?
J.Q.: I would love to compete with others and I always regretted that there are not even European Championships, not to mention Worlds for seniors (=elderly). In every other sport that is the case just not in gymnastics.
Q: In the world of gymnastics you have been known for a long time. For those who don't know this: you started quite early. In the fifties you were one of Eastern Germany's top gymnasts.
J.Q.: No, not really, I just was "Oberstufe" (pretty high level in there system but not quite elite). But I started out playing handball until 1954, and there we were Eastern German Champion in 1954, with the (she names a club that I can't really understand the name).
Q: But in gymnastics in Halle...
J.Q.: Along the way a started doing gymnastics, that was allowed then. Then I did actively gymnastics until 32 or 33. Also at "Wissenschaft Halle" (another club), back then. But then I restarted in 1956.
Q: A last word to Quaas and Freyburg. How does this match together? For ever, right?
J.Q.: Yes, forever, since I restarted gymnastics I was back here every here. And I love it, because one can do gymnastics outdoors, and as always the weather is beautiful.
Q: Yes, and the gymnasts deserve that.
Q: Thank you very much, all the best, and where do we see you again?
J.Q.: The next one is "Schnepfenthal", I like going there, too. That's in the region of GutsMuth (an 18th century pioneer in gymnastics) and also Friesen worked there (early 19th century pedagogue). And I always like it there, too. Also senior championships. But from the championships I want slowly to retire, I think that was long enough now.
See Johanna's exhibition floor and pbars routines at the Cottbus World Cup, and her competitive p bars routine at Jahnturnfest in August 2011 here:
Floor exhibition - http://www.gymnastike.org/coverage/238754-Adult-Gymnastics/video/624106-86-year-old-Johanna-Quaas-exhibition-floor-routine-at-the-2012-Cottbus-World-Cup
P bars exhibition: http://www.gymnastike.org/video/624108-86-year-old-Johanna-Quaas-exhibition-parallel-bars-routine-at-the-2012-Cottbus-World-Cup
P bars competition: http://www.gymnastike.org/coverage/238754-Adult-Gymnastics/video/620738-86-year-old-German-gymnast-Johanna-Quaas-competing-on-parallel-bars