Not too many Sports loving Nigerians are accustomed to the Sport of Gymnastics but an International Certified coach who was the former Technical Director of the Nigeria Gymnastics Federation, Anthony Asuquo is optimistic that with the right policies and administration to back up the sport, Gymnastics will be the most followed sport in Nigeria.
Coach Asuquo spoke extensively on the genres of Gymnastics which included Aerobics, Artistic and Power Tumbling.
He further said that Aerobics and Power tumbling Gymnastics were newly introduced in Nigeria so that more medals can be won due to its simple elements and encourage aspiring athletes who cannot flip to develop an interest.
Edo 2020 National Sports Festival that was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic in Nigeria has Gymnastics as one of the featured sport with 17 out of the 36 states participating.
Coach Asuquo was a household name in the sport of Gymnastics in Nigeria between 1989 to 2006 at the National Sports Festival but he is disappointed at Nigeria not achieving its primary target in terms of Data Capturing of gymnasts over the years.
He said, “Many athletes do not get paid and they just go for training, then afterwards left alone to go sort themselves out.”
He emphasized, “Not many Sports councils pay their athletes and do not organise programmes and physical preparation regimes which leads to the Nigerian Fire brigade approach whenever competitions are fixed.”
In his final words, Coach Asuquo advised that a monitoring team be implemented from the Nigerian Gymnastics Federation to follow up gymnasts in the country to physically condition their bodies to be fit at all time for the Sport