Dasha Joura: Gymnast, journalist

Australian Daria Joura

“…as I embark on the journey to share my experiences on the journey to Beijing, I hope that I can captivate the interest of the community in our sport; help everyone respect our sport and the fantastic talent and perseverance of the athletes, coaches and staff; and be utterly charming, entertaining and inspiring at once. Not anything I can’t handle.”

So says two-time Australian National Champion Daria Joura in her inaugural column for PerthNow, an Australian news portal loaded with other goodies (currently on its homepage right now one can watch a video of a “wild monster python” that ate a local family’s dog.)

Joura will be penning a weekly column, sharing her views and experiences in the lead-up to the Olympic Games. Joura is widely recognized as Australia’s leading competitor and best hope for a medal (though, as Northernriver points out, Lauren Mitchell’s not bad either.)

In her first column, published Feb. 26, Joura crusades for more recognition for Australian gymnastics in her home country.

Gymnastics has never had a large following in Australia, though I don’t understand why there is seemingly little interest in this great sport of ours.

It is repeatedly one of the most, if not the most, watched sports when Olympic and Commonwealth Games are broadcast.

I believe the ratings were also sky-high during the airing of the 2005 Melbourne World Gymnastics Championships. So it is definitely not a question of entertainment – speaking from experience, people never seem to tire of pleading for a demonstration of a back flip.

It’s fairly apparent that the style and spunk that make her gymnastics so much fun to watch are present in her writing too.

(via Difficulty plus Execution)

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