Whatever Happened to
Elena Piskun?

Piskun's
Competitive Results:

1991 Cottbus International: 1st AA, 1st FX
1992 Chunichi Cup: 5th AA, 2nd BB
1992 Medico Cup: 5th AA
1993 American Cup: 3rd AA
1993 Chunichi Cup: 3rd AA, 6th V, 2nd UB, 6th BB
1993 European Cup: 14th AA
1993 French International: 3rd BB, 4th UB, 2nd FX
1993 Arthur Gander Memorial: 1st AA
1993 Hungarian International: 4th AA, 1st V, 1st BB, 1st FX
1993 International Mixed Pairs: 1st T
1993 Soapberry World Challenge: 2nd AA
1993 Swiss Cup (mixed pairs): 1st T (with Scherbo)
1993 Tokyo Cup: 2nd V, 2nd UB, 8th BB, 1st FX
1993 USA vs BLR vs UKR: 6th AA
1993 World Championships: 7th AA, 1st V, 4th FX
1994 American Cup: 3rd AA
1994 Birmingham Classic: 6th AA
1994 DTB Cup: 2nd UB, 4th FX
1994 European Championships: 5th T, 12th AA, 2nd V, 5th UB, 5th FX
1994 Goodwill Games: 8th AA, 3rd UB
1994 International Mixed Pairs: 2nd T
1994 Swiss Cup: 1st V, 1st UB, 7th FX
1994 USA-BLR-CHN Tri-Meet: 2nd T, 2nd AA
1994 World Championships: 10th AA, 5th V, 5th FX
1994 World Team Championships: 6th T
1995 Cottbus International: 7th V, 8th UB, 4th BB, 2nd FX
1995 DTB Cup: 6th V, 1st UB, 3rd FX
1995 European Cup: 3rd AA, 4th V, 4th UB, 2nd BB, 8th FX
1995 Gander Memorial: 2nd AA
1995 Hapoel Games: 3rd AA
1995 Ostrava International: 6th AA 1995 Pre-Olympics: 3rd AA, 3rd V, 1st UB
1995 Varna Golden Sands International: 1st AA
1995 South African Cup: 1st AA
1995 World Championships: 8th T, 10th AA
1996 Australia Cup: 1st AA
1996 Catania Cup: 1st AA, 1st BB
1996 Cottbus International: 6th V, 1st UB, 5th FX
1996 DTB Cup: 5th V, 3rd UB, 3rd BB, 2nd FX,
1996 European Championships: 4th T, 11th AA, 6th UB, 3rd BB,
8th FX
1996 French International: 5th V, 4th UB,
1996 Gander Memorial: 1st AA
1996 Grand Prix of Rome: 3rd AA
1996 ITA vs BLR vs ROM vs RUS Meet: 4th AA
1996 Olympic Games: 6th T, 12th AA
1996 Swiss Cup: 4th V, 3rd UB, 1st BB, 4th FX
1996 World Championships: 1st UB
1997 BLR vs CHN-SUI Tri Meet: 2nd T, 11th AA
1997 Cottbus International: 2nd UB
1997 European Gymnastics Masters: 1st T
1997 World Championships: 7th T (prelims), 30th AA
.

The majority of these results were compiled from information found at Gymn Forum.
Additional results obtained from issue 7 of Gym Stars and various back issues of
IG magazine


Elena Piskun and Svetlana Khorkina at the 1997 Defis d'Or. Photo used the expressed permission of Caroline Paulian.

Although never quite a bonafide gymnastics "star," Elena Piskun's career was stunning nonetheless. For over a half a decade, Piskun formed the backbone of Belarussian gymnastics, competing in oodles of competitions and keeping Belarus on the medal winning stand. For example, she won gold on vault at the 1993 World Championships and tied for gold on the uneven bars at the 1996 Worlds Championships. Piskun also excelled at other meets, often winning many international invitationals (e.g., 1993 Swiss Cup, 1995 South African Cup, 1996 Australian Cup).

Piskun's success is all the more impressive when you consider that the gym in her hometown of Bobruisk was too small to accomodate a full sized floor exercise mat! Despite the obstacles though, Piskun was Belarus' dependable and shining star.

In the years leading up to the 1996 Olympics, it was clear that Piskun would lead the team. Then, Boguinskaia re-emerged from professional gymnastics and stunned the world by announcing a comeback. Although in Boguinskaia's shadow, it was Piskun who truly led the 1996 Belarussian team. With few gymnasts to replace her, Piskun did not seriously contemplate retirement. Unfortunately, a nagging knee injury forced her to retire after the 1997 World Championships. Piskun immediately began coaching in her hometown of Bobruisk, but all the while was sorting out a coaching abroad.

Prior to the 1996 Olympic Games, the Belarus team acclimatized themselves to the time zone by training in Roswell, Georgia. Their hosts were very impressed with Piskun, and extended to her an open invitation to return to their home at any time. Piskun accepted in the invitation, and in July 1998 she moved to Roswell and accepted a position at Northwind Gymnastics in Alpharetta, a nearby town.

Graduates of Piskun's coaching at Northwind include Courtney Bumpers (2000 US Classic competitor) and Loren Simpson, a member of the UGA team. Piskun is also a gymnastics judge, a role she took on in 2001.

Podkopayeva (UKR), Dzyndzyak (UZB) and Piskun (BLR) at the 1999 American Cup. Photo courtesy of Rachelle and the
official team UZB webpage.

 

Piskun coaching at the 2000 US Classic in Tulsa, OK.
Images used with the expressed permission of Larry Fewell.

 

. This page was created on May 28, 1999 and last updated on September 30, 2003.

 

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