Ukraine's Paralympic swim team: Underwater Mission: Ukraine's Paralympic Swim Team Prepares for Rio 2016
Sport16:28 Aug. 25, 2016

Underwater Mission: Ukraine's Paralympic Swim Team Prepares for Rio 2016

UT visited a training venue of Ukraine's Paralympic swim team 

During the European Championship, which took place on April 30 - May 7, the Ukrainian Paralympic swim team gained the lead. 45 gold medals is a result of Ukrainian sportsmanship. Even more achievements are now expected about Paralympics in Rio, which is to start in September.

As athletes say, the sports forum in Europe became a preparation ground to test Ukrainian swimmers' skills before the start of Rio Paralympics.

Mashchenko Oleksandr, bronze winner of Paralympic Games 2012
"The championship of Europe in May was a final stage before the Paralympic Games. It was a chance to practice once again, to meet other contestants. Our preparation started more than a year ago, each of us put forward aims for Paralympics 2016".

Coaches' support and guidance are basic components, which define good results of Ukrainian swimmers. A member of the team explained how training takes place.

Istomina Kateryna, silver winner of Paralympic Games 2012
"When we have long training, it's tiresome not only physically, but also mentally. However, our coaches see it, they know what we need, they explain what we do wrong and how to improve it in order to become better. And even talking to our coaches is already of good help".

Doping scandal with the Russian Paralympic team has changed a map of direct rivals of the Ukrainian team. Russia has always been a strong opponent of Ukraine during any Paralympics, however, now the situation is going to be different. Speaking about rivals of this year's Paralympics, a team member, and the head coach said the following.

Stetsenko Anna, gold winner of European Championship 2016
"They will be the US, previously it was Russia, and now there is also Azerbaijan, their team is also strong".

Vdovychenko Hennadiy, head coach of Ukrainian Paralympic swim team
"Russian, American, British, Australian, Brazillian and Dutch swimmers are main rivals. China's team is good as well. Paralympic swimming is widespread today".

This year's swim team is numerous - 44 sportspersons, which is greater than that of previous Games. The head coach shared his reasoning about the team growth.

Vdovychenko Hennadiy, head coach of Ukrainian Paralympic swim team
"Thanks to our great results, we can increase the number of athletes participating in European and world championships. There are also junior competitions, a program for young swimmers, which gives us the opportunity to choose from the best. In such a way, we can develop Paralympic regional movement".

The Ukrainian government promises good incentives for sportspersons winning different types of medals. Up to USD 40,000 per gold medal, USD 26,000 for silver, and last but not least, USD 18,000 for bronze.

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