News / Longevity

Johanna Quaas, who turned 90 this year, is the oldest gymnast of the world

The 11-times German Senior champion of artistic gymnastics, Johanna Quaas from Halle, Germany, in September 2012 was officially recognized by The Guinness Book of Records as oldest gymnast in the world.

Johanna started gymnastics at an early age and appeared in her first competition in 1934. After completion of school she worked in the obligatory social year (Pflichtjahr). In 1945 she finished her job training as gymnastics coach in Stuttgart. Afterwards she moved to Weibenfels, where she started to train handball as gymnastics was banned by the Allied Control Council. In 1947 this ban was removed and she started again with gymnastics. In 1950 she started to study at University of Halle-Wittenberg. Afterwards she trained coaches at the Institut fur Korpererziehung. She co-authored the gymnastics text book "Gerastturnen".

During this time she trained at the HSG Wissenschaft Halle. In 1961, she also coached gymnasts at SC Chemie Halle, including Barbara Dix-Stolz and Christel Felgner-Wunder, who were later nominated to start at the 1964 Summer Olympics.

In 1963 Johanna married the gymnast coach Gerhard Quaas, with whom she has three daughters.

At age 57, Quaas again started with training in 1982 and won at the VII. Turn- und Sportfest der DDR in Leipzig. After the German reunification she also started at all Deutsche Turnfeste since 1990.

In June 2016, Johanna Quaas, who also turned 90 this year, carried out a tandem parachute jump in honour of the Queen. Johanna, who jumped attached to an instructor, said she wanted to finish what the monarch had started during the London Olympic Games. The Queen appeared with James Bond actor Daniel Craig in a film during the opening ceremony of the 2012 Games.

Surprise: A stuntman dressed to look like the Queen parachutes to the ground at the Olympic stadium during the ceremony

ref.: youtube, wikipedia,

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