Ana Georgescu became a rhythmic gymnast when she was three. She was part of the Junior Romanian Olympic Team with over 30 Gold International and National medals won during her career. Ana continued as a professional dancer in two well known dance companies AEROS and Rhyth, mix, dancing on some of the most famous stages of the world, including on Broadway.
Becoming a Certified Fitness and Aerobics Instructor and also a Rhythmic Gymnastics Instructor was a turning point in her career. In 2011 she became a Zumba®Education Specialist and now she teaches Zumba® Instructor Trainings and presents at Fitness Conventions and Conferences around the world. Ana’s passion for dance and fitness inspires and motivates thousands of people to have fun while working out and heading towards a healthy and positive lifestyle.
- How did you get into the gym hall?
Literally: My grandparents took me there when I was about 3yo and then years after years my they took care for me not get late or skip any training. I am so grateful to them! My aunt used to coach Rhythmic Gymnastics at CSS 1 Constanta when my parents and grandparents decided to sign me up for gymnastics so that I could grow in a harmonious way and to keep me away from TV and other distractions. Nobody in my family thought I’m going to do it on a professional level, but I already had plans.
- How was the transition from Constanta to Bucharest? Did you basically have to start fresh with new teachers, new coaches, new colleagues?
It was a tough transition! First of all because when my parents told me that I’m going to move with them to Bucharest I wasted a lot of tears realizing how much I’m going to miss my grandparents but also because already at that point I couldn’t imagine my life without Gymnastics. Pointless for my parents to try to convince me that there are enough Gymnastics Clubs in Bucharest. Until I didn’t go to my 1st training at ANEFS Club (today UNEFS) I didn’t trust them or maybe it was to difficult for me to process that . Starting with that training I realized what hard work, drive and to exceed your own limits meant. My father always smiles when he remembers those days’ conditional trainings and the running laps around the stadium: “YOU WERE RUNNING AND CRYING.. RUNNING AND CRYING BUT NEVER GIVING UP!”
- You’ve been a member of the National Team of Rhythmic Gymnastics. Can you tell me more about that period?
It was tough but beautiful. Same routine of two trainings a day, every day, in which you had to want more from yourself and achieve that trough every repetition of every exercise, every routine, each and every ballet class, or body conditioning session was not easy. Living in a camp along with my teammates who were like my sisters brought both tears after exhausting training days, injuries or days when we were just missing our families and happiness when we were running all over the hotel that we were staying in, laughing till we were getting stomach aches. That intense period of time made me so much stronger. I have so many memories and stories to cherish from those times.
- Which are for you the most precious medals won in Rhythmic Gymnastics?
Every medal I ever won was important. Either National or International, the tougher the competition the bigger the satisfaction after the award ceremony. If I have to name one though that would most probably be my 1st All Around National Gold medal won when I was about 9 years old.
- Why did you make the change from Rhythmic to Aerobic Gymnastics?
I will not get into details since I tend to become a little bit emotional and sentimental about this topic but a short answer is because my chances to grow as a rhythmic gymnast were extremely limited.
- Which one of this Gymnastics did you love the most?
I liked a lot the Aerobic Gymnastics because it challenged me. I had the chance to train along with the European and World Champions and this helped me learn a huge lot and step out of my comfort zone but deep down in my heart I’ve always been a Rhythmic Gymnast. Rhythmic Gymnastics has been, is and most probably always be my dearest sport.
- Which is your most important medal in Aerobic Gymnastics?
The third place at the 2009 Aerobic Gymnastics Open Cup/ Timisoara. It meant so much more to me since I won it while being injured and that being my last competition.
- What do you regret the most regarding your entire career as a professional athlete?
It is a process that I am still working on but I’m trying not to regret anything. I am grateful for each experienced lived either good or bad. Grateful for each injury or disappointment because the sum of all these experiences made me who I am today. Was my career exactly the way I dreamt it will be when I was 7? Not really but I wouldn’t change a thing. I gained dear friends, memories, lots of medals and a character that can be formed only in the gym (this being both good and bad).
- Why did you end up your competitional life? How did you get over this?
I ended it up because I had a lot of pains and injuries. It’s almost impossible for gymnasts to get to an elite level without sacrificing their health at all but we all are doing it knowing what the repercussions are and hoping that everything will pay off at one point. I retired because that hope was lost and because I realized that some sacrifices just weren’t worth doing anymore.
How did I get over that? There are very few people who know how hard it’s been. Gymnastics’ been my passion and it took a long time for me to learn to live basically in a new world. I am still learning I guess.
- What were you doing before becoming a ZES™ how did you reach this position?
Because I couldn’t just become an inactive person after 18 years of professional sport I started giving group fitness classes while I was continuing my studies and working as a designer at a well known sportswear company. After a while the manager of the gym I was working for at that time asked me to do my research about a program called Zumba®, since it started to make waves in the fitness industry, including in Romania. I Googled it and not long after, the gym registered me to one of the Basic 1 Instructor Trainings (http://www.zumba.com/en-US/trainings ). I left that training being inspired to help people become more active, motivated to become a better dancer and the best instructor I can be. Seven months later when Zumba® opened an European ZES™ call I applied for the ZumbAtomic® (now Zumba® Kids and Zumba® Kids Jr.) ZES™ position. I was called to a live audition that changed my life… again
- How’s your life looking now?
I ended my professional career as a gymnast and started my professional career in Zumba® .. so my life is pretty much as intense as it used to be when I was competing. It requires balance, endurance and a lot of sacrifices.. but I love it and somehow it replaces my passion for gymnastics. More than just that, I have the chance to get in contact with so many people, different cultures, travel the World. I get to teach, to share some of my experience and my knowledge, to inspire and to motivate people to choose a healthy lifestyle. I get to create an influence, to make a change and leave a mark! I ‘m a lucky girl!
- Any plans for the future?
I don’t like to throw myself to much in the future. Generally speaking I want to help, educate, inspire and dance as much as possible. I want to keep on learning and growing as an instructor, trainer and person. One day at a time…
Thank you Laura for this interview, thank you to all my coaches who have helped me during my gymnastics career even with just a “POINT YOUR TOES!!!!” . Special thanks to my lead coach Mariana Mezei who’s been by my side for more than 10 years. Thank you to Professor Dr. Alexandru Buzescu who “fixed” my knees (and spine, and ankles, and… not only once). Thanks to the dance companies AEROS and Rhyth.mix!!! Thanks to Alice Visan for helping me start my fitness journey and for asking me to google Zumba®, thinking it might suit me. Thanks Zumba® Fitness! And thank you to my family and to those very few friends who really know me with smiles, tears, hysterical laughs, moods and with who which I created tons of memories! (you know who you are).