Sunday, June 12, 2011

Ju-Ping Tian - "Dragon Lady" for Australian WAG Program

Ju-Ping Tian (Photo Courtesy: Andrew Taylor)

Gymnastic coaching recently did a entry on coaches that linked to an articile Brigid did in 2009 on WAG coaches. Here is the part on former head coach of Australian WAG team Ju-Ping Tian:
Coach: Ju Ping Tian
Gym: AIS
Gymnast: Monique Allen, Kylie Shadbolt, Julieanne Monico and many, many more
Why?: Because before Peggy Liddick, there was Ju Ping Tian, the woman who made it possible for the Australian girls to qualify their first Olympic team in 1992 after moving from 26th place to sixth at the World Championships in 1991 in the U.S.A. She produced our very first world event finalist.

Ju Ping Tian moved to Australia from China in 1983 and brought with her a wealth of knowledge about the discipline, skill and presentation needed to compete amongst the best in gymnastics. The Australian women’s team improved massively under her watch. I also believe the elegance for which the Australian gymnasts became known for can only be attributed to the ground laid by her.

Thanks to the work she put in on a bureaucratic level, Australia has better training facilities, better trained coaches and more opportunities for international experience. When Liddick, who I also debated putting on this list,took over, some of the hardest work, in terms of making sure talented young gymnasts were moving steadily up the ranks for Peggy’s appraisal, was already in place. There was, however, much opposition to her desire to centralise all gymnasts at the AIS, perhaps most famously by Joanna Hughes, claimed to be Australia’s most talented gymnast at the time, who refused to leave her coach and her home in Victoria. But still, she made change happen.
Brigid also mentioned that she
"tried to emphasize that what I admired about Ju Ping Tian was her bureaucratic effort in re-organising Australian gymnastics on an administrative level, rather than her actual coaching. I had heard she wasn’t the most pleasant coach."
I guess Ms. Tian might have been one of those touch coaches to work with. The only report I can find on Tian was from the Age when she was honored with being appointed a Member of the Order of Australia back in 2006. Really love to read more on this legendary coach, please do let me know if you have more articles on coach Tian.

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