Olga Korbut

Olga Korbut

About Olga Korbut

Olga Valentinovna Korbut (b. May 16, 1955 in Hrodna), also known as the 'Sparrow from Minsk', is a Belarusian, Soviet-born gymnast who won four gold medals and two silver medals at the Summer Olympics, in which she competed in 1972 and 1976 for the USSR team. Early life Belarusian born Korbut, who started training at age 8, entered a Belarusian sports school headed by coach Renald Knysh at age 9. There, Korbut's first trainer was Elena Volchetskaya, a Olympic gold medalist, but she was moved to Knysh's group a year later. Initially he found her 'lazy and capricious' but he also saw potential in her great talent, unusually supple spine, and charisma. With him, she learned a difficult backward somersault on the balance beam. She debuted this at a competition in the USSR in 1969.