On the eve of Independence Day, India will be hoping that Deepa Karmakar gets Gold in the artistic Gymnastics event. The petite 1993 – born gymnast has become the first Indian to reach the final of apparatus in the artistic Gymnastics.
Karmakar attained a combined score of 14.850 in Vaults, including a very difficult Produnova vault. She entered the finals of Women’s vault event on the basis of her eighth rank.
Produnova is one form of Gymnastics which several American Gymnasts have refused to take up so far because of the possibility of a fatal injury while trying to achieve the extremely difficult landing.
Produnova, named after the Russian Gymnast, Yelena Produnova, comprises of running full tilt towards the springboard, jumping followed by blocking by the hand. Then, the two somersaults in the air require swinging the legs into two full rotations, followed by the extremely crucial landing. If it goes wrong, it can crack the spine into parts and can even lead to death. Its considered extremely tough because the force attained due to the acceleration gained mean that there is enormous pressure on the body at the time of the landing. There has been a demand seeking its ban due to high level of risk involved. After the 2016 Summer Olympics, Produnova can see a reduction in its D – score. Currently, it has a huge D- score of 7, due to which, some consider it as a shortcut but also a risky route of trying for an Olympics medal.
But its this form of artistic gymnastic vault that which Karmakar seem to revel in. She has the highest score in a Produnova, that is 15.300, including 7.00 for difficulty and 8.300 for execution. Deepa happens to be one of the only five women in the world to have successfully landed the Produnova vault in competition. A bronze medal winner at the Asian Gymnastics Championship, she is considered, by far, the most successful Indian female Gymnast
Karmakar came into prominence as she became the first Indian female Gymnast to win bronze medal at 2014 Commonwealth Games held in Glasgow. Thereafter, in April 2016, she became the first female Indian gymnast to be assured of an Olympic berth. Born in Tripura’s Agartala district, she started practicing Gymnastics at the age of six. She was born to a father who was an SAI coach and who introduced her to Gymnastics. Her coach, Bisbeshwar Nandi, who has been coaching her for more than a decade and a half now, is considered to have played an instrumental role in her success.