Prominent Russian rhythmic gymnast Karolina Sevastyanova has impressed her fans by proving she’s still in top form – despite retiring from professional sport almost nine years ago.
The 25-year-old posted a picture of herself stretching on a balcony, proudly demonstrating vertical standing splits and showing her pencil-straight leg lines.
“I can still do it,” Sevastyanova captioned the photograph, referring to the fact that she is remains capable of performing gymnastics elements despite quitting sport.
The gymnast, who announced her retirement right after winning the 2012 Olympic gold in the team event, was recently embroiled in a controversy after talking about her charity activities.
During a question-and-answer session with her fans, the world and Olympic winner explained that she doesn’t want to help mothers who have many children and experience money problems, because it was “their choice and responsibility to have many kids.”
Her comments triggered an uproar on social media, with critics accusing the former athlete of arrogance and disrespect for women who struggle with their lives.
Responding to the criticism, Sevastyanova said that “this is fully her responsibility to choose whom to help,” adding that the users who lashed out at her over her remarks were predominantly male.
“Apparently they are unable to do anything in their life. And they have become offended by my unwillingness to feed them,” she said.
Sevastyanova is one of the most discussed gymnasts in Russia, with her Instagram account amassing more than 620,000 followers.
Residents of the Commonwealth of Independent States who took part in a poll conducted during the London Olympics named her the most beautiful female athlete participating in that year’s games.