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10 An Israeli Champion The Sky’s the Limit ! Have you heard of rhythmic gymnastics ? It is a relatively new Olympic sport that combines ballet , acrobatics and music . Rhythmic gymnasts also use different props * , such as a ball , a hoop * or a ribbon , in dance movements . This demands a great deal of focus , skill and coordination * . In recent years , this sport has become very popular , and now Israel has a champion of its own : 21-year-old Neta Rivkin . Neta has worked very hard to be the success she is . She practices eight to ten hours a day at the Wingate Institute near Netanya and at Hadar Yosef in Tel Aviv . She began doing gymnastics when she was just six years old . In 2011 , this young athlete won a bronze medal in the individual hoop competition in the World Championships in France . “ I was surprised to win the bronze medal , ” she said , “ but at the same time I believed it was possible . ” Then , in the 2012 Olympics in London , Neta became the first Israeli gymnast to reach the rhythmic gymnastic finals , making it to seventh place . For Neta , taking part in the 2012 Olympics was an amazing experience . She says that the Olympics is a competition that you cannot compare to any other competition . Neta adds that as an Israeli athlete she is always treated with respect . Athletes from other countries tell her that they love to come to Israel because the people are so friendly . Neta’s advice to young gymnasts is to believe in themselves and practice all the time . She says , “ The sky’s the limit !”

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