The history of Romanian gymnastics is dominated by the personality and achievements of Nadia Comăneci. However, since that moment on, a lot of tremendously talented athletes followed in Nadia’s footsteps, some of them with remarkable results. This is the case with Daniela Silivaș, an Olympic champion in 3 events in Seoul, 1988.
She was born in 1970, in Deva, and was one of the first gymnasts trained at the Deva Olympic Centre opened in 1978. Her first coach was professor Ioan Cărpinișan. In 1980, Daniela Silivaș was already the winner of the national school championships. In 1982 she won the gold in the all-around, beam, floor and vault events of the national junior championship.
There followed a triumphant international debut, with Daniela Silivas winning the all-around and floor events of the Junior World Gymnastics Championships in Japan. In ’84, at the Junior European Championship in Rimini, Italy, she walked home with the gold medal in the beam event and the silver in the uneven bars and floor.
Daniela Silivas moved on to become the world leading gymnast of the late ‘80s. In the World Championships in Montreal in ’85, she won the gold in the beam event, while 2 years later, at the European Championships in Moscow, she won the gold in the all-around event, beam, floor and uneven bars, and the silver in the vault event. That same year, at the World Championship in Rotterdam, she took home the gold in the uneven bars and the floor event, and won the world title with Romania’s team.
1988 saw the only Olympic Games participation in her career, in Seoul. She won 3 gold medals on that occasion, in the uneven bars, beam and floor, and 2 silver medals, in the all-around and in the team competitions.
The last major competition she took part in was the 1989 World Championship, held in Stuttgart. Once again, she won the uneven bars, beam and floor events, and added another silver medal in the team competition.
After her retirement from competitions, Daniela Silivaș settled in the US, where she is a gymnastics coach.