Sylvia Zarkova MITOVA

Artistic GymnasticsArtistic Gymnastics
Games Participations1
First Olympic GamesBarcelona 1992
Year of Birth1976


Silviya Mitova was the daughter of 1972 Olympic gymnast Maya Blagoeva and Bulgarian Olympic coach Zarko Mitov. In addition to the 1992 Olympic Games, she competed at the 1991 and 1992 World Championships. Her best results where a sixth on the floor exercise, fourth on the beam, and fifth on the vault, all in 1991. At the 1992 European Championships she won a bronze medal in the vault and was ranked fourth on floor. Mitova was a five-time Bulgarian Champion.

One month after competing at the 1992 Olympics Mitova broke her neck while training on the trampoline, an accident which left her paralyzed. But after a series of surgeries she slowly start walking again, but was left with a spastic limp, needed assistance for balance, and still had no feeling in her hands. Mitova was granted a stay in South Africa on the initiative of a family of local gymnasts, despite political difficulties because the country was still under apartheid. There she underwent further neurosurgery and recovered further. The family returned to Bulgaria and later emigrated to the United States, where they ran a gym, called Silvia’s Gymnastics, in Pennsylvania.

Olympic Results

Athlete Olympic Results Content

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