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Kajsa Margareta Bergqvist ( ; born October 12, 1976 in Sollentuna Municipalitymarker in Stockholm County) is a former Swedishmarker high jumper. She has won one bronze medal in the Olympic Games, one gold and two bronze medals in the World Championships in Athletics and one gold and one bronze in the European Championships. Her personal outdoor record of 2.06 m, set in Germanymarker in 2003, is also a Swedish record. Her indoor record at 2.08 m, set in Germanymarker in 2006, is also the world indoor record.

Biography

Career

Bergqvist was born up in Sollentuna Municipalitymarker in Stockholm County. Her interest in sport began when she was 6 years old and tried sports such as football, volleyball, badminton, swimming and cross-country skiing, none of which was able to keep her interest.

When she was 10 years old, she was persuaded by her big brother, Anders, to compete in Rösjöloppet, a long-distance track event. After that event, she began to try out several athletic events.

Bergqvist continued to train in several athletic events until she was 15 years old, when a new coach, Bengt Jönsson, came to her club, Turebergs FK. Soon after his arrival, he and Bergqvist chose to concentrate on the event that was her best, high jump.

She attended Southern Methodist Universitymarker in Dallasmarker (USA) in 1995-1999, with a degree in Advertising. She was the NCAA champion in 1997 with a clearance of 1.93 in the rain at the Indiana University over Amy Acuff of UCLAmarker ending her streak at two. She won the NCAA meet again in 1999 with a height of 1.90 in Boise. In the season 1999, she tied Acuff's collegiate outdoor record of 1.95 (6-6). That record is sometimes omitted as it was set in international competition after the NCAA meet.

During 2001-2008 she lived in Monacomarker.

By 2004, lack of progress and long travel distances caused Bergqvist to end the relationship with her coach, Bengt Jönsson. She joined a group of athletes (including Olympic gold medalist Christian Olsson) under Yannick Tregaro.

At a competition in Båstadmarker, on July 18, 2004, Bergqvist tore her Achilles tendon. Due to the injury, she missed the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athensmarker, but managed to return to form just in time for the 2005 World Championships in Athletics in Helsinkimarker. There she made an impressive series of jumps to edge out Chaunte Howard for the gold medal. Her Helsinki victory earned the Svenska Dagbladet Gold Medal for that year.

In 2006 she had been ranked the number one female high jumper in the world but failed to win in that summer's European Championships in front of her home fans in Gothenburgmarker, having to settle for a bronze medal.

In Arnstadtmarker, Germanymarker, on February 4, 2006, Bergqvist set her first world record. A first attempt indoor leap of 2.08 m to surpass Heike Henkel's 2.07 m leap on February 8, 1992. The record wasn't totally unexpected since she jumped 2.00 m already in the warm up for the competition.

Bergqvist chose not to compete in the 2007 European Indoor Athletics Championships, opting, instead, to concentrate on defending her world outdoor crown. She had not started the indoor season well, and was nowhere near the form which had seen her set the world record the year before. It did not pay off as she finished 7th in Osaka.

Bergqvist married director Måns Herngren on New Year's Eve in 2007 and shortly afterwards, on January 7, 2008, announced that she would retire from high jumping. She had found her life entering "a new phase" and that she no longer felt as motivated to keep competing, even after her break in 2007.

Post-athletics

Since her retirement, she has been an ambassador for both UNICEF and the IAAF.

International medals

High jump



Other victories

High jump



Kajsa Bergqvist's 2.06 m jump in Eberstadt 2003


References

  1. Arcoleo, Laura (2007-07-07). World Youth Press Conference - Athletes' quotes. IAAF. Retrieved on 2009-09-11.
  2. Turner, Chris (2005-10-24). Bergqvist is appointed as UNICEF Ambassador. IAAF. Retrieved on 2009-09-11.


External links










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