Thousands of East Germany youngsters are taking part this week in the sixth East German 'Spartakiad', claimed to be one of the biggest sports festivals in the world.
Gv Leipzig street with tram and flags.
SV Pedestrians walking past athletes' photographs in street (2 shots)
MV & CU 'Spartakiad' insignia. (2 shots)
MV & CU younger athletes limber up (2 shots)
CU Trainer talking to young boy in boxing ring before bout and MV trainer in other corner massaging opponent. (2 shots)
MV young spectators look on as boys fight. (4 shots)
GV Gymnastic arena.
SV & CU young girls vaulting over horse. (3 shots)
SV judges watch as youth exercises on horses and in applauded. (2 shots)
MV PULL OUT TO SV girl winners receiving awards.
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Background: Thousands of East Germany youngsters are taking part this week in the sixth East German 'Spartakiad', claimed to be one of the biggest sports festivals in the world.
SYNOPSIS: It's being held in the southern town of Leipzig where there's a 100-thousand seat stadium, and a lot of other sports facilities. The streets are decorated with flags, and photographs of young athletes in action. Thousands of visitors have been pouring in for the week-long event.
Some of the competitors are very young-the ages range from eight to eighteen.
The East German 'Spartakiad' festivals are the training ground for many of the country's top athletes. Hundreds of thousands of children have been competing all over the country for a place at Leipzig, and only the best ten thousand got through. These young boxers in the under 13 group, the so-called 'paperweight' class, were among the first to compete at Leizig. Gymnastics are an important and popular part of the games and attract big entry lists.
There were a few unsteady landings by some of the young hopefuls -- but some impressive performances too.
The 'Spartakiad' festivals highlight the East Germans' dedicated commitment to competitive sport. About 60 percent of all schoolchildren now do regular sports outside their compulsory school sports programmes, and last year more than five million people took part in mass sports competitions throughout the country.