Igor Mazurenko about ARMWRESTLING and OLYMPIC GAMES

Igor Mazurenko - World Armwrestling Championship (WAC) Founder │ Image Source: PAL - Professional Armwrestling League
Igor Mazurenko – World Armwrestling Championship (WAC) Founder │ Image Source: PAL – Professional Armwrestling League

” DOES ARMWRESTLING REALLY NEED OLYMPIC GAMES ?

These days, especially in the Internet, there is a very active dispute, concerning the question wether armwrestling will be an Olympic sports discipline and what it is lacking for this.

Dear friends, after much thought, I decided to write an article about the future of our sport, about what is important and what is not worth of paying attention and should just be let go and be not raised up again and again. Today, in armwrestling there are many organizations and groups that develop our favorite sport discipline in their own way, but there is no clear vision of the system and armwrestling as a popular, self-sufficient and profitable sports discipline.

Many of you have taken a waiting position, hoping for a miracle. Let’s face the reality. As the President of WAC, PAL I receive a lot of messages asking what I, as one of the few armwrestling word officials, do to armwrestling hit the Olympic family.

You even can not imagine how difficult this question is and how difficult an answer is.
Anyone who was involved in the Olympic disciplines of sports states clear: our sports discipline will never be in the Olympic family. This does not mean that we should not try, but we are adults and should face the truth.

What does a sports discipline need to have to become an Olympic discipline?

1. The massive popularity and SportAccord registration.
2. Clear rules and popularity on sports channels. Armwrestling has neither one nor the other.
3. Youth Sports – young people training at different levels. Armwrestling has it only in some countries of the former Soviet bloc. For example, in Russia for the Juniors’ Nationals come up to 350 young people in age categories 14-16 y/o, 16-18, 18-20 y/o. In the United States – youth armwrestling is absent completely. In fact, it doesn’t exist.

With these initial parameters, we must not only stop the discussion on this topic, but just forget about the Olympics.

What can we do for our sports discipline or should we strive for in the Olympic movement?
The question is also difficult, but I’ll answer it.

America is a unique country for the development of any sport to the level of professional sports. There are many examples. For example UFC do not claim to be recognized Olympic Committee and member of the Olympic family, but in fact, it doesn’t really need it. Their athletes are real celebrities, they star in films, TV series, etc.

The second unique “sports discipline” is wrestling, which has two versions: WWE version – in the form of shows – and Olympic wrestling types: classic and freestyle wrestling. Many of you will hardly name a single Olympic champion in classical or freestyle wrestling, but all of US knows who the Rock, Senna, and other wrestling stars are.

This show with elements of wrestling made it possible for athletes to become the Stars of Hollywood scale.

NBA and Olympic basketball. What is cooler?
The answer is clear to everyone. NBA is much steeper than the Olympic basketball. Baseball and softball were in the Olympic movement. It seems to me that so far they ask themselves why they needed it. The Olympic movement completely useless for American baseball stars, truly.

My answer is clear: armwrestling needs to develop as a professional sport. We need to sit at a round table with all the organizations for negotiation. It is necessary to standardize the rules of, sports equipment, etc.

In the US, there are all the necessary mechanisms. And after some 5-10 years, we will see our athletes, as movie and television stars. This will bring children and youth, adults and the elderly’s, huge masses of people to arm wrestling.

And only then can we think about whether we go to the Olympic family, or it is not worth it.

IGOR MAZURENKO
WAC / PAL FOUNDER ”

Source: PAL – Professional Armwrestling League

See also ► World Armwrestling Federation (WAF) is ready for SportAccord

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