115th anniversary of physical education and sports in Saint Petersburg state university

Фотографии: 

Associate Professor S.M. Lukina
Honoured Figure of Russian Higher Education, Professor B.A. Mikhaylov
Dr.Sc.Hist., Professor I.L. Tikhonov
Saint Petersburg State University, St. Petersburg

Keywords: university sport, physical education, Olympic games.

Introduction. The students and graduates of the University are often called universants. This term also refers to the teachers who have made a notable contribution to University development. There are a lot of well known outstanding athletes and sport organizers associated with Saint Petersburg University.

In the late ΧΙΧ - early ΧΧ centuries universants played an important role in the organization of sports in Russia. Among them graduate of the Department of Natural Sciences of Physics and Mathematics Faculty N.A. Panin-Kolomenkin, the first Russian Olympic Champion (figure skating, London 1908). Outstanding chess player of the late ΧΙΧ century E.S. Schiffers and strongest cyclist of the early ΧΧ century M.M. Repinsky. A.P. Nagel, who was a Law Faculty student at that time, became the founder of the "Sport" journal in 1900. The first Russian sport journalist at the Olympic Games in Paris G.A. Duperron was also a student of the Law Faculty. In the period from 1885 to 1897, founder of the modern system of physical education P.F. Lesgaft worked at Saint Petersburg University as freelance university lecturer and gave lectures on anatomy at the Department of Natural Sciences where N.A. Panin-Kolomenkin studied.

Graduate of the Faculty of History and Philology V.I. Sreznevsky became the first Chairman of the Russian Olympic Committee held in St. Petersburg in 1911. There were three universants among the members of the Committee: V.I. Sreznevsky - Chairman; A.P. Lebedev - his companion; G.A. Duperron - Secretary. In subsequent years the Committee included other universants: N.A. Panin-Kolomenkin, D.D. Marshalov and E.E. Tevyashov. Note that in 1913 G.A. Duperron was elected as a member of the International Olympic Committee.

Objective of the study was to analyse and summarize the experience of many years of work in the field of physical education and sports in Saint Petersburg State University.

Results and Discussion. The first phase of development of university sport in the University ended in 1917. It began on 13 November (1 November O.S.) 1901, when the "Courses of Swedish Gymnastics and Athletics" were opened in the University. Law Faculty student I.V. Lebedev was the initiator and the head of the courses. Before that he was actively involved in the circle of Dr. V.F. Krajewski - "the father of Russian weightlifting" [3]. Unfortunately, the activities of I.V. Lebedev in the University ended in the spring of 1905.

In 1908, when the work in the sports circle of the University resumed, London hosted the IV Olympic Games in which Russian athletes participated for the first time. The Russian team consisted of five athletes, including two universants: Law Faculty student G. Demin (wrestling, lightweight) and N.A. Panin-Kolomenkin (figure skating) -  who became the first Olympic Champion of Russia.

The work of V.N. Smirnov shows that in 1912 student-universants already participated in many competitions even international ones. At the championship of the University Sport League in gymnastics (there were three apparatus: horizontal bar, parallel bars and rings) the superiority of University team was overwhelming and an individual competition was won with the same amount of points by the universants - brothers V.V. Ergardt and B.V. Ergardt [5].

The Olympic Games of 1912 in Stockholm were attended by five universants: N.A. Panin-Kolomenkin (pistol shooting); P.P. Sokolov and A.I. Uversky as the Russian football team members; wrestler A.V. Severov and famous tennis player count M.N. Sumarokov-Elston. They all did not succeed, however, Sumarokov-Elston won the Russian tennis tournament after his arrival. Note that later he became the eight-time champion of Russia in tennis and was inducted into the Russian Tennis Hall of Fame.

The second stage of development of physical culture and sports in the University began in 1920s. In 1924, a student club was opened in the University. It consisted of different sections, among which the most popular was the one dedicated to physical education. The section involved 300 people divided into 9 sport groups: skating, athletics, fencing etc.

On 21 September 1933 the University opened the Department of Military Science and Physical Education (order No. 450 of 21.09.1933). Colonel K.P. Artemyev was the head of Department in the 1933-34 academic year. And only in the 1935-36 academic year an independent Department of Physical Education was created headed by E.P. Petrov. From that moment the teaching staff of the Department took charge of all sports-related work with the students in the University.

Over the next 10 years the Department increased considerably. In 1938 there were 18 full-time teachers (including 8 senior teachers) and about 20 instructors, who worked in the sports sections. Already at this stage, i.e. in the first decade, the Department gathered the best coaching staff of Leningrad:  I.P. Sery, M.V. Tyshko, F.M. Ionov, A.Y. Shekhtel, M.V. Shekhter, G.I. Shevaldyshev, B.S. Brechko, and others. This made it possible for the University to take a leading position in the sport hierarchy of higher education institutions in the scale of the city and even in the scale of the country in the first years of Department existence [2[.

In 1935 the first interfaculty competitions in nine sports were organized by the Department. The students of the Physical Education Faculty became the first winners. In the University yard sport facilities were built, including volleyball and basketball courts; two tennis courts and a football field, which was a skating rink in winter. Director of the University M.S. Lazurkin was the initiator of this activity. In April 1937, an attempt was made to create the first university sport club in Leningrad. 

The University sport life was not stopped during the Great Patriotic War, that in turn enabled its athletes to take leading positions in the city and in the country in the early post-war years. In 1945 a sport club was opened and for the first time in the USSR the educational process related to physical education was divided into separate sports. This created the prerequisites for the emergence of a number of outstanding athletes - World and Olympic Champions -  in the 1950-1970 within the University [4]. 

In 1956, postgraduate of the Law Faculty G.I. Shatkov became the Olympic Champion in boxing in super middleweight class at the XVӀ Summer Olympics in Melbourne.  

In 1962, mountaineers of the University, including its rector Master of Sports in Mountaineering A.D. Aleksandrov, conquered a nameless peak 6222 meters high in the Pamirs, which was named "Peak of Leningrad University".

In 1962, for the first time in the history of higher education institutions of the USSR, a research laboratory at the Department of Physical Education was created. Its first supervisor was V.E. Borilkevich, an associate professor of the Physical Education Department. Two years later he began publishing the interuniversity collection of studies "Voprosy fizicheskogo vospitaniya studentov" (The Issues of University Physical Education) as a chief editor. This contributed to the scientific enrichment of teachers and coaches of the Physical Education Department and to special physical training system for elite athletes. In total there were 35 issues in this collection.  

During these years the Department was headed by outstanding people. In 1964 its head was V.U. Ageevets, who later became the rector of Academy of Physical Culture named after P.F. Lesgaft. He worked until 1973, when he was replaced by famous mountain-climber M.M. Bobrov awarded with the title "Honorary Citizen of St. Petersburg".  During the war Bobrov participated in the concealing of the spire of Peter and Paul Cathedral in Leningrad.                                                                                                                    

Those years represent the "golden" period in the history of the Department especially considering athletics and chess. In 1969, graduate of the Faculty of Philology (Journalism department) B.V. Spassky became the tenth World Chess Champion. In April 1975, student of the Faculty of Economics A.E. Karpov was declared the twelfth World Chess Champion.

In 1968, second-year student of the Faculty of Psychology Natalia Kuchinskaya became the Olympic Champion in gymnastics at the Summer Olympics in Mexico City. 

Four years later, student of the Faculty of Economics Y.A. Tarmak became the Olympic Champion in high jump at the XX Summer Olympics in Munich. Upon her graduation from the Faculty of Economics T.V. Kazankina became the two-time Olympic Champion in800 and 1500 m running at the XXI Summer Olympics in Montreal and that win was the achievement of her personal trainer - senior teacher of the Physical Education Department N.E. Malyshev.

In 1975 Vladimir Putin, the future President of the Russian Federation, graduated from the Law Faculty of the University. He was engaged in sports since childhood and did not give it up while being a student. Later he became Master of Sport in sambo wrestling and judo and upon graduation he won the title of the Champion of Leningrad [1].

For the period from 1950 to 2010 the following sport sections existed: aerobics, athletics, swimming, winter sports, martial arts, applied sports (orienteering, climbing and hiking), sport games, wrestling and a special ealth group (for students with poor health).

The teaching staff of the Physical Education and Sports Department in the early 2000s: 13 professors; 31 associate professors; 4 Doctors of Sciences; 19 PhDs;  2 Honoured Coaches of Russia and 7 Honoured Workers of Physical Culture and Higher Education of the Russian Federation.

Over the past 60 years, since the emergence of the title of Master of Sports of the USSR and until the beginning of 2000, coaches and teachers of the Physical Education and Sports Department have trained: 364 Masters of Sports; 62 Masters of Sports of International Class and international chess masters; 667 Champions of Leningrad and St. Petersburg; 138 champions and prize-winners of the championships of the USSR and Russia;  43 champions and prize-winners of World and European championships.

Note that in the period from 2000 to 2014  students and graduates of the University participated in the Summer and Winter Olympic Games: E.V. Smiryagin - pole vaulting and P.A. Brayko - high jump in Sydney; N.M. Rusakova (Kresova) - 100-meter hurdles in Athens; A.V. Bogdanova - 6th place in the heptathlon; J.A. Kondakova - 100-meter hurdles and R.M. Gasymov - judo in Beijing.

Graduate of the Faculty of International Relations Yuko Kawaguchi took the 4th place in pair skating at the Winter Olympics in Vancouver. And finally graduate of the Faculty of Psychology Maria Orlova took the 6th place in skeleton at the Winter Olympics in Sochi.

Conclusions. The conducted historical analysis of the achievements of the University athletes makes it possible to study the development of university sports in our country. All universities have gone through similar paths in their development from the establishment of separate departments of physical education till present. However, there are so many Olympic Champions, World and Europe Champions and  Olympic Games participants among the students and graduates of our University that any country of the world and any foreign university could be proud of. 

References

  1. Znamenitye studenty Sankt-Peterburgskogo universiteta. Yuridicheskiy fakul'tet (Famous students of St. Petersburg University. Faculty of Law) / N.G. Matsneva, E.A. Yatsuk, O.V. Anisimov. — St. Petersburg. - SPbGU pub. h-se. - 2012. - P. 232.
  2. Leningradskiy universitet (Leningrad University). – 1975. – № 77 (2439).
  3. Mikhaylov B.A. Istoki razvitiya studencheskogo sporta v vuzakh Rossii i Sankt-Peterburga v nachale XX veka (Origins of development of university sports in Russian and St. Petersburg universities in early ΧΧ century) / B.A. Mikhaylov, S.Sh. Namozova // Teoriya i praktika fizicheskoy kultury. - 2014. - №12. - P. 18-21.
  4. Mikhaylov B.A. Fizicheskaya kul'tura i sport v Leningradskom universitete v 1940-1945 godakh (Physical Culture and Sports in Leningrad University in 1940-1945) / B.A. Mikhaylov, I.A. Lomova // Teoriya i praktika fizicheskoy kultury. - 2015. - №5. - P.97-99.
  5. Smirnov V.N. Iz istorii razvitiya sporta v Peterburgskom universitete 1908-1917 gg. (From history of of development of sports in St. Petersburg University in 1908-1917) / V.N. Smirnov // Voprosy fizicheskogo vospitaniya studentov. – St. Petersburg, 1992-139.

Corresponding author: khubbiev@gmail.com

Abstract
The article describes the historical path of university sport and physical education of students of Saint Petersburg State University for 115 years, starting from 13 November (1 November O.S.) 1901, when the "Swedish Gymnastics and Athletics Courses", the prototype of modern sport clubs, were opened. It was possible due to enthusiasm of Law Faculty student Ivan Lebedev and the attitude of University rector A.H. Golmsten. That date can justifiably be considered the beginning of university sport in Russia. After 1917 a new phase in the development of university sports began with the formation in 1935 of the Physical Education Department which became the centre of sport movement in the University. Its sport life was not stopped during the Great Patriotic War, that in turn enables the athletes of the University to take leading positions in the city and in the country in the early post-war years. In 1945 a sport club was opened and for the first time in the USSR the educational process related to physical education was divided into separate sports. This created the prerequisites for the emergence of a number of outstanding athletes - World and Olympic Champions -  in the 1950-1970 within the University. The paper shows that the University played a leading and, in many respects, pioneering role in the development of university sport in St. Petersburg (Leningrad) and in the whole country.