ROC President: The idea of the Olympic Games is to revive the mass sports culture

One of the most urgent and pressing concerns of many is the financial viability of hosting the Olympic Games in Sochi. The President of Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) Alexander Zhukov explained the importance of investing in the 2014 Winter Games.

“The idea of the Olympic Games is not limited to the material heritage – the fact that many children will start sports after watching these competitions is also very important. There is no doubt that they will. Even now, looking at Alexander Tretyakov, our figure skaters and alpine skiers, many will go in for sports with great pleasure. This is the way I myself started figure skating – when Belousova and Protopopov became champions my grandmother took me to the skating rink”,-  the head of the ROC shared his memories.

“To achieve our goal, it is necessary to revive the programme of general physical training – continued Alexander Zhukov. – Earlier this set of exercises was called Ready for Labor and Defense, abbreviated as GTO, but it can be called whatever you like. The idea is that children must do a certain set of exercises – perform a certain number of push-ups, run, jump, in order to aquire information about their physical fitness and to further develop what they are good at. The system of testing and physical education is the right system of comprehensive physical development  of both children and adults”.

“Ultimately, this means that you will have to spend less money on medical care because people who play sports – I’m not talking about elite sport, I mean those people who are  interested in certain sports –  are healthier than those who are not engaged in any kind of sport. Unfortunately, in the 90s children in our schools could not do push ups. This is why I can say that the expenditure for the Games is perfectly justified”, – said the President of the ROC.

“Of course, we need children’s sports coaches to achieve our objectives. Many of them went away, because  in the 90s salaries were not paid. Without good coaches  it’s impossible to rearrange large-scale participation, but even nowadays we show ourselves to good advantage in the international youth sports. Last year we won all the championships in winter sports, including skiing and biathlon (category under 17) with graet advantage”, – said Alexander Zhukov.