The workshop on judo was held in the Republican State School of Olympic reserve for students. The event was initiated by the NOC Belarus Athletes’ Commission headed by Dmitry Dovgalenok. Members of the national judo team Marina Slutskaya, Nikita Svirid, Dmitry Minkov, Egor Voropaev, as well as the Soviet and Belarusian judoist Ruslan Sharapov came to meet with the students. Guests started their workshop with small talk to satisfy the students’ curiosity about the nuances of preparation for competitions, how athletes relax and recover after important starts, how they build a nutrition plan and reduce weight if such a need arises. Someone was interested in the personal stories of the members of the national team, namely asked to talk about how the athletes came to the sport and made their choice in favor of judo. Others wanted to learn the secrets of achieving a high technical level or doing specific holds.
During the workshop, members of the national team also did not miss the issues of doping. Actually, it was one of the key topics of the discussion. The strongest judoka Marina Slutskaya took the floor and tried to convince the students that banned drugs can bring to an athlete only a short-term success. Marina’s idea was unfolded by Valentin Chernyakevich, head of the department for prevention, education and international cooperation of the National Anti-Doping Agency. Mr. Chernyakevich gave the students a brief information about the term of keeping samples, how long athlete might be disqualified and told about everyday cases which might lead to the situations when an athlete involuntarily become doping positive.
Judo athletes also discussed the importance of victories for the athlete’s rating. Specifically the 2nd European Games 2019 in Minsk where judo athletes will be awarded rating points, which are taken into account in the selection for the Olympic Games in Tokyo in 2020.
– The 2nd European Games is an important event for the country and the Belarusian sport, honorable and responsible for us. At the same time, home arena might become both a positive and a negative factor, – said Marina Slutskaya. After the European Games we will have the World Cup, thus, the main task is to be ready for both competitions. If we talk about the role of the Games for judo in Belarus, then I would say many things depend on marketing and advertising. It often happens Belarusians do not know that judo competitions are taking place in the country. For example, every year we host the World Cup. It brings together not that many spectators as we would like to have there. Moreover, most of them are our relatives and friends. Nevertheless, I hope that this largest start of 2019 will give impetus to development, and what we need only have a good performance.
I know that judo competitions within the framework of the Games will be held on the Chizhovka-Arena. I have never performed there, but I hope to check it before the Games. After all, this year there will be a World Cup, which will clearly demonstrate the same order of organization as during the 2nd European Games. Even though if suddenly we are not going to compete at the World Cup, I’m sure our managers will give us a chance to get acquainted with the venue. After all, this is the advantage of the home arena. In addition, we will not have a language barrier, which means that everything will be known and understandable – Marina Slutskaya shared her thoughts on the 2nd European Games.