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Old 07-20-2012, 05:13 PM   #2878
brandon green
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Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 15
Cool Close but not quite

Originally Posted by Jason Ashman View Post

I was speaking in general terms of training; most of what we use today that forms the backbone of our athletic training methods are derived or evolved from Soviet Bloc methods. As you're aware and have mentioned, how it moves from there into sport-specific work varies dramatically by a ton of different factors. I'd expect the lack of Soviet track stars had a lot to do with apathy towards track events in general; I can't recall the Soviet program ever seeming to be interested in track, although they always took an interest in field events. Perhaps the reasons are because the training simply didn't apply well enough to make champions, but its equally possible that there was simply never enough people interested in it over there to put the effort into it.

As for recently, you could make a very good argument that the reason behind lack of Russian success in the last 2+ decades is the same reason for the rapid decline of Russian hockey players, field athletes, and gymnasts- There's no longer Soviet system to pump cash into development, and Russia has spent the better part of the last 2+ decades in disarray as far as sport development is concerned. The rise of Chinese sport in the past decade is testimony to what a dedicated effort by a centralized government (Is China still considered "communist"?) can do.

Its only in the last few years that Russian sport has began to recover, and you're seeing the results, like Ekaterine Blesinka, who won the 100m Hurdles in the youth Olympics. The Russian 4X100m men just won a gold (the Ukranians roided-out) at the U23 Euro championships, and shot-putter Yevgeniya Smirnova just won bronze at the world junior championships. The development is coming, its just nowhere near where it once was.

One must also consider the continuing success of the former Soviet satellites, who, without the internal turmoil that faced Russia, have continued to do well, even if the get caught doping more frequently than most.
*********** When the USSR was intact they got caught doping very rarely. They had a very few track stars based IMHO on the fact that the field events are more subject to training than track is. In other words genetic predispositon is a more significant factor in sprinting for example. Complex technique and special strength are inherent in the field events.
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