For all this time, - little more then 20 years - Rustam has become an integral part of arm wrestling. How did it all begin for him?
Rustam, how and when did you meet armwrestling?
- Back in 1998, I was a 15-year-old boy; we celebrated the birthday of a friend with a friend at a club. In the same place, someone organized an armwrestling championship. I won all, and I was not the largest. Then I was introduced to the sportsmen who were engaged in this particular sport. Then it all started.
How did you imagine your career at the very beginning of your journey, did you see yourself at the top of armwrestling?
- I was getting started. I liked this moment and all the time there was a great excitement to beat the strongest. But to say that I imagined myself at the top of Olympus, no. I liked the process itself. And when I still saw the results of my work, I started to believe in myself even more. So, step by step, I got to the "stars".
What did you do during the forced rest from the competition? What prompted your comeback?
- Honestly, I was a little tired of this all and thought that I had to finish everything. For two and a half years I didn’t do armwrestling at all, but I continued to train my students. I was sure that that’s it, a sports career is over. But by chance and with the help of my good friends who pulled me back and insisted on returning, I still returned. In general, this is not regret.
At the same time, when I was not engaged in armwrestling, I was still in active mode. Had to work in the gym. I was engaged in MMA at the amateur level and dedicated one day a week to the gym workouts.
Which fight do you think is the hardest in your career?
- My most interesting fight took place in 2017 at the Lotoshino tournament. In the final of the open class, I pulled with Khadzhimurat Zoloev. I won in this fight. The struggle in the hook was very tense, the efforts were maximum for almost 1min 40s.
What athletes would you set as an example for beginner athletes and why?
- As an example to young athletes, I would put those champions who promote a healthy lifestyle and adequate behavior in life and in competitions. Personally, I like athletes like John Brzenk, Dave Chaffee, Levan Saginashvili and others in this regard.
How do you assess your brother's chances of return, subject to full training?
- If Ruslan really wants to return, then he can cross the road for many athletes of good level. I know that for sure!
Do you have more famous sportsmen in your relatives except for your sister and brother?
- There were no eminent athletes in the family, which I might know, certainly.
Do you plan your children to join sports and armwrestling in particular?
- I plan to introduce my children plan to physical activity. What kind of sport they choose – I let them do it. To impose something, I believe, it is wrong. It is necessary to respect the choice of the child, then he will succeed.