A few days ago Igor Mazurenko defended his PhD thesis at Kharkiv State Academy of Physical Culture! The topic? Armwrestling, of course! The details below, and now the most important. Ladies and Gentlemen! Not many of us can introduce ourselves with a PhD in front of our name, with the title of “the self-reliant science worker”. This is something special! ()
I will begin with that you don't even realize how difficult Igor's road to this title was. In my opinion this is the toughest battle Igor has had to fight in his entire eventful life so far. And the difficulty isn't in conducting the research, describing it, documenting it. The hardest part was something else!
Well-known, olympic and “traditional” sports disciplines have had their “theorists” (so the employees of different physical education academies that specialize in the whole scientific “setup” of a sport) since the 1940s.
For example, weightlifting. The methodology of this discipline is written out in kilometers-worth of book pages, academic texts, theoretical reseach documentation. Athletics... every step of a long jumper, on the run-up, has a thousand of descriptions, Masters theses, PhD theses and postdocs.
The representatives of this “academic” clique, docents, PhDs, professors, they are all very delicate about their beloved sports.
They are not willing to enthusiastically welcome someone who presents to them a completely new sport and publishes their research, theories, conclusions...
What can interest an old professor who spent half of his academic life analyzing the weight bar's trajectory in the first phase of snatching? I know guys like that, I know what I'm saying.
Igor had to get the title of MSc in Physical Education first.
During late 1980s the Moscow Sports Institute accepted a candidate who WAS NOT a weightlifter for the weightlifting major for the first time since the establishment of the institute (and the beginnings of this school reach as far as the first years of USSR).
That's not all! He didn't even WANT to be a weightlifter!
He was popularizing armwrestling and that was all he wanted to talk about.