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Judo/Sambo UnderGround >> Sambo training in Russia?


3/29/10 5:20 PM
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Graugart
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Does anyone here have any experience with going to Russia (/belarus/etc) and train Sambo?
3/29/10 8:52 PM
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dynamo
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I have trained sambo in Russia ten times, Minsk, Belarus twice and Alushta, Ukraine once. What can I do for you?
3/29/10 10:38 PM
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FatBuddha
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wow! I may remember some of your detailed posts in years past. Not to hijack this thread, but could you comment on an outsider going to train in Russia - what to expect, cultural differences, etc? thanks!
3/30/10 5:26 AM
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Graugart
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Wow that sounds awesome, Dynamo, I would love as you tons of questions ;)

Can I have your email? I am working on a little project :)

Don't worry about the hijacking FatBuddha, I was wondering the same :)
3/30/10 8:09 AM
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dynamo
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Hi Guys,

I'm driving to Kansas City today so I'll post tonight from the hotel.

My email is dynamogregg@msn.com
3/30/10 12:41 PM
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Graugart
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Awesome, looking forward to hear from you. I'll drop you an email tonight! (european time :))
3/30/10 12:44 PM
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judo man
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Edited: 03/30/10 12:44 PM
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Come on share some stories guys.
3/30/10 9:22 PM
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dynamo
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Edited: 03/30/10 9:47 PM
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My first trip to Russia was in the late 1980s. At that time it was still under the Soviet Union, it was very austere and drab and most people were poor.

For the most part facilities were antiquated and run down but they made the absolute best of what they had.

Our training took place at the Lenin Institute Of Physical Culture and Sport (today it is known as the Academy of Sport and Exercise). The Institute was a University for Olympic Sports and Sambo. There was a plethora of incredibly beautiful and fit women studying there.

Our training would begin with morning lectures concerning Soviet models of preparation and training for the wrestling sports. In the afternoons and evenings we would have practical training on the mat.

What surprised me most was how well we were treated and how open they were with their training methods, keep in mind that the Cold War was still going strong. I became friends with several Russian coaches that today are still my friends (I would not meet Igor Kurinnoy until several years later).

One night these coaches took me and another American out to dinner. As the custom goes you drink vodka before the meal. We first toasted the United States and then Russia. From there they started toasting each Republic of the Soviet Union, keep in mind there were 15 republics. I have never been so drunk in my life. By the time we got back to the hotel they literally had to carry us into our rooms. The next morning we were so hung over could barely function much to the amusement of our hosts.

This trip intensified my desire to learn more about Sambo and Russian Judo.

I will post more later but in the meantime are there any specific questions?
3/31/10 8:27 AM
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Graugart
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Sweet info man, thanks :) I will write you an email soon about my project, but until then:

How is it to be a (training) tourist there? Do people speak english? What about general safety?

How is the training when you are a foreigner? Communication, attitude towards outsiders, toughness, etc?

How is living there? For how long were you there?

How much can you train and how much did you pay for the training?

Where would you recommend someone to go for training first time? gym/city? (have lots of BJJ experience, but never trained judo/sambo explicitly)
3/31/10 9:10 AM
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dynamo
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Edited: 03/31/10 9:13 AM
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To answer your first question many people speak English however I would not recommend traveling to Russia without having a host. There is still a fair amount of corruption that exists. It would be best to have a host or contact. You will need a visa and that requires an official invitation to travel there.

As I said in my previous post the athletes were very friendly and open. The training was very rigorous and tough.

I generally stay for about two weeks, I do not want to wear out my welcome and for the most you are pretty worn out by then.

You'll train anywhere from 6 to 8 hours a day. For me the cost runs around $100 and a day and that included lodging,food,training and transportation around Moscow. Keep in mind this is based on my experiences and has a lot to do with my friendship with Igor Kurinnoy.

Not having any judo or sambo training will be a major problem. You'll do well on the ground but you'll get demolished standing. I would highly recommend you train judo/sambo for at least a year before embarking on a trip to Russia.
3/31/10 12:39 PM
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judom
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Hi Graugart,

I've trained judo in Russia and all over eastern europe.

It all REALLY depends on what TYPE of training you are looking for. There is a whole range of clubs, from top competitive clubs to regular dojos. But even in standard dojos, often, many guys have competed seriously before.

Now, if you have no standing training, you have NO business training with competitive schools, many guys are beasts there, some competing as part of national teams, etc and won't care at all if they throw you on your head. As a friend of mine, former Sambo World Champion said: I throw them, let them figure out how they land. So you definitely don't want to go to such places. You will get broken down there and noone will have time to show you anything. You will just be a practice dummy. Even now, after years and years of judo, now that I am not training much, I don't go to such dojos, even though the coaches are my friends, because you need to be in certain shape when you go there.

However, if you train at a regular dojo, you can still enjoy some fun training with some really good coaching. Last time I trained at a club where the coach was a former A-level judoka, the club was really laid back but the training is tough, and we even had some guys from the U.S.A who did BJJ (I think one had his own BJJ academy in US). He really liked it and the coach spend more time on him showing him judo/sambo stuff. Definitely, I think people like foreigners.

And figure out what TYPE of training you want to do. My advice is to seek out a normal club, don't go to competitive clubs.

Socially, yes, definitely find a host, preferably someone at the judo club, e.g. the coach or assistant, to help you around, find you a place stay and show you around. That is very important.

And enjoy the nightlife. :)








3/31/10 3:01 PM
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judo man
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This maybe off topic, but I've heard that used toilet paper there is to be thrown into waste baskets not the toilets, cause it will clog them over there. A canadian judoka blog mentioned this while training in Belarus.
4/1/10 1:43 AM
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JoshuaResnick
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that's true in much of latin america too.
4/1/10 5:39 AM
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Graugart
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Hey guys

Thanks for all your posts, it is a big help.

Judom >> Can I have your email and ask you a few questions there? :)

The thing about toilet paper is pretty common in most parts of the world where I have traveled :)

Thanks
4/2/10 2:13 PM
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Punk Dobbs
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Graugart,

If you do end up going over there, make sure you bring a lot of cool tshirts with you so that you can give them out as gifts to each of your sparring partners. Most of the real tough guys over there only wear polo shirts and so they won't want to spar with you if you are handing out crappy tshirts.

I learned this very lesson from Dynamo himself.
4/4/10 12:57 AM
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nowaydo
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ttt
4/6/10 10:58 AM
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sta94
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Great stuff, thanks for sharing!!!
5/16/10 3:24 PM
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SamboSteve
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I have been to Russia to train 3 times. (once with Gregg - dynamo). I have trained at Sambo 70 and Borec in Moscow and the FKE and Suvorov Military Academy in St. Petersburg. I won't repeat what others have said regarding travel and training in Russia - they are spot on. But, I will say that I have always felt very welcome there and that the stereotypical "cold Russian" image was rarely seen when training. I have always been welcomed with open arms. Having said that, I was always hosted by someone so, I am not sure how it would be for a stranger without a host and formal invites.

I will post some videos of training there. Please feel free to contact me with any questions: samboinfo@yahoo.com
5/16/10 3:40 PM
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SamboSteve
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2007 trip part 1:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IVDED1tpY0k

2007 trip part 2:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U35qeumRiCA

2007 Trip part 3:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j-C-bJvmFmk

2007 trip part 4:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RllUCYXyzRQ

Here is some light rolling/coaching from 2009:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MkkYC2HB7PY

Behind the scenes with Dhani Tackles the Globe 2009:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pgohmXANkGk

2008 worlds highlights:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3bA1lmlYh7s
5/24/10 11:27 AM
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sta94
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TTT for later video-viewing - Thanks so much for sharing!
7/24/10 9:16 PM
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Ninja mon
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Great stories guys!!! I love your videos Sambo Steve!!!
7/25/10 12:48 PM
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RexKwonDo
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I just got back from Moscow a few months ago (not for training). You may want to consider Ukraine. Much cheaper than Russia (especially Moscow) and you don't need a visa.
7/26/10 8:04 AM
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Kai Tremeche
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TTT for more.

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