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27 January 2015 | in Universiade 2015, Winter FISU World University Games, Ski Jumping

Women's Ski Jumping is growing

STRSBKE PLESO - The first competition of ski jumping was held today, 27 January on the site of Strbske Pleso. The women were honoured as they were the first to jump from the 100m hill.

Irina Avvakumova (RUS) gold medallist in Strbske Pleso


Olympic discipline for the first time in Sochi in 2014, the women's ski jumping is on the sports programme of the Winter Universiade since 2005 at the games in Innsbruck, Austria.


FISU has always had a pioneering role in the introduction of new sports on its programme. We remember also snowboarding which was already on the menu of the 1995 Universiade in Jaca, Spain even though it appeared on the Olympics only three years later in Nagano. And these are just two examples among many others.


FISU takes advantage of the excellent relations with international sports federations to test new competition formats and its benefit for student-athletes. Only recently, at the Winter Universiade in Trentino (2013), FISU introduced in close cooperation with FIS a new ski jumping discipline: the mixed team competition (a male and female jumper). The goal was to offer a second opportunity for women (who often compete on the normal hill) to compete and to have more countries participating in a team competition. The athletes responded with enthusiasm and the competition was a success.

We must admit that the women's ski jumping continues to progress slowly but surely its development is evidenced by the fact that it is a woman who represents the International Ski Federation (FIS) at this Universiade. Renata Nadarklewicz explains that people have changed their minds since the early days of women's ski jumping: "Little by little, the women's ski jumping has passed all steps to get to be represented in the World Cup and more and more women are attracted to this discipline. We see very young athletes on our competitions and new countries as wsell. You know, women's ski jumping has always existed, it has just been hidden for years. Today many nations believe in the future of this discipline and are engaged in development programmes. This is also why we see jumpers from Canada or the United States, countries that do not have a great tradition in this sport. It is also for this reason that other nations are late, they simply not believed in the possibilities."

The podium of the women's k100 ski jumping event 

This afternoon in Strbske Pleso, Russian Irina Avvakumova had her moment of glory beating the Japanese Yuka Kobayashi and another Russian, Anastasiya Gladysheva. It is a magnificent victory for Irina who had already shown her talent by winning the bronze medal in Trentino, at the 2013 Universiade. The student of the Physical Education Institute of Moscow was very happy today: “This victory is the result of a huge work we do in training with our team. I also think that my experience is also beginning to help me on these great events. It's been 8 years that I practice ski jumping and it gives me very strong emotions, I love that.”

The men's podium


Finally, note that in the men’s competition on the same hill Bulgarian athlete Vladimir Zografski won the contest beating two Russian jumpers Ilmir Hazetdinov and Evgeniy Klimov. Vladimir, a student at the Academy of Sport in Sofia dominated the competition thanks to a great regularity on the two jumps (rk1 and rk2). Note also the superb performance of the Russian team with two athletes on the podium and the relative underperformance of Poland with a first jumper ranked only seventh.


Yvan Dufour, Editor-in-Chief

Photos Roman Benicky & Yvan Dufour