|After the competitions.
"All the teams revealed their typical features-
I. About the importance of event for Russia and European Federation.
Russians never make mistakes,
The Frances are cold and restrained,
The Englishmen are excitable, the Germans
showed their characteristic sense of humor..."
TCFE's President- Dan Docherty.
It is very difficult to gather all the Slavonic taiji practitioners.
Therefore, the TCFE's decision to organize the regular Championship in
Russia was the only possible way to do it.
Europe looked into the window showing Russia
The Most Ancient history.
The History of Internal Arts on the territory of ex USSR made its first
short steps for about 15-20 years ago.
At first Soviet people heard about karate. After that, it became
clear that something like that was practiced in China. Than the people
began discussing the miracles of extra sensitive persons and sorcerers.
Some people created their own systems. Bu soon, it turned out that all
this had been invented by the Chinese under the name of Qigong. It was
a little offensive that we were left behind even in this case. That time
the Chinese practices of different levels began to visit occasionally some
cities and towns of USSR. Than we understood the next thing, on the one
hand- not all the yellow-skinned men are masters, on the other hand - not
all the masters regard seriously to our achievements. It was necessary
to study again in spite of the achieved skills of karate, meditation and
It began the mass pilgrimage of soviet and post-soviet youth to a real
After some time spent in studies and development, the first contact
with the European colleagues at last happened.
The Ancient history.
I remember my life in England eleven years ago. While my Motherland
was suffering from perestroika and putsches I got acquainted with the masters
of taiji living and working in England and those who came there with short
visits- Chee Soo, Dan Docherty, Raimond Gho, Ling Weiji, Dong Zenchen.
Then I came back home and met Sasha Kozminykh.
In two years, Dan Docherty invited me to a regular European Forum as
a participant and for the meeting with TCFE.
On coming back to Moscow, we got acquainted with Albert Efimov. Two
years passed, and on the next Forum of 1999 I worked as an instructor.
In the spring of 2000 we organized in St-Petersburg The International Festival
of Internal Arts. In that Festival the main clubs of taiji-quan and others
internal styles, at least from the Central and Northern-West regions of
Russia competed for the first time. In addition, there participated the
delegation of Taijiquan and Qigong Federation of France headed by Anya
Meot. Every Autumn TCFE began organizing its Championships, the first of
2000 - in Holland, the second of 2002- in Denmark. By the total voting
of TCFE's members, it was decided to organize The Championship of 2004
The Contemporary History.
One year before the Championship.
1. The conference in Moscow- Albert Efimov, Dan Docherty, the representatives
of Moscow's clubs.
2. The creation of forum taiji.ru - Albert.
The divisions of duties - Moscow (Albert Efimov, Vladimir Sidorov)
are responsible for the Competition's Rules.
Andrey Serednyakov from St-Petersburg is responsible for general organization.
3.The meeting of Technical Committee in St-Petersburg - Andrey Serednyakov,
Nadezhda Sokolova, Tatyana Ivanova, Nikolay Kirillov, Elena Dobrovolskaya,
There were discussed financial calculations, composing of schedule
of actions. It took place the meeting with managers of "Winter Stadium".
Tour Company "S-tour" was authorized to receive guests. Hotel "Sovetskaya"
was chosen for an accommodation of participants.
Information support on the site iari.ru - Nadezhda Sokolova.
4. The beginning of creation of computer program - Daniil.Ê.
5. Searching of sponsors.
One month before the Championship.
We try to teach referees to understand the systems of putting down the
points and working with initial documents, which are referee's notes. But
for any inexplicable reasons it was done only in St-Petersburg. Only once
Vladimir Sidorov came from Moscow. Every Sunday St-Petersburg's referees
gathered for training judging process. And again, nothing like that happened
Two weeks before the Championship.
Some team leaders began making changes in the lists of their participants.
I am discussing with Ronnie Robinson (The secretary of TCFE) a possibility
to introduce a new nomination of tuishou – “tuishou on stage” as in Chenjiagou
- Jiaojuo. The result was the principle refuse, because Europeans did not
get accustomed to this version. Most of all, the manufacturers of a stage
suddenly asked for unusually high price. As a result, the organizers refused
of this item.
One week before the Championship.
Some team leaders are going on changing the lists of their participants.
We tried to keep the tradition of TCFE and to organize program in that
way when every participant has a few minutes for the appearance. So, the
result of any changes is the breaking of all the plans. However, the badges
were being printed! Finally, we got badges showing the wrong time!
By that time were ready:
- medals, diplomas,
- T- shirts,
Posters were sent to be stuck.
The plan of appearances on nominations for three days was composed.
A part of nominations was reduced because of small quantity of participants.
In particular, judges and referees were assigned among brigades, and the
brigades distributed among grounds. The principal of distribution- nobody
referees his own participants (correspondingly – his own styles). Everyone
has to referee according to a general level, on the base of ten general
criterions of judging.
- We received the wrestling carpet,
- The rented tatami were driven,
- Also there were ready the flags of countries-participants and TCFE’s
flag which specially was made for the European’ Federation Championships.
III. THE PROCESS ITSELF.
Ronnie Robinson (The secretary of TCFE) arrived.
The last meeting on “Winter Stadium” of volunteers who are students
and the members of Polytechnic University’s Taijiquan club. Last trainings
just on the spot.
The volunteers were assigned among groups - video, judges working with
stopwatches and their assistants, a group helping with the accommodation
and cultural program, ticket collectors.
The volunteers’ work, especially of stopwatches and referees’ assistants,
exceeds all the praises! Thanks to them that the competitions finally took
place. Because all the records were considered, composed and presented
to a secretary.
Arriving, accommodation, registration.
In the morning, registration began on “Winter Stadium”. On the daytime,
it moved to the hotel “Sovetskaya”. Even during the registration, some
participants went on making changes. For example, the weight of nearly
all the members of Estonian team considerably differed from the weight
indicated on registration forms!
Some about thirty persons changed their declared nominations or found
the difference of declared nominations and nominations indicated on badges.
The information sent beforehand was put on the base in time, and checked
by Organizing Committee twice. Therefore, it was difficult to understand
the cause of mistakes- weather it was program falls or the changes of mind
of participants. The second variant was more probable.
Decoration of “Winter Stadium”.
Marking of grounds. Placing of the flags of countries-participants,
tables and chairs.
Computer’s expert Daniil is spinning his web.
Video-expert Victor is placing video cameras.
At 7p.m, the first meeting of the representatives of Russian, Ukrainian,
Latvian and Estonian teams took place on “Winter Stadium”. There were discussed
general questions. Just at the same time, the leaders of Federation - Dan
Docherty, Ronnie Robinson, Cornelia Gruber suddenly appeared on the stadium.
They were humbly waiting the end of “Russian” meeting.
7.30 p.m. – referees’ conference for “Russians”. Many of them would
work for the first time on the competitions of such level. Vladimir Sidorov,
deputy Chief Referee of Russia, presided on this conference.
Chief Referee is especially remarkable person of the competition. May
be he had not done his best over training referees for work on The Championship.
Nevertheless, his personal presence and work during four days and nights
is an example of high level of internal art. Vladimir’s ability to control
all referee’s procedures including investigation of appeals, to appear
himself without losing peace and lucidity of mind is his personal mystery
and an example for the descendants.
The second Russian patriarch of referees is Paul Troshkin. In his usual
solid and unhurried manner, he refereed tuishou competition in its most
filled categories. He is founder of school and Wushu Federation of Orel.
Soon they will have a regular tuishou seminar (see announcements).
By the way, a couple of words about patriarchs. Mikhail Baev was noticed
on the stands among spectators. He came from Moscow especially to watch
The INBI team was accompanied by mysterious Ì. Êuznetsov. It is said
he is a teacher of a famous Russian alchemist CHOÌ.
We wish Ìàêån Isakovich Isakov could come. He is the most famous master
of internal arts from Kirghizia, teacher of the Baev Brothers. Now he lives
on the Urals. He spent in China those days, but his spirit was together
To my opinion, the level of European judges and referees in general
is higher than the Russian ones. The Frances - Stephan Zimmer, Caroline
Shatz, Louis Michel Berose, Ilias Calimintzos, Christian Bernapel, Marianne
Pluvier, Philippe Raffot, Dominique Ricci, Julien Granjoux, The Englishmen
- Carl Burges, Garry Wragg, Fang Chen from Denmark, Finne Hans from Norway,
Piotr Ziemba, Sylwia Janos from Poland.
And of course - Dan Docherty, Anya Meot, Ronnie Robinson.
That is a result of great experience of participating in the similar
However, the most of our referees worked for the first time in such
important Championship they stood a considerable load, shown a maximum
adherence to principles and organization. They are- N. Êirillov, S. Levinson,
À. Soloviev, Î.Êîrovin, the group of referees from St-Petersburg’s club
headed by R. Romanov - À. Grigoriev, Ò. Grishchenko, Ì. Êîpekin, Ì. Berezin,
R. Ìudrogelenko, referees from Togliatti - Å. Verialov, À. Ìàrchenko, from
Moscow- À.Êîzminykh, P. Shulman, Wan Lyn, À. Åfimov, À. Òàraikovsky, À.Skalozub,
Ì. Bayandina, Ò.Êramtsova, Ò. Ziyatdinova, Å.Stankevich etc.
At the same time Dan Docherty, Ronnie Robinson and Cîrnelia Gruber
express me their wishes concerning the organization of process.
FRIDAY , THE FIRST DAY OF COMPETITIONS.
10.00-11.00 Arriving to “Winter Stadium” of the participants, referees,
presidium, a minimum quantity of journalists and TV, representatives of
sponsors. The end of registration.
10.00-11.15 The international referee’s conference.
11.30-12.00 A short lunch for journalists with the participation of
Presidium of Federation and Organizing Committee.
12.05 - 12.30 Formation of participants and the Ceremony of Opening!
12.30 - The demonstrative appearance started by the children dancing
ensemble studying at a Palace of Children’s Art of St-Petersburg. It was
continued by the group of sport wushu from The Sport Academy named after
Lesgaft. Also there appeared at the Opening the children group of "Wu-de"
centre from Togliatti.
Finally we saw demonstrative appearance of Russian masters of taijiquan
and other Internal Arts:
St- Petersburg - R. Romanov, À. Grigoriev, Ð. Àbdulmanov, Å. Fedorova,
Å. Solonieva, N. Êirillov.
Moscow - À. Êîzninykh, V. Tcharushin, À.Skalozub, Wan Lyn, À. Òàraikovskiy,
Ò. Êramtsova, D. Àdgiguerey, Y. Plyasov, À. Åfimov, P. Òroshkin.
The beginning of competitions
8 p.m. The end of the first day’s competitions.
350 participants is incredible scale! Some nominations includes at
about forty participants!
I participate at a nomination Chen style, advanced. I must have concentrated,
heard an internal silence and with a great pleasure made Xinjia paochui.
I reached the finals.
The first appeal. As a result the nomination “42 forms” was parted
from the nomination “The other forms of taiji ”. Nevertheless not everything
is OK with this nomination even later. In spite of officially announced
time - 5-6 minutes, referees stopped the sportsmen in four minutes …
Group of referees and Presidium of Federation went to the restaurant
which is a sponsor of Championship.
Tuishou referee’s conference.
Hardly we try to clear up some questions. For example will be the participants
of a combat on boots or barefoot. I vote for a traditional variant for
Federation- they must be barefoot. Because of that now I am sitting with
plaster on the left foot, my little toe broken. Next time I will insist
on tuishou in boots.
I had two combats – both of them against Moscow’s colleagues. I won
both times. The second combat was against a disciple of Vladimir Sidorov
– Ànton Êîlabin. He is a real monster! A young tiger! But that time my
experience helped me. Therefore it is necessary to work hard over my physical
training for the next competitions.
It is a very difficult day. Some grounds are empty.
Near the evening time President Dan Docherty could not stand it any
more and roar at Organizers and Chief Referee. It had a wholesome effect
– the time of combat was reduced until one minute. All the referees liven
up and the grounds are filled up.
8 p.m. -The end of the second day’s competitions. It is necessary to
be in time on party!
Video-expert Victor thoughtfully sorts out numerous video cassettes.
21.00 Party in hotel “Sovetskaya”. Most of the participants are here.
Anya Meot announces The Forum of Federation in July in Paris. The Organizers
present diplomas to Presidium of Federation. Dan Docherty made a return
speech. An extract of which you can see in epigraph.
Everything is traditional – meals and dances. Russian folk music does
not prevent participants from meetings and discussions.
The Organizers leave for a secret address to vigil there all night
and prepare for the third, final, day of competitions. The result is a
plan of work. There will be nine grounds: three of them to finish preliminary
nominations and the finals on forms, the other six are intended for the
rest of preliminary tuishou’s combats, and after that for tuishou’s finals.
We are trying to examine the tuishou’ reports.
The third, final, day of competitions. -
10 a.m. – Beginning of competitions.
Everything proceeds according to the previously composed plan. There
are appeals to referee À.Òàraikovsky. French team expresses distrust. The
referee’s brigade is changed. The nomination appears all over again.
Albert Efimov leaves competitions at 2p.m. It is time for him to go
In the middle of day the appearances on forms has finished.
As it usually happens in finals, I feel great impression of prize-winners’
appearance. They are three best participants of each nomination. It is
really international level!
Michel Dussachuy, Lac Le My, Gary Wragg, Aleksei Gailish, Luce Condamine,
Tatiana Kramtsova, Piotr Ziemba, Rinat Abdulmanov - these are prize-winners
whose appearances I was happy to see and referee.
I wish the other stars appeared behind my back. Little by little the
space of “Winter Stadium” becoming empty.
The ceremony of rewarding does not look as show. Therefore all the
rewarded received their medals.
The last finals of tuishou come to an end too late at about 9 p.m.
Organizing Committee dismantles an equipment and left the stadium at
I met morning at the hotel and said last farewells to my friends and
colleagues. President Dan Docherty confirmed once more that Russians never
made mistakes. In spite of that all the participants noted some faults
of organizers they were glad of MEETING and possibility to compare the
mastery of East and West.
I began understanding that everything had finished and it had not been
The most important aim of my visiting England eleven years ago, which
is the meeting Russian, Ukrainian, Latvian, Estonian and European practical,
I am inspired to go on working. The level of all the sportsmen is very
high. So the chosen course is correct. I have a feeling of possibility
to continue the friendship and creative meetings. I do not know weather
it will happen on our Eastern country or may be in two years in Paris.
Andrey Serednyakov. 2004 November.