“Knights of Five Qualities” project in Nizhniy Novgorod reaches more than 11,000 participants
Social inclusion through the prism of Pentathlon was the aim of a major project called “Knights of Five Qualities” which took place in the Nizhniy Novgorod region (RUS) over the past twelve months, concluding in September 2021.
The project was initiated by Dmitry Svatkovsky OLY, Russia’s Olympic Champion from the Sydney Games in 2000 and was organized by the Regional Modern Pentathlon Federation of Nizhniy Novgorod.
The project has been organized in five stages.
At the first stage, in the autumn and winter, educational lessons were held across 13 districts of the Nizhny Novgorod region and three districts of the city of Nizhny Novgorod in a total of 25 schools. More than 7000 pupils from 2nd to 7th Grade took part. At lessons, children learned about Modern Pentathlon including from a film and a cartoon about the sport. The children were also invited to see an exhibition of cups and medals claimed by pentathletes from the Nizhny Novgorod region, including that Olympic gold medal of Svatkovsky.
Schoolchildren could also try their hand at Pentathlon - for example, shoot with a laser pistol or play fencing with safe swords. Such visits were attended by Dmitry Svatkovsky and other outstanding pentathletes of the region such as Sergei Branov, winner and medallist of World and European Youth and Junior Championships, and Liudmila Tebekina, World Championships bronze medallist in Women’s Team-Relay.
At the second stage, in the spring of 2021, five family sports festivals were held in sports and entertainment centers with more than 500 people taking part. Fully 55 families (mother, father and one child of 8-14 years old) of the Nizhny Novgorod region tried four Modern Pentathlon disciplines: swimming 50 meters, fencing on the stand, Laser Run. The winners and medallists of each festival were honoured with medals, commemorative prizes, as well as gift certificates for sports stores.
The third stage - the UIPM Global Laser Run City Tour - was organized in May at the Nizhny Novgorod Stadium. More than 500 participants from 7 to 67-years-old came to the start line, with more than one thousand spectators attended the competition. In July, 60 of the GLRCT’s best athletes under the age of 15 took part in Laser Run races as part of the Senior Modern Pentathlon European Championships.
In August 2021, as part of the fourth stage, Pentathlon sports events were held in summer camps. The project team visited camps in four districts of the region, thanks to which more than 700 children became “knights of five qualities”.
In September 2021, within the framework of the project, agreements on cooperation were concluded between the Nizhny Novgorod Regional Federation of Modern Pentathlon with three districts of the Nizhny Novgorod Region - Sergachsky, Vorotynsky and Knyagininsky. The agreements are designed for three years and involve the development of Modern Pentathlon including the opening training groups in sports and entertainment centers, the organization of referee seminars, the provision of organizational and methodological assistance. The signing of the agreements is the fifth and final stage of the “Knights of Five Qualities” project.
According to Dmitry Svatkovsky OLY, during the year-long project more than 11,000 people became direct participants, and the total audience reach, thanks to the project's social networks and the media, amounted to more than 100,000 people.
“While conceiving the project, we did not expect that it would be so popular among children and adults of Nizhny Novgorod,” said Svatkovsky. “The regional federation, together with the districts of the region, have done an excellent job, which will lead to the development and popularization of sports and, in particular, Modern Pentathlon in the Nizhny Novgorod region. Of course, we have plans on how to build on this success in the future.”