The Department of Physical Education in 1967
The first steps to self-arranged physical training among students originated at Kazan Imperial University. There were horse riding, fencing and dance classes in the University’s curriculum.
In the early 20th century some amateurs exercised with bars and weights in a small room of the University’s library.
At first the University did not have its own sports facilities except the sports hall in the main building, originally the Church of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, and today the Museum of History of Kazan University. In 1840 the University got its own swimming places on the shores of the Kaban Lake in the city center. After 1929 the University’s students exercised at the military arts division. The Department of Physical Education was established only in 1935.
In the early 1930s physical education was optional for students: they had a choice of doing gymnastics, playing lapta (a kind of a Russian ball game), rafting down the Volga. In 1935 physical education classes became obligatory and students started attending the classes according to the schedule.
V. Bekasov, who had graduated from the Military gymnastic school, was the first Head of the Department. He was a universal sportsman, multiple champion of the freestyle wrestling, swimming, athletics and cross-country skiing. At that time the Department was only gaining the experience and the main goal was simply physical training.
Then the World War II began and many teachers, coaches and students were off at the military front. Five years later the battle-hardened people came back to the University.
New records and sport victories resume the pride of the Department of Physical Education of Kazan University.
The voluntary sports society “Burevestnik”, headed the sporting activities in higher education institutions and brought up many famous specialists. Mainly it resulted from the fact that only the professionals were working at the Department - the coaches of Russian class: D. Vashsh, V. Zhitlov (fencing), L. Arslanov, I. Poznyak (basketball), Kh. Murtazin (athletics). The teaching staff was very experienced: V. Mikhnevsky (athletics), V. Togulev (the Sports Club Chairman), A. Kashin (gymnastics), V. Kagan (the Head of the Teaching Subdepartment), Yu. Kozlov (ski sports), V. Shadrin (the Head of the Department)
The Candidate (V. Shadrin, A. Kashin) and Doctor of Science dissertations (N. Peysakhov, A. Prokhorov) were prepared and defended based on the research findings.
In 1958 the annex was built on to the main building. On 14 November 1958 the new sports hall was officially opened and the first Tatarstan artistic gymnastics championship took place there. That very day the sports hall in the Bauman Street was opened and the weight lifting championship of the main board of the all-union voluntary sports society “Burevestnik” took place there. Professor Mikhail Nuzhin, the Rector of the University, welcomed the competitor’s parade.
In the spring 1959 volleyball and basketball courts and the athletics center were built in the University’s yard. Moreover, the sports club and sports and health camp “Cordon” were opened and the University’s water ski base was built up on the Kazanka river.
In the 70s the scientific laboratory on the problem of the psychophysiology of the individual differences in sports and study was successfully working at the Department.
In 1989 the multipurpose Cultural and Sports Center UNICS where the best conditions for sports activities in the country were provided at that time.
Today the studies and trainings are held in 10 halls of UNICS. There are halls N1 and N2 for soccer, basketball and volleyball. There is also a climbing wall in the hall №2 that is the first one in Russia. The halls N3,4,5,6 are aimed at shaping, aerobics and modern dances. In the hall №7 students work at strength training, kettlebell lifting and play table tennis. Track and field students train on the track in the hall N8. The halls N 9 and 10 are aimed at bodybuilding sessions. In 2009 the Chess club was revived in UNICS (the office 502 on the 5th floor). Students can use showers and sauna to regain strength after the sports activities. There is also a health center on the first floor. In summer season students can strengthen their health in the students sports and health camp “Cordon” that is situated on the picturesque shore of the Volga in 30 km (3 281 ft) from Kazan. The total area of the camp is 4 ha (107639 ft2). This summer camp can host 200 people for one session. As a result, 800 students can enjoy their holidays in the camp during 4 summer sessions.
There are 5 single story buildings made of wood and concrete within the territory of the camp. Every building includes 8 rooms for 3-4 people in each room. Campers use following services: football field, basketball court, volleyball and badminton court, covered pavilion (36x12m) for table tennis, covered sports court with wood floor (36x18m) for playing volleyball, handball, tennis and also for holding cultural events. These facilities made it possible to teach classes in 23 different kinds of sport.
The Department of Physical Education developed alongside with University’s infrastructure evolvement.
According to the order of the Ministry of Education and Science of the Russian Federation (N156, 2nd February, 2011) signed by the Minister Andrei Fursenko, it was decided to merge Kazan (Volga Region) Federal University with Tatar State University of Humanities and Education, Kazan State Finance and Economics Institute and Yelabuga State Pedagogical University. Since 1 September, 2012 the new structural subdivision – the University Department of Physical Education, which consists of the faculty of the Departments of Physical Education of reorganized Tatar State University of Humanities and Education and Kazan State Finance and Economics Institute, was founded on base of the KFU Department of Physical Education.
The longstanding history of the Departments of Physical Education of attached Universities is also famous for their names and events. By the moment of the merge, the Department of Physical Education of the Tatar State University of Humanities and Education had celebrated its 80th anniversary and Kazan State Finance and Economics Institute’s department had celebrated its 50th anniversary. You can learn about their history here:
Thus, since 1 September, 2012 the new stage in the development of the KFU Department of Physical Education has begun. The Department’s sports facilities have notably expanded. Today they include UNICS, Sports Complexes Bustan and Moskva, Social and Sports Complex Orenburgsky trakt 10 and sports hall in Butlerova street 4.
Due to concerted effort of the staff the Department work has improved in all directions: new scientific and research directions were identified, publishing activity has increased, and the amount of educational, sports and health events has also grown.