The Beginning of a Great History

The history of CSKA began as far back as in 1923, when the Experimental and Demonstrative Military Sports Ground of Universal Military Training (OPPV) was formed by the Central Department of Military Training for the Labor People.

In February 1928, OPPV became part of the Red Army Central House named after M.V. Frunze (CDKA). In 1934, CDKA team members D.M. Vasiliev and A.A. Demin became the first Merited Masters of Sports of the USSR.

Sportsmen at the Front Line and in the Rear

Starting from the first days of the Great Patriotic War, the Sports Department of the Red Army Central House (CSKA predecessor) shifted the direction of all its activities. CDKA sportsmen were the first to swap sports gear for military weapons. Many sportsmen went off to the front. Ski attack squadrons, demolition and reconnaissance groups were at the forefront and behind enemy lines.

CDKA sportsmen G.V. Baklanov, M.M. Gromov, N.V. Kopylov, L.F. Tarasov were awarded the title of Hero of the Soviet Union. Sportsmen left in the rear, switched to working at the Universal Military Training stations: they were engaged in the military and physical training of active army reserves, trained instructors of hand-to-hand combat, taught skiing, as well as the training of the Red Army special ski squads, reconnaissance units and other divisions. During the war years, sports competitions such as track and field, football, and applied military sports all continued.

In 1946, the Red Army was renamed to the Soviet Army. Red Army Central House was renamed Soviet Army Central House (CDSA).

By the end of the 1940s, the Department of Physical Culture and Sport of CDSA (CSKA predecessor) had become one of the country’s largest sport centers. Within a very short time, sports facilities in CDSA park, stadium and at the ski base in Sokolniki were renovated and extended, new training and physical culture rooms were opened, the best sports equipment was purchased. Renowned army trainers and famous sportsmen returned to the collective bodies of the CSDA and as a result, sports teams grew stronger. Examples of this were the football, hockey, volleyball, basketball, and water polo teams.

CDSA football players won the gold medals of USSR Championship for the first time in 1946, and defended this title for several years. In 1946, CDSA created a hockey team.

CDSA/CSKA Team Members at the Olympics

For the first time in history, CDSA team members and other Soviet sportsmen took part together in the 1952 Helsinki Olympic Games, the program of which included 149 competitive events in 21 different sports. Soviet sportsmen celebrated their triumph. Notwithstanding the fact that it was their Olympic Games debut, the athletes won 106 Olympic medals, 38 of them gold medals, left 67 countries in their wake and became Olympic heroes. CDSA team members were amongst the Soviet sportsmen who returned home with medals.

CDSA sportsmen were the first to become Soviet Olympic champions: Shazam Safin in Greco-Roman wrestling, Mikhail Perelman in gymnastics, Nina Romshkova (Ponomareva) in discus, Anatoliy Bogdanov in rifle shooting, Trofim Lomakin in weightlifting. Gymnasts Dmitriy Leonkin, Mikhail Perelman and Yoseph Berdiev became champions in the team competition.

In 1953, the Central Sports Club of the Ministry of Defense (CSK MO) was created.

In 1960, by decision of the Minister of Defense of USSR, CSK MO was renamed to Central Army Sports Club (CSKA).

The outstanding CSKA sportsmen: Vsevolod Bobrov, Vladimir Kutz and Yuriy Vlasov glorified national sport.

Over the years, many CSKA team sportsmen have managed to become the first Olympic champions from the USSR and Russia in their chosen sports. This notably includes:

Nina Ponomareva, the first Soviet Union Olympic champion in discus;

Sergey Filatov, the first Olympic equestrian champion in the history of national sport;

Elena Vaitsekhovskaya, the first and the only ten meter diving board Olympic champion in Soviet and Russian history;

Galina Prozumenshchikova, the first Olympic swimming champion in the history of national sport;

Aleksander Moskalenko (men) and Irina Karavaeva (women), the world’s first Olympic trampoline champions;

Adelina Sotnikova, the first and the only Olympic female individual figure skating champion in Soviet and Russian national history.

The following sportsmen became four-time Olympic champions: sabre fencers Stanislav Pozdnyakov, Viktor Sidyak and Viktor Krovopuskov, speed skater Evgeniy Grishin, swimmer Vladimir Salnikov, gymnast Aleksey Nemov, skier Nikolay Gulyaev.

Hockey players Vladislav Tretyak, Victor Kuzkin, Aleksander Ragulin, Anatoliy Firsov and Andrey Homutov, figure skater Irina Rodnina and sabre fencer Vladimir Nazlymov became three-time Olympic champions.

Two Heroes of Russia competed under the CSKA banner, skiers Larissa Lazutina, five-time Olympic Champion, multiple World Champion and Merited Master of Sports of the USSR and Lyubov Egorova, six-time Olympic Champion, multiple World Champion, World Cup winner and Merited Master of Sports.

The Winners

In 1946, the CSKA hockey team participated in the very first USSR Championship. Since then, they have gone on to win the national championship 32 times and are now the 20-time European Champions Cup winners. In 2005, the CSKA football team won the UEFA Cup for the first time in national history.

The CSKA basketball team became the Euroleague Champion in 2006 and prior to that, the team won the Europe Cup four times, in 1961, 1963, 1969 and 1971.

The following outstanding coaches earned glory for CSKA: A.V. Tarasov, B.A. and V.A. Arkadyev, A.Ya. Gomelskiy, Yu. B. Chesnokov, S.A. Zhuk, M.S. Rakita, M.I. Viner, M.P. Midler, V.A. Muratov, T.A. Tarasova, E.P. Zagorulko.

In 93 years, over four hundred thousand sportsmen have been trained by the Army sports school.

Throughout the history of the CSKA sports club, its sportsmen have won 1,399 Olympic medals, among them 591 gold, 432 silver and 376 bronze medals. Over six thousand medals, among them four thousand gold medals, were won at the World and Europe Championships. CSKA trained over 15 thousand USSR and Russian Champions.

These achievements can be justifiably called an absolute record amongst all of the Russian sports organizations.

At the XXII Winter Olympic Games in Sochi, CSKA sportsmen won 27 medals: 14 gold medals (four individual and ten team medals), seven silver medals (two individual and five team medals) and six bronze medals (four individual and two team medals).

CSKA sportsmen also made a valuable contribution to the medal rankings of the Russian team at the XXXI Summer Olympic Games in Rio-de-Janeiro. They won 26 medals: nine gold medals, eight silver medals and nine bronze medals. As for the whole Russian team, it placed fourth in the overall team rankings and won 56 medals: 19–18–19.

CSKA Today

The principal CSKA sports base is located in Moscow, the club also has seven regional divisions: in Gelendzhik, Samara, Saint-Petersburg, Sevastopol, Smolensk, Rostov-on-Don and Khabarovsk.

Nowadays, CSKA cultivates 72 kinds of sports (46 Olympic sports, 19 non-Olympic sports and seven applied military sports) and arranges sports training at 171 sports facilities nationwide, from Kaliningrad to Vladivostok, from Severomorsk to Sevastopol.

CSKA has an efficient system to develop children and youth sports and select and prepare reserves for the national teams.

In CSKA and its divisions, 36 sports teams and 33 sports schools for children and youth operate, where over 15 thousand sportsmen are training under supervision of 545 coaches. CSKA sportsmen play the leading roles in the Olympic National Team and Russia’s National Teams.

The Club’s main feature, adopted from the Army, is to continuously strive for victory. CSKA’s new structure allows to efficiently make use of all available sports facilities and prepare qualified physical training instructors, which is vitally important for the Army nowadays.

CSKA at the Military World Games

In 1992, representatives of Russia Military Forces entered the International Military Sports Council or Conseil International du Sport Militaire (CISM). After three years, in 1995, CSKA sportsmen took part in the I Summer Military World Games in Rome. The athletes attained brilliant results, which saw them take first place in the overall team rankings, with 62 gold, 28 silver and 37 bronze medals.

In the three subsequent tournaments, our athletes also celebrated victory. However, the Russian team was not able to take part in the fifth summer competition. That is why the sixth tournament which took place in Korea in 2015 became even more important to Russia. The Russian team won in the overall team ranking with confidence, taking 135 medals: 59 gold, 43 silver and 33 bronze. CSKA servicemen beat their own 20 year old record which they set at the I Summer Military World Games in Italy. At that time, they managed to win 127 medals.

The overwhelming majority of the Russian sportsmen who are to take part in the III Winter Military World Games, are CSKA sportsmen.

Since 2014, CSKA is headed by Colonel Mikhail Baryshev.

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