Sergei Levashev: «Nizhnekamsk has good hockey traditions»


In May last year, a full-fledged hockey vertical was formed in Neftekhimik Organiztion. It should be mentioned, that Neftekhimik hockey school again became part of our Club.

Recently, the adviser to the director general of Neftekhimik Holding Company, who will manage this vertical, began work. The interaction between Neftekhimik Hockey School, JHC Reaktor, Izhstal (Neftekhimik and Izhstal signed affiliation agreement) and Neftekhimik will be under control of Sergei Levashev.

Sergei Nikolaevich is an honored coach of the Republic of Udmurtia and a well–known person in hockey circles, but, nevertheless, we asked him to tell us a little about himself and answer a few questions.

– My whole life is closely connected with hockey. During my youth, I combined my study at the university with coaching. It is probably no coincidence that a year after graduating from the Izhevsk Mechanical Institute (now the Izhevsk State Technical University named after M.T. Kalashnikov) and working at the Izhevsk Mechanical Plant, I was sent to the Izhstal Sports School on the recommendation of the city party committee.

At first I trained a special class of guys born in 1970. In 1988, eight of my students born in 1970 received an invitation to the Izhstal team. Among the most famous of them are Konstantin Maslyukov (currently Izhstal head coach), Evgeny Loiferman (currenty Izhstal director), Vladimir Maslov (known for being a part of the Russian junior team, Ak Bars and Avtomobilist), Albert Loginov (currently Disel coach), Alexander Larionov (Honored Coach of the Russian Federation, coach of the Russian national sledge hockey team).

I worked on the coaching staff of Valery Ivanov (Izhstal), and was the head coach of this team for one season. After a short period of work at Perm Molot, I returned to Izhstal and worked as director of a hockey school for 4 years.

In 2003, I was invited to Podolsk near Moscow. We created a hockey school there. Artemy Panarin, Nikolai Prokhorkin, Egor Voronkov and other players are students of the Podolsk school. After 18 years of work in this city near Moscow, I worked at the Omsk Avangard academy.

– You are an advisor to the Neftekhimikdirector general in the hockey vertical. What are your responsibilities?
– My area of responsibility is the connection between the school, the Reactor JHC, the VHL team (Izhstal).

My task is to improve the quality of this whole system. We are now developing the concept of this work and want to make sure that as many local guys as possible will make it into the Neftekhimik.

– Will there be methodological assistance from your side to the school coaches?
– What could we do without it? Our plans include improving coaches' professional level, monitoring their work, providing seminars and much more. We are currently working on rebooting the entire vertical. We are developing both methods and means that must be used to ensure modern hockey, modern way of training process for children and young hockey players. The club improves the material and technical base of the school. My task is to help improve the quality of work of the coaching staff.

– In many schools, coaches are required to win tournaments and championships at all costs. The up-to-the-minute result is top priority instead of learning how to play hockey. What is your opinion?
– First of all, children need to be taught good skating, stick handling and puck control and many other things. In the coming days, we will discuss the development strategy for our entire vertical, including schools. This issue is also on the agenda. I believe that up to the age of 12 we should teach children hockey skills, up to 14 – improving these skills, then physical training and the nuances of adult hockey. After that, there will be great result.
– You have been working here for two weeks. Have you already gotten acquainted with Neftekhimik hockey facilities? What impression did it make?
– There is a good school in Nizhnekamsk. It is famous for its students who play at a high level. For such a small town this is a great achievement. Nizhnekamsk has good hockey traditions, but all this things needs to be further developed and improved. You always have to move forward, you cannot stand still. Therefore, our task is to keep up with the times, use modern methods of training players. The most important thing is that the club’s management has a great desire to develop further.

– Did you met hockey school's coaches?
– I watched a lot of practices. I met all the coaches. We talked with director of the school and Reaktor coaching staff. We will work.

– Taneco Arena is on its way of being an opponent for Neftekhimik hockey school in Nizhnekamsk. What do you think about this fact?
– Any competition is good for the business. Of course, now parents have a choice of which school to choose. The club's management is taking measures to withstand this competition. For example, hockey and sports equipment is provided for the children.

We, as I already said, want to show good work and raise it to a higher level in order to make our school and educational process attractive. Then more parents with their children will choose our school.

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