UWW Hosts First-Ever Event Organization Workshop in Panama City

By United World Wrestling Press

PANAMA CITY, Panama (January 28) -- In Panama City from January 21 to 24, the first Event Organization Workshop organized by United World Wrestling Sports Department with the collaboration of the national Olympic Committee of Panama finalized successfully.

The workshop was aimed to the National Federations that plan to hold Continental Championships during 2022 and 2023.

“It is essential for the UWW to provide the tools and knowledge to our National Federations in order to increase the quality in the delivery of our competitions and continue to put Wrestling at the top. With the support of the local sports’ authorities and the dedication of my talented colleague Yuri Meier, this first workshop was a success” said Jean-Daniel REY, UWW Sports Director.  

Some of the topics discussed were the benefits of organizing an event, planning, bidding process, functional areas, among others.

The main focus of this Workshop is to work with the countries that have already been awarded as a host country for major events in the Americas in 2022, 2023, and potentially 2024. UWW wants to give the National Federations the tools and knowledge to deliver their events successfully and to provide a follow up with all them to assess and support them in the process.

Panama was strategically selected to host the workshop because it is a country with a lot of potential, its geographical location and the organizational level that has both the National Federation and the National Olympic Committee of Panama shown, was a key factor in the logistical aspect of the Workshop.

Attendees of the first-ever Event Organization Workshop stand together after the conclusion of the workshop. (Photo: United World Wrestling) 

Ms. Damaris YOUNG, President of the National Olympic Committee of Panama, was awarded the Golden Boot as a token of gratitude for her support and commitment to Wrestling in the continent.

Guillermo DIAZ GUTIÉRREZ, President of the Mexican Wrestling Federation and UWW Americas Executive Board member, expressed his satisfaction with the outcome of this first event, "This Workshop opens the way for us to continue to improve the organizing of national and international events, in addition to getting to know the new requirement and regulation of the organizations for our futures events", he affirmed.

The three facilitators who delivered the Workshop were Yuri MAIER, UWW Sports and Development Officer, Eduardo PEREZ TÉLLEZ, UWW Americas Event Manager, and Jesús SALAZAR GARDUÑO, UWW Americas IT Manager.

The Americas is the first continent to hold this Workshop, as part of a pilot project for host cities. The next Workshop will be held in Rome, Italy, where the U17 World Championships will take place. As in Panama, the National Federations participating will be the ones with future or potential events to host whether a Continental o World Championships.


Turkey hosts first UWW women's referee course

By United World Wrestling Press

ANTALYA, Turkey (May 14) --- On May 11, 2022 in beautiful Antalya Turkey, a precedent was set for all UWW Women referees. For the 1st time in United World Wrestling history, HIS-story became HER-story.  Women from 16 different countries have come together with 1 goal in mind; the advancement and recognition of Women officials within this heralded organization.

The Women's Referee Course, which consisted of two courses and three competition days, was preparation for the upcoming Commonwealth Games, and the 2024 & 2028 Olympic Games. 28 women referees from around the world were selected to participate in this first-of-its-kind educational program. 

On the first day of the course, UWW Bureau member Lucio CANEVA attended the opening ceremony and spoke to attendance. He thanked the referees for their support. He also explained why women referees are important for wrestling and all bureau members support this program.

Instructors Antonio SILVESTRI, Ibrahim CICIOGLU and Edit DOZSA collectively contributed to ensuring a successful platform for each woman that took part. Their combined knowledge only helped to propel the confidence of all the participants whether it was about rules or team-building activities and exercises. 

Dozsa, a pioneer of women's refereeing, was fully aware and empathic of the unique struggles women face in a male-dominated sport. Having been selected for the 2008 Olympic Games, Dozsa was able to bring the women together and give them an open forum to voice their individual experiences and struggles, without contradiction or judgments. The idea was for the women to learn how to empower one another. She provided tools and support that have enabled the women to grow and learn with each other over the years.

Participants from Turkey's women's wrestling course join together for a photo. (Photo: United World Wrestling)

The group at the course was experienced and talented. While some referees had wrestled, others were carrying the family torch. Regardless of experience, each member agreed that wrestling is in their blood and has forever changed their lives, for the better.

"Being a female official has many obstacles and nothing is easy about this job," Dozsa said. "We continue to sacrifice to be a part of this wrestling culture we all love so much. This course has given us renewed hope and an optimistic outlook for the future of women referees all over the world. We came in as 28 individuals and left as 1 empowered sisterhood."

The first two days of the course were dedicated to the theoretical aspect of refereeing and important rules were discussed and explained by instructors. A practice session was organized on the second day. All the questions of the attendees were answered by the instructors who also showed critical situations like referee mechanism, out of bounds situations, takedown and control, illegal wrestling and fouls.

During the last three days of the course, referees attended the International Champions tournament for the age group in all styles. They had a chance to officiate throughout the competition in both styles which was an experience for them as well.

The course was the first step for the women referees toward their Olympic hopes. The instructors thanked UWW president Nenad LALOVIC and all the bureau members for their support. They also expressed their gratitude toward the Sports and Development Departments for their collaboration and the Turkish Wrestling Federation for their attributions.