Let's talk about sport? Conversation with Vladlena Bobrovnikova.

Vladlena is a member of the Russian National handball team, she plays for Rostov-Don, is an Olympic champion of the 2016 Games in Rio, became part of the All-Star team at the European Championship 2020: the best left back. Vladlena is a multiple winner of the Cup and Super Cup of Russia, champion of Russia and Italy and winner of the EHF Cup. She is also a silver Champion at the 2021 Olympic Games in Tokyo.

-(MV7)  What was the main push for professional sports? Why Handball?
⁃ In my hometown Krasnodar, handball was not very popular, and by a lucky coincidence, my P.E. teacher was a handball player in the past. She opened the handball section. Before that, I was engaged in karate, and I did not like it at all, it was very boring and painful, I didn’t like this sport at all. After lasting three months, I accidentally started playing handball. I was addicted, and the teacher saw a little talent in me and advised me to go to a specialized handball school for the Olympic reserve. I did, and from there it all started. My parents also loved handball. In general, I believe that any sport is a social lift for any person, even if, for example, the person is not from a very wealthy family, one can achieve success in life with the help of sports, leave a mark on the history of Russian and world sports.

-(MV7) Describe handball briefly, what is it, what is its ideology and main feature?
⁃ Handball is an incredibly colorful and bright sport that develops the body: you have to jump, run fast, think, make decisions. I believe that especially for children, this is a very developing sport. And in regards of beauty, women's handball is the most beautiful sport for me, there is simply everything: contact, and wrestling, and falls, and jumps, and speed, and beautiful feints. All my friends who have never seen handball come to the game and after one time they say: "Why didn't you tell me before ...?" Then they become fans and constantly come to the games. The main "trick" in our sport is that both tall and thin, and small and chubby can be engaged in it. It's not like, for example, in basketball - they want more tall players. In general, anyone will come in handy with us, it does not depend at all what height or speed you are, they will find a place for you everywhere.

-(MV7) What is the most incredible event in your sports life?
⁃ First Olympic Games in Rio and our first victory. It was unforgettable. We went there as outsiders, very few people believed in us, and Russia did not become Olympic champions for 32 years, and then we did something incredible. Tokyo also had very bright Olympics, but it was harder, "more suffering" in such challenging covid times. So the brightest moment is the 2016 Rio Olympics and our victory at it.

-(MV7) Women's EURO 2026 in handball will be held in Moscow and St. Petersburg. Does this mean that this event will further increase the popularity of handball in Russia?
⁃ This is incredible news! I think this will be a breakthrough for Russian handball, I am very happy about it! The Handball Federation led by Sergei Nikolaevich Shishkarev, I think, has done a great job to achieve this. I think it was not easy. I am very proud that my sport will be represented, let's say. Hope there will be many broadcasts. All the best teams, the best players will come to our native Russia, and I am very proud of that.

-(MV7) You are an active tick-toker and blogger, is this a job or a pleasant hobby for you? Will this be your main occupation after the end of your career?
⁃ It gives me incredible pleasure to make creative vidos, reels, tik-tok. Since the life of athletes is monotonous: training-games, training-games, everything somehow goes in the same rhythm, so I want to diversify my life with some kind of creativity. I watch different videos, I really like to edit, select and add music. I don’t know if this will become a source of income after my career, but I will continue to do so. I hope I don’t run out of ideas, and whether it will be my job is not important, the main thing is that I enjoy it and see how people like it. Even sometimes in Rostov they stop me and say that they saw my tik-tok or reels, and I am very pleased. Rarely, when a handball player is also a blogger these days, not many of us have social networks.

-(MV7) What advice would you give to young athletes who want to become professional handball players?
⁃ I would like to wish young athletes in any kind of sports perseverance, hard work, and not feel sorry for yourself. If you want to be very successful, you have to work on yourself internally, not look at others, and especially ignore others cheating and not doing their work properly. You should look only at yourself, strive to be the best, be needed in the team and be a support to your teammates. Even if you are an athlete in team sports - the main guarantee of success is a lot of work and perseverance and not go off the road that you have chosen, because if you reach the end, you will achieve success, you will leave a mark in history, you will achieve a lot that will help you in future. Even if you quit sports, you will still leave a mark on the history of Russian and international sports - it’s worth a lot, so you cannot retreat, no matter what. All failures remain in the past, and you need to think only about the bright future.