Russian Artistic Gymnastics as a Sports Tourism Product: Some Observations and a Research Agenda
Tourism and its importance to the Russian Federation are very much in the headlines at present. Considering the huge investment made in facilities for the Winter Olympics, the building of new sports facilities for such mega events as the Football World Cup, and the status of St Petersburg as a candidate city for the 2028 Olympics, it is clear that Russia has long term plans to attract visitors to their sporting events. The purpose of this paper is to develop a research agenda to explore the potential of artistic gymnastics, a sport in which the Russian Federation has excelled for many years, as an agent of tourism development.
The paper will take a case study approach, considering the nature of fandom and identifying features of artistic gymnastics as cultural heritage and sports tourism product. The national and international environment within which it is set are examined, prior to the development of a research agenda. A detailed review of literature on the historic, current and emerging trends in Russian artistic gymnastics; the place of artistic gymnastics in tourism development and sports tourism in Russia will be carried out.
The nature of gymnastics fandom, both in Russia and internationally
The nature of sports tourism development in the Russian Federation
The nature of gymnastics as a sport and its competition cycle
Artistic gymnastics as cultural heritage, and its potential as an autonomous means of promoting Russian national identity
The relationship between Russia’s sometimes fading gymnastics competition results, and its potential to leverage the sport for tourism interest
The potential for tourism product development linked to artistic gymnastics in the Russian Federation.
The paper contributes to the literature on the nature of sports tourism as it relates to artistic gymnastics in the Russian Federation in particular.
KeywordsSports tourism Artistic gymnastics Russian Federation Sport as a cultural form
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