06 Jan 2019

Located in the Iranian capital city of Tehran, Alzahra University was the recent host for a workshop entitled ”Modern Sciences on Racket Sports Focusing on Table Tennis”; proceedings commenced on Friday 28th December and concluded on Sunday 30th December.

An intense three days, which provoked extensive discussion, was made possible thanks to the co-operation with the Ministry of Science, Research and Technology of Iran, alongside the Table Tennis Federation of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the national federations of badminton, squash and tennis.

by Ian Marshall, Editor

At the helm of proceedings was Dr. Sima Limoochi, notably supported by Professor Miran Kondric, Chair of the ITTF Sport Science and Medical Committee, alongside Professor Gordana Furjan-Mandic from the University of Zagreb. In addition the workshop attracted those who possessed doctorates and master’s degrees; coaches representing all four racket sports were in attendance as well as members of various Iranian universities.

“Undoubtedly, today sport organizations have an important strategic role, fulfilling research projects. The world today is moving at the fast pace and things are changing incredibly quickly. Therefore, focusing on research and sport science should be considered as an important strategic plan for any sport organizations.” Dr. Sima Limoochi

Professor Miran Kondric addresses members of the workshop (Photo: courtesy of Sima Limoochi)


Highly appreciated by all, Professor Miran Kondric spoke on the topic of the need to include sports science and medicine in all racket sports, stressing the need for co-operation between governing bodies, before later addressing the subject of physical preparation.

“After having very successful conference prior to the World Championships in Halmstad, this is another event which should be copied worldwide. Thanks to the Alzahra University for the invitation and the warm hospitality. I enjoyed this short stay in Iran very much. The interest of participants showed how important it is to communicate and exchange knowledge and ideas.” Professor Miran Kondric

Physical preparation prominent on the agenda, the subject was endorsed by Professor Gordana Furjan-Mandic; she highlighted the fact that suitable exercise prior to practice or competition reduces the risk of injury.

“Due to the harder and bigger training loads and change of materials, athletes are prone to even more injuries. Coaches need to have more information on the causes of injuries. I hope, we have in this short time educated coaches in terms of the physical demands placed on athletes. My thanks to the Alzahra University and especially Dr. Sima Limoochi for the invitation and raising so much interest in this topic.” Professor Gordana Furjan-Mandic

Key note lectures from Professor Miran Kondric and Professor Gordana Furjan-Mandic; in addition Professor Vaez Moosavi spoke on the subject of mental preparation, Professor Khabiri addressed the subject of the negative consequences of success. I would suggest he lectures the British press! As soon as an athlete succeeds they find reasons for criticism; of course if Andy Murray wins he’s British, if he loses he’s Scottish!

Testing reactions, Professor Miran Kondric (Photo: courtesy of Sima Limoochi)


Meanwhile, Dr. Sima Limoochi elucidated the history of table tennis both worldwide and in Iran, focusing on mental characteristics. Additionally she stressed the vital role of sports science, a subject which Dr. Bakhtiyari, the Deputy for Students at the Alzahra University and Dr. Alizadeh, General Director of Physical Education at the Ministry of Science, Research and Technology, also stressed in their presentations.

“All guests and participants added greatly to this workshop; I really must thank all of them for their warm presence.” Dr. Sima Limoochi

Similarly, a welcome guest was Shahrokh Shahnazi, Secretary General of Iran National Olympic Committee. He endorsed the importance of the workshop as did Mehrdad Alighardashi, President of the Table Tennis Federation of the Islamic Republic of Iran. Proudly, he highlighted the notable achievements gained by members of the national team in the past three years.

A most successful initiative, it is surely logical that as records are broken in sport, levels rise, physical demands are ever greater, sports science has an increasingly important role to play; more such meetings as at the Alzahra University are to be encouraged.

Members of the workshop in Tehran (Photo: courtesy of Sima Limoochi)
Sports Science Professor Miran Kondric PhD Professor Gordana Furjan-Mandic Dr Sima Limoochi