Meet Petra Spatz

President of the German Armwrestling Federation


Hi Petra - how long have you been armwrestling?

I have been armwrestling for 14 years. I began competition at the German Championship in 1988.

How did you get started?

On a public festival the first Armwrestling Club in Germany promoted the sport. For the first time I didn't know about this "unfeminine" sport, but my husband supported me to visit the training of the club.

  What happened?

First of all I was very surprised that the armwrestlers were different than I had imagined. . But they welcomed me warm-hearted and encouraged me to take part of the first German Championship. I was well trained in judo sports like Jujutsu and so I had an advantage in the competition against other sportswomen, especially in concentration, speed and fighting spirit. I won the German Championship and flew a quarter year later in 1989 to Daytona Beach to the Worlds of the WAWC. There I won the Vice Championship at 55 Kg.

  What have you done since then?

Aside from the years of the birth of my daughters (just 8 and 11 years old) I have been involved with this sport. But only 7 years after beginning of my armwrestling career I was good enough to win one of the top 3 places at an International competition. I worked hard on my technique and I had to accept that I couldn’t make this sport beside other activities to be successful. Since 1995 I got to know the International family and I tried to visit competitions as much as possible to learn new things for me and my armwrestling friends in Germany.

  Well what exactly have you won all over the world?

German Championships (13 participations) 9 times German Champion, 4 times Vice German Champion European Championships (3 participations) 1996 3rd place, 1997 3rd place right, 2nd place left, 1999 2nd place left World Championships (3 participations) 1989 (WAWC) 2nd place right, 1996 (Virginia beach) 2nd place left, 2001 Poland 4th place left More than 40 cups on International competitions (most 1st places)

  Armwrestling Workouts?

My personal insiders tip is climbing. Important is that you climb only with your hands and without your legs (some climber are wondering about this style). This is optimally for the fingers, hand and the forearm. Also the pull up only with the arms on a bar is recommended.

Recommendations For New Armwrestlers?

For all new armwrestlers I suggest they take the time to learn the right technique to prevent injuries. It was not for me only the sportive challenge that give me the armwrestling kick. It's more the atmosphere on competitions and the friendly relationship of the athletes among themselves. Sometimes I saw that two competitors after a hard fight stand at an armwrestling table and instruct new tricks to each other so that on the next competition they will improve their technique to win. This is the best way to learn new things. Also I am convinced that in no other sport the wrestlers celebrate so much. Neither different culture, language nor nationality are a problem. Furthermore armwrestlers from Eastern Europe are after a short time friendly to the rest of the world.

What will you wish for the future of the sport?

One part of my dream came true in this year. The European armwrestlers joined into one. Many concessions are necessary to make this important step. In 2003 Germany is arranging the European Championship and I'm very proud to welcome a united Europe in my country for a grandiose competition. I hope that the right people will be candidates for our new executive committee. Sportsmen who will support the sport and are not interested in influence and money. But also the WAF has to decide the next steps to join the armwrestlers worldwide. After the splitting of the federations it was not the greatest thing for me to visit a World Championship. The attraction to meet the best armwrestlers of the world was decreased and I considered no longer attending a World Championship.

I see also without pleasure that doping is more and more a problem. I'm very angry when I see that fair and hard trained armwrestler have no chance for final fights. Therefore I wish we were able to find ways to control that situation.

In the last year I learned that every armwrestler could contribute for the reunification. We've come together to talk respectfully and to be able to compromise. Nobody should be anxious to lose face. The reunion was possible because teams that were on both sides demonstrated good cooperation and friendship. 

Well done and thank you Petra!



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