HMB is no longer just a sport. It is a sports and cultural movement now with a multifaceted and multi-tiered infrastructure. There are blacksmiths, craftsmen here who make products from leather, clay, wood, fabric, team support groups and many other talented specialists who reveal the beauty and power of our sport. This is a real HMB ecosystem, which is impossible to do without. It is very interesting to learn about the masters and their work, and we are interested in telling you about them.
HMB ecosystem this is how we call the rubric, where you will meet masters from different countries. The first hero of the new column is a blacksmith from Russia, who combined the skill of working with metal and the skill of using it on the lists of HMB tournaments. What are the features of his work in the forge, how to choose metal for the athletes needs, memories of the first attempts at working with metal and what inspires the master to new achievements, read now.
Choosing the right armor for HMB sports is half the battle! It is important to find a master who will make the armor right for you — authentic, so that you can enter the lists of the tournament, and reliable, fully meeting your needs and safety requirements, so that you can leave the lists with your achievements. We can all agree, having armor that meets all these criteria is very important.
Ideally, you want the armor smith to be more than just a professional. But he has to have a deep understanding of the sport itself. For example, he is keen on HMB sports, or he took part in the HMB World Championship Battle of the Nations himself. In addition, he should be able to help choose the right material from which the armor will be made based on the requirements of the fighter.
Dmitry Koryagin, a master from St. Petersburg, successfully combines all the above. Being a professional blacksmith, he is engaged in HMB and was even part of the HMB Russia team for 4 years in a row himself.
So where does the work of a blacksmith begin – on an element or a complete set of armor? Of course, with studying the sources.
“I look at the sources on the Internet. Many museums and auction houses have websites where you can look at authentic armor from a particular region and historical period. Also, there are people who have the opportunity and time to work with originals and take their own photographs. Fortunately, they also upload these photos to the Internet. It helps a lot”, said Dmitry in an interview.
In the process of armor production, he often works with materials such as stainless steel and titanium, he said. According to Dmitry, these materials are practical. Each of them serves a specific purpose that the fighter sets for himself. For example, stainless steel is rigid, heavy, and thick. And of course it must not rust. Titanium is light and strong:
“Different materials have different qualities and because of this, each fighter chooses the armor that suits him personally. Someone who wants to be completely safe but not so fast would take stainless steel. Someone who wants to be fast and agile chooses titanium. And so on in various variations. In addition, working with any piece of armor has its own difficulties and nuances. To highlight some element that is easier or more difficult to do than another is impossible. Plus, a lot depends on the material”.
Being an HMB athlete, the blacksmith made almost all of his own set of armor himself. In addition, the work of the blacksmith Koryagin can be evaluated in the battle against Russian fighters from the city of St. Petersburg.
In a conversation with our reporter, Dmitry admitted that he first got into the smithy in 2003, and since 2006 it has been his full-time job. While still a young graduate of the school, being on the verge of a big adult life, Dmitry already knew that he would become a blacksmith. He was fascinated by art metal. And at the very beginning of work in 2003, as soon as he got to the smithy, he immediately tried to make a helmet – of course, not the simplest task for the young blacksmith!
Many years have passed since then. Dmitry made a lot of armor, weapons, and other beautiful and unique things. His family, teammates and participation in tournaments as a fighter gives him an inspiration. After all, the safety of those who enter the lists in armor made with their own hands is invaluable. It is a sign of quality and responsibility towards athletes.
We thank Dmitry Koryagin for the interview and wish him inspiration and new victories in all spheres of life.