Robert Emmiyan

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Robert Emmiyan
Robert Emmiyan.jpg
Robert Emmiyan in 2006
Personal information
Born (1965-02-15) 15 February 1965 (age 57)[1]
Gyumri, Armenian SSR, Soviet Union[1]
Height1.78 m (5 ft 10 in)[1]
Weight69 kg (152 lb)[1]
SportLong jump
ClubSpartak Gyumri

Robert Emmiyan (Armenian: Ռոբերտ Էմմիյան; born 16 February 1965 in Leninakan, Armenian SSR)[1] is a retired long jumper who represented the USSR and Armenia. He is the fourth best long jumper in history and the best long jumper not of African descent. His personal best jump of 8.86 metres, which he achieved in Tsakhkadzor in May 1987, is the current European record.

Emmiyan received the Honoured Master of Sports of the USSR award in 1987.[citation needed]

An annual track and field meeting in Artashat, Armenia has been held in his honour since 2001 – the Emmiyan Cup.[2]


At age 16, Robert Emmiyan jumped 7.77 meters, the best jump in the world for his age group.[citation needed]

Emmiyan started competing for the Soviet Union in athletics on an international level in 1981.[citation needed]

At the 1985 IAAF World Cup, Emmiyan came in second place.[3]

In 1986, Emmiyan won the 1986 European Athletics Indoor Championships in Madrid with a jump of 8.32 meters.[4]

Emmiyan won the gold medal at the 1986 European Championships with a jump of 8.41 metres, setting a new championship record. Teammate Sergey Layevskiy was the only other man to jump over eight metres, jumping 8.01m, in a dominant victory by Emmiyan. Emmiyan's record in the Championship still remains unbroken.[5]

The inaugural politically contested 1986 Goodwill Games in Moscow saw Emmiyan win the gold medal in the long jump and set a new European record – 8.61 meters.

In what was a great year for Emmiyan, he had the best jump of 1986.[6]

In 1987, Emmiyan won the 1987 European Athletics Indoor Championships again, making it his second consecutive gold medal at the championships, and set a European record for the long jump indoors – 8.49 meters.[4]

Emmiyan participated at the 1987 European Cup and came in first place.[7] Emmiyan set the Cup's long jump record at 8.38 meters. This record was never surpassed and remained when the Cup became defunct in 2006.

On 22 May 1987, in the high land of Tsakhkadzor (1840 meters above sea level)[8] Emmiyan jumped 8.86 meters. At that time, it was the second best jump ever, after a record jump of Bob Beamon (8.90 meters) in Mexico City in 1968. Later, only Michael Powell (8.95 meters) and Carl Lewis (8.87 meters) jumped farther than Emmiyan. Thus, Emmiyan's jump of 8.86 meters from 1988 is currently the fourth best jump of all time, the first 29-foot jump since Bob Beamon's 1968 world record, and is also the current European record.

Emmiyan won a silver medal with a score of 8.53 meters, finishing second behind Carl Lewis (8.67 meters) at the 1987 World Championships in Athletics in Rome.[9]

Emmiyan was a big medal favorite for the 1988 Olympic Games in Seoul. However, he got injured in the qualifying rounds and was unable to continue.[10]

At the end of that year in December, Emmiyan's hometown of Gyumri was hit by an earthquake that destroyed much of the city and claimed the lives of many people, including Emmiyan's father.[5]

Emmiyan was still able to train and remain in good shape. He continued to jump over 8.20 and 8.30 meters. But the mental toll caused by the earthquake remained. Long jumping requires a great deal of focus and concentration. Emmiyan began to decline athletically and his goal of breaking the world record was fading. He claimed his life and career had "changed from what it had been before."[5]

At the 1990 European Athletics Indoor Championships in Glasgow, Emmiyan won the bronze medal with a score of 8.06 meters.[4]

Emmiyan's last major success came at the 1991 European Cup, where he came in second place.[7]

In 1991, Emmiyan started competing for his now independent country of Armenia. At the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta, with a jump of 7.76 meters he failed to qualify for the finals, finishing in 28th place.[11] Emmiyan soon retired from competitions.

Emmiyan is now the President of the Armenian athletics federation as of April 2010.[5][12]

Personal life[edit]

When the 1988 Armenian earthquake occurred on 7 December, Emmiyan's home in the town of Gyumri was heavily damaged. His father was killed and other members of his family also perished. Emmiyan suffered psychological problems following the earthquake which weakened his mentality for long jumping.

Some time after his career ended, Emmiyan moved to Paris, France. Emmiyan married a woman from the Armenian community and with her has two daughters, Fiona and Lauren.[5] His family speak Armenian at home and one day, Emmiyan hopes to return to Armenia. It is difficult for him to live away from his homeland, but he has more time to contribute to the development of athletics in Armenia from afar.[13]


Year Competition Venue Position Notes
Representing the  Soviet Union
1984 European Indoor Championships Gothenburg, Sweden 3rd 7.89
1985 Summer Universiade Kobe, Japan 2nd 8.03
World Cup Canberra, Australia 2nd 8.09
1986 European Indoor Championships Madrid, Spain 1st 8.32 CR
Goodwill Games Moscow, Soviet Union 1st 8.61 CR
European Championships Stuttgart, West Germany 1st 8.41 m (wind: 0.0 m/s) CR
1987 European Indoor Championships Liévin, France 1st 8.49 CR
World Indoor Championships Indianapolis, United States 4th 8.00
World Championships Rome, Italy 2nd 8.53
European Cup Prague, Czechoslovakia 1st 8.38 CR
1988 Summer Olympics Seoul, South Korea DNF
1990 European Indoor Championships Glasgow, Scotland 3rd 8.06
European Championships Split, Yugoslavia NM
Goodwill Games Seattle, United States 3rd 8.23
1991 European Cup Frankfurt, Germany 2nd 8.01
World Championships Tokyo, Japan 14th 8.00
Representing  Armenia
1993 World Championships Stuttgart, Germany 23rd 7.66
1994 European Championships Helsinki, Finland 18th 7.69 m (wind: +0.8 m/s)
1995 World Championships Gothenburg, Sweden 11th 7.77
1996 Summer Olympics Atlanta, United States 28th 7.76

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e Evans, Hilary; Gjerde, Arild; Heijmans, Jeroen; Mallon, Bill; et al. "Robert Emmiyan". Olympics at Sports Reference LLC. Archived from the original on 17 April 2020. Retrieved 27 October 2020.
  2. ^ "Pahlevanyan and Zhukovskaya shine at the Emmiyan Cup". European Athletics. Archived from the original on 15 April 2013. Retrieved 21 September 2011.
  3. ^ "IAAF WORLD CUP IN ATHLETICS". Retrieved 17 December 2012.
  4. ^ a b c "EUROPEAN INDOOR CHAMPIONSHIPS (MEN)". Retrieved 17 December 2012.
  5. ^ a b c d e "European long jump record holder Robert Emmiyan relives his famous win from Stuttgart 86". European Athletics. Archived from the original on 14 April 2013. Retrieved 17 December 2012.
  6. ^ "All-Time World Rankings – Men's Long Jump" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 5 September 2012. Retrieved 17 December 2012.
  7. ^ a b "EUROPEAN CUP A FINAL AND SUPER LEAGUE (MEN)". Retrieved 17 December 2012.
  8. ^ "Geographical Location". Archived from the original on 11 March 2012. Retrieved 17 December 2012.
  9. ^ "IAAF WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS IN ATHLETICS". Retrieved 17 December 2012.
  10. ^ "Athletics at the 1988 Seoul Summer Games: Men's Long Jump". Archived from the original on 17 April 2020. Retrieved 18 December 2012.
  11. ^ "Athletics at the 1996 Atlanta Summer Games: Men's Long Jump". Archived from the original on 17 April 2020. Retrieved 18 December 2012.
  12. ^ "Emmiyan named new Armenia athletics federation president". European Athletics. Archived from the original on 14 April 2013. Retrieved 18 December 2012.
  13. ^ Ռոբերտ Էմմիյան. Մի օր կվերադառնամ հայրենիք, որովհետեւ առանց Հայաստանի ինձ համար շատ դժվար է (in Armenian). Retrieved 25 January 2013.

External links[edit]

Preceded by Men's Long jump European Record Holder
22 May 1981 –
Succeeded by