Modena can justifiably call itself a “sporty city”, where sport is not just loved and followed with a passion, but above all it is practised keenly by citizens of all ages.
The widespread diffusion of sport throughout the province, the huge network of structures and facilities and promoters of sport, is also an indicator of the social wealth of this city, which has always been renowned for its services for citizens and their ease of use by all, and on their quality, innovation and excellence.
That Modena is a city of sportspeople is evident from all its international awards and recognitions.
Here the history of volleyball was written and continues to be written.
It is the birthplace in fact of the famous Gruppo Sportivo Panini, set up in 1966 when the company of the same name decided to sponsor various sports. Initially however, volleyball was not one of them. The first were rugby and athletics and men and women’s volleyball was only added later. Thanks to the passion of Giuseppe and Benito Panini and the technical skill of Prof. Anderlini, “Panini” took over from a local team as leaders of bottom-of-the-league Serie C and in just three seasons reached top-of-the-board Serie A.
In addition to the men and women’s Serie A championship matches, in 2010 the G. Panini Sports Centre hosted the Men’s Volleyball World Championships and in 2014 the Women’s.
The Sports Centre is also the venue for the International Roller Cup, the world roller skating event, which brings to Modena more than 100 skaters from all over Europe.
2013 saw a calendar of high level sporting events: the European roller skating championships for teams, the volleyball World League, the Gymnastics Grand Prix, the Italian Weightlifting Championships and the Paralympic Sports Day.
National and international events are organised every year alongside the many traditional appointments:
• Corrida di San Geminiano, a traditional national footrace held on the feast day of Modena’s patron saint;
• National Table Tennis Tournament, held in February in the G. Panini Sports Centre- Casamodena;
• Modena di Corsa con l’Accademia, footrace through the streets in the historical centre, organised in May in collaboration with the Military Academy;
• Bussinello Trophy and Winter Cup, international junior volleyball tournaments organised by the Anderlini School of Volleyball;
• Incontra lo Sport, a Saturday afternoon in Ferrari Park when everyone gets a chance to try out different sports;
• Salti in Piazza, a display of pole vaulting in a piazza in the historical city centre organised by AS La Fratellanza 1874;
• RUN 5.30, a racewalk held on one Friday in June at 5.30 in the morning in the historical city centre;
• Italian Marathon, the traditional marathon that links Maranello to Carpi on the second Sunday in October, with the finish line for the half-marathon in Modena;
• CorriModena, amateur foot race that sees a huge number of citizens participating;
The coordinating committee for the amateur races also coordinates and manages organisation of over 100 amateur races throughout the province, meaning that nearly every weekend in the year offers an opportunity for running and getting some exercise in company.
The city boasts some big sports venues such as the Alberto Braglia Municipal Stadium, with a capacity of about 21,000, home ground to Modena F.C., the new Rugby Stadium, inaugurated in 2007, and managed by Modena Rugby Club, home to the Serie A Championship, the G. Torri Baseball Stadium, managed by Modena Baseball Club, again home to the Serie A Championship, the track and field stadium, training ground for marathon champions of the calibre of Stefano Baldini and Gelindo Bordin.
But sports are practised and enjoyed throughout the entire province, with sporting facilities for all needs on the modenese Apennines.
The summer and winter tourist resorts in this area offer a great many options, often exclusive, not just tennis, football, track and field, volleyball and basketball, but also golf, horse riding, mountain biking, paragliding and trekking.
Some specific indoor facilities allow swimming, ice and roller skating, tennis and team sports such as volleyball, basketball, football, 5-a-side football, and handball, to be enjoyed all year round, at both amateur and top competition levels.
Snow sports however still offer the most specific and best qualified range of alternatives. There are a great many slopes for all the various skiing specialities, through to sledging, ski mountaineering and ice sports. Sportspeople of all ages and abilities enjoy the exciting challenge that the snowy mountains present – outdoor gyms for exercising mind and body.
Linked to snow sports, the winter seasons on the Modena Apennines offer packed programmes of fun for a complete, relaxing tourist package.