Last NameSportCountryYear Inducted

Sport: Water Polo
Country: Hungary
Born: February 2, 1909
Died: July 20, 2000

With only a few short breaks between 1947 and 1973,
Bela Rajki-Reich was national coach and technical director of Hungary’s swimming and water polo teams. He coached Hungary’s Olympic swim team in 1948, Olympic swim and water polo teams in 1952, and water polo in 1956 and 1972. His swimmers captured four gold medals in 1952, as well as an assortment of silver and bronze honors, and his water polo teams won gold medals in 1952 and
1956 and a silver medal in 1972.

While heading Hungarian water sports, Rajki-Reich also held leading positions in the international swimming and water polo community. He was president of the Ligue Europeenne de Natation (LEN) 1958 to 1962, vice president of LEN from 1954 to 1958, chairman of International Water Polo Board from 1960 to 1964, and vice president of Federation Internationale de Natation Amateur from
1960 to 1964.

Considered one of the world’s leading water polo authorities,
Rajki-Reich has authored numerous books and articles on water sports. He has also produced and directed films on swimming and water polo technique and is an accomplished photographer of water sports technique.

Among his published works, encompassing nearly 250 studies and articles, is The Techniques of Competitive Swimming, published in 1956 with a second printing in 1963. It is a seminal reference book used by swimmers and coaches for stroke technique and training measures. In 1958, he published Water Polo, a technical work dealing with all aspects of the sport. In 1978, Teaching to Swim, Learning to Swim, was published with a second printing in 1980,
which dealt with teaching techniques. All of Rajki’s books, studies, and articles are visually punctuated with extraordinary above-water and underwater photography shot by the author.


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