Calmat, who was born under the name Calmanovich, began at the age of nine with the figure skating. He was trained, as well as its largest national competitor Alain Giletti, by Jacqueline Vaude Crane in Boulogne -Billancourt.
At the French Championships Calmat Alain Giletti 1958 could only leave behind. From 1954 to 1965 he participated in all European Championships and never placed worse than fifth place. Six times he reached the podium, where he twice Vice - European Champion and 1962 three-time European champions until 1964, even before Karol Divin and twice before Manfred Schnelldorfer. Calmat participated in eleven World Championships. 1960 and 1962 he finished third in 1963 and 1964 Vice World Champion, once behind Donald McPherson and once behind Manfred Schnelldorfer.1965 Calmat finally became world champion, before the Americans Scott Allen. Calmat took part in the 1956 Olympic Games, in 1960 and 1964. In 1964, he was the favorite in the tournament, but was defeated Manfred Schnelldorfer and won the silver medal. At 24, he joined in 1965 from active competition. At the 1968 Olympic Games in Grenoble he lit the Olympic Flame.
After his career as an athlete Calmat studied medicine and became a surgeon. Later he went into politics. The socialist Calmat was under Laurent Fabius 1984-1986 Minister of Sport in France. In this role, he served in 1985 as a guest driver in the 24 Hours of Le Mans. From 1986 to 1993 he was a deputy of the National Assembly for the department of Cher and 1997 to 2002 for the department of Seine- Saint- Denis. Since 1995 he has been Mayor of Livry -Gargan. Calmat has four children.