“Never rush a Russian” has always been quoted and with good reason!
Russians are rather quiet, gentle cats who like to be approached slowly rather than pounced on and appreciate a kind word first. Gently turn the cat so that it comes out rear first and then stand it on the table holding it firmly, but gently and calmly.
Most dislike being turned on their backs. Some, but not all, like shoulders and with these cats it can be easier to assess bite etc when they are cuddled into the steward’s shoulder.
Never stroke them over the top of their heads as they will then ‘obligingly’ drop their ears and please don’t stretch them in mid-air as they find this uncomfortable. Don’t “smooth” the coat down – It’s supposed to stand away from the body!