Can’t stop them: How Indian athletes are making it work
With the International Olympic Committee postponing the Tokyo Olympics to 2021 due to the coronavirus pandemic, athletes face an uphill task of keeping themselves fit while staying in self-isolation.
Not only the Tokyo Olympics, but the COVID-19 outbreak has also spelt a halt on all qualification tournaments that will now get pushed back months from their original schedule.
Most athletes, regardless of them booking their spot at the upcoming Olympics or not, would need to restart their training and chalk out a new calendar once the national lockdowns get lifted.
Hence, they have found ways to keep themselves busy at home in the meantime by workouts. Here’s a list of how Indian athletes are training at home.
India’s table tennis sensation Manika Batra posted a video of her doing stretches to keep her muscles warmed up, in efforts to keep herself in shape the next time she smashes a paddle in anger.
India’s bantamweight category boxing star Gaurav Bidhuri also released a video of himself shadowboxing in an open space, but in isolation. He had a hard-hitting motivational message to caption it as well.
Indian sports minister Kiren Rijiju has been a constant beacon of light for the Indian athletes in these tough times. And keeping up with the trend, the 48-year-old posted a video of his morning workout.
"I would like to request all of you to stay fit while you sit at home,” Kiren Rijiju said in the video. “This rope-skipping is a very easy exercise. Every day, everyone should do this for at least two minutes.”
India’s promising weightlifter Jeremy Lalrinnunga also took to Twitter asking people to stay home and devote some time to light workouts. Incidentally, he was rope-skipping as well.
Indian badminton doubles star Ashwini Ponnappa jumped on the bandwagon exhibiting a headstand on her bed.
Badminton ace Parupalli Kashyap, meanwhile, showed the flex in his back when he arced backwards as he performed stretching exercises in the comfort of his home.
Former Indian tennis ace Mahesh Bhupathi showed that the entire family can come together in tough times and remain fit. He posted a video on his Instagram page which showed members of his family skipping rope, stretching and generally sweating it out.
Ace Indian lightweight boxer Amit Panghal, who recently sealed his Tokyo Olympic berth at the Asian boxing Olympic qualifiers, couldn’t be the one to fall behind in workouts. With a mask on, he shared a short skipping session for his followers.
Shooter Manu Bhaker urged her followers to remain active during the 21-day lockdown period as well, suggesting yoga and rope-skipping as the way forward in her video message.
These Indian athletes doubled up as ambassadors and made sure that they used their social media platforms to convey the right messages to a nation of over a billion people; stay home and stay fit.