The ingenuity of India’s sports facilities

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Changing one’s perspective is a tough yet satisfying experience. I personally find it a huge ‘Aha’ when I am able to see the same thing very differently, with just a touch of humour and acceptance. Ready to take a light walk down the humour lane with me to get a new perspective?

Contrary to common perception, India has one of the best training facilities for sports. Hard to believe? This is based on the sneak preview of a high-profile confidential research report, commissioned by high-level sports governance authorities, that we managed to get for the lucky readers of the Art of Livings blog. Read on please!

Exercise 1: Muscle Bustle


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Applicable for: any sport that requires muscle toning and endurance

Training can be done at: any city/town that has a crowded public transport system – bus, local trains

Description: This requires the athlete to travel for 1 to 2 hours on a very crowded form of public transport, say a bus.

  • Beginner level: Catching the bus on a normal day in peak hours
  • Intermediate level: Carrying shopping bags weighing anywhere between 8 and 15 kilograms when doing this exercise
  • Expert level: In addition to carrying weight, there will be special interventions introduced in the journey like sudden and sharp braking by the bus driver, coughing and sneezing co-passengers whose emissions must be avoided, crater-sized potholes on the road etc

Benefits: This helps build physical and mental endurance abilities. Athletes who have completed the Expert level claim that they have also reported increased immunity to bacteria and viruses.

The good news about this exercise is that it can be replicated in just about any place that provides a road, a bus, a reasonably adrenalin-pumped driver and volunteers to play co-passengers.

Exercise 2: Street Reflex


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Applicable for: many sports including football, hockey, badminton, tennis.

Training can be done at: any busy street in India

Description: This is about crossing a busy road at peak time with different skill levels

  • Beginner level: Crossing at a red light when the ‘walk’ signal is on
  • Intermediate level: Using a zebra crossing where there is no signal
  • Expert level: Crossing a busy road at any point chosen at random. There could be additional hurdles like puddles, open drains, jostling pedestrians added based on the ability of the individual

Benefits: This helps builds ability to sense the future moves of the opponent, train the mind and body to respond quickly to sudden events like vehicles running through the red light and handle many sensory distractions like cows, blaring horns without losing focus of the objective of crossing the road.

There are rumours about ‘India-street simulators’ being specially designed in other sporting nations.

On a lighter note, gives a whole new dimension to the question:  ‘why did the athlete cross the road?’

This report seems to be a fascinating study of how the Indian ecosystem, if used intelligently, could potentially breed more medal winners. This could even lead to a new hypothesis about India’s improved showing this Olympics. We would have liked to give you more details about this confidential report, but this is as much as we could manage at this point.. so stay tuned to this space!

On a more realistic note, it is truly amazing how changing a perspective can change one’s experience of a situation!

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