Kolkata, April 17 (IANS) Where there is a will there is a way. It is true both for the world, fighting the COVID-19 pandemic at present, and also for athletes who are braving an unprecedented period of lull to keep themselves motivated for the road ahead.
Boxers Sonia Lather and Kavinder Bisht, both striving for an Olympic berth, are prime examples. With no sparring partner, camps where coaches could guide them and gyms to keep themselves fit; they have devised ways using household items and readily available goods to help them in their daily training.
“I train twice a day. Training schedule has been provided by our federation and chief coach. We are also monitored on a regular basis. We are training regularly and it’s not like our camp has stopped in a way,” Kavinder told IANS from Dehrahun.
“I am climbing stairs for warmups. I don’t have a lot of space so I train on the terrace. I do skipping, shadow boxing and body weight exercises. I am using rods which are found lying to do weight training. There are heavy items too at home which help,” added the two-time World Championships quarter-finalist.
A total of nine boxers including MC Mary Kom, Amit Panghal, Vikas Krishan, Manish Kaushik, and Lovlina Borgohain have made the cut for Tokyo Games, which has been postponed to 2021 due to the virus outrbreak.
Among the big names still to seal their places are Asian silver-winner Kavinder (57kg) and former world silver-winner Sonia (57kg).
The trials were slated to take place on March 26-27 for the remaining four categories (men’s 57kg, 81kg, 91kg and women’s 57kg) but could not take place due to the virus threat.
The World Qualifiers was from May 14-23 in Paris for the rest of the category.
“It does get difficult to train all alone without a sparring partner. But I am not losing motivation,” said Kavinder, 25, who went up from 56kg to 57kg after the latter division was made an Olympic weight category.
Sonia added that she is using home items too for her training and also heavy bamboo sticks and bricks to set up a mini gym.
“I use home stuff which are there for weight training. Also I use bamboo sticks and bricks and sort of set up a mini gym at home. I also have used poles like with iron sticks at home for chin ups. I have plates also and I use them with bamboo sticks for weight training.”
Sonia said it is an advantage that Olympics has been postponed as it gives time to prepare better and rectify mistakes.
“I am upbeat. At this time, you cannot be negative. I am training as hard as I can. I hope situation gets better soon and I will be ready for the trials,” added the 28-year old, who stays in Hisar.
Upcoming boxer Gaurav Chauhan (91kg) further said he is using tyres at his home in Shimla to exercise and also has a boxing pillow which keeps him going.
“I am also using pipes, boxes, rods for exercises. I have spare tyres which are coming to use now. These are times where you need to innovate and keep yourself motivated.”