Coronavirus Outbreak: Pullela Gopichand praises SAI initiative of providing online workshops for athletes during lockdown

The SAI sessions on opening day was attended by athletes and para-athletes from all sport, including Olympic probables shooters Divyash Panwar, Apurvi Chandela, Abhishek Verma, Anish Bhanwala, boxers Lovlina Borgohain and Nikhat Zarin

Press Trust of India March 28, 2020 16:56:33 IST
Coronavirus Outbreak: Pullela Gopichand praises SAI initiative of providing online workshops for athletes during lockdown

Athletes' frustration at having to remain in the confines of their homes amid COVID-19 lockdown is palpable and SAI's various training modules of online workshops earned praise from none other than Pullela Gopichand for keeping them stimulated in trying circumstances.

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File image of Pullela Gopichand. AP

The country is currently in the midst of a 21-day lockdown to fight COVID-19 pandemic that has claimed close to 25,000 lives globally and the number of positive cases is steadily increasing in our country.

The sessions on opening day was attended by athletes and para-athletes from all sport, including Olympic probables shooters Divyash Panwar, Apurvi Chandela, Abhishek Verma, Anish Bhanwala, boxers Lovlina Borgohain and Nikhat Zarin along with swimmer Srihari Nataraj.

Praising the initiative, national badminton coach Gopichand said: "In these testing times with the coronavirus , it is important to keep oneself physically and mentally active and find ways to use our time better. These online sessions will certainly help in achieving that."

"Sport is not only about being competitive, challenges will be thrown up and it is how we face them with the best of our ability and keep moving forward," the chief national coach said.

The first session of the 24-series workshop started on Friday with physiotherapist Dr Nikhil Latey speaking about how to train at home during the time of Corona, getting over 8K views.

This was followed by a session on nutritional requirements during Corona by Ryan Fernando, which had more than 15K viewership from athletes, coaches and fitness enthusiasts.

Gopichand and former Indian hockey captain Viren Rasquinha were among many others.

Speaking about the sessions, Olympian wrestler Pooja Dhanda said:"The sessions are very informative. It helped me think differently about training while at home and helped me focus on the key areas. I look forward to the other sessions as well."

Latey on his part said: "For a lot of us, the moment the lockdown is lifted, we can get back to doing what we do, but it's not same for athletes.

"They are unsure if they will be at the same level as they used to be in the absence of regular training and competition."

"This is why we need to come forward and help our athletes and make them utilise their time and these online sessions initiated by SAI are so useful. With the nationwide reach that SAI has, it will definitely have a positive impact.

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