Lost Indian Sports You Should Know About

Sports have been an integral element of every culture since time unknown. Disinterested from building a settled civilization, people in India felt the need to set aside leisure time for playing sports. Traces of Ancient Indian games showcase that they were innovative, fun and required complete involvement.

In the Indus Valley civilization, people contested with weapons like the toran (javelin), bow and arrow, and the chakra(discus). Besides these outdoor games, we always had a craze for the indoor, and how to we know this? Historians have found traces of primitive board games etched on the walls of caves and temples and discovered dices and counters at sites like Harappa. Ancient Indian texts also incorporate references to different sports.

Over the years, we have lost touch with our majestic sporting culture, and even though we are heading towards a brighter future for sports, some have been lost over the ages. Here are some of the prominent games that left an impression on our history:

Night Polo in the Mughal period

The history of polo in India can be traced to Manipuri villages, where the tribals enjoyed a game called pulu. Although Zahir ud-din Babur was the first Mughal Emperor to establish Chaugan, night polo was an invention of Jalal ud-din Akbar, who created a set of rules and introduced an illuminating ball for late-night matches. The sport nearly died with the end of the Mughal dominion.

Kalaripayattu

Kalaripayattu, also known as Kalari, is an ancient form of martial arts that holds its root in Kerala. The word Kalari appears in various Hindu texts to describe a battlefield and combat arena. Owing to its long-standing history, it has a distinguished place for martial artists. Traditionally, this game includes two forms: the northern style or Vadakkan Kalari, and the southern style or Thekkan Kalari. Over time, a new pattern has also gained recognition, called the primary method or Madhya Kalari, which aims at combing the elements of both styles.

Kushti

Kushti, also called Pehalwani, refers to wrestling contested in Ancient India. It developed during the Mughal era by combining the techniques of Persian koshti pahlevani and native Indian Malla-yuddha. The origin of this sport dates back to the 5th century BC, where it was popularly known as Malla-yuddha, meaning combat wrestling.

Atya Patya

Atya Patya often described as the “game of feints,” is played between two teams, with nine members on either side. It is a popular sport in India, especially Maharashtra. It gained national importance after the formation of the ‘Atya Patya Federation of India’ in 1982. The Government of India listed the federation amongst its list of recognized organizations for the year 2013.

Yubi Lakpi

Yubi Lapki, which translates to coconut snatching, is an individual contact sport that requires coconut. It is an ancient Indian game that originated in Manipur. It is a traditional football game that holds notable similarities to the tournament of rugby, but the two are not related.

Before each game, players rub their bodies with oil to make it slippery for the fame, and a ball soaked in oil is placed before the king. To score a goal, the player has to approach the goal post and cross the line from the front with his oiled coconut.

Kambala

Kambala is an annual buffalo race held in Karnataka, during the Kambala season that begins from November and lasts till March. It started as a traditional sport to entertain the rural public by whiplashing buffalos on a slushy paddy field. The buffalos are adorned with colorful jewels and elegant headpieces of brass and silver.

Jallikattu

Jallikattu is a folkloric bull-chasing sport practiced in Tamil Nadu, organized during the harvest season of Pongal. It is almost two millennia old. In the ancient period, it was popularly known as Yeru Thazhuvuthal. The participants hold on to the hump of the bull for a particular time and grab their horns to achieve authority.

Insuknawr

Insuknawr is a Rod Pushing Sport of indigenous Mizoram. The Mizo community developed multiple games to break their tiresome routine of shifting cultivation; this was one among them. This game requires two players, who hold the rod under their arms while trying to push their opponent out of the ring.

Dhopkhel

Dhopkhel was organized in the state of Assam during its annual festival, Rangoli Bihu. This sport requires two teams, where Dhop, a ball, is tossed by the player in a fashion that it lands in the opponents’ court. It is similar to modern-day Throw ball, and at times there are parallels drawn with Kabbadi.

Pachisi

Pachisi, which translates to twenty-five, is a cross and circle game that originated in Medieval India. It requires a board that resembles a symmetrical cross. The player’s pieces move around the board following the throw of the six or seven cowrie shells, with the number of shells resting with gap upwards designating the number of spaces to move.

Chaupad

Chaupad or chausar has existed in India for most of the past two millennia. This game features a cross-shape board, where four players contest in two teams, and each player owns four pieces. It shares significant similarities with pachisi and modern-day ludo.

Chaturanga

Chaturanga referred to as the predecessor of modern-day chess, is a strategy game that originated in India during the 4th century BC. The exact rules of the game are unknown, but historians believe that it was similar to its predecessor, Shatranj. It was played on an 8×8 uncheckered box, with pieces similar to chess.

Achugwi Phan Sohlaimung

It is a wrestling tournament held between two men to test their strength in the state of Tripura. It is also known as Thwngmung in the Tripuri language(Kokborok). But, in recent years, people are abandoning such sports as they are exposed to modern sporting culture.

Inbuan

Inbuan is another form of wrestling that originated in Mizoram during the early 1700s. It involves strict rules that prohibit kicking, stepping out of the circle, or even bending knees.

Over the years, modern culture has taken over our age-old tradition, not just in terms of sports, but also in our lifestyle. Let’s take a step back and rejuvenate these games that have entertained our ancestors for centuries together.

Smart Work, not Hard Work – 12 Ways to Study Better

Every sportsperson faces difficulty in balancing their sports training and academic endeavors. Every student has the same number of hours in a day, but how they use it matters. They can either spend hours together, attempting to comprehend the syllabus or adapt new study methods that can assist them in reducing the hard work, and focus our energy on developing other skills.

Every person has a different way of retaining information; what helped one might not serve another, and it’s crucial to develop your way to learn. Computing the most efficient way to study is a never-ending process; one can always discover new techniques for improving our approach towards learning.

So here are a couple of tips that can help you study better.

1. What is ‘Your’ learning style?

Like stated earlier, everyone has a different way of grasping information, and it can be divided broadly into four categories:

● Visual learners: they learn more efficiently by seeing, it can be through diagrams, color-codes, videos, and patterns.
● Auditory learners – they learn best by listening. Now this includes speeches, music, rhyme, and additional sounds.
● Reading/writing learners: they learn by reading and writing relevant information down.
● Kinesthetic learner: they enjoy learning by actually doing it, like role-playing, building blocks, drawing, and making flashcards. For them, it is mandatory to put abstract data into practice.

Discover and implement your learning style in daily practice. If you’re a visual learner, then watch videos online, if you’re an auditory learner, listen to classes, songs, and other forms of sounds.

2. Silence isn’t always the key

In contrary to popular opinion, silence doesn’t work for everyone, so figure out which noise environment works well for you. Listening to music enhances concentration for some, while for others, it might be a disturbance. The point is, silence can be as distracting as a background buzz, so choose a place that suits you the best.

3. Change your scenery

Psychologists suggest that a change in scenery can intensify your concentration and retention levels, and it can also help your brain build various associations with particular study material. Now, this change in scenery can range from a switch in the room, to advancing a step ahead and picking an outdoor location.

4. Break the digital, print is the way to go!

You are more likely to forget what you read on your laptop or phone than what you learn from a book. Moreover, a study has claimed that students who take notes on their laptops tend to know less efficiently in contrast to the ones who write it by hand. Now, this is not just because of the online distraction but also because, when you register, your mind processes the information better. So, lose the screen, take notes manually, and get those online articles printed!

5. Studying is not just read

Reading is not the same as studying, since it does not include the active engagement of the participant. Reading and re-reading will not help you remember; it is necessary to make sense of the text and actively involve in the process. Here the question is, how do we formulate a method to study? This is possible by generating a concept map, making and understanding diagrams, develop examples that you are familiar with, try connecting concepts with real-life situations.

6. Stick to a schedule

Making a schedule can help you concentrate and urge you to study regularly. Sit down and make a list of your daily goals, it will motivate you to finish your work on time, and you won’t miss out on assignments.

7. Is multitasking a good idea?

Multitasking is a myth. Researches suggest that multitasking reduces your efficiency and leads to a negative impact on your work. You might think you’re doing a great job at it, but the truth is you’re developing harmful study habits that will affect you in the long run. Always stick to one work at a time and give it your 100%.

8. Getting into the zone

Some people need a medium to get into the ‘study zone.’ It can be music, art, or any other form of activity that calms your mind down and increases your concentration level. Find what works for you and implement it whenever you find it difficult to focus.

9. Take regular breaks

The average concentration span of most people is about 50 minutes in a go, but that’s just an average; your attention span might be as less as 20 minutes or more than an hour, identify yours and take breaks accordingly. Short sessions can help retain more information accurately than stuffing yourself with everything at once.

10. Snooze away the alarm

Pulling off all-nighters is the new trend, but is it a healthy one? Sleep is as vital as food for a human body, so never underestimate the power of a sound slumber. Sleep at least 8 hours to be more alert and focused while working. It will help you convert short-term memory to long-term, and you will learn better.

11. Break the monotone: study multiple subjects

Sticking to one subject and deep-diving into it is not an excellent idea, you might feel burned-out, and lose enthusiasm for that matter. Always juggle between topics rather than zeroing to one.

12. Become the teacher

The job of a teacher is to learn the subject matter and further explain it to the students, and when one does that they gain a clear understanding of the topic in hand. Besides that, they will also reach out to learn new techniques for recalling when expected to teach.

The aim is to study smart, not to study hard! Efficient learning is a skill that will benefit you for life. We understand the pressure students face while studying and focusing on other fields at once, so follow these tips for a better learning experience, without compromising on your dreams.

Nutrition and Healthy Lifestyle for a Sportsperson

The ongoing Covid-19 pandemic has drastically changed the way we look at our fitness and the means of achieving our desired results. While working out has always been a priority, the importance of a healthy lifestyle and nutritious diet can not be neglected. Although there is no standard diet that can be beneficial to one and all, we can always improve on our existing food habits and lifestyle.

What is Sports Nutrition?

Sports nutrition is nothing but the right form of intake that will optimize the athletic performance of a person. This concept emerged in the early 1940s among bodybuilders as a way for them to gain the right kind of nutrients in the handiest form possible. Slowly, it gained recognition among people from all walks of life as a way to fuse an invigorating diet into their lives. However, the kind of nutrients that will benefit a person depends on their need, profession, and goals. For example, a professional tennis player usually needs plenty of carbohydrates for refueling; on the other hand, a professional bodybuilder needs a balance of proteins, carbohydrates, and fats in their diet. The right kind of nutrients can improve performance, keep athletes hydrated for long, and raise their recovery rate.

Nutrition and a Healthy Lifestyle

Consuming the right nutrients is the first step to a healthy lifestyle. Not only sports enthusiasts, but everyone needs a diet plan that can help them push their limits for good. A fulfilling diet clubbed with physical activity can help in reducing the chances of chronic disease, achieving a healthy body, and leading an active life. As far as athletes are concerned, making the right food choices becomes all the more necessary because they need more calories compared to an average adult.

Not only is the type of nutrients a significant factor, but the number of times we eat in a day also matters. Now, this depends upon the calories we burn, the kind of workout we follow, and the sport we play. For a sports person, the meals consumed before and after a session are the most important meals of the day. Ideally, athletes should eat two hours before their workout.

Impact of a Well-Planned Diet on an Athlete’s Health

A nourishing diet can enhance an athlete’s performance, make them more efficient, and increase their recovery rate during a match rapidly. The intake they follow should promote muscle growth and repair.

An inadequate diet can hamper their performance and lead to an increased recovery rate. It can also lead to hormone suppression because sports generate a lot of stress hormones, and encourage your body to release energy stores.

What Does a Fulfilling Meal Include?

Requirements of every person vary based on their body type, physical activities, and calories burned in a day. The general rule is to replace the number of calories burned and provide sufficient fuel for the body to function. On an average basis, a person needs 1,500 – 2,000 calories in a day, but athletes should consume 500 to 1,000 additional calories, attributing to their demanding profession.

A balanced diet should include all the essential nutrients that are required for everyday activities. These nutrients are:

Carbohydrates – These are considered to be the most significant source of calories in your meal. There are mainly two types of carbs; simple and starchy/complex sugars. Milk products, fruits, and vegetables are a good source of simple sugars. These can be used to provide instant energy to the body since they are easier to break down. Complex sugars can be found in grains like rice, bread, pasta, and white flour. But processed, refined grains like white flour are not recommended as they remove fiber and nutrients.

Fats – Fats are an essential part of any meal. They are required to absorb nutrients and act as a critical fuel for your body. But excessive fat consumption can be harmful as the body needs to work harder to burn fats compared to carbs, and it tends to make you slow. There are mainly two types of fats: Saturated and Unsaturated fats. Animal products and processed food is a rich source of saturated fats, whereas olives, nuts, and avocados provide unsaturated fats. Nutritionists advise the consumption of unsaturated fats, as they are heart-healthy.

Proteins – Proteins are essential for cell repair and building of tissues. It is also required to create enzymes, hormones, and other chemicals in the body. Ideally, they should make up for 10-15% of your daily calorie consumption. Meat, fish, eggs, pulses, nuts, seeds, and soy products are a rich source for proteins.
Dangers of following a rigid diet plan

Strict diet plans can have adverse effects on athletes’ bodies. Since they need a diet rich in all forms of nutrients, a restrictive diet can damage their health. A rigid diet plan can also lead to eating disorders, produce severe stress on our bodies, and become an obsession for many. In the chase to eat healthily, we might end up avoiding the nutritious food needed for our growth.

Instead of following a diet plan, one can always set a balance between calorie intake and physical activity for the desired outcome. It is a much healthier and safe practice since your body will receive all the nutrients it demands.

Staying healthy is the goal, not meeting the societal standards! Following a diet that works for you and benefits you the most is the final objective. Always listen to your body; it will show you the right path.

At Sports School, we understand the importance of healthy eating habits and a good lifestyle for a sportsperson to perform at their best. We have partnered with nutrition experts who regularly monitor and provide diet plans for our students as per their activity level to ensure that they consume the right amount of nutrients and fluids for all-round nourishment and scale up their performance.