Manipal wakes up to a marathon
Manipal: With the motive of spreading awareness about strokes, the first ever Manipal University backed marathon was organised here on Sunday, March 5.
The brainchild of Dr. Girish Menon, a neurosurgeon at Kasturba Medical College (KMC), Manipal Marathon comprised of the 21.1 km half-marathon, 10 km run, and fun races of 5km and 3 km. The 3km segment included a separate run for children, while the 10km, 5km and 3km segments included different races for senior citizens, corporates and the open category. The half-marathon saw all eligible age groups, greater than 18 years of age, compete in a single run. For each category, results were compiled separately for men and women.
More than 6000 students, faculty, school children and the general public participated in the marathon. “This is my first half-marathon, the route was really challenging but it was a beautiful run,” said Kulraj Singh Kohli, a 2nd year student of the Manipal Institute of Technology (MIT) who participated in the half-marathon. The marathon also attracted participation from institutions outside of Manipal. Hanumantha GK, a second year BCom student from St. Mary’s College in Udupi, who took part in his first half-marathon, expressed his satisfaction with the way the marathon was organised.
The event kicked off with warm up exercises which included a Zumba session. After the warm up exercises, the half-marathon was flagged off, followed by the 10 km run, both of which had their starting points at KMC Greens. The various categories of the 5km and the 3 km runs had their starting points outside the KMC Food Court.
Children from various schools in and around Manipal turned out in numbers to participate in the 5 km and 3 km races. There was also active participation from senior citizens. “I have been running for the last 15 years and have participated in various marathons, this half-marathon was really challenging, especially the steep incline,” mentioned Dr. T Ranganathan, an elderly doctor practising in Surathkal.
The runners in the half-marathon weaved their way through End Point Road, Syndicate Circle, Perampalli, and Sundari Gate, Karamballi and along the Kalsanka-Ambagilu Road, from where the runners headed back on the same path to KMC Greens. The 10 km run was routed on the same path of the half-marathon with runners turning back towards KMC Greens at Sundari Gate. The 5 km and the 3 km races had its route predominantly around the Manipal Lake.
After the event, runners received a session of physiotherapy from volunteers of the School of Allied Health Sciences (SOAHS). This was followed by the participants visiting Volunteer Services Organisation’s (VSO) Carnival de Manipal and various stalls put up by KMC and the Manipal College of Dental Sciences (MCODS), Manipal College of Pharmaceutical Sciences (MCOPS), and Manipal College of Nursing (MCON) who focused on creating awareness on various lifestyle-related diseases.
Encouraged by the response to the first Manipal Marathon, the organisers are planning to make it an annual affair. The event was organised by the combined efforts of Protons Running (based out of Bengaluru) and Udupi District Amateur Athletics Association (UDAAA), with the support volunteers from The Manipal Runners Club and the Volunteer Services Organisation (VSO). “I’m really very impressed with the response we have got. I’m also impressed by the work that the VSO volunteers have done. This will be a regular annual event, with better organisation in the coming years,” stated Dr. HS Ballal, the Pro-Chancellor of Manipal University.
Featured Photograph: Delvin Varghese
With inputs from Sumit Singh
Edited by Anirban Paul