ASARE students train for Special Olympics2 min read
Manipal: The ASARE home for mentally challenged children has started training five students to compete in the Special Olympics that will be held in South Korea in 2013.
Kavitha, Archana M. J., Bharath C. R., Navin Kulal and Laxmi are practising bocce (a game similar to lawn bowling), hand-ball, swimming, running and figure skating. They will have to go through a series of training camps at the state level and then attend national level games before they qualify for the international level.
The five have already been selected to train for handball at the National Coaching Camp (NCC) and the ACTC Mumbai coaching camp at state level. The first coaching session was from November 7 to 13 in Mumbai last year. This year, they were called again to train in Pondicherry from January 28 to February 1. The selection results of training camp will be out after a month and the games shall be held at a national level sometime in April this year. If they impress at the national level, they will be selected for the national team to represent India at the international level in the Special Olympics. The selection is based on their skill tests, interaction and performance.
The students are supervised by their coach, fondly known as ‘Rohini ma’am’. She told TMJ, “The trainees had a scheduled practise timetable to follow. It was not only game practice, but also taught them discipline in other basic things too.” She added that Archana, Kavitha and Bharath are the strong contenders for now, but if they get more coaching sessions, the other two will be capable of getting selected for the national games as well.
Kulal has already been selected to participate in bocce at a national level event, the MYAS scheme for Disabled National meet in Chennai on February 16. Bocce is sport created for special children generally to test their sensing abilities. The 36 year old sports enthusiast said, “Bocce makes me active and I have made a lot of new friends. I am always nervous at the start, but I gain confidence once I hear cheers from the crowd.”
Sub-edited by: Vrinda Manocha