Social distancing: A new normal for weightlifters at National camp

National weightlifting coach Vijay Sharma says the training pattern of the athletes has been altered keeping in mind the social distancing norms.

Weightlifting camp

Three lifters used to train on a platform earlier, but ensuring social distancing norms are in place, only one lifter is allowed per platform at the national camp in NIS Patiala.   -  Special Arrangement

The National campers at NIS Patiala have gotten used to the new normal as they are following the guidelines issued by the Sports Authority of India (SAI) while doing their daily training.

National weightlifting coach Vijay Sharma said the training pattern was altered keeping in mind the social distancing norms.

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“Earlier three lifters used to train on one platform. That used to help in loading (of weights) and providing support to fellow lifters. Now one lifter is using one platform. Since light training is going on without the heavy load, it is being managed easily,” Sharma told Sportstar.

“We are doing weight training only once a day. A lifter must recover the muscle mass he/she lost (due to the lack of proper training during the lockdown) so that his/her body gets prepared for intense training. Since there is no competition in sight, we need not hurry,” he added.

Sharma said the SAI made proper arrangements to ensure safety of the athletes. “A wash basin has been put up and there is a new place to keep shoes. Sanitiser is in place. The system is good here.”'

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On other norms followed by the athletes, Sharma said, “They wear the mask while moving from hostel to the gym. They take off their shoes and keep them at the designated place and wash their hands before coming into the gym. Then they take off the masks before doing training.

“You cannot do weightlifting while wearing masks. If a lifter wears a mask, then he will go down after the very first lift. You need a lot of oxygen during the training and a mask prevents that. If you are maintaining good distance, then there is no need to wear a mask,” he said.

Sharma also welcomed the Indian Weightlifting Federation’s initiative to conduct a mental training session for the lifters.

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