No respite in sports activities this Ramadan in Kashmir
Despite the fasting month of Ramadan, sports activities are on the rise in Kashmir. Athletes devise ways to train and achieve peak performance during the holy month, as fasting from sunrise to sunset lasts about 15 hours a day.
Abdul Majid Hurray of Goshbugh Pattan, a cricket tournament organizer, said that they are currently organizing the 5th Ali Memorial Casco Ball T10 Cricket Tournament, especially in the month of Ramadan, in which around 65 teams participate.
“There is no decline in sports activities even during Ramadan. Even though they remain fast, the sportsmen continue to play with vigor and enthusiasm,” he said.
Cricketer Adil Kachru, 23, of Kanipora Shopian, in a chat with Rising Kashmir, said he had been playing cricket for 11 years on an alternate basis during the fast. “We play matches every other day during the fasting month of Ramadan,” he said.
Kachru added that the first few days things seemed difficult “but little by little you are getting used to the new regime. There seems to be a divine push during fasting that helps overcome challenges,” he said.
When it comes to changing schedules or managing food during the month of Ramadan, Kachru said that one should take plenty of dates and eggs to meet the body’s needs.
“We eat enough dates and eggs at Iftari time because we cannot consume food during daytime fasting. So the focus remains on a high-protein diet,” did he declare.
Talking about his daily sporting involvement with different teams this season, he said he has been playing for many clubs and cricket teams in the valley.
Ali Sports Academy coach and Padma Shri award winner, Faisal Ali said during Ramadan that they organize events after sports activities. They organize Quran recitation (Qirat contest), Islamic quizzes and Naat contests during the month of Ramadan.
“We organize Iftar parties for the winners and the winners organize Iftari with orphans,” he said.
“In addition, we run community career counseling sessions for children, especially for the poor, although the younger ones also do drills and workouts,” he said.
Jammu and Kashmir Mountain Bike Association Chairman Riyaz Wani said that usually during Ramadan, training sessions for outdoor sports activities have to be postponed or some light exercises are done during of this holy month.
“Athletes do light workouts, warm-ups, strength exercises either one hour before breaking the fast (Iftar) or one hour after Iftar,” he said, adding that he trains himself. -even for an hour after sunset meals.
Arifa Bilal, a record-breaking weightlifter and trainer, said that during the month of Ramadan, they usually do strength exercises and avoid cardio exercises as it causes more sweating, which eventually leads to thirst.
“We take protein and other necessary diet for Sehri and Iftar, although food intake is diminished due to Ramadan fasting,” she said.
Famous Urdu commentator from Kashmir Valley, Nasir Dar said: “We are addicted to commentaries. But, during the month of fasting, it is a daunting task to comment.
“But when you have a passion for the game, it makes it easier,” he said.
Nasir said the love of the game and the excitement on the pitch lifts spirits. “When the players on the pitch can give their 100%, why not me? This is what comes to mind when I see sportsmen playing hard and with commitment even during this month of fasting,” he added.