Srinagar: Sports enthusiast Adeela and Fatima had mostly remained confined to their homes ever since schools were shut following Covid lockdown last year.
Come June, both teenagers have once again started pursuing their passion. Thanks to Water Sports Center, the girls could swim and join kayaking classes at Nehru Park which has come across as a big relief for kids.
Besides the regular kayaking and canoeing coaching lessons, the Water Sports Centre is keeping the kids busy with other sports activities like swimming, yoga, and cycling in the mornings.
“We would take regular part in sports activities at schools before but educational institutions have mostly remained shut for nearly three years now. On top of that, Indoor Sports Stadium too is not open for sports. Other indoor sports activities too are not allowed. We were feeling low due to the second Covid lockdown but thankfully, we came to know about these water sports activities after the easing of lockdown. Now, I and my friends come here every day in the mornings. Others too should give watersports a try. It is a great stress buster in the present circumstances,” said Adeela.
National kayaking and canoeing coach Bilquis Mir said they had resumed water sports after the easing of lockdown and were also keeping kids engaged with other sports activities too.
“We start at 5 am early in the morning so that kids can attend online classes later. We provide them a healthy atmosphere that is much needed these days. There is a lot of stress these days and activities like swimming, canoeing, cycling, etc provide them a healthy atmosphere. Sports activities also keep kids away from drugs and other bad habits,” said Mir, who also heads the Water Sports Center.
She said 50 students were presently being trained in kayaking and 20 others were learning swimming. “Around 30 kids come to learn swimming and 50 others including 20 girls are doing kayaking. They all are beginners and advanced level players who come to train in the evenings. We had hard training sessions before and today we had a yoga session for recovery. We also go cycling sometimes and I request parents to introduce their kids to sports. We are following all Covid related SOPs during our outdoor activities,” she said.