Tag Archives: Sport

And the race begins…

It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them……”,Ernest Hemingway

The mentioned quote of Ernest Hemingway forces us to compare a cyclist with a person driving a car. Indeed, the one who travels by cycle has a greater reach towards all the corners of a city than to the latter one. An enthusiast cyclist never stops himself from treading into any course whether plain, sloppy or mountainous.

Cycling and swimming are said to be something once learnt, learnt forever. And of course, many health benefits are also associated with them. However, lets talk about how cycling helps us in growing up healthier. It’s a kind of exercise that involves the whole body. Thus, strengthens our body in a holistic manner:

  • Keeps away from heart diseases

  • Reduces  diabetes

  • Keeps the blood pressure in control

  • Strengthens body muscles, especially, leg muscles

  • You can enjoy your sweetmeats even while riding since it burns calories efficiently

However, people like to enjoy it more as a sport than as an exercise. And, it was the spirit of one’s competitiveness that brought cycling into Olympics in 1896. There are many different cycling categories in which cycle racing takes place. But before introducing these categories to you let me make it very clear that as a sport, this sweet and simple cycling is full of technicalities like track’s width, cyclist’s timing, kind of bikes, bla..bla..bla…Well, I really don’t understand these technicalities, just wanna enjoy cycling the way it is. So, let’s begin the race without dwelling much into these technicalities…

  1. Road bicycle racing – In this category, the competitive riders need to start simultaneously in order to catch up with each other’s speed. The form requires an ability to ride safely in a herd of many riders. The sport is popularly played in France, Belgium, Italy and Spain.

Catch up the speed
Catch up the speed!
  1. Individual time trialling – For the game it is said, “It doesn’t matter what time anyone else got- first and foremost, you are racing against yourself.” It’s all about racing against a competitor called “clock”. In the race, you are left with a bicycle, a thumping heart and, of course, with the tick-tack of a  clock. People from England and Wales are more devoted towards this particular race.

A race against time
A race against the time!
  1. Cyclocross racing – Well, this is the race where your cycle gets a fair chance to ride on you. Baffled! But I actually mean it. As the name suggests, ‘cyclo’ which means something to do with cycles and ‘cross’ means to cross an obstacle. In the race, the riders are provided with a course full of obstacles like steep hills, wooden trails and grass. To pass these obstacles, the cyclists need to shoulder their cycles and run. Therefore, if you are planning to participate in any such race, make sure you have a bike quite light in weight. France, Belgium and Netherlands are the place where this particular race is mostly organized.

Run shouldering it
Run shouldering it!
  1. Track cycling – It’s all about one’s speed, technique, balance and tactics since you need to ride on an oval wooden track with many riders pursuing you. Countries like Belgium, France, Germany and UK are now its main centers.

Careful! It's an oval track.
Careful! It’s an oval track.
  1. Bicycle motocross (BMX) – Here lies another obstacle full track for you, where you need to cross them all without losing your grip from your bike. If the pilled up dirt paves your way for small jumps, we have wooden ramps too where you can enjoy high jumps.

Enjoy jumping
Enjoy jumping!
  1. Mountain bike trials – Another race with too many obstacles but here lies the test of your quickness, alertness, smartness and patience. This one is different from other races since in it you can’t set your foot on ground while crossing the obstacles.

Can't set your foot on ground
Can’t set your foot on ground.
  1. Cycle speedways – The race takes place on small oval tracks with no gears and tracks to operate on. Your ‘pedal power’ works as the required fuel. Countries like England, Scotland, Wales, Poland and Australia are some nations that take special interest in this race.

"Pedal power"
“Pedal power”
  1. Mountain bike racing – As the name suggests, you are not going to have smooth and regular tracks but need to race in the lap of nature. In a single race,  you will have the experience of different tracks. Somewhere you will have slopes, then descents and many such rough natural tracks. Thus, you need to be very good with paddling on any kind of track. Australia, Canada, France are the nations that produces such daring cyclists.

Enjoy different tracks!
Enjoy different tracks!

Since we are talking about cycle racing let me break the news to you that  the tracks have been set for the UCI Track World Championships 2014. The event is going to take place in Cali, Colombia from 26th of February to 2nd of March. So, all you cyclists around get ready with your lucky bikes to win the race with. And you! The sport’s fans, don’t miss the chance to witness the most happening event of the year.

Advertisements

A Journey from an Active Player to an Active Viewer…

If not otherwise occupied, can you deny when you are offered to play a game? Well, I can’t. Man is by nature drawn towards some or other games. The whole universe regards a mother as a child’s first teacher and do you know how this great teacher teaches a child! Of course, through games. An infant is encouraged to play games through which he can use all his senses.

Do you remember when your mom used to hide your toys under a blanket and how you used to take pleasure in finding it out? Our moms used to collide two of our toys and thus the sound produced used to amaze us and later, in order to encourage us, our moms used to give us same expressions when we repeat it. Even when a little baby makes his glass of milk fall down it becomes a matter of pleasure for him, but can we say the same for the parents? Nooooo. Many times have I heard a sentence from my elders that a child’s work is to play and the parent’s work is to clean up later.infant_play_site_083_w640

With age comes a change in our games. Few years later we start imitating the world around. I still remember how I used to force my elder brother to be a thief and then used to pretend as if making an all out effort to catch him as a cop. And then the next day, he was forced to be my student. hahaha.. I am sure, many of you have the similar instances to get nostalgic about. Such games help in developing our power of imagination, we try to understand the practicalities of life through our own ways. We try to solve our cooked up problems in our own special ways.Phenom-Childred-Play-631

In schools, we get an altogether different platform to play. Here, we learn to play in abidance by rules. We feel ourselves like professional players when we go for an inter school competition. This is the place that turns our fun into our passion. However, it is after our college years that we need to decide whether we opt as a professional sportsman or go for some other ambitious careers. And thus, get busy in our career building process.

At this juncture, our passion as a sports player takes a backseat but to compensate this separation we become an all the more passionate viewer or a fan. We make an emotional bond with a particular sport, then with a team and finally with a player. Being an enthusiastic viewer,  we hardly want to miss any sport event. In such a tech-savvy arena, we have mobiles, computers and apps like ED sports fanatics that keep us updated about sports’ on-goings and their venues. Our belief that fans do affect the outcome of the game, make us follow our Favorite team to the core of the world irrespective of our expense, work, and time.Wisconsin-Fans-Cheering

Lets take a very recent example of our craze as fans: Sachin Tendulkar, a name that needs no recognition. A name that speaks volumes about the legendary cricketer. The news that he is going to take retirement after playing his 200th Test cricket, has spread like fire in woods. The whole Indian cricket association is making an all out effort to give him a memorable farewell. So is the efforts of his widely spread fan following. His fans from all over the world are grappling with their busy schedules to make it to India between 14th-18th November to witness the historic event live. They do not want to lag behind in an effort to bid him adieu amidst so much fanfare. Such is the emotional bond all his fans share with him.

As a viewer, we serve as a support or source of enthusiasm for our team and its players. Thus, whether as a player or a viewer we always remain in touch with sport that gives us a break from our otherwise monotonous lives and relieve us from mental exhaustion. That’s how it becomes a source of energy and enthusiasm throughout our lives.

P.S.- Lets take a sneak view at benefits of playing:

  • Acts as a regular but playful exercise.

  • Strengthen our bones and muscles.

  • Saves us from being overweight.

  • sports give us a break from our otherwise monotonous lives.

  • They relax the mind and vanish our mental exhaustion.

  • They provide opportunity to prove one’s talent.

  • Teach us the importance of team spirit.  

  • Make us disciplined.