Play, learn, grow in this Bengaluru sports school

(From left) Anup Sridhar, Robin Uthappa, Rohan Bopanna.

BENGALURU: Mother of Class 8 student, Arshiya T, was always worried about how to send her child to tournaments and cope with academics at the same time. “My daughter is passionate about badminton. But how will she cover the chapters that she misses out on during the tournament?” said Arshiya.

The Sports School at Vaderahalli on Kanakapura Road tries to mitigate this point of parents, who are worried about the academic performance of their kids. The school’s tailor-made teaching method allows students to pursue their sporting dream without compromising academics.

Set up in partnership with Jain Group of Institutions, the main highlight of the school is involvement of sports celebrities such as tennis player Rohan Bopanna, cricketer Robin Uthappa and shuttler Anup Sridhar on the advisory board. “Coaching is something that I’m fully passionate about. Today, I got the opportunity to advise The Sports School to run their cricket coaching, set up a curriculum, collaborate with many national and international clubs and associations to conduct tournaments often and make sure that each student is given complete attention to nurture their skills,” said Uthappa.

According to Sridhar, setting up of these kind of schools can empower other sports, other than just cricket. “The school allows children to get proper training from a young age that will ensure more potential. They can explore suitable careers that can go along with your sports interests with a backup of academic qualification. If we get such qualified professionals, it can boost any sport,” he said.

All these established players unanimously agreed that this is something essential for the development of the athletes.

“Managing studies during your competitions as well as during the preparations is a big challenge. I personally have faced this. Fifteen years ago, parents used to be very strict about children following studies and giving up any other interest for the sake of it. But now, parents are okay if children compromise on their studies. They want them to play more and be popular. Both situations are not correct. When I was introduced to the concept of this school, I took it up immediately. This is something I dreamed of doing myself at some point of my life,” Uthappa added.

Bopanna, who runs his own tennis academy, said, “I never had a facility like this. It’s good to provide an athlete the right direction to become a world-class player. They need education to lead their life and career. That drew my attention towards this initiative.”

He also added that the school takes care of the overall development of the player.

“Nutrition, physical fitness and stress management – everything has been taken care of, just like how a professional player is exposed to.”

Speaking about the development of students in rural areas and the concept of inclusion, Jaggi Nadig, chief marketing officer, The Sports School, said, “Training of specially-abled children and government school students is under discussion.

There is a lot of economics behind it. We are trying to get CSR sponsors to initiate that. Right now, we are focusing on reaching out to as many children as possible.”


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