Will Fit India Movement Help Create a Healthier India?

National Sports Day

Today, the 29th of August is National Sports Day (Khel Diwas), celebrated in honour of Major Dhyan Chand who brought pride to nation though his incredible performance in hockey. Today, 29 August 2019, the prime minister Mr Narendra Modi inaugurated the Fit India Movement. While inaugurating the movement, the PM said, “The way to make India a great nation is only possible through a healthy person, healthy family and healthy society.” In his speech, the prime minister went on to talk about technology and its implications on the current lifestyle. He said, “Technology and development have reduced physical activities.” The aim of this movement is to encourage people to get more involved in sports and physical fitness and become fit and healthy.

The only sport that seems to enjoy a great popularity in the country is cricket. The formation of the state-wise and region-wise leagues and competitions for sports like hockey, badminton, football and kabaddi are playing a minor role in reviving those games in our county. But we still have a long way to go in terms of developing good sports talent in our country.

The reason behind the lag could be because of the unavailability of the resources and infrastructure required for training. The other reason could also be the mushrooming of schools that don’t even have a decent playground for children. In the cities, parents find it unsafe to let children out to play and cloister them inside the houses or apartment complexes. The changing lifestyle, increasing workhours of parents, decreasing playground sizes of schools and the rising dependence on electronics have slowly eroded active lifestyle. It has gone to such an extent that most of the millennial children don’t know that sports is for everyone. They believe that only “selected” and “talented” children will be given training in certain sports.

It has become more so important now than ever to have an intervention that encourages physical activity and lifestyle changes in adults, which in turn could motivate children. Hopefully, if Fit India Movement manages to bring out the change in lifestyle and encourage parents and children to get more involved in sports and physical activities, we could see a healthier India. However, we can expect to see viable results only if the ideas are converted to actions from the ground level.

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