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What 3 Sports Stars Think About Future of Sports in India

by | Sep 11, 2021 | Creative Mind, People Person

India has a large and diverse population that participates in a variety of sports: We see Football played in local city tournaments to Kabaddi, an indigenous sport, commonly seen practiced in rural India.  While games, such as Chess, and Snooker originated in India, we don’t see enough representation from our country in international tournaments.

Cricket, on the other hand, is India’s most popular sport. It is played all over the country, even in small friend groups and streets! Moreover, other games have started receiving well-deserved recognition due to the recent digital coverage of the Olympics and Paralympics, alike. Emerging popular athletes recently winning medals during Olympics has shifted the attention of people from just Cricket to other sports as well! We owe our champions Neeraj Chopra, Bajrang Punia, Ravi Kumar Dahiya, Lovlina Borgohain, PV Sindhu, Mirabai Chanu and the Men’s hockey team for all their efforts and hard work. 

However, careers in sports still remain unpopular among Indian families. Children are not well informed about these careers or do not have the right resources to decide which path suits their interests. Sports is simply seen as a healthy activity or as a fun hobby for most of India’s youth. Moreover, there is lack of guidance from coaches, mentors or parents to encourage and guide students towards full-time roles.

To discuss this topic, we at Unherd India, organised an hour long Twitter Chat (#SportsCareerChat) with three extremely talented panelists across different professions from the Sports Industry:

  • Ridhima Pathak, a Sports Presenter, Live Broadcaster, Anchor and Public Speaker
  • Shams Aalam, an Indian Para Swimmer and Bihar Khel Ratna Awardee
  • Snehal Pradhan, a former Indian Cricketer. She is a cricket coach and sports writer

    Sports Careers In India

The Twitter Chat (#SportsCareerChat) took place on the 9th of September, 2021 and the Twitter community had questions related to sports career for our panelists! We were honoured to have the three experienced sports professionals to guide the community on career choices in this field.

The panelists had insightful thoughts around Sports Education in India! For instance, Ridhima wishes that there are equal women and men broadcasters in the next Olympics or World Cup!

When asked about ample representation in sports, Shams Aalam believes that talent identification at the grass root level and lack of awareness about sports as a career is the problem.

Snehal Pradhan supports visibility and recognition to professionals in “non-playing” roles in the Sports Industry.

Sports as a professional field remains unexplored and unpopular, twitter chats like #SportsCareerChat is one small step to get the conversation started and going! Small steps lead to bigger changes and we are hopeful that this chat would have helped a youngster to explore a career in the sports field!

On that note, our panelist Ridhima had an amazing idea to bring about change and integrate sports and education- 

Snehal believes that it’s a two-way street! Parents need incentives to send kids to sports and kids need quality coaches and mentors to guide them!

According to Shams, mentors are extremely important and essential in both sports and our life, as well and we completely agree!

Mentors can help youngsters shape their career choices, they can guide them and provide them with industry knowledge and relevant skills. This is why at Unherd, we provide experiential learning and industry mentorships to students so that they can make informed career decisions!

To further this idea and support our budding sports professionals, we are currently planning a Sports Mentorship for high-school students that would be launched very soon. You can learn about our Mentorship Programs here. This would be something that hasn’t been done before, but we hope to provide high-schoolers with in-depth, industry knowledge from experienced mentors in the sports field. Students get to interact, engage and learn the in-demand skills and knowledge required to venture into this profession. Apart from interacting with the mentors, we hope this mentorship would emerge into a support group for young athletes to pursue sports as a profession and not just as a hobby.

To see the entire Twitter Chat Conversation, visit #SportsCareerChat on Twitter here.

For more information on our Programs, visit our Mentorship Page here.

Written by

Written by

Fayeza Asad

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