Indian Chess Champion: Krishnan Sasikiran

Blog by: Suryakant Tripathi.

Krishnan Sasikiran is an Indian chess grandmaster. He was born on 7 January 1981.

He was one of Viswanathan Anand’s seconds in the World Chess Championship 2013.

Born in Madras, Sasikiran won the Indian Chess Championship for the first time in 1999 and won it again in 2002, 2003 and 2013. In 1999 he also won the Asian Junior Chess Championship in Vũng Tàu, Vietnam. Sasikiran completed the requirements for the Grandmaster title at the 2000 Commonwealth Championship. In 2001, he won the prestigious Hastings International Chess tournament. In 2003, he won the 4th Asian Individual Championship as well as the Politiken Cup in Copenhagen. Sasikiran tied with Jan Timman for first place in the 2005 Sigeman & Co Chess Tournament, which took place in Malmö and Copenhagen.
In 2006, he tied for first place at the Aeroflot Open in Moscow with Baadur Jobava, Victor Bologan and Shakhriyar Mamedyarov, finishing third on tiebreak score. Later in the same year, Sasikiran won a gold medal in the 2006 Asian Games’ team event. Tamil Nadu government presented a cheque of Rs 20 Lacs as appreciation for his success. He was also bestowed with the Arjuna Award in 2002. In the January 2007 FIDE rating list, Sasikiran was ranked number 21 in the world with an Elo rating of 2700. He became only the second chess player from India to reach Elo rating of 2700.
In December 2008, he won City of Pamplona international chess tournament, a category 16 event with average Elo above 2640, by one-point margin with a rating performance of 2795. In 2009, he tied for 2nd-3rd with Étienne Bacrot in Antwerp.

In May 2011, Sasikiran won the Asian Blitz Chess Championship in Mashhad on tiebreak over Wesley So and Bu Xiangzhi, after all three players finished on 7/9 points. In October of the same year, he placed clear first in the open section of the 15th Corsican Circuit. He reached semi-final stage of the Corsica Masters knockout rapid tournament losing to eventual winner Anand.
At the 2014 Chess Olympiad in Tromsø he scored 7.5/10 points on board three to help the Indian team to win the bronze medal.[11] Sasikiran also won the individual silver medal on board three.

Indian Chess Champion: Parimarjan Negi

Blog by: Suryakant Tripathi.

Parimarjan Negi is a chess grandmaster (GM) from India, a former Asian and Indian champion.
He was born on 9 February 1993.
He achieved the GM title at the age of 13 years and 142 days (13 years, 4 months, and 20 days) in 2006, becoming the second youngest chess grandmaster ever, second only to Sergey Karjakin.

Negi played on the top board for the bronze medal-winning Indian team in the 2014 Chess Olympiad in Tromsø, Norway.

He was granted the Arjuna Award in 2010 by the Government of India.

Indian Chess Champion: Murali Karthikeyan

Blog by: Suryakant Tripathi.

Murali Karthikeyan is an Indian chess grandmaster. He is born on 1st May 1999 in Thanjavur. Karthikeyan learnt chess at the age of five years.

In 2015, Karthikeyan won India’s 53rd National Premier Chess Championship in Tiruvarur edging out on tiebreak Vidit Santosh Gujrathi, whom he defeated in the direct encounter, after both scored 8.5 points from 13 games.
In December 2011, he won the Under-12 World Chess

Championship held in Caldas Novas, Brazil. Karthikeyan also became the world U16 champion in 2013 in Al Ain.

In 2014 he tied for third place at the Abu Dhabi Masters tournament and helped the Indian team to win the Under-16 Chess Olympiad in Győr, Hungary. In this latter competition he also completed all requirements for the Grandmaster title.

Indian Track & Field Champion: PT Usha

Blog by: Suryakant Tripathi.

The Payyoli Express, PT Usha was first spotted by coach O.M. Nambiar  in 1979 who saw her take part in the National School Games. He then took her under his wing and after a relatively slow start, where he failed to make an impact at the 1980 Moscow Olympics, the Kerala-born athlete came into her own in the subsequent games.

She first tasted success at the 1982 Asian Games, that were held in New Delhi, winning a silver medal in the 100m and 200m event and a year later, won her maiden Gold medal at the Asian Track and Field Championships, that were played in Kuwait in the 400m and also created a new Asian record.

The following year, Usha participated in her second Olympic Games, in Los Angeles, where she first finished first in the 400m hurdles semifinals, but heartbreakingly, missed out on an Olympic medal by 1/100th of a second to finish fourth in the finals.
At the Asian Track and Field Championships, that were held in Jakarta in 1985, Usha won an exceptional 6 Gold medals, which is a record for the most medals won by an athlete in a single international meet.

At the 1986 Asian Games in Seoul, Usha won 4 Gold medals, one each in the 200m, 400m, 400m hurdles and 4x400m relay event and also clinched a Silver medal in the 100m.
Usha took a 2-year break from athletics in 1991, following her marriage, but returned to action in 1993. She was part of the 4x400m relay team at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta but didn’t compete. Later on, she was part of the  4x400m team, that won Gold at the 1998 Asian Championships and also set the current national record of 44.43 seconds.

Indian Track & Field Champion: Milkha Singh

Blog by: Suryakant Tripathi.

Milkha Singh first came into the athletics scene at the 1956 Melbourne Olympics, where he took part in the 200m and 400m category, but the real turning point in his career, came not on the running track but off it, when he got an opportunity to meet Charles Jenkins, who won the 400m event at those Games.

2 years later, a rejuvenated and much-improved Milkha set records in the 200m and 400m categories at the National Games, that were held in Cuttack and then went on to win the Gold at the Asian Games that year in Tokyo.

The year 1958 became better for him when he won independent India’s first ever Commonwealth Games Gold in the 400m event with a timing of 46.6 seconds.

However, heartbreak for Milkha came 2 years later at the Rome Olympics, where, despite putting in an exceptional performance in the 400m, he missed out an Olympic medal by the skin of his teeth. His performance in the race can be best described by a statement in an Australian newspaper in 2006, that read,

“Milkha Singh is the only Indian to have broken an Olympic track record. Unfortunately he was the fourth man to do so in the same race”

Milkha though didn’t let that defeat deter him one bit as he went on to went on win Golds in the 400m and the 4x400m relay. At the 1964 Olympics in Tokyo, Milkha entered to compete in the 400m, 4x100m and 4x 400m events, but didn’t participate in the first 2 events and in the 4x400m relay team event finished fourth in the heat stages, along with Makhan Singh, Amrit Pal and Ajmer Singh and they were eliminated at the heat stage.

Following his win over Abdul Khaliq in a race in 1960, Pakistan’s General Ayub Khan called Milkha The Flying Sikh in his post match comments and that nickname has stuck with the athlete ever since.

Indian Archery Champion: Tarundeep Rai

Blog by: Suryakant Tripathi.

Tarundeep Rai began his Archery career, after representing India at 2003 Asian Archery Championship at just 19-yars of age. However, Rai’s first major victory came at the 2010 Asian Games, where he would go onto win the silver medal at the 2010 Asian Games.

The 31-year old was part of the Indian Olympic contingent in both 2008 and 2012. In 2005, he also became the first Indian to make it into a World Championship semi-final, where he narrowly lost out on the bronze medal.

He has also been bestowed with the Arjuna Award.

Indian Boxing Champion:

Blog by: Suryakant Tripathi

Dingko Singh came into the limelight after winning the King’s Cup in 1997 in Bangkok. The Manipur lad was declared the best boxer at the meet. Dingko was initially dropped from the 1998 Bangkok Asian Games boxing contingent, but later inducted.
He beat World No. 3 Thailand boxer Wong Prages Sontaya in the semifinals, which many considered a big upset. The Indian proved that he could go all the way when he clinched gold in the final beating Timur Tulyakov of Uzbekistan.
Dingko had moved to 51 Kg category from 54 Kg just a few months before the Bangkok Asiad.

Arjuna award – 1998
Padma Shri – 2013
lian honour of the Padma Shri in 2016.

Indian Boxing Champion: Hawa Singh.

Blog by: Suryakant Tripathi.

Hawa Singh dominated Indian and the Asian Amateur boxing for a decade in the 60s and the early 70s. He won gold medals in consecutive Asian Games – 1966 Bangkok and 1970 Bangkok Games in the heavyweight category. No Indian boxer has equalled this feat so far.
He set up the Bhiwani boxing club which has produced 4 of the 5 boxers who took part in the Beijing Olympics in 2008.

Arjuna award – 1966
Dronacharya award – 1999.

It’s Raining Barbells!

formal profile-1 blog.jpg Aylin Hafeeza Hannan

In all likelihood, Barbell is a top favorite piece of equipment to train with for majority of those who train for that hyperemia(pump). Barbells, are the very core of Olympic lifting, a sport which has made its way into a regular gym goers life in a pretty big way thanks to Cross Fit. Gone are those days women turned coy to lifting heavy. With several international Gym franchisees as well as upgraded understanding of heavy strength training, one can spot middle aged men and women doing some barbell overhead presses to reap that morphine-like feeling from the release of endorphins.
The pattern of workouts designed for Cross Fit, HIIT & Functional Training with their USP of compound movement training has endorsed heavy weight lifting like it’s everyone’s business.

Barbells quite essentially actuate compound movement training with moves like back squats, front squats, overhead squats, zercher squats, deadlifts, cleans, overhead presses, jerks, snatches, push presses, bench presses, bent over rows etc.
These are some of the best ways a human body can move and toil towards benefits and gains. The effectiveness of compound movements for burning more calories and maximizing muscle gains once witnessed becomes an addiction. Our hormones favor heavy lifting and the good stress alike to accentuate antidepressant chemicals in the brain, such as dopamine, serotonin and norepinephrine. Hence, a positive stress free and confident ‘You’. Lifting Barbells is manual work which comes with hard earned unpretty calluses. But that factor is dwarfed by the addiction to the feel good aspect of heavy lifts.

They are a great tool to own for their worth on time, space and money.
A tabata workout with power lifting will imperatively recruit major muscle groups in a short duration. Progressively loading the plates and periodization along with optimum nutrition will sky rocket one’s strength remarkably. Dynamic power moves like cleans, jerks, snatches and push presses if incorporated with a sprint or Burpees by the side can boost the Anaerobic System for an enhanced endurance and exercise capacity.
Loading can come with its drawbacks when done in the absence of ideal form and technique. Here it becomes extremely important to embrace the do’s and don’ts of incorporating power moves under the supervision of an expert. In addition to those crucial aspects, decompression of joints and flexibility training are absolutely critical to prevention of injury. A relatively modest training program is incomplete without stretching being a part of it. It’s only apt to say, “more the flex, more the stretch.” Loading maximizes the muscular contractions. And the flexibility disposition should ideally compliment the amount of stress joints and muscles bear. For the longevity of the uber class drills with barbells, one must begin gradually and progress smartly while staying abreast with the needed precautions.

Tabata workout with Barbell:

8 Rounds
20 Seconds work
10 Seconds rest
Total Workout Time = 4mins
All moves, A.M.R.A.P (as many reps as possible) ; 20 secs on, 10 secs off.
Romanian Deadlifts
Med Ball Russian Twists
Hang Clean
Romanian Deadlifts
Med Ball Russian Twists
Hang Clean