India's leading fencer C A Bhavani Devi has found a rather interesting way to train amid the ongoing lockdown: she is using her kitbag for target practice to be battle ready. The 26-year old trailblazer has given fencing an identity in India and has won laurels at the international level through her hard work and determination.
The Tamil Nadu fencer competes in the sabre category and was training in Italy before the coronavirus pandemic stopped global sporting activity. However, she is not letting the forced break stop her.
Back in Chennai before the travel restrictions came into force, she is training at home.
"I am doing basic fitness and fencing work to be ready physically and mentally when things resume. I am doing my basic fitness at our terrace. Using few dumbbell pairs and most of the exercises are own body weight. For fencing, I am doing footwork and target practice using my fencing kitbag," she told PTI.
"I am thinking of the positive side of this break...That I have a long time to prepare myself for future competitions and trying to rest and recover better as I had a lot of travel and stayed away from home for long time."
Bhavani Devi, who is the first Indian fencer to win gold at an international event and is eyeing to compete at the Olympics, said she was in constant touch with her coach- Italian Nicola Zanotti and does online sessions apart from watching fencing videos online.
"Yes, my coach from Italy does online sessions for maintaining mental well-being during these critical times," she said.
The fencer said there were not many cases in Italy before the travel restrictions kicked in and she moved to Belgium for a training camp before returning to India. "The place where I lived (in Italy) was not having cases then but still I used follow basic precautions like wearing mask, washing hands often and not going to any place other than the training centre."
"I used to take care of myself and after discussion with GoSports Foundation I moved to Belgium for a training camp and then it was also cancelled so I came home in time," she added.