The road to the Olympics has been harder than ever before, with the pandemic throwing training plans off, making it more difficult for the athletes to be in peak physical shape. Quarantine rules and travel restrictions made things worse, as athletes struggled to get the required training at top facilities, which they usually get during the run-up to the Olympics. The federations had to be creative with ideas to keep their athletes in peak condition and came up with ideas such as installing home gyms for the athlete to train at the comfort of their own homes. They also focused on expediting the travel process so that the athletes receive international exposure and training just in time for the Olympics.
The athletes somehow manage to get themselves in peak physical shape despite not competing for months together only to face anxiety and mental issues due to the bubble atmosphere created for their safety. The bubble prevents the athletes from having outside contact hence taking them away from their support systems and families who play a vital part in spurring them on. Not having fans on the stands also had a huge impact on the athletes, with many of them dropping out to mental issues such as anxiety and depression.
Taking into consideration these factors and other circumstances that usually come along with competing in the grandest stage of them all makes it a lot more special when an athlete wins a medal.
Indian athletes scripted history as they were able to top their previous best medal tally achieved at the London Olympics by winning 7 medals, including a precious gold. Neeraj Chopra's gold medal, along with those of Mirabai Chanu (silver), Ravi Kumar Dahiya (silver), PV Sindhu (bronze), Bajrang Punia (bronze), Indian men's hockey team (bronze) and Lovlina Borgohain (bronze), is bound to inspire the next generation of athletes.
Tokyo 2020 will forever be remembered as the start of a bright sporting future in the country, while also being one of the best, if not the best Olympics for India.