As the Tokyo Olympics 2021 kicked off we felt a sense of immense thrill within ourselves. Crores of Indians tied the threads of hopes to the players who qualified for this biggest arena of sports. Yes! We shared the pictures of the sportsmen who bagged medals for us and at the same time, felt bad for the players who didn’t make it this time. However, the most important question here is: how many parents want children to opt for sports as a career option, and if not, then why not?
When I was in school, sports periods were taken away by teachers of other subjects to cover their syllabus. Was that right? Even if schools have sports facilities, there is no channel to take their talents to the right platforms. In other words, there is no proper way to channelize their talent into a career option, especially in small towns and rural India. Besides this, a sportsman or sportswoman needs a proper diet, a coach and infrastructure facilities which are often not available to them.
This gives rise to fear of failure in sports and a sense of financial insecurity in the minds of aspiring sports persons. Parents are afraid to allow their children to see sports as a possible career option except in the case of a few popular sports. Lakhs and crores rupees are given to players after they win a medal in the Olympics but many of them opt out due to lack of facilities. Not that it is wrong to award the sports persons who win laurels for our country and make our nation feel proud, but at the same time, I think our country is failing to utilize the real potential of its young people to its optimum level. The government needs to work hard in this regard, so that one day India becomes one of the top-ranking nations in international sports arena.