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Khel Vikas: Balancing freedom and guidance

Khel Vikas: Balancing freedom and guidance

The experiences of Hannah Longster as a volunteer strength and conditioning coach with Khel Vikas in Odisha, India.


Hannah Longster, a 23-year old Northumbria University (UK) graduate, arrived in Odisha in June 2013 to spend eight weeks with the Khel Vikas project run by Pro4Sport Solutions in partnership with Gram Vikas.  As a sport and exercise science graduate, Hannah had previous work experience with the York Sport Village and Fitness First projects in the UK.

Why this project?
I’m interested in strength and conditioning, so I was looking for voluntary placement that would give me some relevant work experience.

When Hannah came across this opportunity, she didn’t hesitate to apply, as she knew time in a foreign country experiencing a different culture would not only help in her professional, but also personal, development.

Mind, body, and stomach

Hannah worked closely with weightlifters and volleyball players; contributing towards their fitness and nutrition plans.  She also took up the initiative to conduct psychological tests on the Khel Vikas athletes. After processing the results Hannah conducted one-on-one sessions with the weightlifters to address anxiety problems they were facing in competition.  Hannah also played a key role, as part of the event support staff, during the inaugural Khel Vikas Inter-Club Weightlifting Tournament and 5km Barefoot Run.

I’ve also had the privilege of being part of the sport development team’s plans in all the events they have been organising, which has been a really fun part of my placement”.

Hannah's advice
I think if you are open minded, outgoing, and up for a challenge then this project is for you.” 


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Rohan Kandoi


Wednesday, September 11, 2013 - 00:00