Sports does not discriminate: Shooter Heena Sidhu

Sports does not discriminate: Shooter Heena Sidhu

Ace shooter Heena Sidhu speaks during an interaction at the fourth edition of ‘Knowledge Factory’ at St Agnes College in Mangaluru on Friday.

Sports is pure and does not discriminate in any form. “If you bring things like religion and regulation into sports, then you are going against the spirit of the sport,” said ace Indian shooter Heena Sidhu stressed on Friday.

During an interaction with Meena Vaidyanathan, founder Niiti Consulting at fourth edition of the Knowledge Factory (#KF2020), at St Agnes College in Mangaluru on Friday, she said, “Everybody should be vocal for the society to change. Sport is an exhibition of hard work and performance. I pulled out of the Asian Airgun Shooting Championship in Iran due to the compulsory hijab rule for all women athletes.”

“I am not a revolutionary. But I felt that making it mandatory for even a sportsperson to wear hijab is against the spirit of a sport,” she said.

“The dream of every sportsperson is to win an Olympic medal, I am working towards it,” Heena said, amidst a thunder of applause from the audience. 

“Many parents are ready to invest in children's education. But think twice and look for sponsorship when it comes to sport, ” she said. Heena, the first Indian Pistol Shooter to be World No 1, appealed to parents to allow their child to play for fitness.

“If the government makes it mandatory for schools and colleges to adopt at least three to five sports, depending upon the infrastructure available then sports will see a vast change,” Heena said.

In a sport, the journey is more important than the destination, she said. “I had felt sad even after winning world number 1 position as I felt I could not deliver the best in me. Good or bad, we athletes keep learning,” she added.

“My family has a passion for guns and my uncle was a gun customiser. When I started shooting, it was a hobby for me. There was no range in my home town. I had converted the garage of my house into a range for practice,” she said.

Shooting is all about biomechanics of the body, she added.

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