In this fast-moving world, not many take time out of their lives to make others perfect. The sense of doing good for society has been lost in the rush to make our lives better.
But there is one such person in the city who does this without regret and expectation. Kuldeep Singh Kochhar, 60, a fitness freak and athletics enthusiast trains people of different age groups who come from different backgrounds to make it big in life.
He has trained police and army entrants, local Olympic participants, school-going kids, mothers and small businessman among others.
“Around 2014, I saw a guy here, throwing a shotput in a wrong manner. I was here for my regular running then. I went to him and said that he was doing it wrong. There were some other guys as well who told me to show how it is done. I gave him a few tips and his throw improved soon after.
“The next day, when I was here again, he came to me and started practising with me. I was okay training him at my leisure at the Pune race course. He trained with me for quite some time and now, he has joined the army,” he said.
Soon many others joined him – from school-going kids, to children preparing to qualify for the police or army. Some also came for fitness and physical training. He sometimes met acquaintances and unknown people who knew about him and they too joined him.
“Over the years, many students have come to me with different training needs. Some young people come to compete in inter-school athletics competitions, district level championships, Sakal Schoolympics and others. Many have also fulfilled what they wanted. Children come to me, learn and go and I am happy to see them doing big in life. It is also sometimes sad to know that even after training so hard, some don’t qualify.
“People saw us training together here and eventually they joined in. I am open to train anyone who has the urge to learn and grow, free of cost. Many cannot afford expensive trainers to help them teach the best.
“Being an athlete and an sport enthusiast, I feel good that I can impart some knowledge and techniques from my personal learning to them,” he adds.
He feels that knowing the basic technique is the key. “When children come here, their running style is different. They don’t know the basic technicalities of athletics. I try to train them accordingly.
“I have more than 25 children and adults who come to me to learn running techniques, shotput, long jump, crawling etc. Most of them come to prepare themselves for the military training and drills that are painful and exhausting.
“There was also a girl who went up to join the Officers Training Academy, Chennai. She could do crawling, rope climbing, monkey rope, push-ups and all this with much ease.
“The days when I am training together with the kids, I come early and finish my regular running and exercise. We are here at the race course from Monday to Saturday from 4:30 to 7:00 pm,” he adds.
“It has been 10 years now that I have known him,” says Ankita, a nurse at a city hospital. “Earlier when I used to come here, I would see him training with many people of different age groups. Soon I came to know that he voluntarily trains them without charging a penny. I later joined the group along with my son, who is currently taking boxing classes elsewhere. We come here almost every day at around 5 pm and try to never miss any training session under him.
“He has always been supportive towards us. It is really fascinating how at this age he is fitter than most of the young boys and can run laps very fast. He is a role model to us and that is what encourages us to train rigorously,” she adds.
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