“A hero is an ordinary individual who finds the strength to persevere and endure in spite of overwhelming obstacles.”
– Christopher Reeve
Sports is known to nurture individuals to become physically fitter and mentally stronger. It hones a child’s motor skills, social skills, emotional well-being and shapes personalities. While training children in sports, Bayside Sports realised the lack of such opportunities available for those who are specially-abled. Understanding the need to professionally address this need of specially-abled children, Bayside Sports launched Aastha Sports in 2018; a new sports academy exclusively dedicated to training specially-abled children in sports and helping them cope better and overcome daily challenges.
Aastha Sports comprises of a team of coaches trained by PlayPal, India, an organisation that creates a cadre of professionals to teach sports and movement-based activities for children with special needs. These coaches have undergone an extensive 6 month training programme helmed by Dr. Anjali Joshi, a leading occupational therapist, followed by an examination and series of assessments before being certified as an ‘Aastha PlayPal’. Owing to the complementing objectives of both the organisations, Bayside Sports has now partnered with PlayPal, India to develop the curriculum at Aastha Sports.
Presently Aastha Sports comprises of two Aastha PlayPals, Pranali Gund and Shailesh More, who train more than 10 children across various age groups. Understanding the special requirements of every child, the Aastha PlayPal customises every training programme, adapting its curriculum, duration and intensity as needed for every new session. The child is coached in a home environment or outdoors, depending on his/her comfort. Aastha Sports encourages parents to be involved in this process and shares periodic progress reports that highlight the child’s achievements and areas of further development.
Be it Cricket, Football, Handball, Obstacle Courses or Track and Field, Aastha PlayPals engage specially-abed children in various sports to teach them skills such as hand-eye coordination, focus, motor skills and others. With Aastha Sports’ curriculum, the child’s progress in sports can be witnessed at every step and celebrated!
Bayside Sports was founded on the principle that ‘Sport’ is a great unifier that eliminates stereotypes and barriers and enables an inclusive and happier society. And Aastha Sports reiterates this vision by providing an opportunity to all children to experience a more fulfilling engagement with society.
In the words of Muhammad Ali, “It’s the repetition of affirmations that leads to belief. And once that belief becomes a deep conviction, things begin to happen.” And Aastha Sports endeavours to be the affirmation for all those young and specially gifted!
(For further details on Aastha Sports please contact Pranali Gund: +91 90824 84605)
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