Sports for Kids and as a Career Option
Expert session Question & Answers

My daughter is 8.5 years old and is learning Karate. She looks very weak and she has very thin body posture, but she never gets tired and is always energetic in everything. Can you guide for a diet so that she will gain weight?

You need to consult a dietician as diet is totally subjective.

Besides talent/skill, what factors to consider to determine if a kid should pursue a sport professionally?

So many factors like social, economical and academics can be considered. Professional sports is demanding in all aspects.

My son is 12 years old and is a football player. He wishes to pursue football professionally.

He must take proper coaching in a good academy which will provide him the chance to enhance his talent.

I want to know the levels in playing cricket matches like Under 10, Under 12 or state level, Zonal level. What is the criteria for playing these matches or playing from special organization like railways, etc? Does sports quota have government jobs and how can we take sports as a career seriously? How and where to start with the preparation? And also, how to cope up and manage sports with academics?

Sports not only has playing career but plenty of other opportunities after playing as well.

My daughter is 10 years old and is skating from 6 years. She lacks in stamina. How do I make her muscles strong and build her stamina as we are vegetarians? She loves ice skating.

She needs to start working on strength training and proper nutrition,  but this should be done under a proper trainer who understands kids’ fitness.

Which sports have career opportunities other than cricket. Will you guide on what parents should do for same. Also, how to deal with this competition?

All olympic sports have career opportunities in India and abroad, send your child as per his or her liking, do not force them. If interested to pursue sports career, then science stream helps for future studies. Teach children to enjoy the sport, not competition as they will perform only if they enjoy.

Let her continue with this training, any training needs minimum 6 months to show results, but strength is a must.

At what age can kids start learning karate and swimming?

At what age can kids start learning karate and swimming?

Karate and swimming are early specialization sports, so earlier is better. The minimum age to start with these can be 4 years.

At the age of 12, is it alright to do weight strength training?

Not weight training but body resistance strength should and can be done.

For any sports activity including running a 3km marathon or professional sports academy what is the minimum age for a child to start? And any other skills in sports can they start early in age and what age.

For 3km, 10 years is the right age to start. The mistake we all make is not provide children with skilled training but emphasize too much on running. Running requires proper running techniques and breathing techniques. It is good to join fun and fitness activities from the age of 4 years.

My son is 11 years old, plays club level cricket. To pursue cricket professionally, how much involvement are parents required to give and on what fronts? As my son is very much inclined to pursue the sport, but we both working parents can't give much time. What would you suggest?

Very importantly his interest is important and parents just need to support him, ultimately he is the one who is going to do the entire thing. Patience is the key in team sports.

If anyone has future goals to play U14 invitation matches, how should he prepare himself and what should be the parents role?

Play league matches organised by association. Very less role by parents, just support your child.

Would football or cricket be more beneficial to kids of an early age like five and nine years? And also which two would result in a better career?

All team sports are excellent for kids. Making a career require so many commitments, first of passion is essential.

My daughter is 8.5 years old, she is very good in running and has high stamina in playing, can she do 3km marathons?

Please don’t do so. It is really early for her.

A lot is being talked about vegan. Many of the top athletes have turned vegan. What is your opinion on this? My 15 years old sons are pursuing badminton professionally, and they prefer vegetarian food. They do have chicken but dont enjoy it much. Will vegetarian food help them get the required protein?

One should follow a diet which you can pursue as a lifestyle. It’s not that someone is doing so I should do it as well. Vegan is not bad at all, do not insist on non vegetarian food only. He might have to eat more portions of protein supplements in that case if he is playing professionally.

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Mahendra Gokhle

Mahendra Gokhale – Sports As A Career Option For Kids

Mahendra Gokhale is a Professional Sports Coach. He is a high performance sports conditioning specialist and runs his own Academy. Being a Fitness trainer for the Mumbai Indians team in the IPL (Indian Premier League), Mahendra Gokhale has a decade long rich experience and expertise in the areas of health, fitness and sport.

About Mahendra Gokhale

He is a certified fitness trainer from CSCS (USA) and CSCC (AUS) and has the experience of working with top athletes across the world.

He was also the former fitness trainer in the Pro Kabaddi League. Mahendra  has been an active organizer of successful events. The events includes cycle treasure hunt, hill treasure hunt, children biathlon and 10 K run events successfully every year in Pune for the past 4 years.

Mahendra Gokhale is always keen to create awareness regarding sports and fitness. Furthermore,  and is seen promoting the knowledge of healthy living through boot-camps. He offers training lectures at various cricket academies in India.

The Session

Mahendra Gokhale – Sports As A Career Option For Kids will be the topic where she will be taking the session at upcoming 5To15 event.