Lighter training workloads during periods, four different week-wise dietary patterns based on the menstruation cycle and avoiding period-pushing pills altogether are some of the changes India’s women wrestlers are incorporating to tackle the tricky challenge of training during periods.
A thoughtful and scientific approach to menstrual health of female wrestlers is helping many prevent injuries that occur due to brittle bones – a result of calcium loss.
Dr Samuel Pullinger is the head of Sports Science at the JSW’s Inspire Institute of Sport, a training centre at Vijayanagar, Karnataka, where the country’s top wrestlers are camped. His team is helping women in combat sports train smarter and harder without compromising on health, he told The Indian Express.
Hansaben Rathore, a 19-year-old, from Depalpur, Indore, went through extremes as a young teen while training in her small town, with absence of knowledge, during her periods.
“At my first centre, I was told not to land up at practice at all during periods because there was a God’s idol in the room. And at my second centre, the coach would say, “achha, problem hai? koi nahi,” and ask me to ignore cramps and pain and continue training at full tilt,” she recalls.
There was little discussion because she felt awkward. But after 6 months, the period pain became unbearable. “Muscle injuries happen because you feel weak. The other option of not training at all also wasn’t right as practice stopped. Here at IIS, our diet for every week is planned keeping in mind the cycle, and training on the first two days of the period is lighter,” she explains.
Rathore has competed during