60 Days of Kindness Fitness Challenge

Jan 4th 2021 – March 4th 2021

(The workouts are recorded and can be repeated by anyone joining at beginner -Intermediate level)

Registrations are open! Contact info@guiderunnersindia.in or Bhumika 9845018103

Note: Guides can refer and send the videos for each day posted on https://www.facebook.com/guiderunnersindia OR alternately can also do a workout which goes with the focus of that day.

Refer to sample videos for visually impaired below.
Guides can refer to youtube 1 hr sessions for their own workout https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC6FJyNZxy-5wcpdSyI_7_Aw


Virtual Run For Community

FIRST OF ITS KIND RUN FOR VISUALLY IMPAIRED RUNNERS AND GUIDES

A tribute to COVID-19 Warriors, health workers and Emergency rescue teams

First edition on Sep 12th, 2020
Second editio -November 1st, 2020

Join virtually via zoom link for flagoff and warmup!
Participate alongside Erich Manser (VI)- World Record Holder for Iron Man, Niket Dalal (VI) Indian Record Holder for Ironman and Amarjeet Singh (VI): Ultra Marathoner, Neha Pawaskar (VI) holds several records in sports and many inspirational runners

A Time Based run: 30mins/60mins


Virtual Run for Community 1st edition(Sep 12th 2020)-Media Coverage & Participation:

Emergency Support Guide Certification Program

Course name: Virtual Emergency Support Guide to Visually Impaired

This is a part of a series of courses with certification in association with Mitra Jyothi institute for Blind and other leading institutes. This course will help you learn how to assist someone who is blind or visually impaired as phone buddy in emergency situation such as COVID19.

Three batches have been completed till September 2020. To learn about upcoming sessions, write to info@guiderunnersindia.in

Our Advisory Board includes illustrious volunteers and Institutions as below:

USA: Run Bionic, Intelligent Performance Clinic, San Diego

USABA, Marathon National Championships, California

Team with A Vision, Boston Marathon

Bangalore : Mitra Jyothi

Delhi :National Association For The Blind

Ahmedabad: Blind People’s Association

Hyderabad: Devnar Foundation for the blind

Mumbai: All India Andh Stri Hitt Association (AIASHA)

Pune: Mai Bal Bhavan (2019), The Poona School & Home for the Blind girls

OVERVIEW:

Guide/Buddy provide confidential, reliable support that helps individuals who are blind or visually impaired lead the complete, rich, joyful lives they want to live. Guides are matched one-to-one and assist with emergency support activities during COVID19 crisis such as keeping track of elderly visuallyimpaired who are stranded and alone. Guide/Buddy may also be matched as sighted guides for fitness or community activities, thereby opening new doors and opportunities.

Each guide/buddy is thoroughly interviewed, screened, undergoes a thorough background check, and is trained by our experienced GUIDES.

Examples of activities include:

Supporting the elderly VisuallyImpaired,Well Being Check, Serving as sighted guides for running, walking, and home workouts

More details will be provided by email on enrollment!

For recorded learning sessions, visit

Facebook Page: Click here

YouTube : Click here to view all sessions

Learning Session with Chaz Davis, VisuallyImpaired Elite Athlete with PB of 2hr 15 mins for full marathon, Massachussets Association for the Blind, USA


Learning Session with Dr Eshwar Kapur, Elite Athlete, Sports Medicine Doctor on Wellbeing and Physical screening for Blind athlete

COVID19 Support for SpeciallyAbled

When COVID-19 hit India, we jumped into action to help them prepare for the challenges,even before the lockdown started in India. It is a special concern for Visually Impaired as they mostly rely on touch.

The ones with Visibility disorder from needy families are a diverse group, experiencing different hardships in accessing information on prevention and risk of infection.

Firstly we shared COVID-19 precautions as per WHO guidelines with them through audio messages with translations in different regional languages like Hindi, Telugu, Marathi, Kannada.  The guidelines was shared with the volunteers, who then communicated with the visually impaired in their respective languages either by phone or whatsapp.

We parallelly prepared a  list of Visuallyimpaired who were in city, or left for their villages / hometown to stay with parents. We also checked with blind Institute or NGOs about the measures they had taken at the premises and hostel facility. If there was any shortage, we helped fulfill the requirement for hand gloves, masks, and sanitizers with the help of donations. About 600 hand gloves, several masks, sanitizers were distributed prior to lockdown.

We soon realized that that there were quite a lot of visually impaired elderly left alone at home. This prompted us to start assigning phone buddy to each of them to keep track of how they were doing. The buddy would keep the phone numbers of neighbor, maid and local ward ration shop (government outlet) and other helpline numbers to support the visually impaired.

We soon started receiving calls for help from the needy families esp. Mumbai slums for groceries and medicines. The daily wage workers were out of cash and no means to buy essentials. Many times the free food distribution and ration was available but they were unaware of this information. So the buddy volunteer became a very critical part to reach the information or the essential items. Over the last three weeks we have supported at least 200 families to get their ration and essentials.

The Phone Buddy also encourage and motivate the visually impaired to take care of their health and fitness and improve immunity by explaining how to do simple home workouts. This keeps them happy and healthy in these difficult times.

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Phone Buddy Guide for VisuallyImpaired: Home workouts

PHOTO-2020-buddy vi This is a special initiative to support the visually impaired athletes during the lockdown due to Covid-19.

The Phone Buddy encourage and motivate the visually impaired to take care of their health and fitness and improve immunity by explaining how to do simple home workouts. This keeps them happy and healthy in these difficult times.

We soon started receiving calls for help from the needy families esp. Mumbai slums for groceries and medicines. The daily wage workers were out of cash and no means to buy essentials. Many times the free food distribution and ration was available but they were unaware of this information. So the buddy volunteer became a very critical part to reach the information or the essential items.

Phone Buddy are of these types:

  • Buddy for Home workouts
  • Buddy for Elderly VisuallyImpaired (who are left alone in lockdown)
  • Buddy for information/education support (free courses/certifications)

Assessment Checklist is used to start working with visuallyimpaired. Please message Bhumika 9845018103 for the same.

For all the above exercise is important to build immunity!

Guide/Phone Buddy To do (Home workouts):

The visuallyImpaired have been training with us for many months now. We will assign a buddy to existing and new visuallyimpaired based on requests.

  • Get the contact number of Visually impaired(VI) from Bhumika or location lead.
  • Call the VI at a convenient time .
  • Confirm the language they are comfortable with(english, hindi etc) , then use the appropriate language chart below.
  • Find out the percentage blindness.
  • Check if they are doing fine in lockdown, any other assistance needed, please note and let the lead know to assign one more buddy.
  • Find out the current workouts they are doing. Make a note of one week’s workout if they are doing already.
  • As the workout intensity goes up, our rate of infection increases, so our goal is to do moderate exercises without causing too much exhaustion. Give rest days. You are not required to workout all 6 days. Example: 2 days of gentle strength workout + 2 days of yoga, breathing exercise, meditation is fine.
  • If Vi doesn’t have smart phone or whatsapp, just a verbal communication is enough. If they do have, you can ask for video or picture if they are fine.

To do these workout, the VI will need:

  • A sturdy chair or wall nearby for support, so they dont lose balance and fall
  • A yoga mat or bed sheet for post workout sitting stretches
  • Water bottle filled with your favorite fruit juice or lime juice with salt/sugar
  • Supportive shoes if you choose to use them in your workout
  • Light hand weights or two water bottles or cans of the same weight
  • Small to medium towel.

Note :If vi is partially blind, they can also read the charts we give them, we just have to read and clarify once. Give the chart on whatsapp.

If 100% then more support then they will need extra support or guidance.Ask if a family member is available else stick to simple to do workout close to wall or chair to hold.

 

Here are some tips to explain to you assigned VI ON THE CALL

1. If you are not currently exercising, start by walking one door to another door at home, for 20 mins, (for at least 2 weeks) to get used to exercise. You can do 2-3 times a week.

IF you are already exercising regularly and walking feels too easy, then you can start by jog-Walk method. Jog to nearest door and walk back..so on for 30 mins.You can do 2-3 times a week.

Guide Buddy Please note down current workout of VI in a week. We will use it to make customized plan.

Continue reading Phone Buddy Guide for VisuallyImpaired: Home workouts

Shoe Drive

– Sep 2019 to Mar 2020

Shoe Collection Drive was conducted in Six Cities in India – Mumbai, Delhi, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad and Bengaluru. More than 500 athletes got new or gently used shoes for supporting their fitness and running training. The project was initiated by Bhumika and supported by a large pool of volunteers/ Guide runners from the corporate and running community. Many thanks to all the donors who supported wholeheartedly.

The drive included many activities :

  • Handling calls from shoes donors
  • Coordinating shoe pick up/drop off
  • Phone/Email response to corporate enquiries for participation
  • shoe size requirement gathering from visuallyimpaired
  • Sorting the donations for shoes with good mileage
  • Shoe laundry for gently used shoe donations
  • Shoe fitment check at training locations
  • Coordinating new cities in phase 2 of drive

Also see https://www.facebook.com/guiderunnersindia/

Cubbon-SeeFromTheHeart 2019

On Sunday Oct 20th 2019,we celebrated the 2nd edition of Pinkathon Day in Bengaluru.We are Happy to announce a new addition #PinkathonDay ‘See From The Heart’ to promote inclusion of specially abled people. This year 3 cities namely Bengaluru (Cubbon), Mumbai (BKC) and Pune (Ghorpadi) have taken the lead and participate in this worldwide celebration.

Bengaluru Celebrations:

We had the SpeciallyAbled and VisuallyImpaired girls as apart of the celebrations.
We had sari draping, to show that a dress can never stop us from running.

The victors group is a group of survivors put up an exhibition of their paintings. It’s a must see. They do fabric painting, canvas painting, kalamkari painting etc. They also make artistic thread and beads jewellery.

Manoranjini did an awesome Zumba

The Cubbon and Lalbagh training girls Vandana, Vasanthi, Kanti, Savita, Anita and team presented contemporary dance coreographed by Rithvik.

Visually impaired athletes…joined us from far and near. We felicitated their achievements.
A fusion dance performance by the Bannerghatta girls Swati, Rajlaxmi, Manisha, Kiran, Pavana, Vijaya and Shilpa.
Group dance by the Basaveshwarnagar training girls. They are doing a mashup of 5 language songs to convey unity in diversity in India.

Dr Ashu and survivors of Myshah foundation joined us.

We had cake cutting to mark the momentous occasion.

Thanks to Kajol bhatia and team for enthusiatic pariticipation.
Special thanks to Running Lab for sponsoring the breakfast.

Thanks to all who came volunteered and encouraged the team of specially Abled and guide runner

Pictures:

https://www.facebook.com/PinkathonDayBLR/

Media coverage:

 

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India’s 1st Official Guide:Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon 2019…an incredible experience… for each one who attempted. Out of the  9 International Full Marathons I completed since 2015…. this was the most enriching episode in my running journey, since this was my first international marathon as an official guide runner, and more so because it was to Erich Manser, my fellow IBMer and fellow marathoner.

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I was just recovering from my first ultra – marathon 145 km, with shin injury after me, where 6 of my visually impaired mentees successfully finished the run in January this year, when I received the confirmation about the Boston marathon guide running. Nervousness clouded me soon after the confirmation, but I took up the challenge realizing that this will be the most important milestone in my guide running experience and for bringing home more awareness in this area. I have mentored a number of visually impaired athletes and their guides for long distance running and simultaneously have run many races as a guide runner myself. But this race event was and will always be a special one. After all this was the world renowned Boston Marathon and also I knew Erich not only as a fellow IBMer, but as the World Champion Iron man and my excitement was at its peak since the day I registered as official sighted guide.

Like Erich already quoted in his blog, yes we were those virtual friends of the Hi – Hello kind, meeting online occasionally over work. But when Erich learnt about my initiatives of mentoring the visually impaired and sighted guides in Bangalore, my volunteering as a Head Coach Pinkathon Training, Samarthanam Trust to the Disabled and Mitra Jyothi Institute for the Blind,for supporting the underprivileged as a part of ‘See from the Heart’ initiative, he regularly lent his invaluable advice in all my endeavours. We occasionally had telephonic discussions about how to exploit technology for accessibility. The pieces of advice from Erich have always been so priceless for he has his own set of experiences as a Technology savvy marathon runner and therefore has so much of cognizance to share.

I met Erich face to face for the first time in Boston when we picked up the race kit.

Guide Bib

We did the Shakeout run a day before race and we gelled together so quickly. During the run we discussed preferred usage of tether. By using a tether – a short hooped cord – both runners are connected at the hand to negotiate the course.

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Image: Tether with a cane

We also discussed that the run will be at conversation pace. Other things included race day weather and gear, water station stops, adjustments to the tether and about how to carry out effective communication during the run, how to deal with crowded sections of the run etc.

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Image: Guide running with Erich at Shakeout Run

I further got to spend more time with him and the other athletes at a team dinner and team brunch organized by ‘Team With A Vision’

It was a marathon information session as well as stage for the other athletes to share their previous race experiences. We were given tips on race, guide running and logistics. The heart- warming get-together helped clear pre-race doubts and fears.

The transport arrangements to the venue, special temperature controlled area at the start point, the post – race bags pickup and arrangements at VIP tent; IBM and NBC media representatives to interview us at finish line,’Team With A Vision’ volunteers to guide, every arrangement so orderly.

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I knew last year was extreme weather with rain and severe cold and it made me more nervous to see forecast had showers again this year. My acclimatization runs in Boston prior to the race, helped me get settled in. Being prone to cough and cold, I took special precaution with intake of immunity boosters like vit c etc. Prior to the race, I did a marathon bus tour to familiarize myself with the route.and prepared for the changing weather conditions, with water resistant as well as cold resistant running gear.

Two day prior to full marathon, enjoyed a rainy weather Boston 5K with my daughter and husband.

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The route and the weather during the Boston Marathon really made the run more arduous, but I could clearly see how prepared Erich was. The tough ascents, mercurial weather with rain at the outset followed by hot sun and later thunderstorms did not seem to affect him at all. Though the rains in the last few kilometres masked the sweltering heat, the steep ascents were difficult for me. Hills are a total ‘No No’ for me when it comes to the latter part of a race. But as Erich and I had discussed earlier, we took a conservative approach and slowed down. The Heartbreak hill ascent after 25 km was darn cruel on the quads, but Erich motivated me and I overcame the difficulty. Later when Erich encountered fatigue after mile 23, it was my turn to encourage him. Thus with good mutual rhythm we pulled through the tough route and picked up pace near the finish line. Chatting all the way, cracking jokes and boosted up by the crowds and fellow runners cheering, “Team Vision go! ““Erich and Bhumika, you guys rock!!!” all the way through the route, my family and friends from India cheered loud close to finish line, made our finish so easy but emotional.

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In my years of training the visually impaired and running as a guide to them, there have been numerous anecdotes to tell, numerous incidents, happenings. But none of them can beat the fantastic experience of Boston marathon. Running apart, there was great encouragement from my workplace IBM and colleagues across the world sent amazing messages of support.It was a great learning experience. I have been reading Erich’s blog about his experiences at the Boston Marathon over and over again; he ends it with citing and I too would reiterate the same, “Kindness is a very powerful thing. Though we are from very different places, we will now be forever joined by kindness”.

Media References:

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http://www.newindianexpress.com/cities/bengaluru/2019/apr/15/boston-marathon-india-sees-major-participation-from-bluru-this-year-1964381.html