After rigorous training for the past three years, three autistic children at Bal Kalyan Sanstha are hoping to enter the Limca Book of Records through a continuous 13-hour swimming event on February 28. The institute is confident of a world record as its three candidates, Raghav Krishnan (11), Bharat Chavan (12) and Rohit Sawant(13), have been practising tirelessly every day.
Minita Patil, Manager, Bal Kalyan Sanstha, said, “They practise from 10 am to 5 pm every day. We at Bal Kalyan Sanstha, always aim for all-round development of children. As per their abilities, we motivate them to take part in several competitions. This record will be another feather in the hat as nobody has attempted it before.”
While these three children practise tirelessly thorughout the day, their parents and coaches cheer them up from the pool area.Their head swimming coach, Abhijeet Tambe, said, “We have been preparing for the event for the past three years. I am sure they can do it.” He added, “They have more stamina than normal children, but they need to utilise it properly.
If they don’t do so, they get hyper. Normal adults have a record of continuous 24-26 hours of swimming. As these children are below 15 years, their muscles are not developed yet. With the mental condition they are in, it is a challenge for them to even swim continuously for 13 hours.”
Tambe added nutrition and diet are very important for them as they tend to get hyper even if they overeat. “Boiled chicken and lemon water is essential for their diet. We ensure they eat and sleep on time. We made them swim with normal children in a 5-km competition in Ratnagiri and Malvan,” Tambe added furhter.
Rohit’s mother Mrunal recalled that when her son was in Class III, he started swimming to overcome his aggressive and hypertensive behaviour. “Rohit had won gold medal in 25-meter competition in Kolhapur last year,” she said.
Krishnan, the youngest among the three, is good at music as well. Chavan’s father, Jaysingh, said, “I learn from my son. I try to interact, build rapport. Humans have to survive. They survive because of other people. And I believe that growth is possible because of special people like him.”
The event will start at 8 am on the premises of Bal Kalyan Sanstha. Tambe said if they succeed, they will try for Guinness Book of World Records soon.