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Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Rio 2016 Olympics:Tripura India’s Gymnastics Capital And Its Many Dipas

They are statements that most people in India have encountered at least once in their lives: “Winning is not important. Taking part is.” A variant, “it is not bad to lose as long as one has fought well or done one’s best.”

A Hindi version goes “Jaan loge bacchey ki?” (“do you want the child to die for victory?”)
The statements are used as platitudes, to lessen the grief of defeat.

What not too many know is that they are in fact derived from comments attributed to the man many consider the Father of the Modern Olympic Games, Baron Pierre de Coubertin. What he is believed to have said is:  “The important thing in the Olympic Games is not to win, but to take part; the important thing in Life is not triumph, but the struggle; the essential thing is not to have conquered but to have fought well.”

On August 15, the 55 young gymnasts at Khumulwng Tribal Gymnasium in West Tripura district won’t line up for their turn to do the vault or the beam. Instead, they will crowd around a laptop that mentor-coach Montu Debnath has promised to bring to the centre, and watch a recording of the Produnova somersault that “Dipa di” would have attempted in Rio the previous day.

But today, days before that “Independence Day special session” and Dipa Karmakar’s much awaited Sunday appearance at the gymnastics finals in Rio, the gymnasts at the centre, between the ages of 5 and 11, stay sharply focused. A little after 4 pm, a shriek pierces through the centre. A six-year-old has fallen off the balance beam, but she quickly springs to her feet and goes back to her starting position.

https://dailymotion.com/video/x4oyhli They are statements that most people in India have encountered at least once in their lives: “Winning is not important. Taking part is.” A variant, “it is not bad to lose as long as one has fought well or done one’s best.” A Hindi version goes “Jaan loge bacchey ki?” (“do you want the child to die for victory?”) The statements are used as platitudes, to lessen the grief of defeat. What not too many know is that they are in fact derived from comments attributed to the man many consider the Father of the Modern Olympic Games, Baron Pierre de Coubertin. What he is believed to have said is:  “The important thing in the Olympic Games is not to win, but to take part; the important thing in Life is not triumph, but the struggle; the essential thing is not to have conquered but to have fought well.” On August 15, the 55 young gymnasts at Khumulwng Tribal Gymnasium in West Tripura district won’t line up for their turn to do the vault or the beam. Instead, they will crowd around a laptop that mentor-coach Montu Debnath has promised to bring to the centre, and watch a recording of the Produnova somersault that “Dipa di” would have attempted in Rio the previous day. But today, days before that “Independence Day special session” and Dipa Karmakar’s much awaited Sunday appearance at the gymnastics finals in Rio, the gymnasts at the centre, between the ages of 5 and 11, stay sharply focused. A little after 4 pm, a shriek pierces through the centre. A six-year-old has fallen off the balance beam, but she quickly springs to her feet and goes back to her starting position.