Shrimant Jha is world No. 3 and Asia’s No.1 differently-abled Arm Wrestler from India. He has won 40 International Medals for the country in various International competitions. In conversation with the Editor of PHYSIOTIMES, he describe his Journey, wins & Failures and also his views on Physiotherapy.
Please tell us about your interest in sports since childhood and what made you inclined toward arm wrestling?
I was interested in sports from childhood itself and was very enthusiastic about it. I always wanted to do something big for my nation. That’s why I wanted to join the Indian Army to serve my nation but due to my physical challenges, I was not able to join the army.
However, I never gave up on myself and my dream. I kept on working hard and training myself. In the gym itself, I heard about arm wrestling and learn more about it. I believed that in this way I could do something for my country hence I started preparing for it and got selected for Indian Team.
Tell us about your family support for the sport?
Honestly, I m here today because of my family’s support. They could not hello me financially but they always provided me the mental strength to fight any courage along the way. I m always grateful to my family.
What do you feel was the turning point in your life?
My turning point in life is when I got selected in India. Then I had a belief that I could do something for my nation which has been my dream since childhood. After a lot of hard work and training, I got selected in 2013 world championship and represent India in Poland.
When was the first time you experienced physiotherapy treatment?
During the 2016 Asian Championship My muscle got pulled so I had to undergo physiotherapy treatment. This was my first experience with Physiotherapy.
Which was the first championship you won and share your Experience?
I represented India first time in the 2013 world championship in Poland. Although I won the silver medal in the first championship itself I was still upset about the fact that I could not win the gold one. When I went to receive my medal the national anthem was not played, it was only played for the person who won the gold medal. I really felt that and promised myself that next time I will win the gold medal and in 2016, I won the gold medal.
You are not from a metro city; did you face any challenges in training in this aspect?
Honestly, it did not affect me much because if you have a dream that you want to achieve you will fight all the odds to achieve it. In this way, I was really lucky that I had my mentor and coaches with me who supported me throughout the journey.
Who were your mentors and guides?
My Father - Sadashiv Jha
Coach - Hashim Raza Zabeth, Mustafa Ali
Chairman of Jindal steel and power - Shri Naveen Jinda
Did you ever have an injury that benefitted from Physiotherapy?
Yes, as I have mentioned earlier that I have was injured during Asian Championship in 2016 and due to physiotherapy i could recover. And also once in 2020, My ligament was affected during training and at that time also I had to undergo physiotherapy to recover.
What is your regular training session like?
Generally i start my training session from 7 PM in the evening to 10:30 PM. I generally focus on strengthening my power and working on my cardio.
How important is diet for an arm wrestler?
Diet is very important for any sport. Most importantly, it will help in getting the right amount of energy and protein to train harder.
You have won 40 world championships till now, how does it Feel?
It really feels good because it was my dream to do something for my nation.
What are your future goals?
Olympic 2024 Paris
Your message to the Physiotherapist?
For any sportsperson, Physiotherapy is really important. As if we get any injury, physiotherapists are the ones who take care of us and keep us on our feet. I am really grateful for the physiotherapist I have who takes care of my muscle.