We want to train youth in sports activities: Dir Tourism
Srinagar: Department of Tourism Kashmir has organised a free swimming classes at Nigeen Water Sports Club. The camp has been in progress for last one month at Nigeen Club.
The initiative has received an overwhelming response from the swimming enthusiasts. Scores of the youth are taking advantage of this opportunity to learn swimming from a group of professional trainers.
Young swimmer Omar Tariq Bhat while sharing his experience said he had never thought of learning swimming in open lake.
“I have been the part of these classes from the day one. We have no swimming pools where we can go and learn swimming. We are thankful to tourism department for organising coaching in the swimming,” Omar said.
The department has provided all the necessary equipments like safety jackets to help children learn swimming in open lake.
Omar has learned basic swimming in just 3 days after joining the classes.
“Our coaches are excellent. Initially I was made to swim with a life-saving jacket but after three days, I got confidence to swim without any support. I was a bit scared but I made it. Now I will gradually move deep into the lake,” he said.
Another swimmer, Ziyaad Mehraj has also learned swimming within a week after joining the classes. Ziyaad said that on his first day he was not keen to learn but came for a fun.
“When I saw other boys of my age swimming, it caught my fancy and I told my parents that I would also learn swimming.”
The swimming classes are also witnessing a good number of older people.
Dr Tariq Bhat who initially came to enrol his two sons for the swimming classes ended up learning himself.
“When I came here I felt excited to jump into the river and learn swimming. I couldn’t resist when we have life saving jackets here. It is a really fun. Swimming is must and I am glad that I am learning it. The department should continue with this programme,” said Dr Tariq Bhat.
Under the observation of noted swimmer and athlete – Riyaz Ahmad Wani – the learners are spending more than three hours in water everyday from 4:30 in the evening when the intensity of the heat is less.
The department has been conducting swimming classes every summer during which around 40 to 50 youth learn swimming.
Director Tourism Kashmir Mahmood A Shah said swimming is very important for every individual.
“We don’t have public swimming pools here where children can come and learn. Sometimes, children go into the rivers and learn which is dangerous. Many drowning cases have also been reported. We want to provide swimming to the youth by expert trainers at Nigeen Lake where the children get all safety equipments,” said Shah.
He said department of tourism is committed to promoting sports activities and train students in swimming, climbing, mountaineering, skiing and other adventure sports.
“We have already conducted rock climbing camp at TRC Nawgam where youth were imparted basic climbing skills. The adventure skills will help them earn livelihood.”