Kshama Koparde – a multi-talented sportswoman
Kshama Koparde is a multi-talented sportswoman. Here are some of her achievements in the field of Wushu, Karate, Taekwondo, and Boxing.
- State-level – 2010 Gold medal
- 2011,12,13 – Gold Medal (‘Sanshou & Taulou events’)
- National level 2012,13,14 – Bronze, and Gold Medal respectively.
- Wushu state (Karnataka) coach 2015 onwards
She started the career with Karate in the year 2009 and won various states and nationals and in 2015 represented India in the international ‘Shotokai’ Karate. DO Championship under junior category at the age of 16 in ‘Kata’ & ‘Kumite’ events and bagged gold in both becoming the first Indian in that respective category. From 2016 and in the following years participated in the state Olympics and made remarkable achievements.
Has been in the field for 3 years and represented state (Karnataka) in the nationals.
She started in the year 2016 during graduation and in 2017, she proudly became the first women from Coorg, Karnataka to represent in Nationals held in IIS- JSW (Ballar) and performed well and successfully improved the performance in the states and in 2019 again presented Karnataka in the nationals held at ‘Kannur’ (Kerela) and became the best boxer of Karnataka with the AIR-5. Collaterally was appointed as a junior state team coach, and was better in performing in terms of my students who bagged five medals in different categories with the success of my coach journey, and during march 2021 turned to an official in the boxing arena and will continue and give her best.
Here is Kshama Koparde in a conversation with GOGO Magazine.
1) How did your journey as an athlete began?
My journey towards the move to be an athlete was surprising and unplanned. I could say I never thought off to get into sports and be something miraculous as I am today. Basically, I joined Karate classes in my 4th grade (2009) as it was sounding very interesting for a girl like me who was damn lazy and her early mornings used to happen at 10 and rush to school and casually done. The ultimate aim to get into Karate was to reduce my kgs and gain fitness as advised by my Dad. In course of time, it has become my career unit. As first-ever participation was in State Level Wushu Championship 2010 where I bagged a GOLD medal and this is how the journey begins. I inculcated it as all-around development of my personality. I completely owned it & regularly stuck to its schedule early mornings and evenings. The dedication and hard work in it have given me 100℅ satisfaction & I was totally enjoying this journey along with my academics. When it has come to recognition in various competitions it motivated me in every minute to do better & better. There is no limit ya demarcation for it. It requires peer dedication, involvement and cent efforts.
2) When did you start doing boxing professionally?
During my graduation in 2016-17; Being a Martial artist we’ll play in Karate, Taekwondo, Wushu – Boxing wasn’t new to me. The play of it never taken me away as always fascinated me towards it. With my gracious bless I got a trainer on my campus where I was taught mornings and evenings & I was quick to grasp the techniques. The punctuality and my respects for the game made me professional which was the happiest ever moment for me and my well-wishers. My Dream as a sports professional has come true in 2018 when I got entry into Karnataka Women’s team to represent in Nationals and I was the 1st women to set the record in the History of Coorg Boxing. It was indeed to keep up and come over next Nationals with ample opportunities.
3) Who has been your inspiration?
I couldn’t resist taking these two names ‘Mary Kom’ & ‘ Akshay Kumar’ Indeed Bruce Lee was ever magical in me with all his efforts. In spite of all Odds Mary Kom who is known as Magnificent for all her efforts and achievements rules every boxer’s heart; pure Inspiration! Akshay Kumar, not just an actor. The Complete Man – Martial artist, social worker, political supporter, Chef, Family man what not..!
4) What are the odds in boxing a career option and how did you manage to fight those odds?
As I have started boxing during graduation time was the odd factor I could find some shortfall in it due to academic schedules. But if there is a pure involvement then even God can’t stop you. All way I used to rush behind the work and classes coping to manage and give more and more time for training. I could have dropped academics and could have been for India Camp having an opportunity but I should respect the ones who have supported me till day for what I do. Balancing all the areas was my duty and I am happy with it.
5) What type of injuries have you faced during your fights and how did you cope up with them?
Twice I had a wrist displacement which was quite severe. I remember in spite of sludge palm I had a final round in finals. it was tough pain but not as tough as my master’s therapy; I was treated with medicine and the pampering of my family come up. During boxing had minor cuts over my mouth and cheeks., bleeding and painful but it was having a great feel somehow warmth and pleasureful. In meantime, it healed leaving a memory.
As a Junior, I always had a fight in the Heavyweight category and being junior most of the times I had a fight with senior people experienced and tough though. There I didn’t bother about results as my aim was to concentrate on better performance. Many times the spirit of mine was appreciated more than the results, which pushed me to take things sportively which helped me to overcome the problems of practical life. Whether it is sports or academic career overall I have taken all the activities with the same spirits – undifferentiating so far.
6) Which has been your most memorable fight till now?
Every match I fought till day remarks my memory. Each match teaches you where I learned a lot. The most memorable one in Mysore Dasara( Karnataka Olympics) when I have to fight with the top boxer till that day – I was confident enough as it was just my 2nd boxing match as let me give my complete worth.; It went quite tough I was tough and the bout was in my favour… It stunned every out there and remarked as most memorable in many of ours. Most of the times I succeeded in achieving the targets.; but sometimes there were some shortfalls from where I learnt the important lessons that made me better than the previous one. The performance of so many athletes has inspired me to do better. So even the shortfall matches are more memorable.
7) How did your coaching career started?
It started as soon as I come with the Nationals in 2018. There will be a performance grading every year where it got me up as a Coach. In my Coorg district, I have a very supportive club where I mention Col. Muttanna sir who is a great personality known supported me like his own daughter and been there in every step of my success getting me to a better position today. As a coach, it’s a thrilling experience I say because it made me realise how tough the job is. I could recall the efforts of my coach on me and how better he moulded us. Reaching every student and shaping them is challenging and need patience. My 1st assignment was to train the sub-junior girls and schedule set for 48 days around, I gave my maximum and succeed to where the future in it went on.
8) Has your family been supportive?
Fully. I could point that without them I would be nothing. My hard work, dedication, involvement is all because of my family. They trained me so well to balance all the activities. I mention my father was the main source of inception followed by my mother and grandparents. My parents were liberal and my grandparents never discriminated against me as a girl but encouraged me to dal all athletic rituals. In addition, my city people also fully recognised my athletic activities and encouraged me to honour and giving suitable felicitations. I am blessed to say my Dean always mentioned me as his daughter and supported me till day and even this moment also.
9) How has life been on the other side of the ring?
On another side of the ring to life is interesting and challenging. I always believe you can’t choose a sport as a career. When you start playing a sport no one can decide there and then that he or she is going to make a career in it. You start because you enjoy it and somewhere down the road it becomes a passion and one stick to it. It just happens. Athletic activities have never come in the way of my academic activities. In fact, it helped me to do better on the academic side also. Never let me back in my studies. Being a topper in the respective classes deserving merit Scholarships & precious etc., on the other side I always enjoyed the household works helping mom in all ways. I always love to keep myself engaged in one or other works and learning new things that are on my way.
10) How was life in quarantine?
It’s a Solitude life. Quarantine has changed me – us completely if I am not wrong. It taught us the importance of every minute that bothered us. It has taken my life to a new shift – Helped for introspection, meditation, self-care, attaining concentration of mind & inner development of personality. As a coach, I couldn’t do much for self I made things better for myself. It was a precious time spending with family. Many of the experiences were shared with me by my Grandfather. That’s true! These days I come with the lessons of Swami Vivekananda and APJ that’s added many new things to me. I even watched and analysed the epic of Ramayana & Mahabharata – Story of Shri Krishna which flowed new light on my thoughts. Overall it was new learning.
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