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Adventure Sports

by Dhananjay Saheba

I consider myself very lucky, I got to spend the last 4 years of schooling at a public school – Scindia School, Gwalior.

Our day started early. We wore woken up at 5:30 and had to report for an hour of calisthenics at 6:00. The academic curriculum also included a couple of classes each week of PT which was primarily gymnastics.

In addition, sports were compulsory. Every afternoon from 4:30 to 5:30 we played football, cricket-athletics, and hockey depending on the season. It was enormously popular. The school had its own little “sickroom”. Students would report sick in the morning with mysterious ailments that allowed them to skip classes. At around 4 in the afternoon the mysterious ailments would disappear, and the students would turn up on the sports field.

I have been practicing yoga for about 20 years now. And I’m also part of a sailing team where we race every Saturday during the sailing season. I happen to be a better photographer than sailor so my rank in the fleet is Captain Camera and my job is to record our adventures for posterity.

In 2015 in my 60th year I volunteered to donate to kidney to a fellow IITian. I managed to pass all the tests but at the last minute– two days before the surgery– I was told that I was ineligible because although I was not diabetic my sugar level was elevated putting me at risk. We were stunned and spent the next few days in stupor. My friend asked me “Sheba, where’s your head at?” My response was: “I am absolutely amazed that in my 60th year I am fit enough to donate a kidney! It’s not that I’ve led a particularly careful life watching what I was eating and drinking yet here I am, and I don’t need any medication whatsoever! I only need to lose weight to get this done. Obviously, it’s very difficult to lose weight otherwise everybody does it. So, I don’t know if I’ll succeed but it won’t be for lack of trying. Just give me some time”. Sure, enough I managed to lose about 9 kgs in a couple of months and the surgery was done.

While I don’t have any lifelong medical data to prove it, I’m convinced that being physically active since a relatively young age played a major role in my being able to donate a kidney.

Today the scope of activities available has expanded greatly. In this issue we present a variety of exciting and exhilarating adventure sports: Anuj Niranjan on off-road motorcycling, Apurv Gujar on highlining, Avishma Matta on kitesurfing, Chinmay Patil on scubadiving, Durga Prasad on hiking the Hampta Pass Trail, Gautam Bharti on paragliding, skydiving, and BASE jumping, Prof Niranjan on ice climbing, Rui Lobo on sailing, Ratanjot on the art of flying and Smriti Mirani on Freediving.

So go out there and get active in any of the amazing adventure sports written about in this issue of Fundamatics.

Table of Contents

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Supporting school education often focuses on resources like labs, computers, or extracurricular coaching for students, while professional development for teachers is frequently overlooked. Developing teachers offers significant leverage for improving…


In the silence of the ocean, she found her song.  I always thought of myself as many things – a daughter, a sister, an engineer, a woman, an adventurous spirit,…

Ice climbing: An intro from the perspective of a serious amateur climber

I nurse dreams of climbing the “Trilogy” of the great north faces of the Alps. Living in Mumbai with a very demanding job (academic jobs are as demanding as one…

The flying chronicles: Paragliding, skydiving, BASE jumping

As the night unfolded, we took turns keeping watch and tossing twigs and logs into our little mountain bonfire. Survival mode: activated. It was a wild night, a crash course…

Conquering the uncharted: Off-road motorcycling through Himalayas

Water crossings came as a complete surprise to all of us. Saddling is tough on the rocks and dust but in water, it was a new challenge unlocked.

Discovering the Underwater World- An Introduction to Scuba Diving

In the same dive, I vividly remember an encounter with an octopus – the master of disguise. Watching it effortlessly alter its shape and color, becoming one with its surroundings…

7 Life Lessons from Highlining

The path to doing anything on a highline, requires you to fall, a LOT. I’ve seen friends not being able to do anything on the highline for years, and being…


Slow living, healthy lifestyle and mind tickling exercise, beautiful sunsets of the hills, calm winds and the smiling faces of people, if this life does not sound fancy, I don’t…

Riding the ocean swells – Kitesurfing

The number of times I face planted and the amount of salt water I drank those days, let’s not talk about that for now. But it was fun!

Tryst with Sailing

The sense of freedom of being one with the elements – sea, wind and sun without the constant hum of technology around us, far from the madding crowd, is unmatched…

Chasing Peaks: Adventures and Adversities on the Hampta Pass Trail

Every step forward felt like a leap of faith into the unknown, the fear of losing our way or being engulfed by the unforgiving elements looming large in our minds.…

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