Tibetan Olympics
Tibetan Olympics 2008

The Event: Day 4, 18 May 2008

Fun in the sun — swimming

Dolkar Tso practicing in pool

Dolkar Tso, 20, tries hard to improve her swimming skills in a pool during a practice session. (Reuters photo by Desmond Boylan.)

Participants playing water volleyball

The participants enjoy water volleyball after the swimming practice session at a pool in Khanyara. (Reuters photo by Desmond Boylan.)

— Early morning running and yoga gives all participants a huge appetite and so breakfast is eagerly anticipated. The swimming training following that was very successful. All participants had improved quite considerably since the first training. The boys had some trial races and the girls continued to improve their strokes and technique. The location was quite spectacular, with the pool nestled in gardens beside a river, and a backdrop of snow-covered mountains. The session ended with a vigorous game of water volleyball, boys against girls, which had everyone laughing and playing frantically in equal measure.

Dr Tenzin Namdul from Mentse Khang (Tibetan Medical Institute), visited to discuss the results of the E.C.G. heart tests which 5 male particpants had taken yesterday. There were some irregularities in 4 of the tests and so these athletes were cautioned not to over-stress themselves and to do yoga regularly. One athlete, Lobsang, had some more serious changes in his heart which puzzled him becasue he is renowned as a long-distance runner and has not had previous problems. He is determined to continue regardless.

One of the girl participants, Makyil, dropped out completely due to a stomach problem. We now have eight young women in for the finals.

It seems monsoon has come early as we are having thunderstorms on many afternoons lately. One such storm today delayed the mountain hike planned for the afternoon excursion. However after tea and snacks, everyone was off to hike up the mountains flanking McLeod Ganj and enjoy the beautiful temperate forests.

The athletes are forming a cohesive team and becoming good friends over the last few days. They look forward to the shooting practice tomorrow and a visit to the Tibetan Government-in-exile.

(Report by Catherine Schuetze, photos by Reuters.)