06:00PM, Sunday 04 April 2021
A medal-winning British sumo wrestler will look to promote the health and well-being benefits of exercise when he attempts to flip a 183kg tyre over 100m at his home in Iver Heath.
Mandeep Singh Kundi, a project coordinator in the property business when he’s not winning gold medals in sumo competitions and representing his country at international events, is taking on the gruelling challenge to raise awareness and funds for NHS Charities Together.
He’ll take on the gruelling challenge on Saturday (April 10) and hopes the support of family and friends, the kind donations he’s received so far, and the rhythmic beat of a Bhangra Dhol (Drum) will motivate him to flip the tractor tyre to the finish line.
Inspired by Captain Sir Tom Moore, he’ll take on the challenge at home in Iver Heath and complete three 35m circuits of his garden.
“The main purpose of the initiative is to get people mentally and physically moving, from being stuck behind technology as well as the impact of the pandemic,” said the 39-year-old.
“In addition, any support received will of course help our wonderful NHS. Like an army at war, they are risking so much to fight and protect us on the front line. Many lives have been lost, and many more may follow, but many have and will be saved because of their selfless service. It would be wonderful to help them in some way.”
Mandeep, the current British sumo champion, believes the solution to our struggles with the COVID-19 pandemic is to get active, whether that’s by flipping a tractor tyre, taking up yoga or simply getting out of the house to go for a short walk.
“The pandemic has had a very deep effect on people both mentally and physically,” he said. “But we need to focus on the solution. It has to be positive and it’s important for people to get active, try and interact with people and not be closed off.
“I want people to relate to this because it’s a universal truth that exercise helps. I want to give people some food for thought to try and get active.”
The British sumo wrestler has been training for the attempt at his home gym and in the space that surrounds his farmhouse. He’s never attempted to flip such a heavy tyre so far before but said he’ll try to live in the moment and focus on taking it one flip at a time. ‘Slippage’ could be a problem, especially over the grassy areas if it’s been raining.
“The tyre is 183kg,” he said. “I might load it up to take it to 200kg, but whatever, it will be bloody heavy. I’m training three times a week for this but also leave plenty of time for rest which is also important.
“I’ve been inspired by Captain Sir Tom Moore and thought I’d do it at home where I’m blessed to live with my family in a farmhouse. The track is concrete and grass which could mean slippage, especially if it’s wet.
“You hit a wall with every flip. It’s easy to be drawn towards the end but you have to focus on each flip and live in the moment. What really helps, other than your physicality and biomechanics, is your spirit and blessings in the form of donations and people’s positive thoughts. I will take a lot of energy from that. You’ll have more energy at the beginning than as you go on when you’ll naturally slow down.
He added: “While I was born in the UK my heritage is Indian and I’m Punjabi. One of the famous instruments of the Punjab is the Dhol, it’s a big drum you put over your neck and bang it with two sticks. That Bhangra music will help with the energy and atmosphere.”
Mandeep had hoped to complete the challenge inside nine minutes to officially register it as a new Guinness World Record, however, this adjudication will now not take place. For Mandeep, this would always have been the ‘Brucey Bonus’ and secondary to his goal of raising money for the NHS and promoting health and well-being during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“This is a record that’s not been set before,” he said. “It would have been the Brucey Bonus for me, but we’ll still be able to put out the message about pushing ourselves and keeping ourselves fit while raising a lot of money for the NHS.”
Mandeep has so far raised £1,335 for the challenge. Click here to support him.
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