Heath Matthews redefined concept of fitness for me: Saina | other | Hindustan Times
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Heath Matthews redefined concept of fitness for me: Saina

other Updated: Mar 20, 2009 16:38 IST

Relieved to have put behind the shoulder injury that sidelined her for three weeks, ace shuttler Saina Nehwal said physio Heath Matthews has made life easy for her as she no longer has to bother about injuries and fitness with the South African around.

"The thing with having people like Heath around is that recovery in between matches and from niggles that crop up from pushing that extra inch during keen contest is assured," Saina said.

"The likes of Heath are tough to come by and he has redefined the whole concept of fitness for me," Saina said in her blog.

Currently undergoing rigorous training for the Indian Open Grand Prix to be held in Hyderabad from March 24-29, Saina is looking forward to a session with boxer Akhil Kumar, whom she considers a great motivator.

"I am also looking forward to having fellow MCT (Mittal Champions Trust) athlete Akhil Kumar coming in to train with me. I cannot help but marvel at the motivation of people like Akhil...Having someone like him along is a really good as he is someone I can look upto when it comes to physical fitness.

"Then, Akhil is a great motivator and you can be sure he will be one of the most vociferous supporters on the courtside during my matches," he said.

World number nine Saina will open her campaign in the Indian Open against Chew Yen Daphne Ng of Malaysia and the Hyderabadi ace is looking forward to playing before home crowd.

"Playing such a big event at home for the first time does have me a bit apprehensive but at the same time I am eager to perform in front of my countrymen. There is pressure but at the same time there is keen anticipation too. I will have the home conditions advantage and I am raring to go," she said.

The Hyderabadi girl, who turned 20 earlier this week, believes in pushing the limit and sweating it out in the court.

"For each sportsperson experiences a unique high that can only come from pushing ones limits repeatedly and finding out that there are actually no boundaries.

"Even if one day I reach the limit of developing physical capabilities, staying at the peak of fitness will require continued adherence to the regime of sweat. Frankly, I don't mind it a bit. In fact, I thrive in it," she said.