Oman Daily Observer - - SPORT -

Sports Medicine ex­pert Dr Mah­mood She­hab­ul­lah tells Anuroop Athiparam­bath that most of the Omani play­ers lack proper fit­ness rou­tine to pre­vent the in­juries. Oman needs a ma­jor over­haul in terms of the fit­ness lev­els of the ath­letes if the Sul­tanate re­ally wants to be­come a sport­ing power in near fu­ture, ac­cord­ing to a sports medicine ex­pert. “Ath­letes in Oman need to be ed­u­cated on var­i­ous as­pects of fit­ness and the proper ways of train­ing in or­der to re­duce many in­juries that they suf­fer un­nec­es­sar­ily,” Dr She­hab­ul­lah, who ac­com­pa­nied Oman del­e­ga­tion to seven Olympics as team sports medicine physi­cian, said. In his 38th year at the Min­istry of Sports Af­fairs as Se­nior Sports Medicine Physi­cian, She­hab­ul­lah said the ur­gent re­quire­ment is to im­ple­ment a ded­i­cated phys­i­cal ed­u­ca­tion cur­ricu­lum in schools. “We should start from the schools. The cur­rent phys­i­cal ed­u­ca­tion cur­ricu­lum is far be­hind the mark. We need a ded­i­cated and sys­tem­atic cur­ricu­lum in this im­por­tant sub­ject, which is closely linked to one’s health,” She­hab­ul­lah, who at­tended eight Olympics, told Oman Ob­server in an ex­clu­sive in­ter­view. On the sports teams in the Sul­tanate, the sports doc­tor said it is only the na­tional teams that are hav­ing a proper fit­ness rou­tine to pre­vent the in­juries. “Ma­jor in­juries are less in the na­tional teams as they are much aware of pre­ven­tion and pro­tec­tion meth­ods. But in the case of gen­eral crowd and am­a­teur play­ers, who spe­cially play foot­ball, they are still ig­no­rant on these meth­ods. They are more prone to in­juries spe­cially ACL in­jury of the knee,” the physi­cian, who hails from Bangladesh, said. ACL tear oc­curs in non­con­tact sit­u­a­tion when the ath­lete lands from an ae­rial tackle/piv­ot­ing or de­cel­er­at­ing sud­denly or suf­fer a di­rect kick on the knee by an op­po­nent player.

“This in­jury keeps an ath­lete away from play­ing from 8 months to a year. I call it sui­ci­dal in­jury. One day, I have seen 5 ACL knee in­juries… which is too much.

“These days the knee in­juries are more in Oman much due to the lack of aware­ness,” the doc­tor said.

From 1981, eight Omani play­ers and one Brazil­ian have lost their lives on ground, much re­lated to heart-mus­cle dis­eases.

Ali Suleiman and Salim Ali Man­sour are among some fa­mous play­ers who lost their lives on the ground.

“Our job is to pre­vent, pro­tect, cor­rect, treat and re­ha­bil­i­tate in­jured ath­letes with flex­i­bil­ity and full range of mo­tion and to en­able his or her safe re­turn to sports. Be­sides bal­anced diet, ath­lete should be fully hy­drated for a clean and true sports and ‘no to drugs/dop­ing’ is our moto.” CHAS­ING THE ‘PIN PAS­SION’ She­hab­ul­lah, who is also an IOC Ma­jor Games Sports Physi­cian, has not only fo­cused on his job while on Olympic Games. The sports en­thu­si­ast had also pur­sued his favourite hobby of col­lect­ing dif­fer­ent Na­tional Olympic Com­mit­tee pins from the par­tic­i­pat­ing ath­letes.

The col­lec­tion is now more than 6,000 and he had col­lected the pins from ath­letes rang­ing from Usain Bolt to Justin Gatlin to Sa­nia Mirza.

Ac­cord­ing to Dr She­hab­ul­lah’s knowl­edge, there are only four such ma­jor ‘Olympic pin col­lec­tors’ in the world with two Amer­i­cans and a Chi­nese apart from him.

“This is my pas­sion, to col­lect Olympic NOC pins. There are more than 6,000 orig­i­nal pins in my col­lec­tion. This is a col­lec­tion of mem­o­ries with the ath­letes at the Olympics not once but eight times from 1988 to 2016.”

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