An essential component of the Action for Rural Rejuvenation program, has been the introduction of sports and recreational activities in the rural villages of Tamil Nadu.

evening gamesDaily gatherings on the volley-ball court are helping to renew a sense of community by involving villagers old and young, and men and women from all castes and economic levels. Playing together fosters a healthy spirit of competition, which translates into higher self-esteem, improved communal harmony, better health and enhanced productivity.

It is in this spirit that Isha Foundation volunteers organize Gramotsavam or "Rural Olympics". Through the event, 600 teams from villages in 7 districts compete in over 13 different sport disciplines and traditional rural games such as Selambu Attam, an ancient martial art, Rekala Race, a bullock cart race to beat the clock, and the crowd pleasing Volleyball and Throwball finals for men and women. Modern track & field events along with fun filled village games allow spectators of all ages to become participants in this weekend-long sport festival.

However, Gramotsavam is not just about sports, it also provides an opportunity to celebrate South India's rural life and culture. Every year, the event showcases traditional rural cuisine and local arts and crafts, while folk songs and dances delight the 300,000+ attendees.

The festivities conclude with a mahasathsang, where Sadhguru offers the huge gathering an insightful discourse, a question and answer session, as well as the rare opportunity of a guided meditation with a Realised Master. Sounds of Isha, Isha Foundation's in-house music band puts on a high-spirited performance that culminates in a spectacular fireworks show.

The annual event has rapidly become one of the most popular events in Tamil Nadu, drawing growing crowds every year.

evening games evening games rural Olympics

Key Components Include:

  • Evening games unite villagers from all sectors of society
  • Womens first exposure to games
  • Annual "Rural Olympics" gathers over 600 teams from 7 districts
  • Features traditional village sports & culture
  • Evening Sathsang with Sadhguru

rural Olympics rural Olympics

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