Laxman Singh Bhandari: An Asian Championship Medalist and Pioneer of Delhi Armwrestling


Laxman Singh Bhandari is a towering figure in Indian Armwrestling. Hailing from Delhi, Laxman Singh Bhandari has been promoting the sport of Armwrestling for many years. He is also an Arm Wrestler himself and has won numerous championship in state and national level. He has also participated in two Asian and two World Asian Armwrestling championship. He is also the General Secretary & Coach Armwrestling Association of New Delhi, Founder Royal Sports Club, Sr. Referee of World and Asian Arm Wrestling Federation.

Laxman Singh Bhandari

1.) How did you get into the sport of Arm Wrestling?

I was interested in sports right from the beginning and my principle is everyone should get themselves involved in at least one type of sport and it doesn’t matter if they participate in them professionally or as a hobby.   

Sports is essential for fitness, healthy body, healthy mind and a healthy soul. As far as my interest in Arm Wrestling is concerned, back in 1989, there was an event taking place in a park in Delhi and my friends pushed me into participating here since I used to beat all my friends in Arm Wrestling. 

So the arm wrestlers that were present in that tournament were all professionals and in that event, I defeated the top players in my weight class. He had won a gold medal in Delhi state arm wrestling championship. After this, I felt really confident and my morale grew and then I started researching about the sport and came to know that there are competitions held in the state, national and international level.

2.) What is your proudest Arm Wrestling achievement?

No tournament is smaller or bigger, every event is prestigious. I have regularly participated in the Asian and World Championship. My best position in world ranking has been #6 and in Asian championships, I have won Gold, Bronze and Silver medal. 

What are your thoughts on the Indian contingent which is heading for Asian Championship?

“People are excited about the Asian Championship but there are issues with the Federation. If they are resolved, I’m sure a huge team will go for the event. It is a good team and the athletes are excited which is the best part. We are also trying our best to get a good team along. Many athletes are contacting me who are willing to go and I’m hopeful that they can win medals at the event.”

Delhi’s contingent seems to have stood out, what makes them different from the other states?

“We have been trying to train the athletes from the grassroots level. If you check out our track record, we have been training the athletes in all the categories available from the beginning. We have different categories- Junior, Senior, Master, and Physically challenged. We have also worked out on the women’s division. Moreover, we promote the athletes in inter-school and host inter-college tournaments. Recently, the 16th Inter-College tournament was held. It has also seen great participation. As we have been preparing the athletes in the grassroots level, they have now matured and we have seen the development. It was our major initiative. That’s why they have turned out to be the stand-out performers. The athletes are also passionate in Delhi and we are working very hard for this.”

The Federation is working well but what should be the role of Govt. to promote this?

“It has been several years that…….Govt. This is a sport that requires less investment and it has a high reach. It is among the very few games that require less investment. Moreover, this sport is played on every level irrespective of the age group and they have been playing the sport for a long time. There are also participants who are of age 70-75 years. So if Govt. provides support then at the school and college level, it will be an acceptable sport and the future of the sport is also bright.”

Recently, India’s strength team went to Nepal, what are your thoughts on Team India’s performance?

“At this point in time, Team India is leading the Strength category across the globe, the reason being that as widely said, India gave birth to this sport and they have been promoting the sport. India is accepting other foreign sports but this is a sport that we are spreading across the World. This is purely, ‘Made in India’ sport. This time as well, a huge team has gone for the event. Kyrgyzstan is a team which is also performing well. I’m very that these games which have originated from India are reaching a higher level.” 

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