Kailash Mansarovar Yatra: The Essential Fitness and Preparation Guide
Fitness you need for the Kailash Mansarovar Yatra: Preparations to make
The Kailash Mansarovar Yatra is the ultimate pilgrimage for Hindu devotees of Lord Shiva. Situated in the kingdom of Tibet, it is still considered as one of the most difficult pilgrimages to make in the world because of its highly remote location, great altitude and inaccessibility. In ancient times, only a few people ventured to make this journey to fulfill their dreams, but now the situation has changed with proper routes having been discovered that can be used to reach Mount Kailash. If you have decided to go on the Kailash Mansarovar Yatra, it is important that you start making preparations. A discussion on just that below!
Eligibility for Ministry of External Affairs Kailash Yatra
- If you are going by the route recommended by External Affairs of India, you must know the eligibility criteria for it. Here are a few pointers:
- You have to be between 18 and 70 years of age at the time of the Yatra and you must have a Body Mass Index of 27 or less.
- You have to be physically fit and healthy medically.
- You must not suffer from any of the following conditions or diseases: epilepsy, heart disease, asthma, diabetes, and high blood pressure.
- If found to be medically ineligible for the Kailash Mansarovar Yatra, your application to the government will be rejected.
Eligibility criteria for private Kailash Yatra
Many people choose to go with a private tour operator these days for the sheer convenience they offer. Here are the things to know about eligibility if you choose one of them:
- You have to be between the ages of 10 and 70 years.
- You have to be physically fit and active.
- No medical tests will be conducted to prove eligibility.
Improving your fitness levels
As long as you don’t have any medical condition or disease that may prevent you from being comfortable with the harsh conditions during the journey, you should be good. Here are tips on fitness for Kailash Yatra:
- Brisk walking: Whether you decide to go by the route recommended by the GOI or you plan to go with a private tour operator, trekking is something you will have to do. If you are interested in doing the ‘parikrama’ of Mount Kailash, this becomes essential. You have to brisk-walk every day for at least 4 to 5 km so that your body is accustomed to the exercise. If you are someone who doesn’t have an active lifestyle, start with walking a couple of kilometers every day and try to go up as much as you can.
- Jog: If you can already walk a few kilometers every day, try to take up your exercise regimen by a notch and jog. Jogging is not difficult at all though it may seem so in the beginning. Jogging will increase your lung capacity and is great for improving the fitness levels of your body.
- Aerobics: You don’t really need to join a gym and pump up the iron before you go on the Kailash Yatra. Joining an aerobic class in your area or better still, finding a group of like-minded individuals in your locality and doing aerobics with them is good enough. You can watch videos on YouTube for inspiration.
- Climb stairs: You don’t need to buy a treadmill. All you have to do is climb the stairs as much as possible. This is a good idea for the home as well as for the workplace. Skip the escalator and go for the stairs as frequently as you can.
- Examinations: Even if you have chosen a private tour operator for your Kailash Mansarovar Yatra, it is best to go to the doctor and tell him about your plan. He will ask you to get a few examinations done. This will go a long way in helping you be confident about the Yatra.
- Take multivitamins: Even if you are medically fit with no problems, taking multivitamin tablets everyday is a good idea. This will ensure that your body is not missing out on any essential minerals.
Importance of taking care of yourself
The weather conditions prevailing in and around Mount Kailash are harsh but the real problem lies in the steep ascent that pilgrims need to make as part of the trek. Climbing 1.5 km to 2 km per day is something most pilgrims are able to do but it is only after they reach an altitude of 3 km that they start having problems. Rest and acclimatization are critical factors for the successful completion of the Yatra. By some smart planning, you can ensure that your body is fit enough to take it all. Start exercising as soon as you decide on the Yatra and carry all the necessary medicines recommended by your doctor. With the blessings of Lord Shiva with you, have faith, because you will definitely be able to do it.
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