HUMANS OF AISTS
MAS2021 | Ep14 | Zahir Khan
Sports are a way of life for me. I have harboured a love of games and sports from my childhood days through today, as I aspire to become a part of and contribute meaningfully to the global sports community. There are three major events in my life that have pushed me to pursue my career in the field of sports, a path that remains largely unconventional in the context of career paths preferred in India.
Internship At A Formula 1 Track – My earliest exposure to global sports was made possible when I interned at India’s first Formula1 track in Delhi. The time spent on site left an indelible mark on me as I witnessed a huge track being shaped out of barren land on the outskirts of the national capital. It gave me goosebumps to see the first ever race on that track. I realized how sports have the unique potential to imbue life into things.
Berlin Marathon – As an amateur marathon runner it was always my dream to partake in the “World Marathon Major” running event. I was lucky to get the race entry and the 7 months I spent training for my debut marathon race were fundamentally transformational for me. During the marathon, I saw how locals were welcoming the runners from over 150 nations, and it dawned on me that this run had transcended the boundaries of geography. The runners themselves might be from different countries, but this was a celebration of human endurance. I witnessed first-hand the power sports hold in uniting people across geographies.
TCS Fit4life program – Working for TCS’s corporate wellness program deepened my understanding of the importance of fitness in day-to-day life. A vast majority of the working population ignores personal fitness because of myriad issues they feel are pressing enough that they side-track their personal fitness. This program helped motivate the workforce at TCS to actively take up fitness alongside their professional responsibilities and helped build camaraderie among the TCS workforce. I realized how simultaneous participation in sports can be achieved alongside professional responsibilities, and how this improves the quality of life.
These three occurrences at various stages in my life guided me to pursue my passion of and for sports as a profession. I decided to enrol myself for the best program there is to help me with my goal, housed in the Olympic Capital, Lausanne where we are able to learn about the nuances of the sports industry from the leaders of the industry. My class of 2021 brings the idea of sports home, serving as a confluence, bringing the diversity of the world to one table.
*Credits for the Humans of AISTS go to MAS 2021 Aditya Narayan and Gabor Zippenfenig for coordination and photography!