NSNIS relaxes admission norms to help elite athletes pursue coaching

The Netaji Subhas National Institute of Sports in Patiala is one of Asia’s premier Sports Institute’s and is renowned for its sports coaching courses.

By Utathya Nag

Netaji Subhas National Institute of Sports (NSNIS) Patiala has relaxed the admission criteria of its flagship diploma course to help more eminent Indian athletes become coaches.

Popularly known as the National Institute of Sports, the NSNIS is Asia's largest Sports Institute and has moulded several high calibre coaches over the years.

The revision adds to the ministry’s decision last month to establish Khelo India Centres across the country to make sports a lucrative option in India. Those centres would allow sports champions to either run the centres or contribute as coaches.

In May, India’s sports minister Kiren Rijiju announced that NSNIS has provisioned for a direct admission of 46 eminent athletes across 23 sports (1 man and 1 woman each) starting from the 2020-21 batch.

The shortlisted candidates under the eminent athletes category don’t need to take the entrance exams and interview mandatory for regular candidates and can progress to the medical and physical tests directly.

“Several changes in the existing policy has been incorporated to ensure that new coaches are able to cater to the evolving needs of the growing sports ecosystem of India and to attract the best available talent in the country,” read a statement.

To be eligible for the shortlist, however, athletes needed to meet certain parameters, which have now been relaxed a little to help more people to benefit from the initiative.

Changes in eligibility criteria

The minimum education qualification (10+2 pass) for entry into the course is still the same but there are certain changes with the sporting achievements cutoff.

While winning a medal at the senior world championship was mandatory earlier, now a participation is enough for direct admission.

Similarly, any medallist - gold, silver or bronze - from the Asian Games or the Commonwealth Games will now be eligible for the cutoff, as compared to the previous eligibility criteria which required a gold medal from either of these events.

For Olympians, the rules remained unchanged. Any athlete who has participated in the Games automatically qualify to apply for the course.

If two or more eminent male or female athletes who meet the eligibility parameters apply from the same discipline, a point-system has been put in place to select the final candidate.

In addition, the last date of submission of online application for enrolment has also been extended till July 31 in view of the ongoing pandemic situation.