If a year and a half long pandemic has taught us anything then it is that health is the most important asset for anyone and those overlooking it should instantly get out of bed and start working out. While Gym and other western forms of workout training regimes have become the universal go-to options for the masses, one ancient training equipment that had lost its charm is quietly making a comeback. The ‘Gada’ or ‘Mace’ training is becoming a popular form of weight training.
Gada which is unmistakeably associated with Lord Hanuman takes some core strength to wield. The old ‘akharas’ of the country that train pehalwans in the rustic settings use Gada as an important tool to chisel out the bodies that allow them to outlast any opponent. Gada has been used by the gallant warriors of India in the past and thus, its use carries some significance. It helps in the movement of every single body muscle, which any other gym machine will have a hard time competing with.
The beauty of the Gada is that you can increase the difficulty by simply moving your hands closer together towards the end of the handle or make it easier by using a spread-out grip with one hand closer to the head while the other remains towards the bottom of the handle.
The ability to change the difficulty of a movement by simply altering your hand placement makes Gada an extremely dynamic and versatile training tool.
While the akharas enjoyed popular use among Western exercise enthusiasts as early as the 19th century, Gada training for some reason didn’t catch on until very recently. Mixed martial artists in the West have taken up heavy ‘Gada’ training as a way to strengthen the muscles involved with throwing opponents to the mat.
The Flowing Dutchman is one of the few foreigners who has been propagating the lost art of ‘Gada Training’. He has travelled throughout India’s hinterland cities and villages and discovered the akharas that still practice the old art form. His videos fetch huge numbers, suggesting that people are starting to reinvent their interest in the Gada training.
From squads to overhead press to bench press to training hamstrings — a Gada can be used for multiple purposes. It is mobile, can be used anywhere, is relatively cheaper than the fancy gym equipment and most importantly can be wielded by people of all age groups. If you haven’t introduced Gada in your training regime already, then you are missing out on an important training equipment.