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Take a breather before exams

How playing outdoor games helps in studying better?

We’ve grown up on the saying “All work and no play, makes Jack a dull boy”. Today, I was speaking to one of my seniors whose son is preparing for competitive examinations. So, we were discussing, how the students prepare for the competitive exam. This is the period of high stress – for example IIT entrance exams have two parts – IIT JEE Main and Advanced. Starting in March when the admit cards for the Mains are released to May when the advanced exams are held. So upto then everybody starts cramming – they go to coaching classes, to tuition classes – students under heavy stress because they study all the time.

Now, it is in the context to understand to keep on studying constantly it is quite likely that you will not be able to absorb at a pace which you were when you started off in the morning. Imagine in one day you get up in the morning and start studying something and continue to study till 11’oclock in night – your retention capacity drops dramatically because your mind is getting tired of studying and absorbing. So, the biggest challenge in learning is that you cannot keep on adding without deleting something. Then it starts becoming stress full.

Get a breather!
The best way is to play games (outdoor games). What happens when you play outdoor games? The candidate playing football, hockey or any other game is so focussed on the game that the mind gets cleaned up of all the tension. Once the mind gets cleaned up there is tremendous opportunity to learn more.

If you don’t clean up your mind, you cannot be fresh during the day. So, even if not outdoor games some sort of outdoor activity like running or brisk walk will be absolutely refreshing.

This is what I have learnt from my IIT days. Even in the IIT there used to be lots of exam pressure. But we used to unplug, play for two hours and your mind is cleaned up to pick up the things you study with the least effort. This is when your mind is working at its best.

So, one reason why we must do lot of physical exercise during high stress environment like preparing for exams is to keep your mind calm and sane.

Mind and Body Harmony
Second reason is that when your mind is stressed out your body also get stressed out. There is supposed to be a mind body balance. When you are continuously reading, you don’t understand, and you get frustrated – all this shows on your body. The two-hour time is for the body. At that time, you’re not thinking about physics, chemistry & maths. You are thinking about your body so exercise your body, yoga etc. So, this brings mind-body harmony and you are more geared up and receptive.

What can add to the stress?
John Abraham, the famous actor once said, your overall health is like a tripod stand – one leg of good nutrition, second is good physical exercise and third is good sleep. This concept is correct. Even if the student lacks on one of the fronts, it is highly possible that the student will not be at his/her best even while preparing for the exams and can add to the stress. What can also be stressful is procrastination of studies and hence students should plan and prepare well in advance.

Author: T. Muralidharan
Name of publication: Telangana Today
Date published on: 05/02/2018
published in: Hyderabad
Tags: Employability

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