MYPPP sports bureau chief Harridzs Mohan said he was 26 and we fell for it, until his friend revealed he was actually a 47-year-old father of two.
Showing off his fit physique at the International Yoga Day event, Harridzs was among the 3,035 participants who turned up at Dataran Merdeka, Kuala Lumpur.
Also present were myPPP president Tan Sri M. Kayveas, Federal Territories deputy minister Datuk Dr Loga Bala Mohan, Health Ministry deputy director-general Datuk Dr Jeyaindran Sinnadurai and Indian High Commissioner T.S. Tirumurti who joined the crowd for a yoga session.
Dr Jeyaindran said the beauty of yoga was that people of all ages could do it. It is also the only exercise that introduces energy to the body unlike most sports which require the body to expend energy.
Recognising its benefits, he said the ministry’s Traditional and Complementary Medicine division was working with the Indian High Commission to certify yoga practitioners to treat ailments. To-date, there are some 50 licensed practitioners in the country.
Speaking on the need for Malaysians to practise a healthy lifestyle, Kayveas said it was crucial that the authorities ensure there are enough parks and open spaces for people to carry out recreational activities.
When there are space constraints, local councils can look into transforming abandoned areas into recreation spots, citing an example of how an empty carpark above a bus terminal in Cameron Highlands is now a venue for aerobics classes.
MIC treasurer Nitesh Malani, who was one of the event organisers, said one way for people to become fit is to be less idle.
“Don’t sit for long hours without engaging in physical activity. Even while waiting at a bus stop, there are simple exercises one can do,” he said.
The session started with a 10-minute meditation class led by Malaysian Yoga Sports Association (MYSA) head coach Lingham Pillai.
It was followed by a session on progressive muscular relaxation techniques by Universiti Malaya Sports Centre senior lecturer Lim Boon Hooi.
The highlight of the event was a yoga demonstration by Yoga Sports Superstars, who earned third placing at the Asian Yoga Sports Championship in Vietnam last year.
The members, mostly in their early teens, were able to contort their bodies effortlessly and earned rounds of applause from the audience.
Organised by myPPP youth wing, the mass yoga demonstration that lasted for four hours, was recognised by the Malaysia Book of Records as having the largest number of participants. A total of 3,035 people took part in the event.