Training under new strength and conditioning coach Jane Tornqvist of Sweden for the past two months has paid rich dividends to the Indian women's football team ahead of the upcoming AFC Asian Cup, feels goalkeeper Aditi Chauhan. (More Football News)
Tornqvist is a former Sweden international and she has played under current India head coach Thomas Dennerby at the club level as well as in the national team. After retirement she became a strength and conditioning coach.
Chauhan believes that morning sessions in the gym with Tornqvist have helped her become a lot more agile on the pitch.
"Ever since Jane has joined, it's made a huge difference. As a goalkeeper, I can see the change in my movements on the pitch. I feel stronger, my jumps are higher, and my kicks are longer," said Chauhan.
"It's all about knowing which parts of your body to work on to gain the extra yard on the pitch, and she really brings in that knowledge," she was quoted as saying in a release issued by the All India Football Federation.
"And these things really matter in tournaments where you have back-to-back matches with little time for recovery."
Tornqvist, on her part, said the Indian players have become stronger and more agile.
"I think the players have started to understand the importance of strength and conditioning, once they started seeing the results on the pitch," she said.
"In two months, they feel the difference on the field – they are stronger, faster, and more agile," said the Swede, who has started liking eating 'dosa' in the two months she has been in India.
The 46-year-old Tornqvist was herself a defender back in her playing days. She won Damallsvenskan (Swedish Women's League) in back-to-back seasons at Djurgardens IF.
"The most important thing is that they have started to get to know their own bodies," said the Yoga enthusiast.
"Your body is a tool, and you need to take good care of it in order to perform."
The women's AFC Asian Cup, a qualifying event for the 2023 FIFA World Cup, will be played among 12 teams in Mumbai and Pune from January 20 to February 6.