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Ranjeet01

Sikh/punjabi Athleticism And Physical Prowess

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But I'm grateful for western languages because it means we can communicate as we're doing now.

Right. Not suggesting that the English language is superior to our Maa Boli or anything, but it's lexicon is far more expansive. Makes it much easier to deploy the sort of flowery rhetoric I like so much.

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Yeah, we're either soft and rotund, or underfed and quite willowy. I'm certain the obsession with alcohol isn't helping, as are the heavy foods made with butter and oil with very little in the way of natural or raw produce. Saying that, the old timers from back home use to consume vast amounts of makhni and other fatty foods, but I suppose their active lifestyles (to put it mildly, lol) meant none or very little of it was converted to fat. Even in these modern times the population back home has begun to suffer from ailments and conditions that were virtually unheard of 40 or so years ago in our grandparents or our parents' times.

exactly, in older times Sikhs used to work day and night and they were very physically strong so whatever they ate was either converted as energy or into muscle nowadays with technology there is little need for physical labour compared to before so when Indians eat food that is way more readily available, drink alchohol etc and do little exercise then we will seem less physically strong

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The thing is Sikhs have this reputation for being tall and physically imposing but I cannot see this in a lot of contemporary Sikhs.

Looking at the average UK Sikh male,I would say the average height is 5' 8'' and it makes me disappointed because you are kind of led to believe otherwise.

However, I feel relieved (Nasha taking aside) when I go back to Punjab and I see some solid 6'2"" Sikh lads.

Just wondering what it could be. Could it be that the majority of UK Sikhs are from doaba and perhaps they are smaller than those from Malwa and Majha. But then there are a lot of Doaba in Canada and they are bigger than the UK Doaba.

One thing I have noticed is that countries where there is a smaller population with lower population density you have people who are larger and stronger in size such as Afrikaaners of South Africa, Scandinavians or the Pacific Islanders such as the Samoans and Tongans whereas those from higher dense population areas such as India, China, Japan are generally shorter.

Obviously diet plays a large part and I think that Punjab diet is largely a wheat (roti) and dairy based makes a big impact whereas the majority of India is rice based.

I think in areas where there is a hotter climate people seem to be larger in their physical appearance, maybe the vitamins from sunlight help growth and in the UK where there is little Sun and more a damp climate, the same nutrients aren't as easily obtained so we will seem shorter. I'm 5'11" so I'm not short or tall but I'm quite wide in shoulder width. It's a shame because in the Guru's time we were probably the most physically intimidating people around.

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Not all Punjabi/Sikhs were tall and well built, regardless if it is today or back then, thats only your perception or what has been fed to you or what you are led to believe......thats just the reality of it. Bhai Bachitar Singh was only like 5 feet tall and in the khalsa fauj.....lots of different types of builds based on backround and lifestlyes etc. The more educated ones were typically shorter and less built while the farmer people were the built ones...its all genetics. They even say Guru Nanak Sahib and Guru Gobind Singh Sahib were around 5 feet 3 inches. So then they wouldn't fit into your box of what you percieve as the reality of punjabi/sikhs.

The same goes for Punjab in general, certain gene pools were tall and certain were not. No different from today.

I very much doubt Sri Guru Gobind Singh Ji was that height based on the weaponry he used, he would need to be taller. Sri Guru Hargobind Sahib is believed to be over 7 feet tall based on the sheer size of his chola he used.

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Right. Not suggesting that the English language is superior to our Maa Boli or anything, but it's lexicon is far more expansive. Makes it much easier to deploy the sort of flowery rhetoric I like so much.

Reading something of Nabokov reminds me how beautiful the English language can be... and he said English couldn't hold a candle to Russian! Show-off, lol.

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Reading something of Nabokov reminds me how beautiful the English language can be... and he said English couldn't hold a candle to Russian! Show-off, lol.

Have to hand it to those smug Europeans though, a lot of them do English better than the Englishmen. Western literature is bold in a way that ours just isn't. Would the realms of possibility ever have accommodated a Punjabi equivalent of Lolita? I'm doubtful. We do love stories well enough, but it gets a bit repetitive.

Speaking of Punjabi physical prowess, we should also consider developing our literary eminence. Every people should have at least one master of prose or poetry to their name.

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Have to hand it to those smug Europeans though, a lot of them do English better than the Englishmen. Western literature is bold in a way that ours just isn't. Would the realms of possibility ever have accommodated a Punjabi equivalent of Lolita? I'm doubtful. We do love stories well enough, but it gets a bit repetitive.

Speaking of Punjabi physical prowess, we should also consider developing our literary eminence. Every people should have at least one master of prose or poetry to their name.

Any budding authors are probably wary of the religious police getting the wrong end of the stick and branding him or her as an apostate or something, lol.

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Genes: What makes great athletes and why it mattersJon Entine | May 20, 2015 | Genetic Literacy Project

Running is the most egalitarian of sports, a natural laboratory. Unlike the props and costumes required for, say, professional football or ice hockey, or the intense coaching demanded of gymnastics an golf, one can just lace up and go for a run. Ethiopias Abebe Bikila proved this quite memorably in the 1960 Rome Olympics, whenshoeless, coachless and inexperiencedhe won the marathon. Raw talent is on display.

Which is what makes the World Track and Field Championships being held in August in Beijing, such an anticipated spectacle. Its the major global event leading up to next years Olympic Games in Brazil.

If there is anything we can be sure, the athletes that win wont always be the hardest working or the best coached. At the most elite level, the victory is contested by those with the best genes.

Those who do not understand the power of genes might argue that the medal podium for runners should reflect a rainbow of diversity, as no country or region should have a lock on desire or opportunity. But just the opposite has happened in track and field: running has become almost segregated by ancestry.

The trends are eye opening: Among men, athletes of African ancestry hold every major running record, from the 100m to the marathon. Of the past seven Olympics mens 100m races, all 56 finalists have been of West African descent. Only two non-African runners, Frances Christophe Lemaire, who is white, and Australias Irish-aboriginal Patrick Johnson, crack the top 500 100-meter times. There are no elite sprinters who are Asianor, intriguingly, East African.

The story of distance running is equally remarkable. Runners of West African ancestry dont tend to do well at endurance races, which are dominated by North and East Africansnote the medal haul in London by Kenyans and Ethiopians. And oddly, East and North Africans are terrible at sprinting.

Can cultural forces explain this?

The most frequently heard reason for this pattern is that African athletes just work harder at running: Its a way out. Thats the same explanation offered for why ghetto Jewish athletes predominated in semi-pro basketball in the United States in the 1920s or why blacks have emerged to dominate so many sports in America. Its one of their few outlets, the story goes, to escape the trap of limited opportunities.

According to this narrative, theres a tradition of running in Africa, and among blacks worldwide, that young athletes emulate; theyve been running to school since kindergarten; they train harder for a chance at the golden ring that athletic success offers; athletes from other parts of the world have developed a toxic inferiority complex to black athletes and switch to other sports; blah, blah, blah.

No one outside of the most politically correct circles really believes those theories capture much of the real story of black domination of running. Certainly scientists do not. Bengt Saltin, who recently passed away as the director of the Copenhagen Muscle Research Institute, said his research suggested that an athletes environment accounts for no more than 25 percent of athletic ability. The rest comes down to the roll of the genetic dicewith each population groupthats the technical term for the term race which carries disturbing associations having distinct advantages. In other words, running success is in the genes.

Here are the facts. Genetically linked, highly heritable characteristics such as skeletal structure, the distribution of muscle fiber types (for example, sprinters have more natural fast-twitch fibers, while distance runners are naturally endowed with more of the slow-twitch variety), reflex capabilities, metabolic efficiency, and lung capacity are not evenly distributed among populations.

Speed genes?

Its controversial stuff although not to hard scientists. We know that genes matter; what we dont know, and many not know for years, is what genes or gene combinations matter most.

Michael Johnson, the 400-meter world-record holder, has postulated that black sprinters benefit from the outsize presence of ACTN3. The speed gene as its been dubbed, makes fast-twitch muscles twitch fast. Lacking the ACTN3 protein does not seem to have any harmful health effects but does affect running ability. Scientists conclude that it is almost impossible for someone who lacks the ACTN3 protein to become an elite sprinter. The so-called sprint gene is more common in those of West African descent than in Europeans, according to a study published in the American Journal of Human Genetics.

Is this runnings smoking gun gene? No. Sports ability, like IQ, is the product of many genes with environmental triggers influencing the expression of our base DNA. But its isolation does underscore that when it comes to performance, genes circumscribe possibility.

As UCLA professor Jared Diamond has noted, Even today, few scientists dare to study racial origins, lest they be branded racists just for being interested in the subject.

From the playing field to the doctors office

But we have no choice but to face this third rail of genetics and sports. Over the past decade, human genome research has moved from a study of human similarities to a focus on patterned based differences. Such research offers clues to solving the mystery of diseases, the Holy Grail of genetics.

So why do we readily accept that evolution has turned out Jews with a genetic predisposition to Tay-Sachs, Southeast Asians with a higher proclivity for beta-thalassemia, and blacks who are susceptible to colorectal cancer and sickle-cell disease, yet find it inappropriate to suggest that Usain Bolt can thank his West African ancestry for the most critical part of his success?

Human populationscohorts of people with shared genesexist. But how important differences based on ancestral characteristics remain a controversial subject. The difficulty is sorting out how much of a trait is genetically inbred, how much may be shaped by environmental factors, and what is just plain supposition, sometimes sprinkled with biases.

Small population based differences can define elite athletes

Differences among athletes of elite caliber are so small, said Robert Malina, a retired Michigan State University anthropologist and former editor of theJournal of Human Genetics, that if you have a physique or the ability to fire muscle fibers more efficiently that might be genetically based it might be very, very significant. The fraction of a second is the difference between the gold medal and fourth place.

Malina, and geneticists and sports scientists in general, note that certain characteristics do show up more in one population cohort versus another. Indeed, empirical evidence makes hash of the myth that culture makes the athlete. Look at Kenya: with but 44 million people, the country is home to athletes holding one third of top times in distance races.

What explains this phenomenon? Its in their culture, say many social scientists. Kenyans dominate distance races because they naturally trained as childrenby running back and forth to school, for example.

Thats just silly, Kenyan-born Wilson Kipketer told me. Kipketer the second fastest 800-meter runner of all time and holder of six of the top 20 all-time fastest 800m times. I lived right next door to school, he laughed, dismissing cookie-cutter explanations. I walked, nice and slow.

What motivated Kipketer to pursue running? Like most young Kenyans, while growing up he hoped that he might catch the eye of a coach who combed the countryside to find the next generation of budding stars. He had dreams of being cheered as he entered the National Stadium in Nairobi. But his childhood fantasy was to be welcomed as a soccer player.

The national sport, the hero worship, the adoring fans, the social incentives that supposedly channel a kid into sportsthat all speaks to Kenyas enduring love affair with soccer, not running. Soccer was and is the national sports obsession of Kenyans. And Kipketer, like many Kenyans, was not very good at soccer; despite their zeal for the sport, and all the social incentives to push them into playing high level soccer, Kenyans simply dont seem to have the genetic package to make them world-class quick burst runners that thrive in that sport. Social and cultural conditioning alone cannot turn athletic coal into diamonds.

But Kenyans from the Rift Valley mountains are naturally diamonds at longer distance running. Many suggest thats due to the East Africans outsized natural lung capacity and a preponderance of slow-twitch muscles. Thats a perfect biomechanical package for long-distance running, but a disaster for sports that require anaerobic bursts, like sprinting or soccer. Indeed, Kenyas fastest 100m time, 10.26, is almost three-quarters of a second slower than Bolts world record. There are more than 5,000 times ranked higher than Kenyas best.

Body types, ancestry and sports

Although people in every population come in all shapes and sizes, body types and physiological characteristics follow a distribution curve as a result of evolutionary adaptations by our ancestors to extremely varied environmental challenges. Elite sports showcase these differences.

Asians, on average, tend to be smaller with shorter extremities and long torsosevolutionary adaptations to harsh climes encountered by Homo sapiens who migrated to Northeast Asia 40,000 years ago. China, for example, excels in many Olympics sports, for a variety of reasons. One of those reasons, according to geneticists, is that they are more flexible on averagea potential advantage in diving, gymnastics (hence the term Chinese splits) and figure skating.

Whites of Eurasian ancestry are mesomorphic: larger and relatively muscular bodies with comparatively short limbs and thick torsos. No prototypical sprinter or marathoner here. These proportions are advantageous in sports in which strength rather than speed is at a premium. Predictably, Eurasians dominate weightlifting, wrestling, and most field events, such as the shot put and hammer.

Check out the results each year at the National Football League combine in Indianapolis. The weights are dominated by white athletes.

At the Olympics, with the exception of North Korea, the top lifters come from a band of Eurasian countries: China, Kazakhstan, Iran, Poland, Russia, and Ukraine. Despite the image of the sculpted African body, no African nation won an Olympic lifting medal.

What about North American, Caribbean and European blacks who trace their ancestry to the Middle Passage? Shaped by many centuries of evolution in Africa, they generally have bigger, more developed overall musculature; narrower hips, lighter calves; higher levels of plasma testosterone; faster patellar tendon reflex in the knee; and a higher percentage of fast-twitch muscles and more anaerobic enzymes, which can translate into more explosive energy. Blacks in general have heavier skeletons and less body fatkey genetic hindrances when it comes to such sports as competitive swimming.

Evolution has shaped body types and in part athletic possibilities, Joseph Graves, Jr. told me. Graves is the Associate Dean for Research and Professor of Biological Studies at the University of North Carolina, Greensboro. Dont expect an Eskimo to show up on an NBA court or a Watusi to win the world weightlifting championship. Differences dont necessarily correlate with skin color, but rather with geography and climate. Endurance runners are more likely to come from East Africa and sprinters from West Africa. Thats a fact. Genes play a major role in this.

Theres no need to make consideration of race in sports a taboo. In fact, sports provide the most rigid laboratory control possiblethe level playing fieldto guide us through the thicket of ideological correctness. So kick back and watch the summer track and field games and the NFL season just around the corner.

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Also have to look at the diet

Indians have one of the worst diet

We cook are vegetables killing most of the nutrients

Butter is considered protein by many indians

an what percentage of sikhs are into fitness an training compared to other races

Sikhs have great genes for athletics so the nature part is taken care of what sikhs lack is nurture when it comes to motivation an training an diet

there are many indian groups with great athletic genes an also indians with bad genes when it comes to sports

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Why do you think we aren't as physically big as we use to be?

because we spend our days in front of PC screens then go home and then the TV screen calls ....there is no mentality of being in peak physical nick to go out there and deal with the world's baddies ... whereas our near ancestors felt ashamed to be sitting idle , if they didn't have to do their own work they would go out and help others , do work for the gurdwara, look at the size of the puratan langar kardieya and the firewood for the chooley you'd have to be really fit and built to do langar sewa even.

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because we spend our days in front of PC screens then go home and then the TV screen calls ....there is no mentality of being in peak physical nick to go out there and deal with the world's baddies ... whereas our near ancestors felt ashamed to be sitting idle , if they didn't have to do their own work they would go out and help others , do work for the gurdwara, look at the size of the puratan langar kardieya and the firewood for the chooley you'd have to be really fit and built to do langar sewa even.

True. Excessive TV watching is terrible for the waistline if there's no physical fitness going on, but more importantly it's very bad for the mind. The kind of insidious mental programming that passes for entertainment these days is crazy. I'm not being tinfoil hat guy, because I use to roll my eyes when people use to say TV was bad for us, but since I've stopped watching TV (around 2008 I think) I've found myself being able to process "life" a lot clearly without the background noise of what was being fed to me knocking around in my mind.

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When was Punjabi ever the same as being a Sikh?

This mentality is what hampers the growth of Sikhi, we think "Punjabi" rather than "the world".

There have been Sikhs from across the world since the Gurus. Look at Guru Nanak Dev Ji, he didn't just walk around Punjab, enlightening Punjabis. He travelled the world, spreading Sikhi.

Only 1 or 2 of the panj pyare was a Punjabi, the rest were from Orissa, Gujrat, Assam. There would have been a lot of variation in their builds and appearances.

Sikhi has no race or ethnicity. Sikhi is just Sikhi, it doesn't have an appearance or a height.

All Sikhs eventually have the same identity, the image of Guru Ji, regardless of their height or build.

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I personally admire the Polynesians ie Samoans, Hawaiians, Maoris, Islanders, Tonga....They are built like brick walls.

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I personally admire the Polynesians ie Samoans, Hawaiians, Maoris, Islanders, Tonga....They are built like brick walls.

Former wrestler Dwayne Johnson has Samoan roots as you know, and they've always been physically impressive from that part of the world.

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