A Sticker for KABADDI : Ashwini Chougule

GOLD medalist KABADDI champion Ashwini Chougule, a farmer's daughter, faced criticism from fellow villagers for wearing shorts. But she did not give up her passion for the game KABADDI - and became an inspiration to others

The Womenz Bureau had an opportunity to interview Ashwini Chougule, Gold medalist in Kabaddi from India and here’s what they shared with us

Ashwini belongs to Belagavi district of India from a village called Bhirdi. Completed Masters in Physical Education from Karnataka State Womens University, Vijaypura. Married to Mr. Ranju S Chougule (Goa). 

Knowing Ashwini Chougule

My father is farmer and we are in total 9 siblings. 7 sisters and 1 brother. Although a big family and being from a farmer's family we had financial crunches but my father and mother left no stone unturned to educate all of us. In the villages preference is given for marriage after the age of 18. As I wanted to study more my father and my mother gave a full support to me for my higher education and they did not force me to get married.

Start of Kabaddi

I started playing kabaddi at the age of 13, that time I was in 7th Grade. The selection procedure was going on for Women’s Kabaddi in our school. Our Physical education teacher Mr. B. Sanakop approached me and told to undergo the selection procedure as I was having a good height and physique for the game. I performed well in the selection procedure, and I joined our School Team. First I played for Interschool competition and our school won the Inter School championship. Later we played for State level Championship and we won 3 Gold medal for the same. For State level championship I won the “Best Raider” title for the team

Aswini receiving the “Best Raider” award at state level compeition

The Motivation

We also have Women’s kabaddi team in our district, as it is well known sports in our district I got motivated from the same , I went through the selection procedure later I was the part of that team and in the same year we won many district/division and state level championship hence that motivated more to me to play Kabaddi game. As we won the gold medal for the state the same year we got a huge appreciation from family, friends and higher authorities from sports that was again a plus point for me to stick to this game

Aswini and team after wining a Gold Medal in Bangalore (India)

The support

My father is farmer and we are total 9 siblings. 7 sisters and 1 brother. My mother and father worked hard for our livelihood. Looking at my passion towards Kabaddi , my family gave me the full support to be a part of it. During the practice session father  is to come with me  ,he also made my two sisters to join the Kabaddi team. My mother also supported me a lot, preparing food at 4.00 in the morning during my practice sessions. Looking at my performance during matches the people appreciated my father for his support to a Girl child to play kabaddi.


I played many National and State level competitions, I was a Best Raider in our team. I played 4 times state level matches, 5 times National level matches and 6 times inter-university matches. 3 times state level Gold medal, 1 time national level Bronze medal, and 6 times University blue. 

Aswini won the General Championship trophy  for 3 years consecutively at intercollegiate competition

Aswini being felicitated as University Blue. She has bagged  University Blue 6 times

Hurdles in the journey

Kabaddi is traditionally an outdoor game played on soft and level ground but nowadays played indoors also. It’s played on clay court outdoors and synthetic courts indoors. We did not had Indoor court facilities, hence we had to practice it outdoor .The ground was also very small. Still we practiced and brought many laurels to the state. As it is a rough game sometime family members were hesitant to send as it was causing us injuries. People in the village do not approve girls to wear shorts, convincing them was a major hurdle, but when we won matches they accepted it.

Aswini in-action during one of the raids at National Competition

Passing on the torch 

I would certainly like to teach other girls who has got potential but lack confidence and support to  come forward. I was lecturer in a B P.Ed College and I trained many other girls who had potential to play. I also motivated my sisters to take up this game. In future I will support girls to come forward and play Kabaddi.

Now married to Mr. Ranju Chougule (Goa) Ashwini is getting full support from her  family to cherish her passion for Kabaddi

The Womenz team  wish her  all  the success in her all endeavors and seek her guidance to bring more women in sports.

Ashwini Chougule can be reached at facebook

First Published: 10-Feb-2018- 18:56