HomeAthletesAbhinav Bindra Biography: From Trigger to Triumph
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Abhinav Bindra Biography: From Trigger to Triumph

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Highlights

  • He needs no introduction. Abhinav Bindra, the Olympic Gold medalist has redefined shooting in India. His illustrious career was a result of undying passion and commitment. Not many know that he started shooting reluctantly when he was in school. The reluctance turned into a dream very soon!
  • At a very young age, Abhinav made his Commonwealth and Olympic debut. However, his first breakthrough came in 2001. He won a bronze medal at the Munich Cup. In the next few years, he achieved one milestone after another.
  • In 2002, he won his first CWG medal and in 2006 he conquered the world by winning the World Championship. The biggest moment of Abhinav’s career came in 2008. He brought home the country’s first individual Olympic gold!
  • After winning more than 180 international medals, he made the country proud for 22 years. Abhinav retired from professional shooting in 2016. He decided to pass on the baton to youngsters. Now, he is enjoying another chapter of his life by becoming an entrepreneur and guide.

About Abhinav Bindra

Abhinav Bindra | KreedOn
 
Name Abhinav Bindra
Nationality Indian
Born 28 September 1982 (age 40)
Birthplace Dehradun, Uttarakhand, India
Education Bachelor of Business Administration (B.B.A.)
Alma Mater The Doon School, St. Stephen’s School, Chandigarh, University of Colorado
Occupation Former Sport Shooter, Businessman
Height 173 cm (5 ft 8 in)
Weight 65.5 kg (144 lb)
Major Achievements
Event 1st 2nd 3rd
Olympic Games 1
World Shooting Championships 1
Asian Games 1 2
Commonwealth Games 4 2 1
Total 6 3 3

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Abhinav Bindra – The Shooting Star of India

Family Background

Abhinav Bindra with his family
Abhinav Bindra with his parents and sister

Abhinav was born into an affluent Punjabi family. He studied in Doon for a couple of years before shifting to Chandigarh. He completed his schooling at Stephen’s School and then graduated in 2000. Abhinav’s family has always supported him in his career. It is quite surprising that the shooting champion was initially reluctant to try it. However, he soon fell in love with shooting.

His parents, Dr. Apjit Bindra and Babli Bindra supported his sporting career right from the beginning. They built a shooting range behind their house itself. This enabled Abhinav to practice at odd hours. Moreover, his family had the means to support his ambition. But Abhinav never took anything for granted. Right from the start of his career, he used to train for 10-12 hours every day.

Abhinav’s mental trainer and coach, Amit Bhattacharjee, spoke to The Indian Express about his ward. Here’s what he said, “Abhinav realizes his weaknesses but believes in himself and is ready to take risks. He is someone who pushes the limits and that is what keeps him motivated. Before the Beijing Olympics, he underwent commando training. Though he comes from a well-off family, he has toiled hard to make a mark as a sportsman and has not taken his success for granted.”

The Right Guidance

Lt. Col. Dhillon and Amit Bhattacharjee first noticed how talented Abhinav was. With their guidance in his formative years, he honed his skill immensely. When Abhinav first started shooting his eyesight was -2. Later, it even became -4. After undergoing corrective surgery, his eyesight became normal.

Abhinav Bindra with coach Gabby
Abhinav Bindra with his coach Gabby

Gabriele Bühlmann, a Swiss shooter, coached Abhinav in the later years of his career. She was with him when he won his Olympic gold medal. Later, Shooter Abhinav Bindra shares fond memories of that achievement in an interview with The Times of India.

“I realized I had won the gold when I went to my coach and asked her. I obviously knew I had done enough to win a medal but I wasn’t sure if it was the gold medal. And when I went and hugged my coach Gabby, which is when I realized that I had won a gold medal.”


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Sporting Career

Abhinav Bindra gold kreedon
Abhinav Bindra proudly displays his Olympic gold medal
  • At the 1998 Commonwealth Games, 15-year-old Abhinav Bindra was the youngest participant. However, his first important medal came in 2001 at the Munich World Cup. Abhinav won the bronze by scoring a record score of 597/600.
  • In the 2000 Olympics, he was once again the youngest participant. Even though Abhinav couldn’t get a podium finish then, the exposure helped him a lot. He continued winning laurels in numerous international meets during this period.
Abhinav bindra on KreedOn
Abhinav Bindra with Gagan Narang. Image: Source
  • At the 2002 Commonwealth Games, Abhinav opened his medal account. He won the gold in the pair’s event and the silver in the individual event. The 2004 Athens Olympics, however, was another disappointment for him.
  • In 2006, Abhinav literally conquered the world by winning the World Championship. He markedly became the first Indian shooter to win a gold medal in the tournament.
  • Abhinav couldn’t participate in the 2006 Asian Games due to a back injury. But, his medal-winning streak continued in the Melbourne Commonwealth Games. He came back with a gold medal in the pairs and a bronze in the singles event.

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And He Made History!

Abhinav’s back injury aggravated in the next couple of years. It also hampered his preparations for the Beijing Olympics. He had missed out on his Olympic dream twice and he wasn’t going to miss out on another opportunity. Bindra came out stronger than ever and rest, as they say, is history! Abhinav’s physiotherapist Digpal Singh told the Times of India in an interview,

“Abhinav is a person who remained completely honest, committed, and dedicated to his goals, so whenever he faced any form of injuries or health challenges he faced them head on through world-class rehabilitation and continuous bio-mechanical corrections throughout his career.”

At the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Abhinav scripted history by bringing India it’s first Individual Gold medal. It was truly a euphoric moment for the entire nation. He achieved this historic feat in the men’s 10m Air Rifle event after shooting a total score of 700.5. The whole country celebrated this win with the champion. He won numerous awards from the government as well as some private organizations.

Unfortunately, Abhinav could not qualify for the next edition of the Olympics. However, he did win the gold in 2014 Commonwealth Games held in Glasgow. At the 2016 Rio Olympics, he missed out on a podium finish narrowly. After a glorious career spanning 22 years, Abhinav retired on the 5 September 2016.

Abhinav Bindra Interesting Facts

Abhinav Bindra KreedOn
Abhinav Bindra at an event
  • He was also the Goodwill Ambassador of the Indian contingent in the Rio Olympics 2016.
  • Abhinav’s mother thinks that he is India’s most eligible bachelor. However, he is not interested in getting married!
Abhinav bindra on KreedOn
Pushan Jain with Abhinav Bindra. Image: Source
  • His favorite dish is tandoori chicken.
  • Abhinav has 2 pet dogs, Buddy is a Saint Bernard and Chhotu is a Beagle.
  • Bindra shared his interesting life story through the book, A Shot at History: My Obsessive Journey to Olympic Gold. The book was published in October 2011.
  • He is known to have tried many unusual methods to improve concentration before important tournaments. Some of them include drinking yak milk and bungee jumping.

This simple yet profound outlook has helped Abhinav succeed in all his endeavors. He never played to add another medal on display, he played for the sport. The entire journey was special to him. He gave his all to the process and the results are visible for everyone. More often than not, we get so consumed with the rewards; we get distracted from the task at hand. Abhinav had all luxuries in life. He could have in fact chosen the easy way and joined his family business. But, he decided to choose the harder, yet much more rewarding way.

Awards and Recognition

  • 2000 – Arjuna award
  • 2002 – Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna (India’s highest sports award)
  • 2008 − Honorary doctorate (D.Litt) from SRM University.
  • 2009 – Padma Bhushan
  • 2011 – Made an honorary lieutenant colonel by the Indian Territorial Army
  • 2018 – Blue Cross, highest shooting honor by International Shooting Sport Federation.
  • 2019 – Honorary doctorate (DPhil) from Kaziranga University

Abhinav Bindra Achievements

Olympic Games

Year Place Event Medal
2008 Beijing, China 10m Air Rifle Gold

ISSF World Shooting Championships

Year Place Event Medal
2006 Zagreb, Croatia 10m Air Rifle Gold

Commonwealth Games

Year Place Event Medal
2002 Manchester, United Kingdom 10m Air Rifle (Pairs) Gold
2006 Melbourne, Australia 10m Air Rifle (Pairs) Gold
2010 Delhi, India 10m Air Rifle (Pairs) Gold
2014 Glasgow, Scotland 10m Air Rifle Gold
2002 Manchester, United Kingdom 10m Air Rifle (Pairs) Silver
2010 Delhi, India 10m Air Rifle Silver
2006 Melbourne, Australia 10m Air Rifle (Singles) Bronze

Asian Games

Year Place Event Medal
2010 Guangzhou, China 10m Air Rifle (Team) Silver
2014 Incheon, South Korea 10m Air Rifle (Team) Bronze
2014 Incheon, South Korea Men’s 10m Air Rifle Bronze

Abhinav Bindra Social Media

Twitter

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Instagram

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by Abhinav A. Bindra (@abhinav_bindra)

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A post shared by Abhinav A. Bindra (@abhinav_bindra)

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by Abhinav A. Bindra (@abhinav_bindra)


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FAQ

When did Abhinav Bindra win his Olympic gold medal?

Abhinav Bindra won his Olympic gold medal on August 11, 2008, during the 10m Air Rifle event at the Beijing Olympics.

How did Abhinav Bindra start his shooting career?

Abhinav Bindra’s passion for shooting ignited during his early years. His parents, Dr. Apjit Bindra and Babli Bindra supported his sporting career right from the beginning. They built a shooting range behind their house itself. This enabled Abhinav to practice at odd hours.

Has Abhinav Bindra won other awards and honors?

Abhinav Bindra’s list of accomplishments is extensive. Apart from his Olympic gold medal, Bindra has received several awards and honors. He was honored with the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna, India’s highest sporting honor, Padma Bhushan, one of India’s highest civilian awards, and many more.

Did Abhinav Bindra participate in multiple Olympics?

Abhinav Bindra participated in multiple Olympic Games, including the 2000 Sydney Olympics, the 2004 Athens Olympics, the 2008 Beijing Olympics, the 2012 London Olympics, and 2016 Rio Olympics. His groundbreaking gold medal win occurred at the Beijing Olympics.

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Mamta Thatte
Mamta Thatte
A passionate foodie, a versatile writer, and now a sports enthusiast, Mamta is always open to exploring new avenues. She has a vast experience in Web Content Writing, Editing, and Social Media Management. A self-confessed coffee and dark chocolate addict, she believes in following her heart and giving her 100% into everything she does.

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