HomeAthletesBabita Kumari Phogat Biography: Wrestling Phenomenon’s Inspiring Journey
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Babita Kumari Phogat Biography: Wrestling Phenomenon’s Inspiring Journey

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The Phogat sisters need no introduction. The Phogat family can be rightly called as the first family of wrestling in India. Though faced with hostility from his own community, wrestler Mahavir Singh Phogat trained his daughters to become the best wrestlers in the world. The Phogat sisters, including Babita Kumari Phogat, are a renowned family of wrestlers from Haryana, India. They have made significant contributions to the sport of wrestling and have inspired a generation of athletes with their remarkable achievements.

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Today we are discovering this journey of one of the best Phogat sister- Babita Phogat. Let us explore her achievements, milestones, and unwavering spirit!

Babita Kumari Phogat Biography

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Name Babita Kumari Phogat
Nationality Indian
Born 20 November 1989 (age 33)
Place of Birth Bhiwani, Haryana, India
Height 160 cm (5 ft 3 in)
Spouse(s) Vivek Suhag
Country India
Sport Freestyle wrestling
Event(s) 55 kg
Coached by Mahavir Singh Phogat
Achievements Bronze in 2012 World Championships, Silver (2010) and Gold (2014, 2018) in Commonwealth Games, Bronze in 2013 Asian Championships, Gold (2009, 2011) in Commonwealth Championship.

Family Background

The Phogat family

Babita’s father, Mahavir Singh Phogat is a former wrestler himself. The Dronarcharya Awardee left his job to completely focus on his daughters’ training. Her mother, Daya Kour, is a housewife. Babita has three sisters and two cousins. All of them are wrestlers. Her elder sister Geeta and cousin Vinesh have already won numerous international honours. Her younger sisters are also wrestlers. Babita has one younger brother, Dushyant Phogat.


Also Read | Geeta Phogat Biography | Husband | Coach | Age


How It All Began

Though the girls had firm support and guidance of their father, it wasn’t easy, especially at the beginning. Coming from a village where girls were killed even before they were born, the Phogat family has truly broken the conservative shackles of the society.

“We were two teenage girls who, according to custom, should have been draped in loose clothes to disguise our curves but instead we were running around the wheat fields in shorts and lycra tops and cropped hair. Everyone was just waiting for us to put a foot wrong,” Babita told the Dailyhunt.

This factor propelled Babita to work extra harder. She used to practice before school, go to school, come back, and practice more. Her coach and father, Mahavir Singh Phogat was a quite a task master. The girls had to come up with various excuses to skip the training. However, they always respected their father’s dedication and worked hard. Babita gives him full credit for her success.

Journey

Babita Phogat in action
Image Source- Xgames

Babita’s wrestling journey started with a stunning performance at the 2009 Commonwealth Wrestling Championship. She won a gold medal in 51 kg freestyle wrestling event in the tournament held in Punjab, India.

She continued her medal-winning streak with a silver medal at the 2010 Commonwealth Games. She was defeated by Nigerian wrestler Ifeoma Christi Nwoye in the finals of the 51 kg freestyle event.

Babita’s golden run at the Commonwealth Wrestling Championship continued in 2011 as well. This time she won the gold in the 48 kg category. At the 2012 World Wrestling Championships, Babita dominated all bouts to enter the semi-finals. However, she lost out to Jessica Anne from Canada. She won the bronze medal by beating Russian Zamira Rakhmanova.

Another bronze followed at the 2013 Asian Wrestling Championships in New Delhi. In the year 2014, Babita followed in her elder sister’s footsteps and won her first Commonwealth Games gold medal. She instantly became a national sensation after this feat.


Vinesh Phogat celebrates after winning the gold medal at the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth GamesAlso Read: Vinesh Phogat: Biography of India’s Golden Wrestling Girl


On a high after the CWG gold, Babita couldn’t carry the momentum in the Asian Games. At the Incheon Games, she missed out on a podium finish. Rio Olympics was a very ambitious dream for Babita. Unfortunately, she lost out in the first round itself.

After some disappointing tournaments, Babita found her groove again in 2018. At the commonwealth Games held in Gold Coast, Australia she won the gold medal in the women’s 55 kg freestyle wrestling.

Interesting Facts about Babita Phogat

Source: The Guardian
  • “First and foremost my idol has been my father. He is the real star and real hero. And after him, Sushil Kumar is my idol. He inspired me after winning a medal in 2008 (at Beijing Olympics),” she told the Deccan Chronicle.
  • Babita was very happy with Saniya Malhotra’s portrayal of her life onscreen in the movie Dangal. The Aamir Khan movie covers the journey of the entire Phogat family and how they brought new found recognition to wrestling.
  • Babita and her sisters were offered roles in the movie. However, they did not want to risk losing focus and turned down the offer.
  • Babita is strictly not allowed to grow her hair as her father feels it is a distraction. She has always sported a pixie haircut. “Papa says it’s a distraction. He says if you want to worry about hair and fashion, give up wrestling,” she told the Guardian.
  • Babita’s hobbies include running and travelling.
  • Babita wants to start an academy for young women wrestlers. She knows that most young girls don’t the get the opportunity she got. Even though there has been a substantial improvement in the last few years, girls are still not getting an opportunity to take their own decisions. Babita wants to contribute in her own way to this cause.
  • Babita has taken part in many programmes during elections in Haryana. She used her fame to encourage the citizens to vote.
  • In the future, Babita wants to be a wrestling coach.

Also Read | The Evolution Of Women’s Wrestling In India


Achievements

  • World Championships
Year Place Event Medal
2012 Strathcona County, Canada 51 kg Bronze
  • Commonwealth Games
Year Place Event Medal
2010 Delhi, India 51 kg Silver
2014 Glasgow, Scotland 55 kg Gold
2018 Gold Coast, Australia 55 kg Gold
  • Asian Championships
Year Place Event Medal
2013 Delhi, India 55 kg Bronze
  • Commonwealth Championship
Year Place Event Medal
2009 Jalandhar, India 51 kg Gold
2011 Melbourne, Australia 48 kg Gold

GrapplingRead More | What is Grappling wrestling? Know everything about the sport 


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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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