Elephants commence weight training at palace

Abhimanyu, accompanied by other jumbos, commenced weight training at Mysuru palace on September 20, 2021.   | Photo Credit: M A Sriram

The weight training for Abhimanyu, who is carrying the 750-kg golden howdah during the Jamboo Savari, began on the palace premises on Monday.

The tusker carried sandbags weighing about 275 kg. The bags were placed inside a cradle-like structure that was placed on “Gaadhi Namdha”, a cushiony bed, and the elephant, accompanied by other Dasara jumbos, walked on the designated route within the palace fort. At around 12.15 p.m., the “Gaadhi Namdha” was secured on the back of Abhimanyu with ropes, and then the ‘cradle’ was tied on top of it. The training began after customary rituals.

The elephants walked up to the north gate of the palace and returned, covering a distance of about one kilometre. The rehearsal went off successfully.

APCCF Jagath Ram, CCF T. Heeralal, DCF K. Karikalan and others supervised the training.

Mr. Karikalan told The Hindu that the weight will be increased with each passing day.

From September 27 onwards, the lead elephant will be given training in carrying the wooden replica of the howdah with sandbags.

Besides Abhimanyu, Dhananjaya and Gopalaswamy too will undergo weight carrying training. “This is a practice followed for years as part of a back-up arrangement.”


The cannon firing to accustom the elephants to the booming sound will also begin soon. The rehearsals are expected to be held within the palace premises.

Also, in view of COVID-19 pandemic, the authorities are keeping a close watch on visitors and they are not allowed to get close to the elephants.

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Printable version | Oct 17, 2021 3:32:16 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/weight-training-session-for-lead-jumbo-begins-at-palace/article36570341.ece

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