HS Prannoy Overcomes Health Challenges to Secure Victory at 2024 Thomas Cup

Leon To

Thu May 02 2024

HS Prannoy
Health Challenges
Thomas Cup 2024

HS Prannoy, the world's 9th-ranked badminton player, faced a tough battle against recurrent health issues while leading the Indian men's team at the 2024 Thomas Cup in Chengdu, China. Despite ongoing struggles with his health, Prannoy's determination and resilience shone through as he aimed to rediscover his top form on the badminton court.

The recent health setback in January 2024 disrupted Prannoy's stellar performance in the previous season. The issue stemmed from a malfunctioning lower esophageal sphincter, causing food to move back up, resulting in constant nausea. Prannoy had previously recovered from acid reflux years ago but encountered a recurrence when he was at his peak. The physical toll was evident in his visibly slimmer physique, alongside psychological challenges.

"I feel like when I eat, the food doesn't go down. Every time I train, the food rises and pushes towards my chest, making me want to vomit. It's clearly related to acid reflux. The food just can't stay down. I can feel it rushing up; that's where I start panting," Prannoy described. Adhering to a liquid diet before morning training to avoid regurgitation, he restricted food intake to prevent affecting his competition schedule, even opting to play matches on an empty stomach, finding nausea worse than hunger.

Initially suspecting acid reflux, the focus of the treatment shifted after subsequent tests revealed the underlying issue, necessitating medication. "It's tough. We had to figure out what the problem was, and that's where all the energy would be channeled. When we understand what it is, we can trust the process a bit more. If you don't comprehend it, you're just stuck in darkness, hoping things will happen, and that's what we did in the first two to three months," Prannoy shared.

The struggle revolved around intestinal issues, leading to extensive examinations. While gut health improved, discomfort persisted, prompting a series of tests over a month. Physicians suggested managing the condition with medication, and Prannoy noticed significant improvements in recent weeks. Reflecting on his victory over Harry Huang from England, Prannoy expressed confidence in the team's collective energy bolstering their performance, fostering optimism for the upcoming Olympic Games in Paris 2024.

HS Prannoy's commendable triumph over health adversities exemplifies his unwavering dedication and grit as a badminton athlete. Amid challenges, his perseverance and commitment to the sport shine brightly, serving as an inspiration to many. As he continues on his path to recovery and success, Prannoy's resilience and determination position him as a formidable force in the badminton arena.