As the nine-day festival of 'Navratri' approaches, the craze for 'Garba', a folk dance, has picked up amongst women in Gujarat to shed a few kilos before the much-awaited festive season.
Kripa Patel, a Garba trainer, said that ladies who come to play Garba in the studio thought it was an ideal way to reduce weight.
"Generally, the ladies who come here are forty plus. When they came here, they used to be overweight. We used to think how would they play Garba. Now after months of practice, they have reduced so much," said Patel.
Anita Zaweri, a Garba player, said that she really liked playing Garba as she thought that it was a good form of exercise.
"I'm very much interested in Garba and still play it like I used to play in my childhood with same enthusiasm," said Zaweri.
Groups of young people dressed in traditional attire with women wearing long skirts dancing to folk tunes and performing "dandiya" with a pair of sticks is a common sight during Navratri.
The Navratri festival is celebrated in honour of Hindu Goddess Durga, a manifestation of the Mother Goddess in Hindu mythology.
It is believed that during the days of Navratras, Goddess Durga descends on earth to rid it of the demons and blesses her devotees with happiness and prosperity.
Fasting during the day ends in nights of celebration.