Out of the box for a cause: Man participates in Dubai Run with unique costume

Out of the box for a cause: Man participates in Dubai Run with unique costume

His costume depicts a man whose niece puts him in a box and completes the run since he cannot due to bad knees

Photos by Shihab


SM Ayaz Zakir

Published: Sun 20 Nov 2022, 11:44 AM

Last updated: Sun 20 Nov 2022, 6:35 PM

Among hundreds and thousands of runners and walkers, a man participated in the fourth edition of Dubai Run on Sunday for a special cause. His unique costume and message attracted attention, and soon, his images went viral on social media.

“(The) need of the hour is knee awareness,” said Anand Raj, the runner from the south Indian city of Bengaluru, who went viral for his costume of a girl carrying a man in a box.

His costume depicts a man worried about not taking care of his knees in his adulthood, and to help him complete the run, his niece puts him in a box and runs. “Knee awareness is something which is largely not addressed, and to highlight the importance of knee health, and I chose the world’s best platform to spread the message.”

Raj was in the city to participate in the Dubai Fitness Challenge and arrived in Dubai on the first day of the campaign. “As soon as I landed, I visited the Khawaneej Fitness Village to have an overview and the workouts I need to focus on for the next 29 days.”

During a visit to Kite Beach Fitness Village last week, Raj met Dr Azam Badr Khan (AKA Dr Knee), who organised a fitness session to raise awareness on knee health. Raj was drawn to this as his late mother and a few other relatives had suffered from knee deterioration. “It was then that I felt this should be highlighted and planned for this during the mega event of the Dubai Run,” said Raj.


“Dr Knee is running an initiative helping people to take care of their knees from deterioration, which is very important in today’s world because of the lack of physical fitness. We got along and planned to spread the awareness together.”

Dr Knee, a knee replacement surgeon at Prime Hospital in Garhoud, has been active in promotive knee health awareness. “Knee osteoarthritis makes an individual paralysed and leaves them with only one option – knee replacement. The initiative is all about having regular exercise to make the knee last for a lifetime,” said Dr Knee.

Earlier costume runs

Raj also took part in the Dubai Ride last year and this edition, where he mounted a juicer on his bicycle to promote carbon neutrality.

He has been a costumed runner for the last 15 years back in India, raising awareness on issues like road safety, gender equality, carbon food print reduction, water pollution, corruption, and racism, for which he had bagged prizes every year.
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