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13 Sports in India that you never knew existed!

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Kancha
www.kreedon.com

The spirit of recreation in India has always been mediated through sports which are unrecognized to the upcoming generations. Also, it has been witnessed that so far the indigenous sports which originated in the territory have all been underrated due to lesser recognition in the broader picture. Such an impasse occurs due to a lack of sponsored advertisement. Certain mainstream games like cricket and football garner a lot of audience and aspirants to pursue a career, considering the fact that these games are very much savored across the globe. But we can’t at the same time overlook the fact that there are other sports which are celebrated in rural India and do not require much equipment for execution and can be played by all folks.

Here are a few of them:

1. Yubi Lakpi

Yubi Lakpi
Source: zoominindia02.blogspot.com

Similar to football, this game is played in Manipur, wherein the ball is replaced by a coconut soaked in oil and either team struggles to take it to drop at a box placed by the end of the field. And here it comes with a twist, where teams lubricate their body with oil and water, to not get hold of one another

2. Ke Nang Huan

Ke Nang Huan
Source: instablog1.rssing.com

It is indeed an integral skill of the tribal people to tame wild animals considering their stay in forests, one such game includes taming a wild boar or pig caged for long, in which participants need to grab their ears and regulate its activity. Famous in the islands of Nicobar

3. Desi Olympics

Beach Volleyball
Source: sandvolley.blogspot.com

The farming community in Punjab since 1933, has been holding a series of a sports event like motorbike stunts, lifting bicycles by teeth which fascinate the entire village a worthy watch

4. Maut Ka Kuan

Maut Ka Kaun
Source: www.scoopwhoop.com

This in literal terms means, ‘Well of Death’ racing speedily on bikes in a well against gravity, would get an ordinary spectator a fit or goosebumps.

5. Elephant Polo 

Elephant Polo
Source: www.aljazeera.com

We all are aware of the elite sport Polo and acquainted with the fact that it is also played at horseback. But it is also played with elephants which indeed requires considerable proficiency to get a commendable grip in the game. However, it comes with a slightly unequal approach, men are allowed to hold the stick with one hand but women can exercise the dexterity of both.

6. Nalugu Stambhalata

Nalgu
Source: en.wikipedia.org

This game is played in an arena surrounded by 4 pillars, it was a way out to keep the kids engaged in the scorching heat. Renowned in Andhra Pradesh where players had to run and hold a pillar before one holds them

7. Pallanguli

Pallanguli
Source: Framingnarratives.wordpress.com

This is famous in Tamil Nadu, with seeds distributed in 6 amongst 14 cups. The person who is unable to identify those cups with seeds even after two consecutive chances, is eliminated from the game

8. Porok Panim Sinam

Source: www.bestadsontv.com

Famous in Arunachal Pradesh, this sport is played between two participants balancing on one leg held by a hand, and place the other hand on his shoulder, the one who keeps the balance for longer times takes the win.

9. Kang Shanba

Kang Shanba
Source: http://www.e-pao.net

It marks the celebration of New Year in Manipur, symbolizing the cycle of life, day, night, death and is played by a circular object, kind of a hoop and has to be thrown within a specified boundary.

10. Jallikattu

Cow fighting
Source: www.tourmyindia.com

Recently a lot of controversies have erupted over this sport, the traditional method to fight an animal counted on one’s bravery. The best dual of man and animal is known as Jallikattu this was a way to choose a life partner. The one who was less prepared amongst the two, it proved to be deadly for the weaker one.

11. Naga wrestling 

Naga wrestling
Source: Medium.com

Wrestling has always been famous in different parts of the country, but here the goal is to reach the opponent wrestler’s waist belt as the target. The one whose body touches the ground the most number of times loses.

12. Hinam Turnam

Hinam Turnam
Source: www.aljazeera.com

Celebrated sport in the remotely forest areas of Arunachal Pradesh, where hunting is a way of survival and participants enact roles of the hunter and hunted. Demonstrating how to fight a beast.

13. Dhopkhel 

Dhopkhel
Source: desinema.com

Much popular in Assam is somewhat a branch of Kabbadi, Dhop is the name given to the rubber ball which is thrown in the territory of the opponent team and one has to bring the ball of his team by crossing the central line without getting touched. It is played during Rongali Bihu.


So mentioned above were some of the amusing sports which can actually blow off a layman’s mind. However, it is indeed regretful that we are oblivious about such intriguing sports which have its foundation in and around us but we failed to become a part of it. But there still remains a chance to witness these games prevailing in rural India which defines not only our culture but unfolds premise of sports which are officially played across the globe. So here is all, you can have a read and further share which would enchant people to explore more about it.


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An impulsive writer and compulsive procrastinator, she energizes her daily grind with coffee, diversions and discourse. All she need to get through life is a flawlessly brewed coffee to accompany her vacillation and is lethargically motivated. On days when she is not writing, you’ll find her reading, watching movies and pigging out. Usually an escapist from worldly problem, seeking solace in books and food. Has a master’s degree in classical dance and has left no corners undiscovered when it comes to being creative and learning an art. A crazy coffee sweetheart who earnestly trusts in the magical power of words.