Sumo Wrestling has a long history. It began during the Edo Period (1603-1868) in Japan and has become Japan’s national sport. It was originated as a ritual ceremony to the gods of good harvest. In the days of Shogun and Samurai, Sumo was used for military and that is where Jujitsu was developed from. Even though other national sports are played in Japan such as soccer and baseball, Sumo is the oldest nation’s professional sport. As of January 2007, there are 702 professional sumo wrestlers in Japan. They hold six Basho’s (tournaments) per year taking about 15 or more days. Sumo Wrestlers use to be all Japanese, but in recent years, there have been more and more foreign wrestlers. The sport is very intense, as well trained wrestlers who weigh at about 150 kilograms grapple with their bare hands.
The sport of Sumo has very few rules. A light sprinkle of sand or salt is to spread around onto the ring to purify it before they begin their match, as the dohyo is a sacred place. The objective of sumo is, to force the opponent out of the inner circle or by throwing him in the dohyo. To actually lose the match it is not necessary to fall in the circle or to be pushed completely out, but the rikishi (wrestler) who touches the ground with any part of his body, his knee or even the tip of his finger, loses the match. If fist punching, hair pulling, eye gouging, choking or kicking in the chest and or neck are being used the Sumo Wrestler is then disqualified.
In order to wrestle you will obviously need two sumo wrestlers. Then each wrestler will need a mawashi (the belt or underwear that a sumo wears.) They come in variety of colors and designs. They re approximately 9.1 meters or about 30 feet long when unwrapped. Mawashi’s are more than just a garment, because in sumo you are allowed to grab your opponent by the mawashi to pull or swing him off balance. For this reason, sumo’s wear their mawashi’s in a particular way. Dohyo’s are a ring that...
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