The sport of Indian soil “Wrestling”

One of the oldest forms of barehanded combat of the world is Wrestling, which is considered to have originated around 15,000 years ago and its traces can be found even in ancient cave drawings. This sport has reference in all mythologies around the world. In reference to Indian epics The Mahabharata and The Ramayana both have references of wrestling.

Greek and Roman mythologies too talk about many great warriors and wrestlers of all time some of whom are even said to have wrestled the gods. The game greatly includes the use of strength, stamina, agility, and technique.

The game is very popular, and was first organized at a national event held at New York in 1888; this game became a part of the Modern Olympic Games at 1904 St. Louis Olympics.

United World Wrestling (UWW) which is the governing body of the sport was founded in the year 1912. The game is very popular in many countries of the world such as India, Greece, Russia and Turkey and many others.

Wrestling at 2016 Rio Olympics


In the modern format of the sport, the game is primarily played in two categories:

· Free Style Wrestling:-In this form of wrestling both men and women can compete in their respective weight divisions. The wrestler can use legs for attacking the opponent or for defending himself. The ultimate motive while remains to pin the opponent on the mat or score more points than the opponent.

· Greco Roman Wrestling: - This is the more traditional form of wrestling in which you can’t attack or hold the opponent below the abdomen. The aim of this form remains the same as freestyle wrestling but women are not allowed to compete in this format of wrestling.

Wrestling in India

In India, the sport is very famous in the rural as well as urban areas. It is practiced extensively in rings made up of Soil known as “Akhada” and many tournaments between villages and cities also held at regular intervals known as “Dangal”. The sport has been practiced in almost all parts of the country and is very popular among the people.

Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) is the governing body of sports in the country and was established in the year 1952. Under the leadership of Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh as its current president the game has surged new heights in the country. And with starting of Pro Wrestling League the game has become more popular in India.

India is a home to many famous wrestlers such as Sushil Kumar, Yogeshwar Dutt, Dara Singh, Sakshi Malik, and the famous Phogat Sisters that inspired many girls to join this sport. The game has glorified the country in many International Championships and also given four Olympic Medals to the country. This game has been a part of Indian culture for a long time and will continue to make the country flag rising at International levels.

Geeta Phogat 2010 Commonwealth Games Gold Medalist



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