Kabaddi Origin, Rules & Rise In Popularity

Last Updated on November 28, 2022 by admin

The South Asian region is one of the most populous of all regions in the world, carrying a deep-rooted history that includes a sports-rich culture. Today, while cricket keeps the limelight, one doesn’t explore India and Pakistan fully if they don’t watch a Kabaddi match, a once-in-a-lifetime experience, witnessing an unreal electric atmosphere. The sport of ‘Pahalwans,’ derived from a Persian word meaning wrestlers, has an immense cultural history in the Indo-Pak region.

The Origin of Kabaddi

Kabaddi, the team sport that originated in the Tamil Nadu state of India, is the National Sport of Bangladesh, Iran, and Nepal; it is equally popular in the Punjab province of Pakistan. Many readers might struggle to get the word’s correct pronunciation as it is not part of the English language, though it has been adopted by many. The word has its genesis in the Tamil language’s word ‘Kai-pidi,’ which directly translates to ‘holding hands.’

The Rules of the Game

Twelve players on each side, seven allowed on the field; the sport traditionally is played in a clay court, barefoot, wearing only the vest. As the modernization of the sport happened throughout time, Kabaddi is now played by many countries, the biggest tournament of which is the World Cup. Also played by women, the team contact sport has rather simple rules. Twenty minutes each of the two halves, teams face off in a square-shaped ground with a line in the middle; players from either side take turns to go to the opponent’s side to say Kabaddi, Kabaddi, Kabaddi as they prepare to tag, the player has to run back without being caught after the tag is made. The referee makes the final call, and the team with greater points in the end wins. That’s all! Sounds simple and interesting? It is even more fun to watch.

Rise in Popularity

Once considered to be only played by a faction of people who were muscular and strong, Kabaddi has come a long way, evolving as a proper international sport of plan and technique. Today, though the South Asian region still dominates, Kabaddi is popular in many countries. The discussion of it being included in the Olympics is also underway amid the game’s rising popularity. The game’s short duration attracts great viewership, and the Kabaddi, Kabaddi chants throughout the game pump up the crowd maintaining enthusiasm till the end.

One of the Oldest Sport

Dating back 4000 years, Kabaddi is one of the oldest sports ever played. Many have reasoned the no use of equipment as the reason it is one of the first-ever sports to be played. With the bare minimum required, the only integral part is the ground preparation. It must be monitored closely to ensure it is not too damp or dry. The ground managers have a rigorous task to perfect the ground condition for a worth-watching Kabaddi match. It is only a matter of time before we see Kabaddi as part of the Olympics. Are you excited to watch a Kabaddi match already?


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