For some reason the first day of the national Sumo Wrestling tournament in Tokyo reminded me a bit of bullfighting in Spain. There's a lot of traditional pomp, a lot of macho posturing, and some colorful costuming. And the sumo wrestlers are about as big as a bull, as well. But, in the end, it's more of a spectacle than a true sporting event. The local aficionados go in for it, but there are many, many tourists in the audience. In some ways, too, sumo reminded me of American football. Four minutes of fooling around, and about six seconds of action.
Nevertheless, here are a few action shots, too.
Believe it or not, the posturing, including the leg lifting, goes on for about four minutes before the bout starts. The bout then lasts, I'm not kidding, an average of about five seconds.
The initial push is important because sumo is really all about balance. The guy who can get it, and get a little leverage, will win.
I'm not sure what the ruling is exactly when both guys fall out of the ring, but I wouldn't want to be under them when they land.
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2 thoughts on “National Championships, Sumo Wrestling, Tokyo”
Wow! I love the photos! I’m glad you made it to the Sumo tournament. I totally enjoyed it, didn’t you?
Corinne, we did like it very much, but like I said, I almost found the spectacle to be more interesting than the actual wrestling. Our new Japanese friend, Keiko, says it’s possible to go watch them train, which I think would be more interesting than watching the actual tournament. Kris told me she found the referees more fun to watch than the wrestlers.