Learn about sumo – the traditional Japanese wrestling for fat people (Part 3)

At the end of the training, they became sumo fighters and in turn were classified into different ranks in the world, depending on their competency, achievement and competition experience. Specifically, there are 6 levels: Yokozuna, Ozeki, Sekiwate, Komusubi, Maegashira and Jyuryo.

Each rank has a different outfit and style. From the Jonidan level and below, fighters wore traditional Yukata costumes and Geta sandals. On a higher level (Makushita and Sandanme) they can wear a traditional short coat over Yukata and Zori sandals. Boxers who have been recognized as Sekitori wear silk robes and also wear more elaborate buns called Oicho.

The competition rules of this sport are quite simple. The ring is just a clay circle with a diameter of 4.55 m. The winner is the person who is knocked back or knocked away from the ring by the opponent. Strings include wrestling, patting, pulling, poking, locking, and punching-in-the-beat, with no punches, kicks or bites allowed.

During the entrance ceremony there are many quite special points. This ceremony is divided into several stages. First of all, the stampede and warm-up ceremony. Next is the Shinto disinfection ceremony, also known as the salt-throwing ceremony. The two gladiators headed to the corner, picked up a handful of salt and threw it into the ring, then looked down at each other.

The unique style and power of each boxer is clearly shown at this first sight. After the Shinto ceremony ended, the two boxers used all their strength to rush into each other with the first shot called Tachi-Ai. A sumo match is fast but fierce, usually no longer than 1 minute.

The venue for the sumo matches is usually held at the Ryogoku Kokugikan national sumo stadium. Above the arena is a Tsuriyane hanging roof designed to simulate the architecture of Shinto shrines. This shows the powerful influence of Shinto religion in sumo martial arts.

Every year, in January and May, when the grand sumo tournament takes place, Ryogoku Kokugikan will attract many people who love this sport. There are spectators who can sit for 10 hours straight to watch the matches.

Currently, despite experiencing many changes of modern life and the introduction of Western culture. Currently, there are many sumo fighters from other countries such as Mongolia, Bulgaria but sumo is still a traditional culture, a religious ritual in Japanese culture.