Africa

Kokuule (Benin)

Name of sport (game): Kokuule
Place of practice (continent, state, nation):

Benin, village name Akaradè

Gallery:

Moraingy (Madagascar)

Name of sport (game): Moraingy
Place of practice (continent, state, nation):

Madagascar

History:

The word derives from the Malagasy moraingy, a boxing fight.

Moringue (or moring, sometimes mringue) is a combat sport practiced in the Indian Ocean, originating in Madagascar under the name of moraingy. It is a form of hand-to-hand combat, including kicking, kneeling, and sometimes head shots. melee techniques are excluded. Today, we still find an authentic practice in Madagascar and Mayotte (in the Comoros archipelago).
According to some historians and some politicians (but this is widely disputed in Réunion's university circles), moringue originated in the 18th century in large sugar cane farms. The black code does not allow slaves to fight, they, from Africa and Madagascar, developed moringue, a fighting style combining music, especially percussion, and martial techniques, so as not to give birth among masters the suspicion of a capacity for revolt by only showing a tribal dance.
According to today's knowledge, it is much more likely that the Madagascan moraingy comes from the Malaysian Tomoi. It would have in all likelihood been introduced into Madagascar, throughout the settlement of the big island, by Austronesian migrations (Malaysia, Indonesia, ...).

Description:

Moringue is therefore practiced to the rhythm of percussion played during matches or training.

Moringue practitioners' attire usually consists of a white shirt and pants of the same tone. The meaning remains unknown.
However, it is not uncommon to see opponents face each other shirtless and the bottom of the pants pulled up to the calf.

In terms of technique, the fighter essentially makes use of a combination of “punches” and occasional “kicks” to defeat an opponent. Now, a wide range of punches are used by the fighter during a duel, and they are as follows:

Misto: The straight punches.
Mandraoky: The hooks.
Vangofary: The downward slanting punch.
Vangomioriky: A punch that closely resembles the famous boxing move “the uppercut”.

Furthermore, defensive moves such as “guarding and side stepping” are also used by the fighter as and when required. As for training centres/schools, there are none available around the world since this “traditional” martial art form is mainly performed in Madagascar and neighbouring islands such as Seychelles and Mauritius.

Sources of information :

Books:
André Jean Benoît, Le moringue : un « sport » traditionnel à l'île de La Réunion, Musée de Villèle, Saint-Gilles-les-Hauts, La Réunion, 1994, 32 p.
Jean-René Dreinaza, Sport, culture, culte, réussite professionnelle: Le parcours atypique d'un Réunionnais, Océan Éditions, 2013.
Sudel Fuma et Jean-René Dreinaza, Le moring, art guerrier. Ses origines franco-malgaches, sa pratique à la Réunion, Océan Éditions, 1992.
Aurélie Lallement, Le « moringue » à travers son aspect identitaire, Université de La Réunion, 1999, 143 p. (mémoire de maîtrise d'Ethnologie)

Articles:
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/11/05/world/africa/madagascar-moraingy.html

Video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1_U5tMEF4uA 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BgE9tteH1No
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vhnElkmFU3I
https://www.madacamp.com/Moraingy

Gallery:

Musangwe (South Africa)

Name of sport (game): Musangwe
Place of practice (continent, state, nation):

South Africa

History:

Every Christmas since the 1800s, boys and men collect in the Tshifudi cattle dip to test their mettle. The Venda tribe in North East South Africa compete in a tournament held in Limpopo Province of North South Africa. With temperature reaching over 30 degrees C, men compete with little shade and shelter against others to prove themselves not only to others, but to themselves. This used to be a ritual to select the bravest warriors, but in the modern day is used to usher young boys into manhood. It integrates a notion of identity and belonging. This is Musangwe.

Traditionally women could not fight or attend, but in the modern days they have been known to do both. Women usually stay after the fights are over to clean up the blood from the fields. There is a story of the most famous Musangwe fighter, Frans Malala. This man could kill anyone with a single punch. The story says that Frans, participating in a Musangwe bout, punched and killed his opponent.To prove that the death was accidental and that he in fact was innocent, the investigating magistrate ordered him to punch a donkey. If he killed the donkey in one punch, the magistrate would believe Frans and he would be free to go. Frans punched and killed the donkey, and subsequently was released of any charges.

Description:

Combatants range from 9 years old to 90 years old. The fighters are split into different groups. Mambibi is for young boys 9-12. Next is Rovhasize or Rova for teenagers 13-18. These groups compete early in the morning until it gets later and it’s time for the groups of people to come to see. The fighters aged 18 and over are called,” Ngwenya” or Crocodiles. Fighters aged 35-45 years are called the “Masters” and those over 45 are referred to as “Legends”. Rivals are separated according to the side of the Lundevine River on which they reside. Northerners are always paired with Southerners in fights. Winning is done if a fighter bleeds, gets knocked out, or surrenders. Some fighters cover themselves in Muti, a traditional medicine extracted from trees and other plants. The word is derived from the Zulu word “Umuti”, meaning,”tree”, or in some cases refers to traditional medicine in general. Some fighters believe that one can counter muti by covering oneself in urine. A man can challenge another competitor by walking up to an individual or group with both fists held forward in from of him. If he approaches a group, a challenge can be accepted by anyone if they come forward with both fist held out in front. Sometimes some are unwilling to fight and will shove another person out of the group forcing them to meet the challenger. This practice is actually quite common.

Looking like regular boxing, the fist fighting escalates into unnatural, uncontrollable, and unpredictable pugilism. Musangwe also allows head butting, knees, and clinching. Fighting a knocked down opponent is against the rules, but people have been known to stomp on their opponent and taunt them to gain crowd support. Once a downed competitor regains his composure the fighting starts back up. When a fighter wants to admit defeat, he raises both hands in the air in surrender. Winning the fights doesn’t normally offer any money or a reward. Fighters choose to participate in Musangwe because it feels empowering.

Importance (for practitioners, communities etc.):

Musangwe is a bare knuckle boxing competition that has turned from a passage into manhood into a sport for molding the character of young boys. The ritual is now used to teach young men to be brave in a time of joblessness and economic hardships. The competition is also teaches young boys to keep out of crime, how to respect women, and to fight only other men. The tradition is strictly bare knuckled and no gloves are allowed.

Sources of information :

Video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3udOORx2cvc

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Intonga (South Africa)

Name of sport (game): Intonga
Name in native language: Intonga
Place of practice (continent, state, nation):

South Africa

Sources of information :

Video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c0AIvWjlPG4 

N'oborro (Senegal)

Name of sport (game): N'oborro
Place of practice (continent, state, nation):

Senegal

Isinaphakade Samathongo (South Africa)

Name of sport (game): Isinaphakade Samathongo
Name in native language: Isinaphakade Samathongo
Place of practice (continent, state, nation):

South Africa

History:

The Isinaphakade Samathongo is an esoteric ancestral combat sport practiced by the Zulus and the Xhosa in South Africa. This system emphasizes powerful combat techniques and an ethical philosophy. It is used as an initiation to the caste of priest-warriors of the two tribes.

Kuta or Hikuta

Name of sport (game): Kuta or Hikuta
Place of practice (continent, state, nation):

Egypt

History:

An ancient Egyptian boxing art still used today. The basis for Hikuta is the ancient art of Kuta.
Kuta was initially developed by the bodyguards of the ancient Pharoahs in Egypt as the most efficient and effective way to defend their king. Kuta remained top secret amongst the Asian rulers for over a thousand years until military soldiers found out the secrets. Today Kuta is the basis for the art of Hikuta

Sources of information :

Video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ecDfJcfPpmg&feature=emb_logo 

Nguni (South Africa)

Name of sport (game): Nguni
Name in native language: donga or dlala 'nduku
Place of practice (continent, state, nation):

South Africa

History:

This tradition is one which arguably developed in societies, cultures and civilisations that used herding as part of their systems of survival; where there are cows, there are stick-fighters.

Description:

Nguni stick-fighting is a martial art traditionally practiced by teenage Nguni herdboys in South Africa. Each combatant is armed with two long sticks, one of which is used for defense and the other for offense. Little armor is used.

Although Nguni/Xhosa styles of fighting may use only two sticks, variations of Bantu/Nguni stick-fighting throughout Southern Africa incorporate shields as part of the stick-fighting weaponry. Zulu stick-fighting uses an isikhwili or attacking stick, an ubhoko or defending stick and an ihawu or defending shield.

The object is for two opposing warriors to fight each other to establish which of them is the strongest or the "Bull" (Inkunzi). In modern times this usually occurs as part of the wedding ceremony where warriors from the bridegroom's household and area welcome warriors from the bride's household and area to meet to "get to know each other", other groups of warriors may also be welcome to join in. Warriors do this by engaging in combat with one another. An "induna" or War Captain / Referee from each group of warriors keeps his crew in check and keeps order between fighters.

Sources of information :

Articles:

Coetzee, Marié-Heleen. (2002) "Zulu Stick Fighting: A Socio-Historical Overview," http://ejmas.com/jalt/jaltart_Coetzee_0902.htm

 

Videos:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U1qrVYh7E1k

Gallery:

Iskandarâni (Egypt)

Name of sport (game): Iskandarâni
Place of practice (continent, state, nation):

Egypt

History:

Iskandarâni is an Egyptian struggle which has now disappeared. Its origins are very old and it comes from the city of Alexandria (Iskander is the Arabic name for Alexander).

Description:

It was taught in the form of dances (Raqs) in the popular district of Ras-El-Din. His practice was broken down into "mimes" or involved four main actions: 1- Stabbing 2- Slashing 3- Cutting the throat 4- Hitting with the head.

The latter technique was called "Roosiya". The objective of the "Roosiya" was to give extremely violent blows using body weight. Without any defensive utility, the "roosiya" had a mainly offensive function ... Among the other techniques of Iskandarâni, the "dancer" also had to execute a dangerous figure with a dagger by striking themselves on the body to show their dexterity in attacking "strike zones". Some fights were mimed by straightening the thumb and forefinger of the hand to simulate a stabbing weapon.

Laamb (Senegal)

Name of sport (game): Laamb
Name in native language: Njom in Serer, Lutte sénégalaise or Lutte avec frappe in French, Laamb in Wolof, Siɲɛta in Bambara
Place of practice (continent, state, nation):

Senegal

Sources of information :

Articles:
https://www.sbnation.com/longform/2013/3/12/4072478/senegalese-wrestling-laamb-zoss-profile 
https://fotografwpodrozy.pl/gdzie-fotografowac/zapasy-laamb-senegal/ 

Video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YdtFY7oGAUQ 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TPULVY2qp4Y 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y06SGyk_mtg 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RR-b9gysMEc 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T2V8mJwVUIg 

Gallery:

Nuba (Sudan)

Name of sport (game): Nuba
Place of practice (continent, state, nation):

Sudan

Sources of information :

Articles:
https://www.occasionalwitness.com/content/nuba/02Culture04wrestling.htm  
https://edition.cnn.com/2015/09/01/sport/nuba-wrestling-olympics-2020/index.html 
https://afrikhepri.org/en/invention-of-wrestling-and-martial-arts-in-africa/  
https://www.csmonitor.com/World/Africa/2015/0619/In-Sudan-Nubans-challenge-prejudice-in-the-wrestling-ring  
http://photoneer.de/return-to-sudan/  
https://face2faceafrica.com/article/nuba-wrestling 

Video:
A History Of Ancient Nubian Wrestling - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DiMofeVeelo  
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lFXjFJcxSIw  
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f0GQMMC4Jg8  
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NApVnfM_BK4 

Gallery:

Nubian stick (Sudan)

Name of sport (game): Nubian Stick
Place of practice (continent, state, nation):

Sudan

Description:

The Nubian stick is actually more of a tournament, but can be seen as a wrestling. Participants are given a staff and shield as weapons for combat. This sport is still practiced in late fall and early harvest. On the other hand, it is prohibited during the growing season because injuries could make young people uncomfortable working.
The fight is part of the ceremonies that follow the harvest, during which we give thanks to God for a good harvest. The event always begins with an invitation from one tribe to another. The guests of the tribe can have their messengers just for the sake of provocation and excitement. The hosts have to scramble to find theirs, and after that they start the fight.
Another way to start the competition is with a symbolic provocation. For example, a man aged 17 to 20 can hold the hands of his rival's fiancée for a few minutes, or cut his bead bracelets. When her so-called husband learns of this, he immediately announces the confrontation by tying a handkerchief or a piece of cloth over his competitor's house overnight, so as to warn the person concerned that he must prepare himself to begin immediately. the next morning.
The fight can take place between two fighters from different villages, or between two villages fighting as a group.

Current status:

Practiced

Libanda (Congo)

Name of sport (game): Líbanda
Name in native language: Líbanda
Place of practice (continent, state, nation):

Democratic Republic of Congo

Description:

Libanda is a form of Marital Arts practiced by the Mongo people of the Democratic Republic of Congo, It is believed to have originated from people trying to emulate the fighting style of the Gorilla. It is a wrestling style that involves multiple fighters positioned in a circular ring with the goal being to body slam an opponent into the ground. The grappling style of Libanda is also believed to be an ancestor of Capoeira taken to Brazil by slaves.
As in free wrestling, it is practiced in a circle and the goal is to put your opponent on the ground using the whole body and with the help of a wide variety of catches, projections, sweeps, etc.
Originally, shots were allowed (hands, feet, head ...) but these naturally tend to be forgotten during training and competitions; the two competitors will seek a fault or the right moment by swinging their arms forward in order to grab the opponent.
This fight is carried out to the rhythm of percussions, accompanied by songs of bravery and defiance, dance figures, magical practices and the evocation of the ancients. In reference to the leopard, symbol of the líbanda, the wrestlers paint their entire body with white spots of paint. More than a combat sport, the líbanda is also akin to a rite of passage: victory is a triumph over oneself.

Current status:

Practiced

Sources of information :

Video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AOaWYLdx7wY&t=472s 

Gallery:

Nxai (aka Rwabi) (Botswana)

Name of sport (game): Nxai (aka Rwabi)
Name in native language: Nxai (aka Rwabi)
Place of practice (continent, state, nation):

Botswana

Description:

The objective is to throw and slap the ground with a prepared stick such that it bounces up and forward propelling it forward and as far as possible.

Kayti (Kenya)

Name of sport (game): Kayti
Place of practice (continent, state, nation):

Kenya

Maabza (Algeria)

Name of sport (game): Maabza
Name in native language: Maabza or Al-Maabza or Al-Qarash
Place of practice (continent, state, nation):

Algeria

History:

It is a traditional sport known since Antiquity under the name (Al-Maabza or Al-Qarash) in which traditional clothing is observed.
As for it is a form of traditional Tuareg fight. Often practiced during ceremonies and festivals, it is close to traditional Senegalese and Gambian fights, which draws on Tuareg military history.

Description:

It is a traditional sport practiced by young people and adults.
This sport is played in a circle with a diameter of 03 meters, as well as on sandy ground or in a room on an artificial carpet.
This sport has a major referee and an assistant referee.
The battle begins after the appropriate situation is taken arm in arm barefoot, that is, by joining the wrestlers. In case of separation, they return to the first position, then the referee gives the starting signal, and from there each tries to drop their opponent to the ground, and as soon as one of the fighters falls, he announces the winner.
In case of side fall, the fight will be repeated
Traditional clothing is compulsory.
It is forbidden to hit with the hand, the head and the legs. If the wrestler do it, the referee stops the fight and gives a warning to the wrestler, then gives the signal to continue the fight. The referee stops the fight if a wrestler receives a second warning.

Current status:

Practiced

Contacts:

Fédération Algérienne Des Jeux et Sports Traditionnels
Address: Rue du 05 juillet Bp :94 Béchar
Tel/Fax: 049/23/47/70 – 049/23/05/80
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Site web : www.fajst-dz.net 

Federation algerienne de jeux logo

Gallery:

Nzango (Congo)

Name of sport (game): Nzango
Name in native language: Nzango or Dzango, Kange
Place of practice (continent, state, nation):

Democratic Republic of Congo
Sport practiced exclusively by women

History:

"Nzango" literally means "foot game" in the local Lingala language. This name is used in the western part of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. In the eastern part, it’s called Kange.
Nzango originates from Congo. It had been practiced by primary school children and in Brazaville it later became a sport discipline managed by a Federation led by Blanche Akouala. The efforts of Guy Noel Mpassi Titov, an employee of Ministry of Health and Vice President of Fédération Congolaise de Nzango, were an impulse to transform the game into the sport. The sport increased its popularity from few regions of the country to nationwide and international popularity (eg. Gabon and Cameroon).
Modern Nzango was approved by ministerial decree in 2005 in Congo-Brazzaville. Since then, official rules have been created, official matches have been organized, and in 2009 the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) has also included them in its sporting legislation.
It is considered the national sport of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Description:

Nzango is a simple game for girls, which initially had been played during school breaks. It has gradually been gaining the reputation of sport recently. Codified with precise rules, it is played on a pitch measuring 8 meters by 16 meters, marked with a red central stripe and two blue ones on the sides. It’s played by two teams of 17 - eleven players and six reserves. A game lasts 50 minutes.
The rules may seem complicated but in fact, they are relatively simple. The goal of the game is to copy the movements of the dancing opponent as accurately as possible. At the beginning of the game, the teams choose a foot by which to attack, with one team side taking the right foot, and the other team side the left foot.
Teams attack or defend alternately with the rhythm of clapping and songs chanted by all participants with the accompanying clapping. The singing determines the rhythm of competition. Slow causes movements of the players to be more similar, along with the acceleration, the competition also gains momentum and becomes more difficult.
Teams are facing each other at a distance of about 2 meters.
Then the first two players step forward. The goal of the player from the attack team is to move forward on their designated attack foot at the same time as their opponent does.
Such movements are invariably preceded by ever more elaborate jumps -- as you can't lose a point while both feet are in the air.
The referee assesses whether the players have mimicked the opponent's dance steps. The referee awards points (called "feet") to players who place their feet just like their opponents. Gradually, players are eliminated, and only one player remains on the pitch. Yellow and red cards are used to punish those who break the rules of the game.
The winning team is the one that collects the most "feet" during the entire match.
The sport can be also practiced by people with disabilities.

Current status:

Practiced sport
The Nzango Federation has been organizing a championship since 2010. Nzango was demonstrated during the African Games in Brazzaville in 2015 (2015 All Africa Games).
The Democratic Republic of the Congo has adopted a new sport discipline called Nzango n 2001. The President of the Nzango Kinshasa League, Victorine Mbombo, wants to make Nzango a sport discipline such as football, basketball or volleyball. Already more than 25 teams have been registered at the headquarters of the Nzango Provincial League located in the municipality of Gombe. The Kinshasa province is divided into two leagues: the Kinshasa East league and the Kinshasa West league. President Victorine Mbombo is a supporter of promotion of this sport.

Contacts:

Association Sportive De Nzango - https://www.facebook.com/SLIMasNZANGO/

logo

Fédération congolaise de Nzango - https://www.facebook.com/pages/category/Sports-Event/F%C3%A9d%C3%A9ration-congolaise-de-Nzango-801290676709356/

logo1

Sources of information :

Nzango - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D683lb1Qik8
Nzango- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZrShLWsKH3c
Nzango - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZvQG-xuPV3o&feature=youtu.be
Article about o Nzango from 29th September 2015 - http://www.emirates247.com/offbeat/crazy-world/nzango-crazy-dance-game-ready-to-rock-you-2015-09-29-1.604967
Article in Le Congolais „Nzango – Un Jeu De Récré Congolais Présenté Aux Jeux Africains” z 25th September 2015 - http://www.lecongolais.cd/nzango-un-jeu-de-recre-congolais-presente-aux-jeux-africains/
Information on Dzango in „Historical Dictionary of Republic of the Congo” -https://books.google.pl/books?id=PNH3y9GFUNwC&pg=PA325&lpg=PA325&dq=Nzango&source=bl&ots=Jci1g8uF1O&sig=HztmBNwaOYcdlyWEDD496ioF0VQ&hl=pl&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwi-_Ke4u7fYAhUpJpoKHRAwBiU4FBDoAQgtMAE#v=onepage&q=Nzango&f=false

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Kipura (Democratic Republic of the Congo)

Name of sport (game): Kipura
Place of practice (continent, state, nation):

Democratic Republic of the Congo

Description:

Kipura is a traditional Congolese wrestling whose movements are inspired by cockfighting.

Sources of information :

Video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f8hMQXFGtI8 

Gallery:

Maratabin or Maratabeen (Morocco)

Name of sport (game): Maratabin or Maratabeen
Place of practice (continent, state, nation):

Marocco

Sources of information :

Video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9jx-uE8AML4&list=PLveDEYLgJCILj6m6mmaLaq840IsquKQVK&index=2&t=0s 

Kokowa or Kokawa (Niger)

Name of sport (game): Kokowa or Kokawa
Place of practice (continent, state, nation):

Niger

Current status:

Practiced

Importance (for practitioners, communities etc.):

The traditional fight, kokowa in Hausa language, is a popular dual fight practiced in Niger. The whole community participates in it with a spirit of conviviality before, during and after, which gives it all its playful, cultural and religious significance. Famous wrestlers nomadize from village to village accompanied by musicians, marabouts and other buffoons to fight after the harvest.
In history, the wrestlers of the 1950s, because of their mystical and physical forces and their techniques, remain living legends.
Traditional wrestling owes its aura to the simplicity of its practice, the accessibility of combat for the rich and the poor, its resistance to modern sports and above all the fact that it remains a rural sport still retaining its playful and cultural aspects. Customary and political powers, marabouts and fetishists, musicians and singers, buffoons and Olympic experts coexist in the psychological preparation of the wrestlers before, during and after the fights in order to build their confidence and increase the chances. The struggle is the framework par excellence of cultural and bodily expression, rites, beliefs, music, oral poetry of the communities. The wrestler who wrestles is the hero of his group, of his region.

Sources of information :

Video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=85mImoYDFvA
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V6QtgEf__H4
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_KnPkv0BrFQ
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=33aCOaU1iAk

Gallery:

Mkazo Ncha Shikana (Senegal)

Name of sport (game): Mkazo Ncha Shikana
Place of practice (continent, state, nation):

Senegal

Olva (Senegal)

Name of sport (game): Olva
Place of practice (continent, state, nation):

Senegal

Contact

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Fundacja IRSiE

30/63, Świętokrzyska street
Warsaw, 00-116

traditionalsports@sportinstytut.pl

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