Levantamiento de Arado (Canary Islands))

  • Name of sport (game): Levantamiento de Arado
  • Name in native language: Levantamiento de Arado
  • Place of practice (continent, state, nation):

    Canary Islands

  • History:

    Its origin is related to the need of the human being to measure his strength, using for it, the materials that he finds in his environment.
    After the Conquest, new ways of exploiting the land came to the Island, which meant the introduction into the agricultural landscape of a new element: the Roman-type plow.
    With the plow, el Canario (A resident of the Canary Islands) created a curious practice consisting of lifting said element, in a show of strength and skill. This was done at rest time, after plowing.
    It was also the case that in agricultural areas, after the work or slaughter, there were exhibitions of lifting the plow, as well as Canarian fighting.
    This sport modality is clearly a test of strength and skill. The promoter of this sport was the famous wrestler Don José Rodríguez Franco (1912-1991) better known as el Faro de Maspalomas.

  • Description:

    The lifting technique consists of two foundations: physical strength and dexterity, also called "geito" or "maña".
    Hand placement is important because uncontrolled force can seriously injure the lifter. One of the hands is placed at one end with the palm down, which is directed as if it were a kind of rudder, while the other is placed more forward with the palm up, providing the necessary balance to combine movements.
    The legs must be supported in the direction of the grate. The lift is started by lying backwards as a counterweight to the plow.
    The work of the arms and the use of the thigh as a support point for the realization of the lever, are essential in the lifting task.
    The descent of the plow is also very important because it cannot be lowered abruptly, since this supposes an imbalance of forces that can cause a blow to the athlete.

    The plow consists of the following parts: Timón (ruder), Cabeza (head), Yugo (yoke), Frontiles, Guijada and Reja.
    Timón: it is a pole four meters long with a diameter of 0.10 meters. At one end it conforms to the head, and that is what the earth is plowed with.
    Yugo: is a piece of wood that fits the neck of cows or oxen to pull the plow.
    Plows vary depending on the land to be plowed and the draft animal in question.
    The average measurement ranges between 4.5 and 5 meters in length, its weight is around 70 kilograms, plus the yoke, the gable and the guijada.
    After the glory days, given by Don José to the Canarian public, the new generations took over, among them are Cástor Castro Morales who not only agrees to lift the plow but also usually places one end of it in the chin and when it descends the plow is placed at half height, greeting the public with it.
    On the other hand is Santiago Santana Rodríguez, grandson of El Faro. He started at the young age of 12 watching his grandfather's displays. Santiago among other particularities when lowering the plow makes a 360 degree turn at half height in order to greet the public.

  • Current status:

    In recent times, lifting the plow has been incorporated into indigenous Canarian sports, exhibiting it at fairs and congresses of indigenous sports.