HOME
The Info List - Malla-yuddha


--- Advertisement ---



(i) (i) (i)

MALLA-YUDDHA ( Devanagari
Devanagari
: मल्लयुद्ध, Bengali : মল্লযুদ্ধ, Odia : ମଲ୍ଲ ଯୁଦ୍ଧ, Kannada : ಮಲ್ಲಯುದ್ಧ, Telugu : మల్ల యుద్ధం malla-yuddhaṁ, Tamil : மல்யுத்தம் malyutham, Thai : มัลละยุทธ์ mạllayutṭh̒) is the traditional South Asian form of combat-wrestling created in what is now India
India
, Pakistan
Pakistan
, Bangladesh
Bangladesh
, Nepal
Nepal
and Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka
. It is closely related to Southeast Asian wrestling styles such as naban and is the ancestor of kusti .

Malla-yuddha
Malla-yuddha
incorporates grappling, joint-breaking, punching, biting, choking and pressure point striking . Matches were traditionally codified into four types which progressed from purely sportive contests of strength to actual full-contact fights known as yuddha. Due to the extreme violence, this final form is generally no longer practised. The second form, wherein the wrestlers attempt to lift each other off the ground for three seconds, still exists in south India
India
. Additionally, malla-yuddha is divided into four styles, each named after Hindu gods and legendary fighters: Hanumanti concentrates on technical superiority, Jambuvanti uses locks and holds to force the opponent into submission, Jarasandhi concentrates on breaking the limbs and joints while Bhimaseni focuses on sheer strength.

CONTENTS

* 1 Terminology * 2 History * 3 Training
Training
* 4 See also * 5 Notes * 6 References

TERMINOLOGY

Part of a series on

INDIAN MARTIAL ARTS

STYLES

Gatka
Gatka
Huyen langlon Kalaripayattu
Kalaripayattu
Mardani khel
Mardani khel
Silambam
Silambam
Sqay
Sqay
Boxing
Boxing
Musti-yuddha Wrestling
Wrestling
Malla-yuddha Pehlwani
Pehlwani
Vajra-musti

LEGENDARY FIGURES

* Agastya * Balarama
Balarama
* Bhima
Bhima
* Bodhidharma
Bodhidharma
* Duryodhana
Duryodhana
* Ganesha
Ganesha
* Hanuman
Hanuman
* Harihara
Harihara
* Jambavan
Jambavan
* Jarasandha
Jarasandha
* Kali
Kali
* Krishna
Krishna
* Kartikeya
Kartikeya
* Parashurama
Parashurama
* Shiva
Shiva
* Unniyarcha * Vajrapani
Vajrapani

NOTABLE PRACTITIONERS

* Guru Hargobind
Guru Hargobind
* Shivaji
Shivaji
* Kittur Chennamma
Kittur Chennamma
* Lakshmibai

RELATED TERMS

* Akhara
Akhara
* Hatha yoga
Hatha yoga
* Kshatriya * Nihang
Nihang
* Paika akhada * Varma kalai

* v * t * e

In Sanskrit
Sanskrit
, mallayuddha literally translates to "wrestling combat". Strictly speaking, the term denotes a single pugilistic encounter or prize-fight rather than a style or school of wrestling. It is a tatpurusha compound of malla (wrestler, boxer, athlete) and yuddha or juddho (fight, battle, conflict). The compound is first attested in the Mahabharata
Mahabharata
referring to boxing matches such as those fought by Bhima
Bhima
. Another word for a sportive wrestling match or athletic sports more generally is mallakrמḍa . The second element, krמḍa (sport, play, pastime, amusement) implies a more limited-contact style of folk wrestling rather than true grappling combat.

The term malla was historically a proper name referring to, among other things, an asura known as mallגsura and the name of a tribe from the Malla Kingdom mentioned in the Mahabharata
Mahabharata
. The name Malla was also used in this sense for an ancient mahajanapada , a Nepalese dynasty descended from them, and the Mallabhum
Mallabhum
kingdom in Bishnapur. In the Manusmriti
Manusmriti
(10.22; 12.45), it is the technical term for the offspring of an out-caste kshatriya by a kshatriya female who was previously the wife of another out-caste.

HISTORY

Bhima
Bhima
kills Jarasandha
Jarasandha
in a wrestling match, a folio from the Bhagavata Purana
Bhagavata Purana

Wrestling
Wrestling
in South Asia
South Asia
has a history of at least 5000 years making it the oldest known codified form of fighting in the region. Competitions held for entertainment were popular among all social classes, with even kings and other royalty taking part. Wrestlers represented their kings in matches between rival kingdoms; death matches before the royal court served as a way to settle disputes and avoid large-scale wars. As such, professional wrestlers were held in high regard. In pastoral communities, people would even wrestle against steers.

The first written attestation of the term mallayuddha is found in the Ramayana
Ramayana
epic, in the context of a wrestling match between the vanara King Bali and Ravana
Ravana
, the king of Lanka
Lanka
. Hanuman
Hanuman
, the god in Ramayana, is worshipped as the patron of wrestlers and general feats of strength. The Mahabharata
Mahabharata
epic also describes a wrestling match between Bhima
Bhima
and Jarasandha
Jarasandha
. Other early literary descriptions of wrestling matches include the story of Balarama
Balarama
and Krishna
Krishna
.

Stories describing Krishna
Krishna
report that he sometimes engaged in wrestling matches where he used knee strikes to the chest, punches to the head, hair pulling, and strangleholds. He defeated Kans , king of Mathura, in a wrestling match and became new king in his place. Siddhartha Gautama
Siddhartha Gautama
himself was said to be an expert wrestler, archer and sword-fighter before becoming the Buddha
Buddha
. Based on such accounts, Svinth traces press ups and squats used by Indian wrestlers to the pre-classical era. Later, the Pallava king Narasimhavarman acquired the moniker Mahamalla meaning "great wrestler" for his passion and prowess in the art.

Competitions in medieval times were announced by a kanjira -player a week beforehand. Matches took place at the palace entrance, in an enclosure set aside for games and shows. The wrestlers typically came of their own accord during public festivals, along with magicians, actors and acrobats. Other times they would be hired by nobles to compete. Winners were awarded a substantial cash prize from the king and presented with a victory standard. Possession of this standard brought national distinction.

The scene of action was gay with flags flapping, and the citizenry quickly packed the rows of benches. When the wrestlers climbed into the arena, they strutted around, flexing their muscles, leaping in the air, crying out and clapping their hands. Then they grappled, holding each other tightly around the waist, their necks resting on each other's shoulder, their legs entwined, while each attempted to win a fall or break the hold.

The Manasollasa of the Chalukya
Chalukya
king Someswara III (1124–1138) is a royal treatise on fine arts and leisure. The chapter entitled Malla Vinod describes the classification of wrestlers into types by age, size and strength. It also outlines how the wrestlers were to exercise and what they were to eat. In particular the king was responsible for providing the wrestlers with pulses, meat, milk, sugar as well as "high-class sweets". The wrestlers were kept isolated from the women of the court and were expected to devote themselves to building their bodies. The Manasollasa gives the names of moves and exercises but does not provide descriptions.

The Malla Purana is a Kula Purana associated with the Jyesthimalla , a Brahmin jāti of wrestlers from Gujarat
Gujarat
, dating most likely to the 13th century. It categorizes and classifies types of wrestlers, defines necessary physical characteristics, describes types of exercises and techniques of wrestling as well as the preparation of the wrestling pit, and provides a fairly precise account of which foods wrestlers should eat in each season of the year.

As the influence of Indian culture spread to Southeast Asia, malla-yuddha was adopted in what are now Thailand
Thailand
, Malaysia
Malaysia
, Java
Java
, and other neighbouring countries. It was popular not only among commoners but also patronized by royalty. The legendary hero Badang was said to have engaged in such a wrestling match against a visiting champion in Singapore
Singapore
.

Traditional Indian wrestling first began to decline in the north after the medieval Muslim invasions when influences from Persian wrestling were incorporated into native malla-yuddha. Under Mughal rule , courtly fashion favoured the Persianate pehlwani style. Traditional malla-yuddha remained popular in the south, however, and was particularly common in the Vijayanagara Empire
Vijayanagara Empire
. The 16th-century Jaina classic Bharatesa Vaibhava describes wrestlers challenging their opponents with grunts and traditional signs of patting the shoulders. Sculptures at Bhatkal depict wrestling matches, including female wrestlers. As part of his daily routine, the king Krishna
Krishna
Deva Raya would rise early and exercise his muscles with the gada (mace) and sword before wrestling with his favourite opponent. His many wives were tended to by only female servants and guards, and among the 12,000 women in the palace were those who wrestled and others who fought with sword and shield. During the Navaratri
Navaratri
festival, wrestlers from around the empire would come to the capital in Karnataka
Karnataka
to compete in front of the king, as described by the Portuguese traveller Domingo Paes .

Then the wrestlers begin their play. Their wrestling does not seem like ours, but there are blows (given), so severe as to break teeth, and put out eyes, and disfigure faces, so much so that here and there men are carried off speechless by their friends; they give one another fine falls too.

Malla-yuddha
Malla-yuddha
is now virtually extinct in the northern states , but most of its traditions are perpetuated in modern kusti. The descendents of the Jyesti clan continued to practice their ancestral arts of malla-yuddha and vajra-musti into the 1980s but rarely do so today. Malla-yuddha
Malla-yuddha
has survived in south India
India
however, and can still be seen in Karnataka
Karnataka
and pockets of Tamil Nadu
Tamil Nadu
today.

TRAINING

The historic Jarasandha
Jarasandha
's Akhara
Akhara
(wrestling arena) mentioned in the Mahabharata
Mahabharata
epic, at Rajgir in Bihar
Bihar
, India.

Wrestlers train and fight in a traditional arena or akhara . Matches take place in a clay or dirt pit, thirty feet across and either square or circular in shape. The soil of the floor is mixed with various ingredients, including ghee . Before training, the floor is raked of any pebbles or stones. Water is added approximately every three days to keep it at the right consistency; soft enough to avoid injury but hard enough so as not to impede the wrestlers' movements. Wrestlers begin each session by flattening the soil, an act which is considered both a part of endurance training and an exercise in self-discipline. During practice, wrestlers throw a few handfuls of dirt onto their own bodies and that of their opponents as a form of blessing, which also provides for a better grip. Once the arena has been prepared a prayer is offered to the gym's patron deity, most commonly Hanuman
Hanuman
. Every training hall has a small makeshift altar for this purpose, where incense is lit and small yellow flower garlands are offered to the god. This is followed by paying respect to the guru by touching the head to his feet, a traditional South Asian sign of respect for elders.

Many wrestlers live at their training hall but this is not always required. Traditionally revered as extensions of Hanuman
Hanuman
, all wrestlers are required to abstain from sex, smoking and drinking so the body remains pure and the wrestlers are able to focus on cultivating themselves physically, mentally and spiritually. This purity is also said to help achieve the highest level of martial and sporting perfection. A wrestler's only belongings are a blanket, a kowpeenam (loincloth) and some clothes. In this regard, they are often compared to Hindu-Buddhist holy men.

Boys typically start training at the age of ten to twelve. To avoid stunting their growth, young trainees are first taught kundakavartana, callisthenics and exercises to develop their overall strength and endurance without equipment. Exercises that employ the wrestler's own bodyweight include the sun salutation ( Surya Namaskara ), shirshasana , Hindu squat (bethak) and the Hindu press-up (danda), which are also found in hatha yoga . After acquiring the necessary power and stamina, students may begin khambhasrama, referring to exercises that use the mallakhamba or wrestler's pillar. There are a number of pillars, although the most common is a free-standing upright pole, some eight to ten inches in diameter, planted into the ground. Wrestlers mount, dismount and utilize this pole for various complex callisthenics designed to develop their grip, stamina, and strength in the arms, legs and upper-body. In a later variation, the pole was replaced with a hanging rope. Rope mallakhamba is today most commonly practiced by children as a spectator sport in itself rather than its traditional role as a form of training for wrestling.

Other training concepts include the following.

* Vyayam: Physical training in general. This includes rope climbing, log pulling, running and swimming. * Rangasrama: Refers to the wrestling itself and its techniques. Includes locks, submission holds, takedowns and, formerly, strikes. * Gonitaka: Exercises done with a large stone ring called a gar nal in Hindi
Hindi
. It can be swung, lifted, or worn around the neck to add resistance to press-ups and squats. * Pramada: Exercises performed with the gada (mace) . An exercise gada is a heavy round stone attached to the end of a meter-long bamboo stick. * Uhapohasrama: Discussion of tactics and strategies. * Mardana: Traditional massage. Wrestlers are given massages and also taught how to massage.

SEE ALSO

* Akhara
Akhara
* Boli Khela * Inbuan * Khmer traditional wrestling * Malakhra * Mallakhamba * Mukna
Mukna
* Naban * Pehlwani
Pehlwani
* Vajra-mushti

NOTES

* ^ A B C Alter, Joseph S. (August 1992b). The Wrestler's Body: Identity and Ideology in North India. Berkeley: University of California Press. * ^ A B Alter, Joseph S. (May 1992a). "the sannyasi and the Indian wrestler: the anatomy of a relationship". American Ethnologist. 19 (2): 317–336. ISSN 0094-0496 . doi :10.1525/ae.1992.19.2.02a00070 . * ^ A B Donn F. Draeger and Robert W. Smith (1969). Comprehensive Asian Fighting Arts. Kodansha International Limited. * ^ Alter, Joseph S. (May 1992a). "The "sannyasi" and the Indian Wrestler: The Anatomy of a Relationship". American Ethnologist. 19 (2): 317–336. ISSN 0094-0496 . doi :10.1525/ae.1992.19.2.02a00070 . * ^ A B J. R. Svinth (2002). A Chronological History of the Martial Arts and Combative Sports. Electronic Journals of Martial Arts and Sciences. * ^ Jeannine Auboyer (1965). Daily Life in Ancient India. Phoenix Press. p. 252. ISBN 1-84212-591-5 . * ^ Robert Sewell (1982). A Forgotten Empire: Vijayanagar. Adamant Media Corporation. ISBN 0-543-92588-9 . * ^ "The Lost Temples Of India". TLC. 1999

REFERENCES

* Martial arts
Martial arts
of India
India
by R. Venkatachalam (1999)

* v * t * e

Grappling
Grappling

GRAPPLING-BASED MARTIAL ARTS

* Aikido
Aikido
* Brazilian jiu-jitsu
Brazilian jiu-jitsu
* Catch wrestling
Catch wrestling
* Chin Na
Chin Na
* Folk wrestling
Folk wrestling
(numerous styles) * Glima * Judo
Judo
* Jujutsu * Sambo * Shoot wrestling * Shuai jiao
Shuai jiao
* Ssireum
Ssireum
* Sumo
Sumo
* Wrestling
Wrestling

GENERAL TECHNIQUES

* Bridge * Collar tie * Eye-gouging * Fish-hooking
Fish-hooking
* Holds * Hooks * Ippon Seoinage * Muay Thai
Muay Thai
clinch * Nelson hold
Nelson hold
* Overhook * Stacking * Sprawl * Sweep * Takedown * Transition * Underhook

GRAPPLING POSITIONS

* Back mount * Collar-and-elbow position * Cradle * Crucifix position
Crucifix position
* Guard * Half guard * Knee-on-stomach * Mount * North-south position * Over-under position * Pinch grip tie
Pinch grip tie
* Side control
Side control

SUBMISSION TYPES

* Chokehold
Chokehold
* Armlock
Armlock
* Wristlock
Wristlock
* Leglock
Leglock
* Small joint manipulation
Small joint manipulation
* Spinal lock * Joint lock
Joint lock
* Compression lock

COMPETITIONS

* ADCC Submission Wrestling
Wrestling
World Championship * World Jiu-Jitsu Championship * Grapplers Quest

* v * t * e

Wrestling
Wrestling
in India
India

NATIONAL LEVEL TOURNAMENTS

* Hind Kesari

REGIONAL LEVEL

* Malakhra * Malla-yuddha * Maharashtra Kesari * Pehlwani
Pehlwani
* Vajra-mushti

STADIUMS

* Khasbag Wrestling
Wrestling
Stadium * Gachibowli Indoor Stadium
Gachibowli Indoor Stadium

* v * t * e

Indian martial arts
Indian martial arts

STYLES

* Gatka
Gatka
* Huyen langlon * Kalaripayat
Kalaripayat
* Malla-yuddha * Mardani khel
Mardani khel
* Musti-yuddha * Pehlwani
Pehlwani
* Silambam
Silambam
* Sqay
Sqay
* Vajra-mushti

NOTABLE PRACTITIONERS

* Dara Singh
Dara Singh
* Deva Raya II
Deva Raya II
* Jatindra Charan Guho
Jatindra Charan Guho
* Guru Hargobind
Guru Hargobind
* Jasmine Simhalan * Maruthu Pandiyar * Kittur Chennamma
Kittur Chennamma
* Rani of Jhansi
Rani of Jhansi
* Shivaji
Shivaji
* Siddhartha Gautama
Siddhartha Gautama
* The Great Gama
The Great Gama
* Vidyut Jamwal

WEAPONS

* Bagh naka
Bagh naka
* Bichuwa
Bichuwa
* Chakram
Chakram
* Gada * Katara * Khanda * Kukri
Kukri
* Maru * Pata * Talwar
Talwar
* Trishula
Trishula
* Urumi
Urumi
* Vajra
Vajra

RELATED ARTICLES

* Akhara
Akhara
* Ankam * Ankathattu * Ayurveda
Ayurveda
* Chakra
Chakra
* Dharma-yuddha * Gurukul
Gurukul
* Kalari
Kalari
* Kshatriya * Nihang
Nihang
* Paika akhada * Prana * Siddha medicine
Siddha medicine
* Varma kalai * Yoga
Yoga

Martial arts
Martial arts
portal

* v * t * e

Martial arts
Martial arts

* List of styles * History * Timeline * Hard and soft

REGIONAL ORIGIN

* China * Europe * India
India
* Indonesia * Japan * Korea * Philippines

UNARMED TECHNIQUES

* Chokehold
Chokehold
* Clinch * Elbow strike * Headbutt * Hold * Kick
Kick
* Knee strike * Joint lock
Joint lock
* Punch * Sweep * Takedown * Throw

WEAPONS

* Archery
Archery
* Knife fighting * Melee weapons * Shooting
Shooting
* Stick-fighting
Stick-fighting
* Swordsmanship
Swordsmanship

TRAINING

* Kata
Kata
* Practice weapon * Punching bag
Punching bag
* Pushing hands
Pushing hands
* Randori * Sparring

GRAPPLING

* Brazilian jiu-jitsu
Brazilian jiu-jitsu
* Judo
Judo
* Jujutsu * Sambo * Sumo
Sumo
* Wrestling
Wrestling

STRIKING

* Boxing
Boxing
* Capoeira
Capoeira
* Karate
Karate
* Kickboxing
Kickboxing
* Muay Thai
Muay Thai
* Lethwei
Lethwei
* Sanshou * Savate * Taekwondo
Taekwondo
* Vovinam
Vovinam

INTERNAL

* Aikido
Aikido
* Aikijutsu
Aikijutsu
* Baguazhang
Baguazhang
* Tai chi * Xing Yi Quan
Xing Yi Quan

FULL CONTACT / COMBAT SPORTS

* Professional boxing
Professional boxing
* Professional kickboxing * Knockdown karate * Mixed martial arts
Mixed martial arts
* Submission wrestling
Submission wrestling

SELF-DEFENSE / COMBATIVES

* Arnis
Arnis
* Bartitsu * Hapkido
Hapkido
* Kajukenbo
Kajukenbo
* Krav Maga
Krav Maga
* MCMAP * Pencak Silat * Systema
Systema
* Wing Chun
Wing Chun
* Legal aspects

ECLECTIC / HYBRIDS

* American Kenpo
American Kenpo
* Chun Kuk Do * Jeet Kune Do
Jeet Kune Do
* Kuk Sool
Kuk Sool
* Shooto
Shooto
* Shorinji Kempo
Shorinji Kempo
* Unifight
Unifight

ENTERTAINMENT

* Fighting game
Fighting game
* Martial arts
Martial arts
film (Chanbara ) * Professional wrestling
Professional wrestling
* Wuxia
Wuxia

THE MARTIAL ART

.