Kabaddi

Kabaddi originated in the modern Tamil region of the Indian subcontinent, which is predominantly present day Tamil Nadu and parts of other South Indian states of India. Tamil empire spread this game to South East Asia during their sea trade. The word Kabaddi has been derived from the Tamil word "kai-pidi" which means "to hold hands". The exact origins of Kabaddi are disputed, with theories suggesting that Kabaddi originated from either the Vedic period of ancient India, or the Sistan region of present-day Iran. The game was said to have been popular among the Yadava people; an abhang by Tukaram stated that the god Krishna played the game in his youth, while the Mahabharata contains an account of Arjuna being able to sneak into hostile areas also take out enemies unscathed, which parallels the gameplay of kabaddi. There are also accounts of Gautama Buddha having played the game recreationally. Despite these conflicting claims, India has been credited with having helped to popularize Kabaddi as a competitive sport, with the first organized competitions occurring in the 1920's, their introduction to the programme of the Indian Olympic Games in 1938, the establishment of the All-India Kabaddi Federation in 1950, and it being played as a demonstration sport at the inaugural 1951 Asian Games in New Delhi. These developments helped to formalize the sport, which had traditionally been played in villages, for legitimate international competition.

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